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steuspeed 09-29-2012 12:02 AM

Gray stain question for kiln dried deck
I'm building a new deck in the NW and the plan is to use kiln dried cedar deck boards. Since cedar eventually goes gray, I am not going to fight it this time. I'm using Sikkens Cetol SRD semi-transparent stain in cape cod gray. I have the option of pre dipping the boards. My fear is the stain will keep the boards from turning gray. Would it be a better option to stain the deck after it ages a bit. Anyone have experience with achieving this kind of look?

user1007 09-29-2012 01:17 AM

You can buy or mix a solution to speed graying of woods like cedar or redwood. Look online for the formula. Cabot's Bleaching Oil is what I used to use and it is a tried and true product for accelerating the weathered look of exterior wood. It has a tiny amount of gray pigment in it. It should work great with your semi-transparent Cape Cod Gray but I forget how soon you can apply the stain. You may actually like the look without the stain? Sikkens probably has a similar product.

steuspeed 09-29-2012 01:21 AM

That's great info. I'll check with my local sikkens dealer paint store. How fast does the wood go gray?

user1007 09-29-2012 01:42 AM


Originally Posted by steuspeed (Post 1019757)
That's great info. I'll check with my local sikkens dealer paint store. How fast does the wood go gray?

Very quickly and especially since you are starting with kiln dried lumber. Hard to give it to you in hours and minutes since temperature, humidity, sun exposure, moisture content of the wood and all will play a role. You might look up the data sheet on whatever you get to see what it says. Can label may have it also.

Just a comment and I sailed boats with natural grayed teak decks so do not mind the look. Are you sure you want to do this to nice kiln dried cedar though? Just asking and double checking, not judging, I promise. Trimmed out with slick looking railings and so forth I am sure it will look great. This is not a set it and forget it proposition though. You are still going to have to use something on the deck every few years depending on climate.

steuspeed 09-29-2012 02:06 AM

This is a two tier deck at ground level with about a 7" grade so anywhere you can get off the deck it's 7" off the ground. No railings. Two intersecting L shapes. Small 1951 ranch house with atomic modern style. Deck edge will have a recessed rope/strip light with a steel facia The facia will have thin offsetting rectangular holes cut out so the light casts out. I'm going to let the steel rust out and give me contrast with the gray.

user1007 09-29-2012 02:23 AM

Sounds nice actually. You might look into some of the newer LED marine lights for decks and stairs as an alternative to rope lights if you need more illumination. Of course there are oodles of programmable LED possibilities now too if you want to change color or brightness.

Laser or water cutting shapes in the steel facia could be fun.

Do post a picture when done?

steuspeed 09-29-2012 02:35 AM

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I have not decided on a lighting solution yet. I'm leaving a 1.5" overhang on the steel facia sides. That should give me enough room for the steel facia and TBD light strips.

The steel hole pattern could be laser, water or plasma cut. I have a local artist piece that provided the inspiration. She may be doing the work.

user1007 09-29-2012 03:13 AM

That is cool. Many of my clients were galleries but few carry a lot of outdoor pieces. Two of my fave artists were with my fave gallery (although I was supposed to love them all equally). Mark and Mindy---no kidding---were a couple with one doing blacksmith work and the other doing amazingly complex metal chasing. They did some spectacular pieces with another friend who late in life has become really good at studio furniture. Of course one of my super faves blows giant crystal pieces and then carves them up. He sometimes adds oxidized metals like you have in mind.

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