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Old 25-05-2018, 17:51   #1
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Wood Choices, types and locations....

Rebuilding mizzen mast and looking into woods. Hearing Sitka Spruce... and now Thai Cedar... Hearing others will simply use Douglas Fir (which is great for me in Colorado being sourced locally. Can some one run up a synopsis on pros and cons of each of these woods. and where to source the material. Google Thai Cedar and you get a lot of different cedar woods and Thai restaurants popping up but nothing on Thai Cedar wood. So how to get some (not sourced at local exotic wood supplier). Sitka can be found in Wa. area...
Not too concerned with price, as I only need a few 2x8's .
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Old 25-05-2018, 19:09   #2
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Re: Wood Choices, types and locations....

One of the You Tube channel sailors replaced their old mast with a new one that they made on the boat with DF 2x material they sourced from Home Depot. They glued it all together with West System epoxy and clamps and then shaped it with a power planer and some sanders. It turned out surprisingly well. I've used DF in the construction industry for years and its much stronger than normal pine or hem fir. The area I would be concerned about is rot but if you are applying liberal amounts of epoxy the wood should soak it up and be well protected. I would be interested to see what you end up building.
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Old 25-05-2018, 19:23   #3
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Re: Wood Choices, types and locations....

ya, I'm a GC and I have been using df for years as well. and ya, my first instinct is to run to local mill and have them mill me down some pieces. But before doing that I want to learn about these other woods a bit more and see if they're going to be worth the trouble, or just go with df. I saw that video and I've seen the mizzen base and it was built like that from factory.
Here I can easily get df in 16' so less splicing... if I have to ship those others in they'll probably be 8 fters or less. Sitka can probably be sourced through local specialty yard on special order, but I can't find **** on Thai cedar. haven't even confirmed that it exists beyond the legends of Sailor Chat sites.... wikipedia's repy The page "Thai Cedar" does not exist. The page "Thailand Cedar" does not exist. The page "Cedar from Thailand" does not exist.
so, mythical wood???
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Old 26-05-2018, 08:15   #4
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Re: Wood Choices, types and locations....

Spruce is used on spars for a reason. Stick with that.
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Old 26-05-2018, 09:31   #5
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Re: Wood Choices, types and locations....

Spruce is about 10 % lighter, Douglas Fir is about 20 % harder and has a slightly higher elastic modulus. 'Thailand cedar" is likely Chinese cedar, cupressaceae cunninghamia, and may be available as decking in the US, but I'd just go with the local douglas fir if it were me...
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Old 26-05-2018, 09:43   #6
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Re: Wood Choices, types and locations....

Spruce is light weight and tough... but soft. I bought a "propellor blank" once for a bowsprit. It may be a bit hard to find but should be out there. I would use that.
Douglas Fir (you have that in Colorado really?) is great, but heavier. You would have to get CVG (clear vertical grain) Fir.... NOT HEMLOCK. CVG Fir is probably as expensive as Spruce.
I have never heard of Thai Cedar so cant comment but it's likely not really cedar is my thought, like Phillipine Mahogany is not Mahogany at all. Thai Cedar could be Phillipine Mahogany actually as I've heard of that and related species being called Cedar before.
Most hardware/lumberyard Fir is not properly dried, so be careful.... it will continue to shrink for a while. CVG may be though.
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Old 27-05-2018, 08:58   #7
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Re: Wood Choices, types and locations....

Thanks guys, that's very helpful... (except Terra Nova... dude if you can't contribute to the discussion, you might want to leave your condescension to yourself)

Blue: Rocky Mountain Douglas-fir (Pseudotsuga menziesii var. glauca) Pseudotsuga menziesii, commonly known as Douglas fir, Douglas-fir and Oregon pine, is an evergreen conifer species native to western North America.
Cheechaco, you made me look it up, lol, I know it's locally available and we use it all the time for Structural here. So, yes looking to me like the better choice. I will avoid Home Depot's stock. We have local mill close by, I can specify CVG.
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Old 27-05-2018, 09:09   #8
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Re: Wood Choices, types and locations....

