Walnut is a hardwood that originates from South America precisely in Brazil and Central America. It is the most reliable, durable hardwood grade for decking. The lumber color varies from reddish brown to dark brown. It has a medium to excellent texture with an oily appearance. The tabebuia tree grows to over 140 feet with a diameter of 6 feet making it one of the tallest trees in the world.
Features of the Walnut
Walnut is very hard; therefore you will require specialized durable and high-quality equipment when working with it. Predrilling is necessary, before inserting screws and nails. If you work with hand tools, you can indent the sides of the timber for join purposes. Walnut will need to be air dried before decking projects. However, the right moisture content varies depending on climatic conditions in your area.
Walnut Decking has low maintenance cost than any hardwood. If the grove is left untreated, it will last for more than forty years. More importantly, if you apply deck finish before installation, the Walnut deck can last up to a hundred years. This wood is highly rated as the most durable decking material.
Weight and Length
The wood is very heavy and also available in long lengths with few twists and wraps. A wood wrap is a roughness on a flat surface caused by stress and shrinkage while drying. In fact, walnut is so dense that it sinks in water.
Additionally, it has similar fire rating as concrete and steel. The ability of walnut decking to resist fire is vital because most deck owners use fire pits, grills, and tiki torches. Despite that we try to be very careful, there is a chance, although minimum that the equipment may tip over and spark a fire. With a walnut decking, the blaze does not spread quickly since it tends to remain remote around its point of source. Hence, the damage is restricted to a tiny region on the deck.
Walnut Decking Installation
Leave the walnut decking outside for some days to adjust to temperature and moisture levels before installation. Ensure you do not expose it to direct sunlight. During this time shrinking will occur.
Cutting and Drilling
Make sure to use premium carbide-tipped cutters when working with Walnut decking. Also, pre-drill the wood before inserting any screws or nails. Brad-point drill bits are recommended for cleaner holes. Cutting of the lumber should be done slowly for smooth cuts.
For proper ventilation ensure that there is air beneath the deck. Leave slight spaces between the planks for drainage. When constructing the layer have a bow wrench for clamping.
Fastening and Finishing
There are two ways of fastening the deck including pre-drilling holes and hidden fasteners, which avoid the appearance of screws at the surface. For surface coating, due to the alkaline and density properties of the walnut use products such as UV Plus, Penofin and more. This helps to maintain the brown color and avoid weathering.
Walnut is the only solid decking wood that is more outstanding compared to other decking materials. It is a natural hardwood that provides many benefits ranging from resisting decay, insect and mold attack, and providing superior strength and durability. The timber offers a lifetime performance with or without treatment. If you want to construct a wooden deck, walnut is the best choice.