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Thread: Australian timbers

  1. #1
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    Default Australian timbers

    Hi , this is more a question for Aussies. I’m just fishing around and thinking about a future build maybe.

    Im looking for Aus timbers suitable for the construction of a laminated epoxy build somewhere about the same weight, if possible, as Oregon (DF) . This build will be about 30/34’ range so I would need a fair bit, maybe from a mill.

    The straighter the grain the better.

    Chinese have discovered the DF suppliers in North America so the price of good stuff has become prohibitive

    Something like Q’land Maple or Flooded Gum perhaps if anyone knows of a mill that’d be great

    thanks Andrew
    Last edited by Andrew Donald; 05-12-2019 at 08:52 PM.

  2. #2
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    Default

    Laminated .. you mean strip build?
    https://www.wood-database.com/australian-red-cedar/

    https://www.woodsolutions.com.au/wood-species

    A boat in that size range ...years and years of commitment!
    Last edited by DeniseO30; 05-12-2019 at 09:08 PM.
    Denise, Bristol PA, Oday30, Anchor Yacht Club, On tidal Delaware River. my current project; http://forum.woodenboat.com/showthre...0-Ducker-Resto

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Australian timbers

    Try Gray's Mill at Karuah NSW for flooded gum.

    Rick

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    Default Re: Australian timbers

    The queensland Maple doesn't appear to be particularly rot resistant. Though if fully epoxy encapsulated that shouldn't matter much. https://www.wood-database.com/queensland-maple/
    Flooded gum - be worth checking how tight a curve and twist you can get into it. If your strips are 10mm, or under, you should be right with most woods i imagine.
    What boat?

    Some hardwoods don't take up epoxy very well.

    Tassie Oak?
    Mountain Ash?
    It's all fun and games until Darth Vader comes.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Australian timbers

    Flooded Gum will take a curve without steaming, at least it did for me. It is not rot resistant so epoxy saturation or equivalent will be needed.
    To do something good
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  6. #6
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    Default Re: Australian timbers

    Thanks guys, bit more homework required on what’s suitable. Designer specifies DF (Oregon) for all framing and strip/veneer in WRC. Might investigate the importers a bit more on them. Aus hardwoods would be heavy to work with too. And decent softwoods are gone.
    Time for a rough checklist and cube it.
    Boat is a Gartside cutter. Still in dream stage though.

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    Default Re: Australian timbers

    Flooded gum is an excellent timber for planking and commonly used in traditional boatbuilding in NSW. Celery top is another option, from Tasmania. There is a guy from near Smithton who could bring a load over if you want a substantial quantity.

    Rick

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    Default Re: Australian timbers

    I’ve heard of celery top, I thought all Tassie timbers were pretty much extinct. I found a couple of places on google. Ist worked out that reasonable quality DF is about 4K per cube so I reckon Tassie will be way over that. But we’ll see
    Last edited by Andrew Donald; 05-13-2019 at 02:28 AM.

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Australian timbers

    Send a PM to brucemoffatt. He has his details. I do too but it'd take me a couple of days to get them.

    Rick

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Australian timbers

    Celery Top or Huon Pine are the go for framing, and wrc for strip planking. There's apparently more Celery Top and Huon becoming available than previously. Almost as strong as our hardwoods but much lighter (much more exy too!). About twice the price of straight grain DF.

  12. #12
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    Default Re: Australian timbers

    Hoop pine has similar density and strength to DF. Would be fine for epoxy methods. Maybe not a good choice for traditional methods.

