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dli 01-19-2006 06:44 PM

Wood or Polyurethane Crown Moldings?
Which is generally easier to install? Wood or polyurethane crown moldings?

747 01-19-2006 11:30 PM

poly. Well maybe not. I'm assuming when you say wood your talking like a four or five or six piece crown molding not like one piece crown or a two piece crown. A lot has to do with a person's budget.

Teetorbilt 01-21-2006 06:46 PM

I'm wood all of the way. The other stuff has no backbone and comes out wavy unless you're real careful, that takes time which costs you.

dli 01-24-2006 12:32 PM

I've bought polyurethane crown moldings, and have seen them up in a few display rooms. I don't see how they could come out wavy.

747 01-24-2006 11:51 PM


Originally Posted by dli
I've bought polyurethane crown moldings, and have seen them up in a few display rooms. I don't see how they could come out wavy.

Maybe because teeter is a mastercraftsman when it comes to wood. A real master.:D

mcruickshank 01-25-2006 09:06 AM

Depends on your tools and your walls
Poly is great for wavy walls (walls on an older home). It can follow the contour of the wall a lot better than wood. Plus it can go up with joint compound or adhesive and no nails. But if you have a compressor and finish nailer than wood can go up just as quick. The time saved is in coping the inside corners, which is not needed for poly. Also, wood is cheaper to buy per linear foot.

I will be adding a crown molding project to my website within the next month. I am installing for a friend on mine. He is in the middle of same debate, poly or wood. His house dates back to 1880, so I am advising him to go with poly, but I will have to have a better look at the walls before we make a decision. I have installed 8" wood crown molding on an old house where the walls and ceiling were not straight. It was not fun to get the crown to fit correctly. Poly would have saved time and money. Crown molding needs to match on two planes: wall and ceiling, so if either are not straight then problems occur.

Good luck,

Average Guy

alvanos 03-10-2006 02:44 PM

I'm going through the exact same debate right now. I'm not so sure about the price point brought up above tho ... I've seen just the opposite. I'm looking at an egg-and-dart type cornice; at HD they have 8' sections for $24 and the wood equiv is nearly $18/linear foot. This might have something to do with what they stock vs. special order since the wood version they need to custom order from Ornamental Mouldings.

One other question - how do you cope or miter these? Can you cut them the same was as wood with the same computer miter saw/coping saw? I read above you don't need to nail them in, does this mean you shouldn't if you have a nail gun already? Also, I've seen in a lot of how-to books ppl put a 2x2 in the corner to help attach the cornice (at least for wood): does anybody else suggest this?


KenTheHandyMan 03-13-2006 09:35 PM

For the DIY I can see how that Poly is easier and it is cheaper. For me though, I would never buy the stuff. Granted, crown shouldn't have to deal with any abuse, being up so high, but the stuff just isn't solid enough for me. Plus, I do furniture grade trim work. I don't think you could get as nice a look with poly since the 'skin' can't be messed with, like when you 'roll' an outside corner.

alvanos 03-16-2006 04:42 PM

Hi Ken, the durability is a good point so let me ask your opinion: the crown I'm looking at is Poly (because it is LOTS cheaper than the wood equiv). The chair rail is wood and the baseboard is poly. It's not that I want poly, but the moulding I like is only availalable in poly - I would have to wait a month to order the wood equiv. Do you think this is a bad idea? My room is all torn up and I'm ready to install, I'd hate to wait another 4 weeks for a wood version ...

KenTheHandyMan 03-16-2006 10:58 PM

The only thing I can say about poly for the base is don't install any of those door stops in them. I know the feeling you're's prefinished, it's in stock, it looks fine, it's cheaper...I don't blame you. It depends on things like, how long will you be there? Will it be in a 'high traffic' area? It's personal preference to a degree as well, and I'll be honest, I'm not the best person to give an unbiased opinion about this type of thing, I'm all wood, all the time.

Like I said though, I understand your situation.

alvanos 03-20-2006 10:58 AM

Hi Ken, thanks again for your input. I would prefer wood myself, but I made the mistake of tearing about my room before having the material :( Anyway, it is a bedroom so not very high traffic. Good to know about the door stop, I would not have thought about that! Next project will be my office downstairs and that will be 100% wood, going to stain everything :)

Surfwalker25 03-27-2006 11:05 PM

dont knock poly until you see framing and finishing
poly all the way if framing on house is not perfectly square. Poly is more flexible and if using nail guns is easy to work with so that you can run with the ceilings easier. DOnt get me wrong, wood is nice but in the end and after a finish coat of paint, well look, I'm a contractor in myrtle beach sc and just put it in a 5.5 millionj dollar home and everyone loves it and really cant tell the difference. Try MDF


Originally Posted by dli
Which is generally easier to install? Wood or polyurethane crown moldings?

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