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Unread 07-02-2019, 05:58 PM   #76
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I think even Kevin's 5 years might be optimistic with today's selection of cedar boards untreated in that application.

If I understand the plan for those boards to be vertical and touching the ground, I'd want not only to seal them well with an oil-based sealer, but I'd want to stand them on end in a shallow container of said sealer for a while before applying the sealer to the remainder of the boards so's to let the end grain soak up as much sealer as possible.

I favor Penofin sealers in the red can.
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Unread 07-03-2019, 11:35 AM   #77
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they were be placed horizontally as per the attached picture. This is not my deck, rather a pic that is similar to what mine will look like. The cedar will run along the ground (and probably be an inch into the ground).
Having said that, should I soak horizontal the edges of the cedar? I am also going to use STONE DUST in the trench.

EDIT: Never mind, I was just at home depot and the composite that I used for my deck is on sale, I will use that as a bumper instead!
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Unread 07-03-2019, 02:15 PM   #78
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STONE DUST or NOT?

I am still unsure about using STONE DUST. The pro desk at HD said just pack the 2x4 (that sits behind the skirt horizontally on the ground) is better to pack in with just dirt since it needs to be stationary. What are you thoughts?

ALSO, I have aluminum spikes to hold the inside horizontal 2x4 in place as well...
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Unread 07-03-2019, 03:49 PM   #79
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I, for one, don't know what "stone dust" might be in this context nor why/how it would be used.
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Unread 07-03-2019, 08:49 PM   #80
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oh sorry :
https://www.homedepot.ca/product/qui...5kg/1000149538
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Unread 07-03-2019, 09:14 PM   #81
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While I could probably figure out what "stone dust" would be, David, I still have no idea why a fella would want to use it in your application. What is your purpose with it?

And looks like it comes from the other side of your river, non?
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Unread 07-04-2019, 08:03 AM   #82
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I was thinking since the 2x4 would be sitting in the ground that the stone dust might be better for leaching of the moisture from around the 2x4 while it is in the ground. The pro desk at homedepot said not to bother. I was just looking for a second opinion.
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Unread 07-04-2019, 08:08 AM   #83
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You're using pressure treated wood for the 2x4 that's on the ground, are you not? The kind that indicates it's for "ground contact?"
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Unread 07-04-2019, 09:22 AM   #84
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yes, it is Pressure Treated and I am also painting it with Behr premium weatherproofing stain (two coats).

https://www.behr.com/consumer/produc...ain-and-sealer
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Unread 07-04-2019, 09:53 AM   #85
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If it's newly treated, that stain is not gonna do much, but I don't suppose it will hurt anything.

This piece is not visible, right?
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Unread 07-04-2019, 11:14 AM   #86
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It will be on the inside of the skirt under the deck. I am not sure if the pressure treated says "ground contact", I just purchased the only pressure treated 2x4 they had at HD. Also it will not be completely buried in the ground, just sitting on it and packed in on the sides.

So do you think just packing it in place with dirt will be enough?
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Unread 07-20-2019, 11:55 AM   #87
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decking step question - which wood to use?

A year ago when I started this project, I was being what I thought was proactive and bought wood in advance for my wrap around step. This would be a single step only.

I purchased:
2x6x16 - 4 pieces
2x6x12 - 4 pieces

Since my backyard is graded and slopes down, my original intention (and wrongly) was to build up the area and therefore the 2x6x12 (or 16) would have worked well. After doing research and talking to knowledgeable people (and it doesn't take much to be more knowledgeable than me), I realised that building up the landscape isn't the way to go, that over time the newly built up land would end up leveling out with the changing seasons and precipitation. Therefore that means digging down and level out the land (see pic).

Lowest point from grass to deck - 17 inches
Highest point from grass to deck - 21 inches

1) At the lowest point (before digging), it is 21 inches from the grass surface to the deck. I am assuming I will have to dig down approx 2 inches (making it 23) and fill it in with stone dust or gravel and tamper it down (and possible patio stones or bricks). So I am approximating & assuming (and maybe wrongly) about 22 inches after from gravel to top of the deck.

If I am right, this would mean a 2x6x12 would require an air step of 16 inches for a person reach the top
(6 inch board + 16 inches = 22 inches) - see pic.
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2) At the highest point and which I am going to make everything level with, before digging, is approximately 17 inches from the grass to the deck. That means I need to dig down approx 6 inches and then add to that using gravel and tampering it to make it the same as the lowest point (what the heck am I a going to do with all that fill???) and perform the same as the above step to make it all level.

If I am right, and of course I am probably not, I am left with the unenviable task for doing one of two things :

1) buying all new wood (2x12x16 and 2x12x12) and spending $280 (after tax) on it (and not being able to use the original wood - wasted money).
This would make the AIR STEP not the original 16", but instead 10" (12" board height + 10 inches step = 22 inches).
** I also have composite material over the step and that is about an inch high.

or

2) Stack the ORIGINAL 2x6x12 and 2x6x16 VERTICALLY to create the same amount (6+6=12). I am not sure if stacking 2x6x12 vertically will be a no-no in this case. I would of course support the stacking with additional wood. The step would be have spacers even 16 inches as well (see pic)

this post has taken me well over 2 hours to get right, but I am sure it is still going to be confusing or I have missed something. I am asking if #2 is a permissible way to go rather than buying all new wood.
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Unread 01-31-2020, 12:13 PM   #88
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Well, I am hoping someone can help me with an issue I have noticed on my deck skirting, here is a bit of background first:

I purchased PT fence boards a couple of years ago, kept them in my house (for about a year so they dried) and then used them for the skirting around my deck - installed in the middle of summer. I knew that boards shrink when they dry, so I thought that having them dry first (for about a year inside my house) would have reasonably made them about the size they were going to stay once installed. I also know that in the summer things expand - and in the winter, things contract. So please explain this:

It is the middle of winter here. I went outside and looked at my snow covered deck and found in about 6-7 places the skirt has bowed out - almost as if the boards have expanded during the winter! Boards are arcing out, pushing against each other...how is that possible? I know I am not living at the nexus of the universe, so there is a reasonable explanation for it, but I am baffled. I would have expected them to shrink, if anything, but not expand.
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Unread 01-31-2020, 12:31 PM   #89
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A photo would certainly help here, David.

These boards (the ones that were formerly gonna be cedar?) were installed with the ends butted together?

What is the length of these PT boards?

Did you check the moisture content after they had been stored indoors in conditioned space?

Did you check the moisture content today?
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Unread 02-01-2020, 12:27 AM   #90
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I’m wondering the same as CX.

I’m picturing the skirt boards oriented vertically, and touching the boards to either sides...like typical fence pickets. Is this correct?

Wood expands and contracts in its width far more with changes to its moisture content than changes to its temperature. Wood is hygroscopic...it is always seeking moisture to reach equilibrium with the air around it. Even if it doesn’t directly get rained on, it will gain or loose moisture content with the change in relative humidity.

I think this may be as simple as your boards have grown because the average moisture content of your interior heated home is less than the average moisture content that the boards have been exposed to outdoors. I think you dried them a bit too much. If you had moisture readings at the key times CX asked you about, it would confirm.

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