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Old 16-10-2011, 13:30   #1
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Wood Type For Painted Headlining

Hi Folks,

I am considering replacing the headlining with wooden battens, aligned fore and aft, about 3" in width. My plan would be to paint the batons white to improve the natural lighting level.

What type of wood is recommend? I don't want to use pine as it will probably absorb water and expand, nor do I want to use an expensive hard wood as it will be painted.

I like the asthetics of old wooden yachts where the painted cabin roof contrasts with the teak timber paneling. Any advice would be appreciated?

Thanks,

BlowingOldBoots
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Old 16-10-2011, 13:41   #2
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Re: Wood Type For Painted Headlining

ash, maple, birch -----maple is nice n hard---use epoxy to penetrate and protect it, whatever you use.......
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Old 16-10-2011, 13:45   #3
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Re: Wood Type For Painted Headlining

Quote:
Originally Posted by BlowingOldBoots View Post
Hi Folks,

I am considering replacing the headlining with wooden battens, aligned fore and aft, about 3" in width. My plan would be to paint the batons white to improve the natural lighting level.

What type of wood is recommend? I don't want to use pine as it will probably absorb water and expand, nor do I want to use an expensive hard wood as it will be painted.

I like the asthetics of old wooden yachts where the painted cabin roof contrasts with the teak timber paneling. Any advice would be appreciated?

Thanks,

BlowingOldBoots
Long leaf yellow heart pine is considered hardwood..1/4 sawn vertical grain will work fine..pm me if you need some also have oak...DVC
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Old 16-10-2011, 13:55   #4
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Re: Wood Type For Painted Headlining

Go with something local, light in weight and color, and as rot resistant as possible. For a headliner I like Port Orford cedar, but it's hard to come by. Alaskan yellow cedar a close second. It's a question of personal taste and matching the existing finish to some degree though. I think 3" is way too wide for headliner, I'd be looking at more like 1 3/4" or 2". Once again just a question of personal taste. I'd go with Port Orford because I like the color for a headliner (very light), it's incredibly rot resistant, and it smells really good. Male sure you backseal, thats where most people go wrong on a headliner like this IMHO.
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Old 16-10-2011, 14:16   #5
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Re: Wood Type For Painted Headlining

Western Red Cedar.
Prepped right and painted and it will outlive you.
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Old 16-10-2011, 14:37   #6
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Re: Wood Type For Painted Headlining

I would not use western red on a boat. While fairly rot resistant, it is very weak (obviously not important for a headliner), and holds coatings very poorly for the same reason it is rot resistant. Note that western red cedar is the only material that Gougeon brothers specifically states you should not apply WEST epoxy to, as it will fail eventually. I've found this to be true of most other coatings on western red as well. And the rot resistance isn't even in the same ballpark as Port Orford or Alaskan white or yellow. Of course it is much cheaper. If you look at rot tests for red, you will find that is extremely resistant to ground rot from being buried, this is why it is used for fencing. It's resistance to rotting when exposed to fresh water and lots of air isn't so hot though. It tends tyo dry rot when exposed to lots of wet/dry cycles. I suppose it could be an OK cheap option for headliner, but not on my boat. Too dark as well for an overhead. Port Orford is almost white. Sitka spruce is also a popular option for it's light weight and light color, but it's not as rot resistant either...
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Old 16-10-2011, 14:40   #7
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Re: Wood Type For Painted Headlining

How would Sequoia/Redwood work in a marine environment?
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Old 16-10-2011, 15:23   #8
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Re: Wood Type For Painted Headlining

You want a species that's lightweight, relatively rot resistant, and won't have knots that will bleed through paint. Strength for a headliner is not an issue -- it's really decorative rather than structural. Epoxy adhesion is not relevant either--you want to make the battens removable in order to have access to through deck fittings, wiring, etc.

A good coat of primer should mitigate any moisture absorption issues.

This link gives the densities of most common woods.

The most economical choice would probably be battens milled out of pine or cedar that are commonly used in home construction.
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Old 16-10-2011, 16:08   #9
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Re: Wood Type For Painted Headlining

Table saw, router table, rip down local lumber yard "Doug Fir", use the router to 1/4 round the edges, prime and paint, beautiful. cheap amd long lasting.
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Old 16-10-2011, 16:16   #10
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Re: Wood Type For Painted Headlining

Doug Fir
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Old 17-10-2011, 10:54   #11
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Re: Wood Type For Painted Headlining

Thanks folks for your replies. I looked up Douglas Fir and found this site: -

DOUGLAS FIR WOOD PRODUCTS PAGE : BEAMS : FLOORING : SIDING : BEAR CREEK LUMBER

So I now know that yellow pine and Doug Fir are the same species. I live in Scotland and this wood is certainly available over here, for example: -

Timber Merchants - Douglas Fir Sawn To Size Timber - iWood

Thanks cburger for the pictures which has provided an alternative solution. A suitable shade, epoxy coated a few times, could provide the lightness and effect that I would find pleasing.

Best regards all,

BlowingOldBoots
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Old 17-10-2011, 12:03   #12
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Re: Wood Type For Painted Headlining

Soft maple is a good paintable wood. Poplar is popular & cheaper, but its grain is a bit more open.
Before you paint, make sure you ease the edges. Paint and sharp edges don't mix, as the paint will start to peel at any sharp edge.
This, from a guy who doesn’t do wood.
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Old 17-10-2011, 12:22   #13
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Re: Wood Type For Painted Headlining

Japanese Cedar. (Cryptomaria Japonica). Light in colour, light in weight, will not rot, easy to work. Pretty soft, but for head lining, won't be an issue.
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Old 17-10-2011, 12:45   #14
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Re: Wood Type For Painted Headlining

I'd like to suggest a little simple reality here. The poster needs to install headlining. Strength is a non-issue. This is inside the boat, at the top of the cabin. Rot is not a significant issue unless he has leaks in his overhead. He doesn't need epoxy. He wants to use paint as a finish, so grain/color of the wood is not important. What he needs is something that is light in weight, local (aka inexpensive) and within the choices that meet those 2 criteria, has the highest rot resistance. Properly sealed and painted, virtually any wood will serve for this application. It is hard to imagine a less critical application for wood in a boat. Get something light weight, cheap, and do a nice job installing and painting it. It'll be fine.

Regards, Paul
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Old 23-12-2011, 16:36   #15
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Re: Wood Type For Painted Headlining

Robbins Timber in the UK sells a pre-grooved 5mm marine ply specifically for this purpose. Very light weight, under 3kg per sq meter, grooved at 60mm to look identical to tongue-and-grooved strips. Can be painted or varnished. I researched this topic for the last 2 years, considered everything, and this is what Im going to use on my boat.
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