Decking board, which way up?

nicebutdim

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14 Dec 2009
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I've just seen that b & q sell the composite board, about £8 a length (2 1/4 m length). Only problem is the colour, very dark grey, almost black.
 

nicebutdim

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Wobbleboxer said:
I use gravel boards, similar size to decking boards but unfinished and therefore cheaper. No grooves, so I don't have the problem.
Are they layed direct to the ground? Have you had any warping problems?
 

Wobbleboxer

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nicebutdim said:
Wobbleboxer said:
I use gravel boards, similar size to decking boards but unfinished and therefore cheaper. No grooves, so I don't have the problem.
Are they layed direct to the ground? Have you had any warping problems?
They're raised from a few inches to a foot or so (easier than contending with too uneven ground levels). Haven't had any warping problems in 3 years but I wish I'd covered them in roofing felt to add a few years to their life. They are fine at the moment but the weather will get them eventually. I'd still do it this way again.
 

minimans

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nicebutdim said:
I think I may have opened pandora's box here, and here was me thinking it was a silly question... Where are the composite boards sold from, I'm quite tempted by that idea. Or another idea, I could go outside, crack a gas main, and when british gas turn up and then leave their plastic protective fence around the hole I have a free supply of some plastic boards. They may have red and white stripes on them but they'll last! If anyone here works for bg I'm only joking!
Try here..................... http://www.trex.com/
 

trammayo

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Hi - can I add my sixpen'orth?

I used decking boards to construct some garden furniture. I made it flat side up and have no weathering problems (and we have a high humidity here).
It is fair to say that, as long as water doesn't lodge anywhere and the boards can dry, then they will last a long time. If you ballasted your track on the boards this would hold moisture. If you laid the boards groove side up, there would be less surface contact with the track so this would promote drying.

It is also true to say that if you cut the boards, the sawn ends should be treated as the tanalith doesn't penetrate right to the core of the timber. I was lucky to get a gallon of Ensele many years ago (dangerous stuff - contains arsenic) to seal the ends. I use a drop of washing up liquid to make the treatment "wet" so it will easily soak in. I suppose you could use this method with water based treatments.

Mick
 

yb281

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trammayo said:
It is also true to say that if you cut the boards, the sawn ends should be treated as the tanalith doesn't penetrate right to the core of the timber. I was lucky to get a gallon of Ensele many years ago (dangerous stuff - contains arsenic) to seal the ends. I use a drop of washing up liquid to make the treatment "wet" so it will easily soak in. I suppose you could use this method with water based treatments.

Mick

When I built my deck the timber merchant supplied some special paint for sealing the ends.
 

trammayo

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yb281 said:
When I built my deck the timber merchant supplied some special paint for sealing the ends.

Exactly! Might I also add that most wood treatments (that inhibit decay) available to the general public will be water based for two reasons - (1) because solvents attract Duty?Tax and (2) because of COSHH assesments (Control of Substances Hazardous to Health).

Mick
 

nicebutdim

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14 Dec 2009
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trammayo said:
Hi - can I add my sixpen'orth?

I used decking boards to construct some garden furniture. I made it flat side up and have no weathering problems (and we have a high humidity here).
It is fair to say that, as long as water doesn't lodge anywhere and the boards can dry, then they will last a long time. If you ballasted your track on the boards this would hold moisture. If you laid the boards groove side up, there would be less surface contact with the track so this would promote drying.

It is also true to say that if you cut the boards, the sawn ends should be treated as the tanalith doesn't penetrate right to the core of the timber. I was lucky to get a gallon of Ensele many years ago (dangerous stuff - contains arsenic) to seal the ends. I use a drop of washing up liquid to make the treatment "wet" so it will easily soak in. I suppose you could use this method with water based treatments.

Mick

I like your idea, I can see the logic behind it and a good idea for sealing the ends.

I had a look around yesterday at different types of board, the composite caught my eye, but expensive to initially get started, which I can't justify just yet. I thought I'd have a quick look at the wickes web site, and it's a third of decking there until tomorrow (Wednesday) so if you're in the uk and thinking of wood, get in there quick. I ordered about 150 ft and getting it delivered for not much more than £110! Can't be bad as they say it's pressure treated, and shouldn't warp as it's 'slow grown'.
I've decided I'm going to get the layout down as planned using the wood decking, then as time and money allow replace the wood for composite. I know it's more expensive in the long run, but I'm impatient!! lol.

Thank you all so much for your views on this, and your experiences with different variations has really opened my eyes and gave me alot to think about, if it hadn't have been for wickes's special offer I feel I may still be undecided!