spruce ROTS.
caoba(coaba-not sure spelling), which is a cedar used for truckbeds works well as does doug fir, straight grain clear

it is difficult to obtain thai cedar, unless you can find appropriate masts off another pooor victim of destruction.
we are currently working on masts for solitarybird. my thai cedar mizzen needs new wood scarfed into where the rot occurred from patriciacane's breakage.
first we rebuild the step area, inclusive of beams running transversely beneath the step. is a nicely intensive task. we will use perota for the base supporting step. then onward. i am making november the goal for newness of masts--may have a solution in form of potential destruction of a formosa 41 as an option. we donot dare to hope. while hoping we are collecting the woods needed for the feathering in of wood to replace that which has rotted so well. mine are thai cedar.
the formosas that were shipped to usa were stepped with spruce masts which are more susceptible to rot than is thai cedar.
these small hahaha projects are reason for the yahoo group an d fb groups for these boats. enjoy refit. is a wonderful way to know your boat and have a good trade winds cruiser when completed

for those who know nothing about taiwan, the island is a usa protectorate that communist china, aka mainland china has desired to swallow whole. sorrry but there is nothing CHINESE on these boats except proximity. no chinese steel, no chinese wood..no chinese anything. usa and taiwan had deals and trade complete with shipping. imagine that. what a coincidence as taiwan has been protected by usa since taken from japan during ww2. might want to do some history before spewing misinformation and disinformation. we have been carefully collecting information on these boats for a future project.
thailand is closer in proximity to taiwan than is alaska and spruce, hence use of spruce only for those boats shipped to usa for commissioning.
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Old 27-05-2018, 09:19   #9
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Re: Wood Choices, types and locations....

sitka spruce is a excellent if you can get actual sitka spruce, doug fir is also very good. Don t use heart wood d.f. both need to be knot free, clear altho the spruce may have small1/4 pin knots d.f. is heavier and more dense, spruce is lighter and more flexible. s. spruce is expensive . both need to be kiln dried. If prices were close I would use real sitka spruce. I use spruce for making oars and they are great. I son t know about thai cedar.
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Old 27-05-2018, 09:28   #10
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Re: Wood Choices, types and locations....

Quote:
Originally Posted by Michaeltouche View Post
Thanks guys, that's very helpful... (except Terra Nova... dude if you can't contribute to the discussion, you might want to leave your condescension to yourself)...
Condescension is you thinking you know better than boat builders around the country because you're a GC.
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Old 27-05-2018, 09:33   #11
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Re: Wood Choices, types and locations....

If I was being condescending about knowing everything because I am a GC... then what the F(&$@ am I doing on this page trying to learn everything I can about different woods that are used on boat mast.... go away troll.............
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Old 27-05-2018, 09:46   #12
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Re: Wood Choices, types and locations....

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Originally Posted by Terra Nova View Post
Spruce is used on spars for a reason. Stick with that.
spruce rots faster than many woods usable for these masts.
\spruce mast life is about 20 years. thai cedar lasts over 40 years without rot at bases. biiig difference. coaba or caoba or the truckbed wood lasts forever as well. i would go with that or doug fir, as michael has discussed.
make sure mast boots and partners donot leak in rains.
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Old 27-05-2018, 09:48   #13
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Re: Wood Choices, types and locations....

Zeehag, you keep mentioning Thai Cedar, where do you get this information about species. There is no mention of the wood through a google search. Jimbunyard mentioned it probably being Chinese cedar, cupressaceae cunninghamia. which I looked up, native to China then spilling down into Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia... and possibly into Thailand... is it this species. I can see why they would use it considering it grow to 160' long straight.... Thanks Ken z Ya, it's a toss up of Sitka and Doug Fir, but then I hear how spruce rots (thanks Zeehag) and my main boom has a rot spot... so conflicted... hahaha I just haven't heard any reason to go through the added effort to get Sitka... which I have found (just not locally) and a mizzen needs only needing 8ea 8 footers not a huge blow to pocket compared to other needs on the boat.
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Old 27-05-2018, 09:55   #14
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Re: Wood Choices, types and locations....

I have only built one wooden sloop 30+ years ago. I used Alaska Sitka Spruce for my mast. I used it because, long ago, as a small plane pilot most old small planes used it for the wing spar, and Howard Hughes used it for the Spruce Goose (largest wooden airplane that didn't fly anywhere). You use to be able to get long lengths without any knots. Good Luck
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Old 27-05-2018, 10:09   #15
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Re: Wood Choices, types and locations....

Old growth, clear Port Orford Cedar. Good luck with that.
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