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Finishing a redwood pergola

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Forum topic by mazzy posted 03-30-2014 03:55 PM 727 views 0 times favorited 4 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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mazzy

56 posts in 2047 days


03-30-2014 03:55 PM

Hi,

We just got done constructing a redwood pergola (new growth). After the rains go away and everything dries out we will apply a protective finish. Optimally the finish will:
1. protect the wood
2. be easy to apply
3. be easy to maintain during the future years
4. not drastically change the color of the redwood (other than the normal enhancement that an untinted oil base would create).

I’ve heard that Duckback (Superdeck) is good. I would really like to hear from you experts that have already gone through the trials and tribulations. Please let me know what your suggestions would be.

Thanks a lot,
Mazzy

-- Mazzy, San Francisco Bay Area, http://www.woodworkwonders.com


4 replies so far

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barringerfurniture

223 posts in 1180 days


#1 posted 04-11-2014 12:12 AM

Duckback is awesome! I’ve done a ton of exterior redwood work – decks, custom gates, arbors, etc.

Duckback is great because it’s a one-coat formula. If you try to apply a second coat, you’ll find out why; the second coat won’t penetrate and you’ll be left with an oily, uneven, non-drying sheen that’s difficult to remove. The instructions are pretty clear in that regard.

I’ve never used their non-pigmented one (not sure what they call it) but I’d assume it just brings out the natural color of the redwood as a straight oil would without any artificial color. I’ve used their “redwood” color a lot and it looks great always.

Very easy to apply with a brush. I think some people spray it with a garden sprayer. I always apply to all lumber before any cutting, then build the piece, then apply to all exposed end cuts. Or else, apply to end cuts as I go. Redwood end grain really soaks the stuff up and I think they recommend two coats on end grain for that reason.

Sounds like you’re gonna build first, then seal. It still works pretty good as far as drips and so forth as long as you’re reasonably careful. The majority of it just soaks in the wood – doesn’t form much of a surface barrier so drips aren’t usually a problem.

Maybe that would be the only drawback – not much surface barrier. More of a penetrating/hardening barrier INSIDE the wood that’s mostly effective against water but not against dings and scratches.

-- Scott Barringer, Sacramento, CA barringerfinefurniture.com

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barringerfurniture

223 posts in 1180 days


#2 posted 04-11-2014 12:14 AM

Sorry, just read that you’ve already built.

-- Scott Barringer, Sacramento, CA barringerfinefurniture.com

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barringerfurniture

223 posts in 1180 days


#3 posted 04-11-2014 12:27 AM

If you’re interested in a more resilient surface, Behr makes a pretty good product that requires two coats. I’ve used it a lot too. Drawbacks are that since you’ve already built, you’ll have to be real careful about drips. May not be a problem if it’s not colored though.

Also, after a couple years, it wears away around edges and stuff – like paint chipping off – and doesn’t look so good.

Duckback is better unless you really need that surface barrier.

There! Now I feel really smart!

-- Scott Barringer, Sacramento, CA barringerfinefurniture.com

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mazzy

56 posts in 2047 days


#4 posted 04-11-2014 03:18 AM

Great advise. Thanks

-- Mazzy, San Francisco Bay Area, http://www.woodworkwonders.com

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