Reply by eaglewrangler

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64 posts in 2500 days

#1 posted 12-18-2012 12:34 AM

there are a number of naturally rot resistant woods, the tropicals like purple heart IPE and others, but they are harder to work and I burned some IPE in a plug cutter and it was worse than pepper spray. But there are a number of native woods that are rot resistant as well. Locust, while not native, is plentiful here and I use it in outside stick style and for bench legs. plum is very resistant, and less so cherry. I like the white oaks, especially chestnut oak (which tend to grow slower and tighter grained).
Even so I have used hickory and ash and other woods in outdoor benches from slab cuts. Understand that they have a limited use, around 10 years, which compared to the metal patio furniture my wife got, which is rusting after just a few years, seems like a decent time.
So your elm may rot in a decade, but keep them out of the dirt and they might outlast your car and refrigerator and washing machine.

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