There seems to be some, but not a lot of ipe data already on this newsgroup. I'm preparing to have a ~500 ft^2 deck replaced using 1x6 ipe (the old deck was 2x6 cedar). Because there is almost no local experience using ipe I've had to spec out everything myself to decking contractors. I think I have most of the topics covered (anchorseal, ss fasteners, carbide teeth on saws). I'd really appreciate if anyone could provide their suggestions on:
1.DRILLING: What is the optimal drill type for drilling & counterboring for 3/8" plugs? My current ideas are: a. drilling two separate holes: 3/8" carbide forstner bit for the plugs and 3/16" carbide brad tipped for the screws or b. HSS drill bit/countersink/counter bore kit from Lee Valley Any recommendations on material/drill type/ease of sharpening?
2. My existing deck is 25 years old. The framing is 2x10 treated @ 16" centers and upon inspection it looks very sound- no rot/soft spots. I'm not sure how to evaluate how many years may be left in it. Of course, I don't want to put a 40 year deck on a frame with 10-15 years left on it. Does anyone have real experience with life expectancy of 1980 treated lumber vs. today's treated lumber? These joists look a lot straighter than what I've seen lately at Home Depot. Cost to reframe is ~$2500 using 2x8's.
Any and all advice from experienced ipe users is welcomed! Thank you.