ceadar sign

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Forum topic by thelodge posted 06-01-2015 12:43 AM 802 views 0 times favorited 9 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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5 posts in 521 days

06-01-2015 12:43 AM

I just finished our cedar sign. I am going to hang it outside but, I need to know what is the very best sealant to put on it. I want to protect it from all the outside elements.


9 replies so far

View dlgWoodWork's profile


159 posts in 3177 days

#1 posted 06-03-2015 07:03 PM

Cedar is pretty weather resistant. Are you wanting to keep the wood from fading over time? Where will you be hanging it? Do you have a picture of the sign?

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View Yonak's profile


979 posts in 944 days

#2 posted 06-03-2015 08:22 PM

For a wood product that’s always outdoors, unprotected, the most long lasting finish is paint. Another option is General Finishes Exterior 450 water based clear. I’m not convinced any finish will preserve the color of cedar over time. Possibly, a solution is no finish and replacing the sign from time to time.

View MrUnix's profile


4045 posts in 1622 days

#3 posted 06-03-2015 09:52 PM

Every cedar sign I’ve made has aged over time when left out in the elements. I do give them a coat or two of water seal just for good measure, but UV exposure will fade/grey the wood eventually. I actually like the look it gets after a few years. Even so, it is an excellent outdoor wood and should last a very, very long time.


-- Brad in FL - To be old and wise, you must first be young and stupid

View Andre's profile


993 posts in 1229 days

#4 posted 06-03-2015 10:03 PM

Marine Spar Varnish, will need touch up every couple of years.

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View Retrovert's profile


4 posts in 504 days

#5 posted 06-11-2015 05:27 AM

Some years ago my parents wanted their cedar-sided house refinished.

I found that Benjamin Moore has a special varnish for cedar and redwood. Most of these have stains which had so much pigment they were like paint, and were so dark out of the can that they obscured the beauty of the weathered wood, but there is a clear formulation. So I called up and asked if I could blend a colored varnish with clear varnish to get a little color but not as much as the stock. The answer was sure, the only difference between them was pigments, but that the stain blocks UV so that the clear varnish would only last 3-5 years instead of 5-7.

I went with a blend of about 1:3 (1 color to 3 clear) and it lasted 10 years, so I don’t know how accurate the pigment theory really is. The color was exactly what they wanted, which wasn’t totally weathered, it was the warm color that older cedar has.

View alittleoff's profile


288 posts in 700 days

#6 posted 06-11-2015 08:11 AM

I used minwax helmsman indoor/ spar urethane on the last outdoor project I did. It’s been 2 years now and it still looks good. I’m planning on giving it another coat sometime this year even if it dosent need it. I don’t really no of anything that will last a long time outside. Around here the sun does about as much damage as anything on wood. Any way hope this helps some.

View helluvawreck's profile


22707 posts in 2290 days

#7 posted 06-11-2015 01:50 PM

I love the way cedar ages. I used Thompson water seal on a cedar picket fence that I built 19 years ago and it isn’t about to go anywhere yet. It’s still got some life in it and has aged beautifully.

helluvawreck aka Charles

-- If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him step to the music which he hears, however measured or far away. Henry David Thoreau

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Jim Finn

2391 posts in 2345 days

#8 posted 06-11-2015 02:20 PM

As has been mentioned paint is the best for outdoors. Another idea is to use un-tinted paint. Goes on white and dries clear.

-- "You may have your PHD but I have my GED and my DD 214"

View DMC1903's profile


237 posts in 1751 days

#9 posted 06-15-2015 04:03 AM

Epihanes marine varnish

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