Adirondack chair wood choices
#11
  
Hi folks,

I am looking to build about 4-5 ACs. They will be outdoors in the spring/summer/fall.

From the reading I have done - Western red cedar and cypress seem to be top choices.
There are a few recommendations for Oak and cherry.
Redwood is out of question - I would not know where to source it for a reasonable price.

I already have a huge stash of oak and cherry. I am not sure how they will tolerate the crazy weather in upstate NY. They might also be pretty heavy!

I can get the cypress and WRC from Wallumber for a decent price. I am leaning towards cypress.

Something else I should be considering?
If I go with Oak or cherry - how do I finish?

I also want to know that if I wanted to build a couple of painted chairs - what wood can I use?

Thanks for your help guys...
The Apple wont fall;
Let's go and shake the tree.
Reply
#12
  Re: Adirondack chair wood choices by nocrapman (Hi folks, I am lo...)
If you use oak make it white oak not red. I have had good luck with Cabots Australian Timber Oil. stay away from a film finish.
KNOWLEDGE AND EXPERIENCE EQUALS WISDOM. RMB
The SO asked me today, "what are you going to do to day"? I said "nothing".  She said, "that's what you did yesterday"! Me, "Yes love, but I was not finished yet"!!!!!!!! Smirk

Reply
#13
  Re: Adirondack chair wood choices by nocrapman (Hi folks, I am lo...)
Meant to write white oak.

So no Spar varnish etc as top coat?
The Apple wont fall;
Let's go and shake the tree.
Reply
#14
  Re: Adirondack chair wood choices by nocrapman (Hi folks, I am lo...)
If you want to make painted chairs, white pine works just fine.  I made two for my bride out of pine; but prior to assembly I primed with exterior primer, then assembled, then two coats of white house paint.  I give them a light touch up every year with house paint, do the underneath once every three years; they are 8 years old already and look as good as the day they were made.

One thing, I used 4/4 pine for the two front and side legs, makes for a much sturdier chair.
Credo Elvem ipsum etiam vivere
Non impediti ratione cogitationis
Reply
#15
  Re: Adirondack chair wood choices by nocrapman (Hi folks, I am lo...)
I built mine from cypress, but then discovered that apparently there new growth cypress does not have the same benefits as old growth stuff.   I have no idea how to tell the difference - maybe the density of the rings?

I have used Epifanes Spar Varnish on a picnic table, but not on the chairs.  It has held up amazingly well on the table, but not sure I would want it on the part of the chairs that touch me when I'm sitting.  A little too plastic-y.  My chairs need to be refinished and I think I have decided to use paint - maybe with a deck stain?

As an aside, I was trying to be efficient and built 4 and once.  For me, that was too much.  I don't have a band saw or table saw, so everything got done with hand held tools.  By the time I cut all the pieces, I was bored.  Put the pieces aside.  When they started getting in the way (maybe 2 years later?) I finally assembled them.

Next time it's only 1 or 2 at a time.

Steve
Reply
#16
  Re: Adirondack chair wood choices by nocrapman (Hi folks, I am lo...)
A friend in PEI, Canada has built hundreds of adirondack chairs and he uses spruce. Last time I was visiting, I helped him make 7 for a request and he does not paint them, but leaves them weather naturally. They turn a nice gray and have lasted on the porch and in the yard for many years. He has jigs that allow for cutting and assembly and the work goes rather quickly. He has also built picnic tables and swings using the same wood.
George

if it ain't broke, you're not tryin'
Quando omni flunkus, moritati.
Red Green

Reply
#17
  Re: Adirondack chair wood choices by nocrapman (Hi folks, I am lo...)
Unless you want to spend a lot of time each year refinishing, I would use cedar or white oak. White oak is quite rot resistant and you can just let it weather to gray. The only drawback is that it's heavy, but unless you plan on moving the chairs around a lot, I don't see that that matters. And if you've got a stash of it, why not use it?
Reply
#18
  Re: Adirondack chair wood choices by nocrapman (Hi folks, I am lo...)
Pay special attention to the bottom of the legs. The endgrain will wick water.

I made half a dozen Norm Abrams adirondacks 20 years ago. Still have the plywood patterns......made them from cypress and then painted. They lasted quite a while but when they failed it was from the legs rotting out.
Reply
#19
  Re: Adirondack chair wood choices by nocrapman (Hi folks, I am lo...)
(04-04-2017, 12:30 PM)joe1086 Wrote: Pay special attention to the bottom of the legs. The endgrain will wick water.

I made half a dozen Norm Abrams adirondacks 20 years ago. Still have the plywood patterns......made them from cypress and then painted. They lasted quite a while but when they failed it was from the legs rotting out.

I was watching that video the other day.....

Will epoxy, glue or some kind of rubber at the base fix that water wicking issue?
I have read that white oak is not too good at wicking from end grain? no direct experience though.
The Apple wont fall;
Let's go and shake the tree.
Reply
#20
  Re: Adirondack chair wood choices by nocrapman (Hi folks, I am lo...)
(04-04-2017, 12:30 PM)joe1086 Wrote: Pay special attention to the bottom of the legs. The endgrain will wick water.

I made half a dozen Norm Abrams adirondacks 20 years ago. Still have the plywood patterns......made them from cypress and then painted. They lasted quite a while but when they failed it was from the legs rotting out.

This^^^^ Even when good drainage is otherwise provided, they will hold water and mush and crush.  Get them off ground contact with nylon or such.

If the bottoms of the legs are provided for, doesn't matter too much what you use for the chair, as long as it will hold fasteners.  If it is allowed to dry between rainstorms, will last fine.
Better to follow the leader than the pack. Less to step in.
Reply


Forum Jump:


Users browsing this thread: 1 Guest(s)