View Full Version : Finish on Ipe

Jim O'Dell
05-07-2005, 7:37 PM
Ok! I found some Ipe today at Hogan Hardwoods. I needed 10', they had a total of 30'. Works for me. I got the Threshold for my shop door cut and fitted in, now what do I use on Ipe to finish it? This is not a door that will be used for normal foot traffic. I will enter through the door that leads to the back yard. But I will use it in nice weather for ventilation, and to move items in and out from the driveway (tools, lumber, etc.), and if hail is in the forecast, I will move the tools around so I can get my van in (too tall for the regular garage). So, what is the best coating for this? or does it even need anything? I will use Liquid nails to "help" secure this to the concrete, and I need to look into getting some anchors I can drill and put into the concrete.
As a side note type question, what does one use to glue Ipe to Ipe? Regular wood glue, or would this be a good occasion to use some of the Gorilla glue? As always, THANKS for your help! Jim.

Charlie Plesums
05-08-2005, 11:47 AM
Ipe can be left plain, and it will age to gray like cedar. It can be oiled - I have seen as many different recommendations as people who have done it... I use Thompson's recently, not because it was good, but because it was easy to redo (as you will need to with every finish).

The little bit of gluing that I did on the Ipe (non-structural) was with waterproof PVC, and it seemed fine. All structural connections were stainless steel screws. I just threw out my gorilla glue and will never buy any more (but I don't want to start another war over that glue - some people like it, but I don't).

Ipe is so hard/strong, that you might want to think of it as reinforcing the attached concrete. Never before have I had a material that a screw couldn't cut the last 1/4 inch if the pre-drill wasn't deep enough, but I stripped out the head before it would go the rest of the way in. Amazing stuff.

James Carmichael
05-09-2005, 12:17 PM
From what I've read, Ipe shouldn't need much of anything.

So far as gluing, I think the chief concern is getting the surfaces clean with acetone or mineral spirits as Ipe probably has a lot of oil. I've had good results with Titebond III so far on exterior applications.

How was your experience buying from Hogan? Did they let you pick out your boards?

I'm very nearly in NML myself, right across the road from the old Equestrian center south of I20. I wish I'd gone about 1/4-mile further west, out of the city limits for lower taxes and freedom to build a shop without nit-minded interferece from city bureaucrats.

Jim O'Dell
05-09-2005, 1:46 PM
James, Hogans was great. They only had 30' of Ipe in a HUGE warehouse. The young salesman said comeon, let's go look. I was actually the one that spotted the rack with 3 pieces on it, shrink wrapped together. I believe they would let you pick what you wanted.
We just moved from North Benbrook off of Chapin Rd. Last summer. We're a little west of the Hwy 80/I-30 split. I'm not sure taxes were a good reason. Ours just jumped 40% (about $1400.00). But we're outside the city limits where we don't have to worry about how many dogs we have at any one time. And it's oh so peaceful out here. Jim