Author Archives: theipeguy

Better Silt Fence Stakes

A silt fence is a temporary sediment (loose soil) control fence used primarily on construction sites to protect the water quality in nearby bodies of water such as lakes, rivers, streams, ponds and oceans.

silt fence stakes

They are most commonly constructed of a geotextile fabric with embedded wood stakes spaced every couple feet. The wood stakes are commonly made from lower grades of domestic lumber that do not meet the strict grades for cabinet grade lumber.

Some manufacturers of silt fences have reached out to us in search for a strong wood that can withstand tough soil conditions. Soil that contains a lot of clay or rocks will often snap the standard wood stakes that you standard silt fences are constructed with.

We have supplied silt fence stakes made from sustainable South American hardwoods to a silt fence manufacturer who was in search of stronger wood stakes.

South American hardwood stakes do not contain any chemicals, are naturally rot resistant and up to 3 times harder than oak which make them the perfect choice for a silt fence stake that is intended to keep our water ways clean.

In addition sometimes a “super” silt fence is required by agencies such as the EPA on certain projects.

Super silt fences are commonly constructed with a chain link fence embedded into the ground and a standard silt fence placed in front of the chain link fence to control the sediment run off.

This method makes a much stronger silt fence but is much more labor intensive and more costly.

Some manufacturers are testing our South American hardwood stakes to make a “super” silt fence that does not require the added chain link fencing. The chain link adds extra strength to the silt fence.

Since our hardwoods are 3 times harder than oak a super silt fence made with our hardwoods may not require the added labor and costs of the chain link method.

For more info and pricing got to our Hardwood Stakes page.

Using Classic Decking Components To Achieve a Modern Design

Architectural projects around the world have embraced modern design in recent years. This style favors minimalism and rejects ornamentation, resulting in a look that is both pleasing to the eye and easy to implement—an important consideration in regions experiencing skilled labor shortages.

modern ipe deckIpe Decking with Garapa Border and Stainless Steel Cable Railing

Designers of this style have been keen to incorporate wood elements into their projects. Modern design, with its clean lines and crisp angles, can come across as cold; the natural patterns and warm colors found in wood create a pleasing contrast. Wood has been used in modern designs for privacy screens, accent walls, decking, and more. Take, for example, the fence and privacy screen at this hotel in southern Florida:

modern wood fenceFence and Privacy Screen Built Using Advantage Cumaru

Not all wood is created equal. The exotic “super woods” produced under the Advantage Decking® brand rise to the top when it comes to weatherability, flame spread testing, and strength. Through proper forest management and adherence to the strictest environmental laws, Advantage Decking® boards are also a truly renewable resource. In an area the size of a soccer field, only 1–3 trees are harvested, ensuring the forest remains healthy and flourishing.

The most popular Advantage Decking® species are Ipe (Brazilian Walnut), Tigerwood (Brazilian Koa), Cumaru (Brazilian Teak), Garapa, Jatoba (Brazilian Cherry), and Massaranduba (Brazilian Redwood). Choosing between species often comes down to desired colors and project budget; costs between species can vary as much as 50%.

Whether the project is commercial or residential, modern designs favor the use of narrow boards to achieve a sleek look. This is a win-win for the modern design client, since narrow boards are a plentiful byproduct of sawmill operations, and thus are less expensive. The other benefit to narrow boards is greater stability. All fine craftsman know the basic woodworking concept that the wider the board, the more it moves. Since decks are often subjected to the harshest elements, narrow boards go a long way toward maintaining a flat surface that resists the cupping and twisting seen with wider boards.

narrow hardwood deckingProduction of Narrow Cumaru Decking Boards at AdvantageLumber.com Factory in Brazil

 

