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Wood expert here?? Need help.

Discussion in 'Other Off Topic Forum' started by bubba, Apr 1, 2004.

  1. bubba

    bubba Formula 3

    May 8, 2002
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    One of my customers want me to look into outdoor wooden furniture for them. Frankly, I know very little about it. They are talking about teak, which as I understand it is quite expensive.

    I know there are many types of wood for making outdoor wooden furniture. Can someone tell me the types of wood commonly used for outdoor wooden furniture and their relative costs?

    Some links for more detailed info would be highly appreciated. Many thanks!
     
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  3. PeterS

    PeterS Three Time F1 World Champ
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    Teak is really good for outdoor furniture. It's very robust against the elements. Cedar and redwood are also excellent choices, but teak is the best, but about 3-4X the cost for finished furniture. If you are in HK, obtaining Teak would probably be the most available.
     
  4. bubba

    bubba Formula 3

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    PeterS, many thanks for the info. Actually, I am trying to get these furnitures made in China. The factories my staff contacted said as a raw material teak cost 9-11 times as much. Damn!
     
  5. PeterS

    PeterS Three Time F1 World Champ
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    Go to www.cocobolo.com. That is where I buy my exotic wood from for the furniture I build. I am sure they can ship it to Asia and you would save big $$$'s!
     
  6. PeterS

    PeterS Three Time F1 World Champ
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    Bubba..I was in HK a year ago and saw the Bently that has an '8' on the license plate. Is it true that the richest guy in HK at the close of the year gets to drive that car for that year?
     
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  8. Tyler

    Tyler F1 Rookie

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  9. wax

    wax Four Time F1 World Champ
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    Teak Outdoor Furniture

    Shorea Outdoor Furniture

    Incidentally, I mention Shorea (a non-endangered type of mahogany), as it is denser & heavier than it's counterpart, teak, but much more plentiful & therefore, cheaper. Left untreated, it weathers to a lovely, warm grey or can be maintained with teak sealer.

    Here's an interesting bit of "environmental intelligence gathering" Burma, forestry auctioned to druglord's company ("Asia World Co, the company owned by druglord Lo Hsing Han."), *teak , pine & Shorea prices*, Chinese border, Elephant Docks...

    *"At Kengtung in the year 2000 the price of pine was 20,000 kyat per ton, shorea wood 70,000 kyat per ton, and teak 300,000 kyat per ton. If the timber is transports to and sold at the Chinese border, the price of each ton of wood is higher."
     
  10. bubba

    bubba Formula 3

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    Many thanks for all the info. Very helpful.

    I haven't heard of this before. Can't quite remember which tycoon owns that 8 plate, but he isn't the richest guy here. The richest guy in HK (worth over US$10 billion) is fairly frugal, wears a Casio watch and rides in a Nissan President (granted, it's the most expensive Nissan, but still a Nissan).
     
  11. PeterS

    PeterS Three Time F1 World Champ
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    I really admire that!
     
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  13. ctk

    ctk Karting

    Jul 2, 2001
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    Teak is an excellent outdoor furniture timber. Most teak furniture today is made in Thailand or Indonesia. For it to be imported into Europe or the USA, it has to have a certificate that the wood was harvested from a managed forest rather than cut in the wild. You can probably find smuggled Golden Teak from Burma (Myanmar) but it is expensive. To use timber furniture in dry climate countries, you have to make sure the timber has been properly cured and dried otherwise it will shrink and warp. Quality and price of teak logs vary greatly. Depends on the design and what you want. hope this helps.
     
  14. bubba

    bubba Formula 3

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    ctk, thank you for that info. Yes, the managed forest deal, a.k.a. FSC. A pain in the butt for most Chinese factories to get.
     
  15. teak360

    teak360 F1 Veteran
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    Teak is the best, but only if you get older wood. Managed plantation wood, unless it is over 50 years old, is not superior to a number of other woods. There is a lot of inexpensive teak furniture available now, stay away from it if you want long lasting quality.
    I own several teak plantations with trees from 3 years to 16 years old. There are a lot of good uses for this younger wood, but outdoor furniture isn't the best of them.
    Remember, the general rule is that if you pay what seems like a LOT for teak furniture, and check out the provider, you will be getting the best. I personally would rather have one good chair and have most people sit on the ground than have six poor quality ones.
     
  16. Mitch Alsup

    Mitch Alsup F1 Veteran

    Nov 4, 2003
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    Along with teak, and the redwoods, Cypress is also a good outdoor wood.
     
  17. ctk

    ctk Karting

    Jul 2, 2001
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    Singapore
    The use of timber in furniture and decoration can get quite complex and involved, if you really want to get into the nitty gritty. For example, each year a tree grows, the trunk gets thicker (annular ring). Thus, when examining a trunk cross-section you can figure out how old the tree is. Now depending on how the sawmill has sliced the trunk (quartered, etc.) you will see a different pattern of grain. Teak (known as Jati ) in SE Asia is commonly used in furniture. It is usually cut straight grained.

    Managed forest teak are much younger (but you are not destroying the natural forest resources) and the general natural colour tone is a very pale greenish brown instead of golden brown. most teak if left unprotected by finishes are still very hardy and will age to a silvery gray.

    For furniture use, especially if they are small sections like arms or spindles, you are not going to enjoy the distinctive visual graining and generally off cuts are used. Solid or large expanse sections like chairbacks or wall panels should be selected from sections that display good grain and blemish free stock. In all, if it a piece of furniture, all teak parts should have come from the same tree or stock as you want to ensure when it ages, it changes tone evenly.

    Your biggest worry about hardwood furniture is always, poor design, poor assembly and biggest headache, warping. Price and quality are concommitant. Teak is beautiful and long lasting, easy to work on and has very dense grain structure.

    If in HongKong, You should check out huanghuali timbers or blackwood for beauty in timbers although I would not recommend it for outdoor use, it will probably get stolen!!!
     

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