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  • FIRST POST
    • gutovicky
    • By gutovicky 27th Feb 17, 8:12 AM
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    gutovicky
    New Western Red Cedar Fascias?
    • #1
    • 27th Feb 17, 8:12 AM
    New Western Red Cedar Fascias? 27th Feb 17 at 8:12 AM
    Hello MSE Home Maintenance/Repair Forum,
    Does anyone on this forum have experience of fitting Western Red Cedar Fascia and Barge boards?

    I favour wood over plastic. I understand Western Red Cedar is a durable timber and that its resinous quality would protect it externally without needing painting. This sounds good to me.

    Can anyone advise me where to get WRC boards (I live in Carmarthenshire, South-West Wales)?
    Would I have to ask my supplier for 'specific cuts'(?) of timber - so as to minimise or eliminate the risk of boards warping or bowing over time?
    Does WRC need special nails/fixings?

    Any advice or insight would be appreciated!
    Last edited by gutovicky; 27-02-2017 at 8:17 AM. Reason: spelling error
Page 2
    • Furts
    • By Furts 6th Mar 17, 10:02 AM
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    Furts
    Well, that's the point really, poor quality work does happen, which is why I'm in this position.

    So, can anyone else on the MSE forum, from their experience, give me any further options on what to replace my fascias & barge boards with - so that I can attempt to do as good a job (long-lasting) as funds will allow??
    Type of timber?
    Source of timber?
    Pre-fixing treatment of timber?
    Post-fixing treatment of timber?
    Type of fixings?

    [If it helps, my property is a simple detached, 3-bed bungalow built in the 1970's - and I'm not out to create any specific aesthetic..... We moved in last April, 2016. The painted softwood fascias & barge boards have already had repairs made to each corner - where fascia meets barge board. These repairs have not been looked after, so the wood is again damaged & rotting at these points. I've decided to replace the whole boards.]

    I had been thinking of using Western Red Cedar since someone (in the past, on this forum) recommended this timber - yes, imported I'm sure. They advised that WRC is so full of resin that it makes it naturally resistant to damp & associated fungus & rot.
    Unfortunately, this advise seems to have been contradicted in this thread (by Private Church for instance).
    And Furts, sorry, I'm still uncertain what your fascias are made from, and what you recommendation would be.... you seem to have had success with your fascias which you describe as "ordinary pressure-treated softwood" &/or "unsorted joinery grade Redwood" - with lashings of timber stain & treatment on top. So, what precisely was the timber you used? Sorry to be a complete duffer......

    Any further contributions, would be good.
    Thanks everyone for your time & trouble.
    Originally posted by gutovicky
    I can only say what I specified, sourced and fixed. Little different to anything of, say, 30 years ago. Go to a good, reputable, timber merchant, or builders merchant which has its own joinery/pressure treating shed.

    Get C24, KD, unsorted joinery redwood, which is pressure treated after being machined up to your exact requirements - drip groove, thickness, soffit rebate, and running lengths (because you want to eliminate joints). All cut ends must be twice flood coated with preservative, and coat copious coats of stain on all faces. I have done around five (I think), and capeverde has done six. So little difference there!

    Give it at least one coat of stain on every face before fixing it, use good ss screws if you are a perfectionist, and expanding glue on joints - but waterproof pva will do a decent job.

    Paint finish is always a dubious area but if you are confident that the finish is breathable/micro porous then that is your choice. I have used Leyland white exterior breathable - it has weathered fine over a few years on gates and fences but long term who knows what the result will be. With Sikkens and Sadolin the test of time has been passed.

    Hope this helps!
    • missile
    • By missile 6th Mar 17, 2:14 PM
    • 8,867 Posts
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    missile
    30 years is the design life, which is a conundrum when a home is based on 60 years. One always hopes items will exceed their design life and with care, and an element of luck, this is possible.

    Your WRC is difficult to give definitive advice because nobody knows its full story. For example was it Canadian grown, or was it UK grown? None of us know this, and it is not possible to give an answer.