Just because narrow boards are the rising trend doesn’t mean wide boards have no place in modern design. Take this resort in South Beach:

modern ipe gateAdvantage Ipe Gate and Pergola

This residential fence combines block and hardwood. This simple combination always delivers a crisp and effective look:

stucco wall with hardwood top

This modern marina uses wide Ipe deck boards. The borders and angles break up the space in a manner consistent with modern design, while simultaneously allowing the dock to fit perfectly in the space allotted. The Ipe was allowed to weather without any oil treatment, resulting in the “silver teak patina” you see below. Applying a coat of Ipe Oil® will restore and preserve the color if desired.

ipe wood modern marina

Keeping it short! These are 6-foot Cumaru deck boards. The short lengths allow for this modern, perpendicular pattern, but they also save money. Short boards, like narrow boards, are abundant in sawmills and therefore cheaper.

discount decking

So far we’ve seen modern designers go the narrow route, and we’ve seen them go short. What if you combine them? Advantage deck tiles do just that, and it’s proved to be a very popular option. Deck tiles are budget-friendly and they’re the perfect embodiment of the modern style. They come in a variety of sizes (such as 12”x12”, 20”x20”, and 24”x24”) and they come together in a snap. They can cover up an ugly concrete slab or rubber rooftop membrane while allowing water to drain underneath. They can even pop loose for easy under-tile access if necessary. Advantage deck tiles have been used in both commercial and residential projects for decks, rooftops, showers, balconies, porches, walkways, and countless other applications.

Ipe Hardwood Deck Tiles

A cohesive design means choosing your furnishings to match your architecture. These poolside cabanas were constructed using modern Ipe decking components, such as 4x4s and 2x6s.

ipe cabana

If ever there was a wood created just for the modern aesthetic, it was Tigerwood. Also known as Brazilian Koa, this brown wood is run through with streaks of black. The project below was modernized by combining Tigerwood with metal rail spindles and a chevron pattern. More good news for the wallet: Tigerwood is one of the cheaper hardwoods in the Advantage DeckingⓇ lineup!

modern tigerwood deck

Rainscreen hardwood siding has seen a lot of growth in the market. The advent of specialized hidden fasteners designed specifically for Rainscreen profiles has made the installation process much simpler and have helped to popularize the use in both residential and commercial projects.

When the exterior is complete, Advantage has many materials to help you carry the modern look to your interior. This live-edge desk with “waterfall” ends shows off the wood grain in its simplest, natural form. This slab is made from Advantage FSCⓇ Tigerwood, which is also available in decking, siding, soffit, v-groove, or solid T&G flooring components to match.

Slabs as art! The Advantage Urban Log Recycling Program produces a wide variety of live-edge wood slabs out of its Florida sawmill. These slabs are used for tables, desks, bar tops, and wall art.

Most of the slabs are cut from trees that are storm-damaged, dead, diseased, or invasive. The live-edge wall art below was harvested from an invasive Banyan tree. Invasive species crowd out and kill native species, which has become a serious problem in many communities. Thankfully, this piece will live out a more peaceful existence, admired for its beauty as natural art. Many of these pieces can be found at www.WoodSlabs.com or can be cut to order by calling the Florida sawmill at 941-388-9299.

wood wall art

Keeping with the modern theme, AdvantageLumber.com has retooled and modernized it’s factories in both the US and Brazil in order to continue delivering responsibly harvested hardwoods of outstanding quality. As the only US company to own a decking mill in Brazil, Advantage is the direct source for sustainably produced exotic hardwoods. With proper forest management, facilities at the source, four US mills, and nearly 300 awesome employees, AdvantageLumber.com is an internet leader for hardwoods and ahead of the curve when it comes to responsible harvesting. The Advantage team—and their families—appreciate your purchases and hope to be part of your next awesome project!

A board, a bundle, or a truckload shipped direct to your home or jobsite worldwide!

Best Wholesale Tomato Stakes in Bulk for Farms

South American hardwood tomato stakes are 3x harder than oak and can last up to 75+ years outdoors without rotting.

