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Discussion Starter #1
Good morning all. I have been reading for the last hour on previous post about decks. I still come away with questions after doing so. I know that products are going to come down to personal preference. Sort of like the Ford Vs. Chevy thing, but surely their is good stain that will hold up on a deck? Also I haven't read any resent post on this subject there may be something newer, Later Greater out their now?

The project is a three year old 650 SF deck built on a steel frame. These are 20' long treated 2x6 boards. Not knowing any better then, I used Thompson’s water sealer for the last three years on it. I don’t have to tell you it last about three months and then it's gone. This deck is 14' up and really takes a pounding from the sun.

From what I have read I plan on sanding (That’s a lot of sanding) and then applying a stained sealer on it.

What can I use to sand this large of an area? My 1/4 sheet sander will kill me on this project. A few bosrds are starting to cup.
Next, what product would you recommend I apply to this surface? I would like something a little darker than normal wood color? This (I pray) holds up for a long time. It doesn’t really get that much traffic on it as it’s already in the mid 90’s to upper 90’s here.

I appreciate your time and advice.
Mikeydidit
 

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Discussion Starter #2
DEFY Extreme Semi-transparent Wood Stain

I found this while searching this morning. Has anyone used this product yet? If so what do you think of it?

Thanks
 

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Mikey, the problem with sanding a deck with cupped boards is that you will scald the high spots and miss the low spots if you use a large belt sander. I have used my orbital and my sheet sander on large decks & it really doesn't take as long as you think. Problem is your knees will take a beating unless you have knee pads or something soft to place under your knees. Also, the orbital can leave swirl marks if your not careful. To be honest I have never found a product that will give you more than 2 years on a horizontal deck surface. The wood just takes too much abuse from UV, snow, wind, rain, sleet, snow, etc. I do use Deckscapes from SW and I like CWF-UV from the Flood Co. They both give me 2-3 years on a deck surface before retreatment.
 

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Thanks for your reply Gymschu. I have a freind the owns his own painting company and he also recommended the SW Deckscapes. It's just from reading on here and a couple of other places it looks like people are starting to recommend using Latex again on decks. It seems that their are some sort of organic materials in the Oil based that atract mold and mildew. The product I mentioned (DEFY Extreme Semi-transparent Wood Stain) has replaced that with a syntheitc material that does not atract the mold. Down here In the south, thats a real problem which is why i was considering it.

I went looking for a good cleaner this weekend and ended up with the Cabot for around $9.00 a gallon. From what everone on here has been saying, its a good product? Next week i'll go back for the Cabot deck brightener. Hopefully I can get started cleaning and sanding within the next couple of weeks. A freind is loaning me his power washer, so i should be good to go. It's already 101 down here so it shouldn't take long to dry.. (OUCH)

That still gives me a little time to figure out what stain to use..
 

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The industry is shifting to latex, not the people. The tail is wagging the dog. Thank Uncle Sham! I just used a new modified alkyd/latex hybrid translucent from Sikkens, Cetol SRD-WB. Translucent is deceptive because it definitely adds significant color to the deck. It was a nice product, time will tell how it holds up, as it's brand new.
 

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The problem with Latex stains is they never weather like an oil will. Once it decides to loose it's grip on the wood you have peeling. Oil will just weather away layer by layer till it's time to stain again.

Be careful staining over any surface that had Thompsons on it. Yes the color wore off in a few months but there is more than likely still parafin wax left behind and NOTHING likes to go over parafin wax.
 

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Stain technology

Many stains have hybrid technology, like the Flood SWF (solid) and the TWF (semi-transparent) finishes. You get the alkyd penetration into the wood, and the color retention of the acrylic. This is primarily due to VOC regulations from the EPA.
 

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I'm in the process of doing our deck as well (about 500SF) and had to sand all the old stain off (removed solid to put on semi transparent).

Tried sanding with a belt sander, didn't work very well (slow, plus the cupped boards problems as mentioned before). Palm sander worked ok but again, pretty slow. Ended up renting a drum sander (like what they use to refinish hardwood floors) and a buying a bunch of 36gr pieces and ran that over it once.

Worked great, a couple passes over the cupped parts leveled it out and took away the stain. Couple really bad ones will have to be done with the palm sander but saved lots of time. Just have to be careful as you're getting used to it. Too long in one spot and you'll wear a nice deep hole in the wood.
 
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