My wife and I are about to put some decks on our house, and after much
research, we had pretty much enthusiastically decided to use ipe for
the deck boards. However, our builder just told us about something
called Tigerdeck (also known as goncalo alves) which appears to be
very similar to ipe, and yet our builder can get Tigerdeck for about
20% less than ipe.
Now we are wondering how Tigerdeck compares with Ipe -- any pros or
cons we should know about? Are they really just about the same
product? Does anyone in this newsgroup have any experience with
Tigerdeck that they would care to share? Does anyone in this
newsgroup have any experience with the use of this material as deck
I'm a little surprised that goncalo alves can be found at lower prices than
ipe. It's considered a fairly expensive material. Major differences: GC is
more highly figured; Slightly less durable: Modestly easier to work (but still
Make sure you get only heartwood for best durability.
"The test and the use of man's education is that he finds pleasure in the
exercise of his mind." Jacques Barzun
I'm even MORE surprised that it is even thought of as decking material !!
I've got some '1x4' pieces 'laid away' that I picked up many years ago . . .
I've only heard of it for good quality handgun 'stocks' . As in S&W
Mod 29, Mod 25-5, etc.
decks on our house, . . . our builder just told us about something
than ipe. It's considered a fairly expensive material. . . . highly
+ + +
There is a fair chance it is one of the other Astronium species. Two species
of Astronium have figured wood (goncalo alves), but many others have
unfigured wood (ususally). The latter are sold under a variety of
names, and occasonally as goncalo alves. The unfigured wood is a lot less
rare, and should be fairly good for decking.
I had never heard of Tigerdeck, but a few minutes with Google prove that the
above is right:
email@example.com (Dolchas) wrote in message
I'm surprised you can find goncalo alves for less than ipe. I
recently paid a fair amount for a few boards of nicely colored goncalo
alves that I'm using for a small project. Quite a bit more than ipe.
Goncalo alves is a beautiful wood, and I found it machined very nicely
(seemed significantly softer than ipe) ... a little tricky to glue up
(used acetone and gorilla glue per comments on the wreck by Steve
Knight and others).
I no not know about "goncalo alves" out door properties.
But, Ipe has a 50 year life expectancy outdoors and bugs do not like the
Also Ipe is very easy on you body parts as it does not splinter once sanded
Have you considered some of the man-made materials? Cheaper. Much
easier to work hence cheaper to install. Very durable. No finishing
and re finishing. Does not contribute to tropical deforestation.
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