Thursday, June 12, 2008

Protecting and Staining Ipe, Mahogany, and Ironwood Deck or Porch Floor

We have tested numerous coatings over the years, and all have certain advantages and disadvantages to specific jobs. We continually test a variety of available wood care products. All the deck coatings we feature at are the best we have found in various product categories.

Exotic hardwood has always been a challenge. One TIME is our product of choice for exotic hardwood where a natural, non-varnished look is desired. It does bring out the natural beauty of the wood like an oil, darkening and enhancing. One TIME addresses and overcomes almost every disadvantage and performance shortcomings of traditional oils, new acrylics, and other products (drying issues, film-building, lap-marks, peeling, short-life, poor appearance). One Time cures in the sunlight and becomes part of the wood structure. There is no film building even with repeat applications. There are no lap marks, and there is no solvent hazard. It is environmentally friendly for use around water, and does not require harsh chemicals or strippers for later maintenance (also a plus around water). One TIME uses transoxide pigments which are premium UV blockers, but also very translucent and natural looking.

A huge advantage of One TIME Wood Protector is the ease of application, and lack of lap marking. Backside and end grain can be sealed prior to construction, and any bleed or runover to the front side blends in when we coat the topside after construction. It is very critical that low to ground decking, and porch flooring be backside sealed prior to installation. You still want to minimize run-over, but most products are very tedious and difficult to precoat with when trying to coat the back without getting coating on the board face. One Time is very forgiving of frontside overrun.

Below is is a client's deck finished with One TIME Golden Honey on Garapa Gold:

On new exotic hardwood, like Mahogany, Cumaru, Ipe, etc., I like to see the wood dry and weather 2-3 months to lose a little of the surface oils, and draw in the sealer. Acetone wipe can be used for quicker application, but weathering a little is always best. After weathering, we consider preparing the wood with an oxalic acid brightener. If wood is coated quickly when new, we may see a little shorter life on the first application if we are unable to deliver enough product into the surface. I like clients to understand the nature of hardwood. We normally get about 250-300 sq ft / gal on most wood, but we see more like 400 sq ft / gal on hardwood, so obviously we are getting about half the amount of product on the surface of the hardwood. We sometimes see greater longevity of the color after the second application in a couple of years, after the wood is a little seasoned.

Staining Ipe, Mahogany, and Ironwood

No stain lasts forever on tropical hardwoods or Ironwood, but One TIME lasts the longest. While One TIME is not the “silver bullet” we all seek, it is the closest we can get. While it will lighten and need rejuvenation, we at least get a fantastic summer and full winter out of it. Most oils go only around 6-8 months on tropical hardwood, with little protection and no beauty left by fall, going into the winter months. The winter graying leads to needed harsh chemistry, and sometimes sanding.

One TIME does not require, or need, any harsh chemistry to maintain. It will not darken or lead to stripping. You can simply clean with a detergent like Simple Green, SoilX, or Dirtex, and recoat as desired. One TIME cannot soak as deeply into Ipe as it does into most domestic woods, so be sure to apply maintenance coat thinly on tropical hardwood when color becomes faded. Maintenance and touchup is very easy with this product.

The only limitation of the One TIME is that it does require UV to cure, so it cannot be used in a covered and screened in area. Test a small sample board in any deeply covered area that gets no sunlight.

See Colors on Wood

OneTIME on Hardwood video discussion.

More on Tropical Hardwood