    The likehood, based on typical home building, is the grade is not good, and the treatment with coatings is not good. That goes with the territory on new home buying and nothing can be done about that. Basically the same as my post above where I commented that the developer I was working for was scimping on the timber.
    Originally posted by Furts
    I am sure you are correct and I appreciate your comments.
    Most builders do scrimp on materials and cut corners during construction. Makes no sense to me.
    I have no idea what specification of WRC was used or what treatment was applied.
    I really like the natural finish of the wood and to my mind it takes on character as it ages. After 10+ years my boards are weathering very well and if they last another 10 years, I will be very happy.
    Last edited by missile; 06-03-2017 at 3:05 PM.
    "A nation's greatness is measured by how it treats its weakest members." ~ Mahatma Gandhi
    Ride hard or stay home
    • gutovicky
    • By gutovicky 6th Mar 17, 10:11 PM
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    gutovicky
    No missile, I have not worked on the fascias yet myself at all.
    I meant that I can see that repairs have been made to the (original) painted softwood timber fascias at some point in the past (years before I moved in). And now, those repairs (inserts of timber at each corner of the property) have themselves deteriorated - because they weren't looked after.

    So, I want to start afresh with new timber.... and do what I need to do to make it last.

    And yes, I'd happily use anything that would give me 20+ trouble-free years.
    Thanks for your help.
    • missile
    • By missile 7th Mar 17, 10:48 AM
    • 8,867 Posts
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    missile
    Thanks for the clarification.

    I always find it surprising owners will spend many thousands to purchase a house then scrimp on maintenance.

    Good luck
    "A nation's greatness is measured by how it treats its weakest members." ~ Mahatma Gandhi
    Ride hard or stay home
    • gutovicky
    • By gutovicky 8th Mar 17, 7:51 AM
    • 14 Posts
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    gutovicky
    No missile, I have not done any work on the fascias/barge boards yet at all.
    I meant that I can see that, in the past (some years before I moved in presumably), repairs have been made to the barge boards and fascias - at each corner of the property, where the boards meet. Now I can see that the boards have deteriorated again, in those same places - because the wood has not been looked after.
    I've made the decision to replace the boards entirely.....

    And, yes, I'd be happy with any timber/treatment that was going to give me 20+ 'troublefree' years.

    Cheers all.
    • Furts
    • By Furts 8th Mar 17, 9:13 AM
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    Furts
    No missile, I have not done any work on the fascias/barge boards yet at all.
    I meant that I can see that, in the past (some years before I moved in presumably), repairs have been made to the barge boards and fascias - at each corner of the property, where the boards meet. Now I can see that the boards have deteriorated again, in those same places - because the wood has not been looked after.
    I've made the decision to replace the boards entirely.....

    And, yes, I'd be happy with any timber/treatment that was going to give me 20+ 'troublefree' years.

    Cheers all.
    Originally posted by gutovicky
    Your decision and your finances so I wish you well. The wild card is this. Your 1970s bungalow was built before it became a requirement to pressure treat fascias and barges. Hence your deterioration. Also white paint was in fashion so more problems are created here. Add to this I doubt there has ever been meticulous maintenance of treatment, sealing and painting


    That said, the wood has lasted way past the design life of 30 years. With some TLC and filler on the corners, or adding some new timber pieces at the corners, you could end up with decades of further life at little trouble and far less expense than renewing everything.

    Think of this as the Eco option - reduce, recycle and reuse!
    • gutovicky
    • By gutovicky 10th Mar 17, 8:31 AM
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    gutovicky
    Thank you Furts for all your replies - very thorough and informative. I'm gaining a much clearer idea of my options on this job.

    Yes, I have considered another repair - inserts of timber at each corner again - and looking after these carefully in the future. But there's other things needing attention:
    1. the guttering is rather shabby and leaking in places [but true, I could clean and repair this....], and
    2. the roofing felt under the roof tiles is badly frayed and ragged above the guttering - meaning that the roof felt does not reach down into the guttering [for drainage from under the tiles as necessary].

    I have been assuming that, to do a decent repair of the roofing felt, I'd need to take off the guttering and the fascias - so giving me the opportunity to replace boards...

    Can anyone advise me on this situation? To repair the roofing felt along the guttered lengths of roof, I intend to do the following:
    take off the guttering,
    take off the fascias,
    lift the lowest row of (concrete) tiles,
    cut away the frayed underfelt,
    pin a strip of new roofing felt to the exposed rafters along the lengths of the roof (making sure the top edge slots under the original felt, and it's wide enough to dangle into the guttering),
    then replace all; tiles, fascias, guttering.

    Is this the way this job is normally tackled? How else do people sort out roofing felt that has deteriorated over time so that it no longer reaches (& drains into) the guttering??

    Any help appreciated!
    • Furts
    • By Furts 11th Mar 17, 8:51 AM
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    Furts
    To "repair" the roofing felt the gutter and fascia stay in place - indeed it is vital the guttering stays to guide your levels.

