Wood for exterior trim and furniture

Hi,
I am a novice to woodworking and have some question. Appreciate if some knowledgable person in this group can help me.
I am looking into making some ginger bread trims and building some outdoor furniture. My question is, since I am going to prime and paint the items, can I use cheap construction wood, instead of more expensive pressure treated fir or red cedar ? I heard that pine can also be left exposed to the elements after painting. I am thinking of using pine for the trim work, and construction lumber for the furniture.
Can these wood last 10, 15 years with a coat of paint every other year ? Or I must use rot resistant materials to start with ?
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On 11 Oct 2004 17:19:27 -0700, snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com (JW) wrote:

Use White Oak, Cedar, Cypress, Mahogany, Redwood, or Vinyl.
Pine and Fir will rot in 15 minutes, if the paint stays on in the first place. <G>
Since you're painting, you can use lower grades, no need to spend for furniture (FAS) grade. Do it right, and you'll only do it once.
Barry
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There is LOTS of pine trim on the outsides of houses. If it's kept painted, and if it's designed so that water can't sit on it, it can last a long time. HOWEVER, gingerbread is so hard to paint and keep painted that I would certainly prefer to use something more rot resistant.
For the furniture the issue is often that the paint gets rubbed off the bottoms of the legs and water soaks up into the wood leading to rot. Other places can have the same problem (joints are a particular issue if water can get in and sit there), but the bottoms of the legs are usually the worst because they get abraded every time the furniture is moved and they sit on the ground. There's lots of outdoor pine furniture out there and it will last a fair while if it's carefully maintained, but again, if I were putting the work into it I would try to use a more rot resistant wood.
- Bruce

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I put plastic feet on the bottom of my outdoor furniture. May not be perfect, but I figure it will help add a few years before rot starts. Ed
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Thanks everyone for responding. My other question: home builder in my area tends to use some pine for some exterior trims and then paint them white. If I want to do the same thing, is there any particular type of pine I should use ? Or they are all the same ?
I agree with one gentleman who said with the work put into making furniture, it is wise to start with something more rot resistant. So I have my mind set on using red cedar for furniture.
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snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com (JW) wrote in

Consider the work that goes into the trim on your house, the weather to which it is exposed, and the maintenance it will require, when you make choices. Consider also that it may take scaffolding or ladders to do that maintenance.
Consider also that few of get younger with passing years....
The best wood for trim may not be 'wood'.
Patriarch
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patriarch wrote:

Or possibly one of the concrete-with-leaves tropicals.

--
--John
Reply to jclarke at ae tee tee global dot net
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Much of the original gingerbread trims were made from basswood, cedar and others. As for making your own out of less expensive wood, I think it would make a difference where you live. Wood trim will react to moisture or the lack of it differently in Arizona, Hawaii, Florida or Maine.
The drier the climate, the less important the type of wood becomes. In any case, good prep, primer, paint and on-going maintenance we insure a long lasting project.
Dave

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The thing which is going to kill wood outside is *continued* exposure to moisture. One place where that is tough to avoid is the feet of furniture because if the ground contact. Pine legs *will* rot over time.
Exterior trim is less of a hazard, but that still requires good design (slant horizontal surfaces and no wood within 18 of the ground) and installation (flashing, back priming, end priming, and calking) to will go a long way. You Want to prevent water from getting trapped or absorbed into end-grain.
-Steve

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