Extreme Temperatures and softwoods

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Old 02-09-15, 10:25 PM
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Extreme Temperatures and softwoods

Hello all.
I'm looking to install 1X6 T&G pine on both my ceiling and floors at my cabin.

Ceiling-Is there anything I need to do besides acclimating for 5-7 days and sealing it? I'm worried about our extreme -30 winters and the shock from heating it up on the weekends. Would it warp or buckle from these kinds of fluctuations?

Flooring-same as above and.....I'm up 4 ft off the ground without an insulated floor. Any kind of barrier I should put down between the OSB sub-floor and pine?


I really only want to do this once so any info or experience will be greatly appreciated!

Thanks for your time.
 
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Old 02-10-15, 04:04 AM
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Welcome to the forums!

Generally T&G pine is kiln dried and ready to accept finish at any time. IMO it's best to apply 2 coats of poly/varnish [sand between coats] prior to installation because it saves time and is easier to do on a saw horse. I'd rethink using T&G pine on the floor as it's really too soft to wear well and the bevel at the groove would make it harder to keep clean. Roofing felt is normally laid over the sub floor under the wood flooring.
 
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Old 02-10-15, 05:53 AM
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My in-laws have this on some of the ceilings and walls at their lake home and it's beautiful. As Mark said, two or three coats of polyurethane (I prefer oil based).

I also agree I would not use this on a floor for the same reasons.
 
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Old 02-10-15, 06:16 AM
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Just to clarify, it takes 3 coats of poly [sanding between coats] to achieve a fine finish. It's always best to apply the final coat after installation.

My youngest son has 1x6 T&G pine on the ceilings/walls in half of his house - it does look sharp!
I also prefer oil based as it will deepen the colors naturally in the wood. Using water based poly will result in a lighter color as it does little to change the look of the wood other than give it a sheen.
 
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Old 02-10-15, 06:44 AM
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Much of the lumber in Alaska is not kiln dried so we can't assume that it will be like we would in the lower 48. If the T&G was not kiln dried I would plan on it shrinking and bringing it inside to dry for as long as possible would be a good idea. 5-7 days is a good start but I would try to go much longer if you can wait. After your satisfied that it's dried I would seal all sides of the boards with at least one coat before putting it up.

I don't think you'll directly have much problem due to the temperature. But when it's cold the air is dry which can lead to shrinkage and cracking. Then when summer comes the moisture in the air will increase dramatically and the wood will swell somewhat. Getting the wood dried first then sealing it well should help stabilize it's moisture content and stabilize it as much as possible.
 
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Old 02-10-15, 06:49 AM
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It can take wood 6 weeks to 6 months to air dry. It's not a great idea to finish wood with a high moisture content. If the moisture can't escape thru the unfinished side it will try to go thru the finish lifting it in the process Water based coatings are more forgiving than oil base.
 
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Old 02-10-15, 06:54 AM
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If it isn't kiln dried I would want it to be air dried at least six months. And remember, it won't dry unless the air can circulate so a tight bundle will never dry in the middle. Each and every board needs to be separated with small sticks and spaces to allow full access to the air.

(Mark beat me to it.)

I do wonder though how much wood is milled to tongue and groove that is NOT kiln dried. Milling green lumber and then drying would leave an awful lot of misshapen milled wood in my experience, limited as it has been.
 
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Old 02-10-15, 07:58 AM
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Would the cabin at least be conditioned when you are not there? Is there any plumbing at all? Figured that you would at least have the temp. maintained at 50 degrees to prevent freeze ups, and then only heating things up to 70 degrees on the weekends.
 
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Old 02-10-15, 01:34 PM
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I appreciate the quick responses! And I will try to clarify a few things.


You probably wouldn't figure this but wood is EXPENSIVE in Alaska and so is everything that goes with it. Because sawmills over charge and yet the demand is here... I'm going to save money and ship kiln dried pine from Washington. It makes me sick that I have to go this route but it just doesn't make sense to give more and get less. Coincidentally my only real bulk local wood options in this area(without shipping it in from a different part of the state) are Birch and Spruce.

I agree and have read that pine is not the best for flooring but I have looked online and seen some absolutely beautiful pine T&G floors. I have to try to remember that I'm building a cabin not a 5 star resort I was just considering it because of the amount that I could get shipped in. Is there any other species that has a similar look, harder and reasonably priced?

So for the ceiling, 2-3 coats of seal seem to be the consensus. Since it will be Kiln dried should I seal the entire board or leave the back still unfinished? and during install should I give an extra 1/8th of an inch for expansion or more?


czizzi- I will have water and sewer next year but I had all my plumbing pitched to drain in the winter. I would love to maintain 50 degrees but fuel is extremely expensive in this area.


thank you all again!
 
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Old 02-10-15, 01:47 PM
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Yellow pine makes for better flooring than white pine. We rented a 2 story cabin in the smokies a few years back and they used white pine for flooring on the 2nd floor with the exposed joists and underside of the pine for the ceiling below. While no one else in the family noticed, I could tell where the finish and wood was worn down in the traffic areas upstairs along with multiple cracks where light would shine between the 2 floors.

I think there are as many arguments for sealing both sides as there are for leaving the backside raw. If it wasn't too much hassle, I'd apply 1 coat to the backside, no need for any more. You do have to be careful on how much poly gets applied to the tongue and grooves as any build up can affect how they join together. You don't really want to stop and sand or scrape to allow 2 pieces to come together.
 
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Old 02-11-15, 03:36 AM
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Composite decking boards are subject to probably the most expansion and contraction of any building material out there short of expanded PVC trim boards. Given that, they are installed differently depending on the prevailing temperature when you put the boards down. You, technically, can use the same philosophy when installing your pine boards. Hold till the warmest part of the season and with that also, crank the heat to what will be the maximum working temperature. Then let the wood acclimate at this temperature and humidity for your several days. Maintain those settings throughout the install. Install the wood tight to each other as this represents its largest expansion state. All other future temperatures will represent a cooling and shrinking of the boards. Gaps may open, but you won't get any buckling from over expansion. Expansion and contraction happens over the length of the board as well as the width. If you are fortunate enough your boards will all be full length across the ceiling.
 
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Old 03-09-15, 07:40 PM
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a real quick after thought

I went to my neighbors today and looked on there ceilings and walls and they had no sealer on the pine anywhere! they do hold a ambient temperature of 50 year round but it looks as if it was brand new(it has only been up for 3 years). Thoughts of leaving it untreated ?
 
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Old 03-10-15, 04:46 AM
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Since the wood is protected from the elements it will hold up a long time without any coating applied to it. It would be prone to absorbing any moisture in the air. Any spills or grime that gets on the wood will be harder to clean up [sometimes impossible if the stain goes too deep] While the wood might look unchanged, I'd bet it has darkened some over the years as that is what wood does when it's not protected by bark or a coating of some type.
 
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Old 03-10-15, 04:56 AM
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I think pine looks better with 2 or 3 coats of oil based poly on it regardless of whether it needs that for protection on a wall or ceiling.

On a floor or anywhere else a spill can occur, raw wood is a disaster waiting to happen.
 
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