A farmer came to us with a problem…

Every year he used regular domestic wood stakes such as cedar and oak and a lot of them.

The problem he had was each year he would lose hundreds of his stakes because they broke as they were being pounded into the hard ground or they would rot after only a couple years of use.

One of his main sources of income is his tomato farm where he supplies restaurants, canning companies, and grocery stores with tomatoes.

Losing hundreds of tomato stakes each year was a major set back in time spent getting the tomato plants tied up to the stakes as he sourced and purchased more.

This was costing him a lot of money both in time and the cost of replacing the stakes.

He found us online when he was looking for the best wood for outdoor applications and contacted us. As soon as he told us his problem we told him he needs to use a wood specie such as Ipe, Tigerwood, Cumaru, Garapa, Massaranduba or Angelim Pedra.

We showed him how well all these species work for decking and have proven to last 75+ years with no chemical treatment ever needed. They will not rot in the ground and they are up to 3 times harder than oak.

We custom cut the stakes for him and shipped a whole pallet to his farm.

He was delighted with how strong they were his farm laborers did not break a single one when they pounded them into the ground. He sent us this picture of the field they were used in.

He said he’ll be replacing his old stakes used in his other fields next year. He was very happy with the wholesale price we were able to give him for the bulk tomato stakes.

He said they are about the same price he was buying the domestic wood stakes from his local sawyer.

He estimated with what he was spending on stakes each year and even if these only lasted him 10 years it will save him several thousand dollars.

If you need the best tomato stakes in bulk and would like to purchase a large quantity please contact sales@advantagelumber.com

Swim Spa Deck Built With Ipe Wood

swim spa deck

A swim spa can be a great addition to your home. However before you purchase a swim spa you need to consider a deck built around it.

A custom deck built for your swim spa will make accessing and using your new swim spa easy and enjoyable it can also reduce the risk of a slip and fall injury.

This is a Master Spa 15 Deep Swim Spa that a California homeowner purchased. They were looking for the best decking material to build a deck for their new spa.

Whats the Best Deck for a Swim Spa?

We strongly suggested Ipe wood for the deck surrounding their new spa. Here’s a few reasons why Ipe wood works so well for swim spas:

  • Our Ipe wood has natural slip resistance and has been ASTM-C1028-89 tested so our Ipe Decking exceeds the Americans with Disabilities Act requirements for Static Coefficient of friction in a wet environment
  • Ipe is naturally resistant to mold, mildew and wood boring insects
  • Approximately seven times harder than Cedar, ASTM-D143-94 tested; our Ipe decking stands up to the harshest conditions imaginable.
  • Barefoot friendly since it does not give off splinters

These are a few reasons why our customer chose Ipe for their new swim spa deck and railings.

Swim Spa Deck Ideas You Might Like:

The homeowner designed the swim spa deck to allow simplified unrolling of the spa cover. This is achieved while standing on the 3-step side. You can easily fold and unfold the cover on the spa while walking the entire length of the spa.

ipe swim spa deck

Take note of how wide the top platform is, this is an important detail. When you are taking your cover on and off you are usually focused on the cover so a narrow step would leave you more likely to trip.

The wide platform reduces the risk of tripping over a narrow step while taking your cover on and off. One other detail you’ll notice is the height of the top platform.

Your walking platform should allow you to fold up your cover without being hunched over and this deck was designed with that in mind as well.

The upper deck allows for easy spa access and features a wide bench for removing your sandals as well as a nice place to set your towel and smart phone.

The railing is stainless steel cable to maximize the views of the garden. The posts are powder coated which will offer years of maintenance free railing. The top handrail is Ipe wood to match the decking and provide a nice slip resistant grip.

LED lights were built into the steps to illuminate the steps as well as add some elegance. The deck substructure is constructed of clear redwood and was designed to allow removal of the spa side panels for future maintenance of the spa if needed.

 

How Long Will Ipe Wood Last?