    Fit black plastic eaves protectors - do not use new pieces of felt. Also fit bird stops if you have profiled tiles - ideally those made to match your profile shape. Screw both items to the top of your fascia - another reason not to remove this before doing the work! You would have nothing to screw to....
    • gutovicky
    • By gutovicky 31st Jul 17, 1:36 PM
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    • 0 Thanks
    gutovicky
    Please may I pick up this topic again..
    A very, very belated thank you to Furts for your last bits of advice on this topic....

    To update the forum on my 'fascia/soffit replacement' situation...
    Even though months have gone by, I have still NOT got the work done....

    In the meantime, I've actually bought loads of pressure-treated softwood timber (joinery grade Redwood) and this is drying out - indoors, in my sitting-room (& out into the hallway).

    I now need to decide whether I paint or stain this timber.
    Of course, I'm looking for the best option that will reduce maintenance in the future.
    Furts has said that he believes staining is better than painting.
    My understanding is that, in terms of maintenance of fascias and soffits in the future, RE-STAINING is a lot simpler than RE-PAINTING.
    Is this correct??

    Thanks all.
    • Furts
    • By Furts 1st Aug 17, 7:00 AM
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    Furts
    Just in recent weeks I have been talking to the technical folks at three paint/stain manufacturers on this. I wanted a stain type finish because the client wanted to see the wood, or not obliterate it. So one coat of clear base stain, then two coats of colour tinted on top, or three coats if maximum protection is sought. (That will be where extreme conditions exist.)

    You want these three coats. Your choice on the product, but I am going for Johnstones Woodcare(?) range. It is on offer at my local decorating centre until the end of the month. Hence much cheaper than competitors for what I want to do.

    If money is plentiful the ultimate is claimed to be Sadolin Xtreme. Osmo is also out there (at a price!), but I am not convinced this will be better. Indeed it may be worse since they seem more DIY focused, and less knowledgeable.
    • gutovicky
    • By gutovicky 1st Aug 17, 11:17 AM
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    gutovicky
    Thank you Furts...
    So, are you saying that there are 'staining treatments' I could do that would provide a coloured end finish (white)?
    [I take your point about building up layers - I should steer clear of magical 'one-coat' products].

    Really?? Do you believe that Johnstones' products have the quality/durability track record?? I always thought they were at the cheap & cheerful end of things - or am I just being a paint snob....?

    Could someone please clarify the following for me, from their experience:
    1) Do staining treatments always soak into the timber better than paint treatments?
    2) Are stained timbers (fascias/soffits) going to be easier to recoat every few years compared with painted timbers? I'm assuming stain can just be cleaned and re-coated, whilst paint would need cleaning and sanding down before recoating. Is this correct?

    Thank you
    • datostar
    • By datostar 1st Aug 17, 4:26 PM
    • 1,003 Posts
    • 607 Thanks
    datostar
    There's a row of about 20 very nice looking semi-detached houses near us with distinctive WRC wall cladding on their top halves. It might be their age now (probably 1970's) but at least one of the houses seems to be continually having work done on the cladding, either re-staining, patching up or complete replacement. Not the case with the surrounding brick houses!
    • Furts
    • By Furts 1st Aug 17, 8:14 PM
    • 3,488 Posts
    • 2,180 Thanks
    Furts
    Thank you Furts...
    So, are you saying that there are 'staining treatments' I could do that would provide a coloured end finish (white)?
    [I take your point about building up layers - I should steer clear of magical 'one-coat' products].

    Really?? Do you believe that Johnstones' products have the quality/durability track record?? I always thought they were at the cheap & cheerful end of things - or am I just being a paint snob....?

    Could someone please clarify the following for me, from their experience:
    1) Do staining treatments always soak into the timber better than paint treatments?
    2) Are stained timbers (fascias/soffits) going to be easier to recoat every few years compared with painted timbers? I'm assuming stain can just be cleaned and re-coated, whilst paint would need cleaning and sanding down before recoating. Is this correct?

    Thank you
    Originally posted by gutovicky
    Staining is better than paint because it soaks into the timber, whereas paint sits on the surface.

    If you want white you could go for a breathable/micro porous paint, but I am suspicious of them. I have used Johnstones and it has remained fine after perhaps five years, where it gets wet and windy, but little sun.

    Staining is far easier to recoat. I have recoated windows and not cleaned them down first and it has been fine. (I wiped off the cills because they were filthy but nothing else).

    Sadolin Classic can go 30+ years without recoat. It depends what exposure there is to the sun. I have this on my home. The secret is the more initial coats the longer it will last before a recoat. So where the sun gets it there were five, or more, coats applied when the bargeboards were fitted
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