Join Date: Feb 2000
Location: Annapolis, Md
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Ipe comes from a species of tree that grows around the Caribbean basin and in Central and South America. When called Ipe it is typically referring to wood of that species that comes from Brazil where it is both farmed and fround in the wild. The wood is very close in appearance and behavior to real Teak (which only grows in Asia). Ipe is widely available for decking and is moderately to reasonably priced given its durability and stability as a species.
Clear old growth cypress used to be a great wood for grates and decking, being rot resistant, moderately stable, and reasonably light when dry. But that no longer is the case. Most cypress that is available today is fast growth species that were planted during the 20th century and which are very rot prone and not especially stable.
Juniper is a southern U.S. name for Atlantic White Cedar. This is a great wood for planking a boat and sub-decking since it is quite light in weight, and in old growth forms, the heart wood was quite rot resistant. But again since we are mostly getting sap wood from fast growth versions of this species or similar white cedar species, it tends to be knotty and pretty rot prone. This would be an acceptable species to seal with epoxy and paint.
As explained above the purpose of coating the wood with epoxy is to use the epoxy to seal the wood to prevent discoloration and swelling and as very stable primer for the varnish finish. The originally proposed species of red oak, and the alternatives that I suggested are species which cannot be exposed to the weather without being protected and that is what led to the suggestion to coat the wood with epoxy.
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Curmudgeon at Large- and rhinestone in the rough, sailing my Farr 11.6 on the Chesapeake Bay
Last edited by Jeff_H; 12-15-2009 at 08:04 AM.