Composite Deck Trim that Bends?


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Old 06-02-12, 04:34 AM
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Composite Deck Trim that Bends?

We're thinking about re-doing our deck with composite material, however the deck has some curves to it. Is composite deck trim flexible enough to follow the curves?
 
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Old 06-02-12, 04:38 AM
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Deck boards will remain flat and straight. You will need to cut the curves out and possibly re-radius the boards. Could you post a few pics of what you have? That way we can see what you see. http://www.doityourself.com/forum/el...your-post.html
 
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Old 06-02-12, 05:23 AM
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https://picasaweb.google.com/1011997...07616662/Deck#

Here are some pics. As you can see, only the front is curved - the two sides will be easy (I think - never worked with composite)
 
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Old 06-02-12, 05:44 AM
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You could get one of these...

Or if you wanted something cheaper, you might be able to rent an electric ground blanket to heat up the composite.
 
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Old 06-02-12, 07:05 AM
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With only the front board with curvature, I don't think lateral bending of the composite will really work. Fine for the riser boards, but the flat board, I don't know.
 
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Old 06-02-12, 09:22 AM
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I'm not sure what you mean by the distinction between the riser and flat board. I thought all I'd need to bend was what I was calling "trim" - a piece that stands up vertical and runs horizontal along the sides. I thought I could cut the decking to fit the curve and cover the ugly part with the "trim". Does this make sense? More importantly, am I thinking about this all wrong?
 
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Old 06-02-12, 09:33 AM
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Okay - I just did some reading online (should have done it before I posted here....).

I misnamed things it looks like - what I was calling "trim" seems to be the "riser". Trim seems to be really a piece that sits flat and frames the decking. Bending that stuff seems difficult, time consuming, and expensive - especially for such a small deck.

So I guess my question is this - can I put the decking on flush with the underlying frame and then cover with the riser material? Doing this will require me to cut a curve long-wise into the last deck board (maybe two?). Will the riser on this side sufficiently cover the part that I cut- not only on the curved end but the sides as well? In other words, can I get away without the trim?
 
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Old 06-02-12, 10:34 AM
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That's what I was picturing... that you were asking about how to curve the riser.

If you get solid composite (there are several brands that are solid) the cut edge could look exactly like your existing deck does, matching the existing curves by ripping the board in exactly the same way. If the composite is solid, there would be no need to "cover the part that you cut".

But if you get one of the types of composite that has a hollow extrusion, or that has extruded "legs" then yes, something would need to cap the cut edge. Heating the material with a thermal blanket would help you bend it. That curve isn't that sharp so bending it should be fairly easy. Having two or three people and working fairly quickly to get it pressed back and screwed down would be the key.

Biggest problem with composite materials is the amount that they expand and contract. Miters will look great when you first put it together but with a few temperature changes they start to gap open. it's pretty hard to avoid, even when you glue and screw those miters together.

Lefty has probably done quite a bit of this type of work, maybe he will chime in, and if he doesn't you could PM him. I've never personally done any curves on decks.

Only other idea I would have... which again would only work if you are using a solid composite material is to just rip the 5/4 x 6 riser into 2 parts... to make it 1/2 x 6, or thereabouts. Thin composite would bend a lot easier- might not even have to be heated, and you could do it in 2 layers to achieve basically the same thickness. They do make composite "fascia cover" that's roughly 1/2" thick, which might be the material you'd want to use in the first place.
 
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Old 06-02-12, 12:55 PM
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I think I understand what you're describing. I like the idea of using solid composite for the decking if the exposed ends look like the tops/sides. Then as you said all I'd need is a riser to cover the vertical parts. Sounds pretty easy.

Thanks!
 
 

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