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Thread: What wood would you use?

  1. #1
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    What wood would you use?

    I was asked to remake this lattice assembly. Its pretty punky in spots, and clearly pretty severely warped as you can see in the pic. Overall its about 4' x 8'. Obviously the wood species needs to be rot and insect resistant as well as dimensionally stable. The slats in the lattice grid are about 11/16" thick and 1 1/4" wide. Biggest concern is keeping the longer slats straight & flat. My plan is to use rift sawn white oak. I had also considered using western red cedar, spanish cedar, or perhaps sapele; I just don't think that any of these options will provide the necessary dimensional stability. Any thoughts? Other species that I may be overlooking?
    IMG_3464.jpg
    ---Trudging the Road of Happy Destiny---

  2. #2
    My choice would be clear, WRC...but I'm on the left coast.

  3. #3
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    I'd consider redwood.

  4. #4
    I think white oak is a good choice. The problem with conifers is that if its not quarter sawn you will get some sharp edges
    from grain lifting on the heart side. Your project will be seen on both sides, the white oak will be pretty much the same on
    both sides.

  5. #5
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    Ipe.....Buy a couple 2 x 4 x 8' Ipe boards, and rip down for the slats

  6. #6
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    Modern day redwood is not nearly as rot and insect resistant as old growth redwood -- close to Douglas fir, as I recall. I would use cedar, white oak, or cypress.

  7. #7
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    I bet mahogany or teak would last about forever if the budget would spring for it.

  8. #8
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    Will this be painted or left bare?

    Any way to determine what was originally used?

    jtk
    "A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty."
    - Sir Winston Churchill (1874-1965)

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Koepke View Post
    Will this be painted or left bare?

    Any way to determine what was originally used?

    jtk
    It will be painted. Difficult to tell what was used originally. The house is over 100 years old, and the wood has gone very gray - at least where I was able to flake off some paint. It may have been a cedar or fir, the softness would indicate that. I doubt I would find suitable fir to replicate what was most likely old growth timber when it was logged a century ago.
    ---Trudging the Road of Happy Destiny---

  10. #10
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    ‘Simple’ projects like this are never that simple. Why was the trellis there? Originally it may have been for a climbing fragrant flowering plant, a nice welcome at the door. It may have started life unpainted but paint added as it aged. It has gaps all the way round except where needed at the brick floor.
    If they intend to add a plant then I would use WRC and leave it unpainted, it will look better and last long enough. You can add a planter as part of the design.
    If they insist on paint then I would use teak for dimensional stability.
    Clearly when you start painting, the post needs to be done, the bottom of which needs repair, the wall needs to be done, heck the whole house may need to be done!
    ​You can do a lot with very little! You can do a little more with a lot!

  11. #11
    I would not use western red cedar; it is weak and splintery and a person who grabs the trellis to keep their balance could break it. Using rift sawn or quarter sawn would not make a difference in this application. You still would have bowing issues.

    What we did in the past for lattice and trellis work is to frame the panel with heavier material. Not just slightly wider, but thicker also. This gives your work strength and dimensional stability that the present design did not have. Using a frame of 1 1/2 X 1 1/2 would add great strength and stability. You could also make horizontal rails just above and below the circle that are smaller than the outside frame, but a little heavier than the other lattice pieces. This would give more strength and interest. Having the lattice members all one dimension makes it look cheap.

    Here is some stuff from Roubo, note heavier framework:
    Roubo treillage.png
    Here is Roubo's L'art du Treillageur, illustrations at the end of the book.

    https://books.google.com/books?id=VQ...ardins&f=false

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by William Fretwell View Post
    ‘Simple’ projects like this are never that simple. Why was the trellis there? Originally it may have been for a climbing fragrant flowering plant, a nice welcome at the door. It may have started life unpainted but paint added as it aged. It has gaps all the way round except where needed at the brick floor.
    If they intend to add a plant then I would use WRC and leave it unpainted, it will look better and last long enough. You can add a planter as part of the design.
    If they insist on paint then I would use teak for dimensional stability.
    Clearly when you start painting, the post needs to be done, the bottom of which needs repair, the wall needs to be done, heck the whole house may need to be done!
    Yes the whole house needs to be painted, but fortunately I am not a painter LOL! I am replacing the bases on both columns also, and plan to alter the design of the trellis slightly to get the bottom rail up off the brick. Thanks for the suggestions.
    ---Trudging the Road of Happy Destiny---

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Warren Mickley View Post
    I would not use western red cedar; it is weak and splintery and a person who grabs the trellis to keep their balance could break it. Using rift sawn or quarter sawn would not make a difference in this application. You still would have bowing issues.

    What we did in the past for lattice and trellis work is to frame the panel with heavier material. Not just slightly wider, but thicker also. This gives your work strength and dimensional stability that the present design did not have. Using a frame of 1 1/2 X 1 1/2 would add great strength and stability. You could also make horizontal rails just above and below the circle that are smaller than the outside frame, but a little heavier than the other lattice pieces. This would give more strength and interest. Having the lattice members all one dimension makes it look cheap.

    Here is some stuff from Roubo, note heavier framework:
    Roubo treillage.png
    Here is Roubo's L'art du Treillageur, illustrations at the end of the book.

    https://books.google.com/books?id=VQ...ardins&f=false
    Thanks Warren. The only solution to the bowing/warping problem that I could conceive of is a heavier frame, glad to see I was not mistaken in that thought.
    ---Trudging the Road of Happy Destiny---

  14. #14
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    I'd use cedar for most of it but beef up the frame with a heavier, stronger wood....The paint will
    offer some protection.
    Jerry

  15. #15
    Steel flat bar.

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