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Which cladding?


pocster
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Hey all,

 

My architect specified larch. I'm less than sure - it doesn't seem that durable (5 -> 10 years).

What's the "best" cladding? by that I mean last the longest and require little or no maintenance?

 

My architect tends to add sometimes 'pretty' features (like timber framed windows); but doesn't think of the practicalness or maintenance - I guess he likes timber B|

 

Cheers

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Here's a good reference for durability of timber species.

 

http://www.greenspec.co.uk/building-design/timber-cladding/

 

Where are you getting your info on Larch. I thought, as the above link states, it was fairly durable and good for 30+ years without treatment.

 

But shop around to get the best price. I ended up with half my cladding being a European Oak at a very reasonable price as Brooks Bros seemed to have a load to "get rid of"

Edited by IanR
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If it only lasts five years, then it isn't larch!

Quality and prices vary hugely, depending on species, origin, grading (all heartwood?) and treatment (if any).

 

If you really want to go for zero maintenance, would your planners allow you to use wood-effect cement fibre board? E.g. marley Cedral.

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Our local sawmill reckoned that local larch was good for around 20 to 30 years before needing treatment, and if clear treated every five years after that would probably last for around 60 years.  His view was that larch was a bit under-rated, and generally tended to be as good as, if not better than, UK grown cedar, in terms of durability.

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As crofter said, arguably fibre cement board or a plastic/wood composite cladding may be more durable. 

 

I suppose I need to ask - what do you mean by 'durable'? Although it sounds like an obvious question, some would regard (fairly) the look as playing a part in this - hence why more modern cladding is popular because it retains the original look with no maintenance. Many people do not like how natural timber weathers. 

 

 

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I just choose a random (ish) website

 

https://www.iwood.co.uk/cladding-external/21/larch-siberian/

 

As you can see durability is 'slight' ; so according to them quite poor.

 

4  Slightly durable  5-10 years

 

 

I guess as mentioned what do I (or anyone) means by durability?. I suppose I mean maintenance - the fact it weathers etc. and changes colour is fine because that's part of the 'natural' charm.

Edited by pocster
mental issues
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The most durable cladding will perhaps be woods used by coastal defence engineers.

 

Or teak or iroko, or the one that @PeterStarck has on his balcony.

 

Or if you are feeling very rich and resolute, the sapwood of Greenheart :-), which last a century in Groynes.

 

Or I always fancied Coconut Palm.

 

Palmwood_house_2.JPG

Edited by Ferdinand
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Ipe is very durable, but heavy and expensive mostly used for decking.  Also a fair bit of rainforest destruction occurs as they end up clearing a large swathe of trees to drag out the odd Ipe.  Western Red Cedar is lightweight, duarable and medium cost.  Siberian Larch is durable at lower cost.

 

Lots of the stuff used for marine projects is not so suitable for cladding, as the desired properties are different (resistance to marine based borers, impact, appearance etc)

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3 minutes ago, Mr Punter said:

Ipe is very durable, but heavy and expensive mostly used for decking.  Also a fair bit of rainforest destruction occurs as they end up clearing a large swathe of trees to drag out the odd Ipe.  Western Red Cedar is lightweight, duarable and medium cost.  Siberian Larch is durable at lower cost.

 

Lots of the stuff used for marine projects is not so suitable for cladding, as the desired properties are different (resistance to marine based borers, impact, appearance etc)

 

Thanks ... Ipe was the one.

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I ended up going with Siberian Larch....I had always said I would have Western Red Cedar but the Larch is much tougher for knocks and dents..... I also found some larch with a nice grain and a scarificial pre weathered coat which I preferred to Sioo which after weathering for 4 months on my WRC sample was so white it looked like balsa.

 

v v happy with the larch and the cost saving was an unexpected bonus

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5 hours ago, pocster said:

I just choose a random (ish) website

 

https://www.iwood.co.uk/cladding-external/21/larch-siberian/

 

As you can see durability is 'slight' ; so according to them quite poor.

 

4  Slightly durable  5-10 years

 

 

I guess as mentioned what do I (or anyone) means by durability?. I suppose I mean maintenance - the fact it weathers etc. and changes colour is fine because that's part of the 'natural' charm.

 

Wrong measure of durability...

 

Thats the Trada post spec for durability i.e. If you left a 50x50 post in the ground. 

 

Larch will last 20-25 years as cladding. 

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Might be worth looking at Thermowood. They claim 30 year durability untreated for cladding use and up to 60 years if treated at regular intervals. Half of our build is clad with it and the rest in Marley Cedral Click. One advantage of the Thermowood is that it's very stable.

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