When someone first hears about Ipe wood and that it can last 70 plus years outdoors with no chemicals they don’t believe you. However it’s true and proven to last 70 years and longer.

Ipe wood

In fact Ipe was used on the Coney Island boardwalk and lasted for 70 years before it was ripped up. It was then reclaimed by a furniture maker to build this cool lounge chair that resemble the iconic Cyclone roller coaster on Coney Island.

Cyclone Lounger

CYCLONE LOUNGER

The 70 year old reclaimed Ipe on the Cyclone Lounger looks as good as the new material we sell. This reclaimed Ipe wood will probably last another 50 years.

Now if Ipe wood can last 70 years on the Coney Island boardwalk which has seen as many as 14 million people in one summer. How long do you think it will last for your deck or outdoor project?

The U.S. Naval Research Laboratory tested Ipe wood in the ground for 15 years to check it’s resistance to termite attack. They gave it the highest rating because there was no damage from termites.

Ipe is on of the best termite resistant woods without the use of chemicals. If you are looking to build a deck, fence, pergola or other outdoor project that you want to last a lifetime give us a call 1-877-232-3915 or buy ipe wood online

 

How To Cover an Old Stucco Ceiling

One of our great customers Pro Quality Carpentry completed this job and had to share how beautiful it turned out.

nickel gap ceiling

The previous ceiling of this screened in lanai was old stucco that was looking dingy and had cracks. The home owner hired Pro Quality Carpentry to renovate their outdoor space and make it look more appealing.

Pro Quality recommended our Tigerwood in a nickel gap tongue and groove profile that we custom milled for them.  Tigerwood is an exotic hardwood that’s incredibly durable as well as exceptionally beautiful.

Tigerwood is naturally resistant to rot and decay and offers a 30+ year lifespan without chemical treatment.

The Install Process Was Simple

First Pro Quality Carpentry started by installing wood furring strips to the existing stucco ceiling and made sure to attach the furring strips to the wood support trusses underneath the stucco.

Next they installed our Tigerwood nickel gap tongue and groove and fastened to the furring strips with stainless steel screws through the tongue to leave the ceiling free of faster holes.

Here’s Another Picture

Tigerwood nickel gap

 

How Much Does Ipe Wood Cost?

Ipe Deck NY

Ipe wood is well known among builders, contractors, architects and even homeowners because its proven to last 70+ years outdoors with no maintenance.

Due to the proven longevity of Ipe Wood many professionals specify it for their jobs. As a result this drives up the price. Over the last 10 years we have seen the price of Ipe wood increase over 20 percent.

During the same time frame we have other species that have slightly decreased in price such as Cumaru which is very comparable to Ipe.

Currently for 1 x 6 Ipe wood decking our price is $3.09 per linear foot and for 5/4 x 6 Ipe wood our price is $4.46 per linear foot. Check out our webpage for the most current Ipe Prices

How to Estimate How Much Ipe Wood You Need to Purchase

Hardwood decking like Ipe is priced by the linear foot and most deck projects are calculated by the square foot. This makes estimating and pricing the amount of Ipe wood you will need a little challenging.

We have linear feet to square feet calculators built into our decking pages that will help you convert linear feet to square feet.

As a general rule of thumb if you are using a 6 inch wide deck board and you have a 500 square foot deck you need a little more than double in linear feet since a 6 inch wide board has a net finished width of 5.5 inches.

To be exact you would need 1091 linear feet for a 500 square foot deck if you use 6 inch wide deck boards. Don’t forget to add in some boards for waste and cuts that you may incur when building your deck.

Following this information will help you get an accurate price for an Ipe wood deck. If you find the price of Ipe wood a little higher than you were hoping please contact us. We have other species that are similar to Ipe but cost less.

We speculate that in the future the prices of Ipe will continue to rise as they have. This is one reason we have stocked a steady supply of other species that are nearly identical to Ipe such as Cumaru.