  13. #13
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    Default Re: Australian timbers

    Quote Originally Posted by Andrew Donald View Post
    Thanks guys, bit more homework required on what’s suitable. Designer specifies DF (Oregon) for all framing and strip/veneer in WRC. Might investigate the importers a bit more on them. Aus hardwoods would be heavy to work with too. And decent softwoods are gone.
    Time for a rough checklist and cube it.
    Boat is a Gartside cutter. Still in dream stage though.
    Timber salvage yards sometimes have good sized Oregon beams. I built my mast from recycled Oregon.
    To do something good
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  14. #14
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    Default Re: Australian timbers

    Hi All

    I am in the process of building a 30' Gartside glued design that specified DF scantling and WRC glued planking (2 layers). I have substituted the DF with QLD Maple for the frames and Hoop pine for the stringers etc. This has worked out well including steaming and laminating the stem instead of trying to find massive timbers to saw from. For the planking I found a lot of QLD Kauri that I have used instead of the WRC, it is slightly heavier. The main problem I found with the Qld Kauri it is that it has been very susceptible to changes in humidity and given I started the project in NSW and it is now in SA, there was a lot of movement in the glued planking as I hadn't got to the glassing stage with the last dry summer. I was mainly focussed on finding Australian timbers of similar density so that I didnt change the weight of the vessel and it is fully embalmed in epoxy. Chris

  15. #15
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    Default Re: Australian timbers

    If the timber is encased in epoxy, species like Huon, cedar and such are a bit OTT no?
    Expensive timbers, perfect for the job and beautiful, but somewhat wasted under glass and paint.

    I'm thinking along the lines of strength and does it take glueing, but considering availability and price.
    Keeping a close eye on treatment of the timber parts before each piece is installed and planning on a decent paint system.
    Celery top looks affordable at first blush. http://www.celerytoppine.com.au/timberRange.html but there's extra for better grade stuff.
    Hoop pine; http://www.marinetimbers.com.au/prod..._pine_-__clear - that 4x1 sawn price looks alright. (Got a thicknesser?).

    And a high quality marine ply deck glassed over.
    It's all fun and games until Darth Vader comes.

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    Default Re: Australian timbers

    I made contact with a Tassie supplier today and they only supply Taswegian builders with the Huon and Celery etc. They run a timber bank wher builders can go. They gave me another number but I think I’m leaning to Gypsie’s way of thinking. The prized stuff is too precious to entomb.
    I can get fair quality DF for somewhere south of 4K per M3 which I’m happy with. Works out at about $27/m for 150x50. I found Marine Timbers prices a bit scary for just Hoop.
    Still thinking about WRC for planking, although soft the designer specifies sheathing anyway. So many boats have been built with it, it cant be that bad can it? Also its got some rot resistance despite what some say.

    Good info too Chris

  17. #17
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    Default

    I certainly wouldn't use Huon. Gays might not go to Hell but anyone who builds an epoxy laminated sheathed boat with Huon surely would. Celery is good. How about macrocarpa or whatever it's called. Heck why not use radiata if it's all going to be encased in frozen snot. It's at least as good as the timber in any marine ply you'll get.

    Sent from my CPH1851 using Tapatalk

  18. #18
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    Default Re: Australian timbers

    Hi Andrew - not entirely sure what you mean by “laminated” in terms of hull construction. Do you mean like a strip plank build or perhaps a multiple diagonal lay up (ie double or triple)?

    Have you considered western red cedar? I sailed a Mal Hart built triple diagonal glassed cedar Ingliss 47 in the ’93 Sydney Hobart and it made for a strong and beautiful hull - bright finished on the inside.
    Larks

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  19. #19
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    Default Re: Australian timbers

    For the backbone meranti would be good exchange for DF. Somewhere between light and dark red should nicely match DF's properties.
    For the planking exchange WRC with paulownia (kiri). It's lighter and softer then WRC so depending on build style you can compensate with increased santlings, more glass or a diferent species for the veneer. Paulownia strip with meranti veneer for example.
    I know both are not "native" species but they should be available and maybe cheaper.

  20. #20
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    Default Re: Australian timbers

    Yes Larks (Greg?) laminated everything,keel, the whole works. Planking is strip planked then two layers of veneers. Gartside designed it with DF framing and WRC planking, decks and cabin. The whole boat is sheathed. It’s looking like that will be the way I would go when/if I do it. Cheapest,lightest to work with etc etc.
    I vaguely remember you bought a log of Huon. Do you remember the cube rate?

    Rumars, Not sure if we can get Meranti ( correct me if I’m wrong but doesn’t it come from Indonesia?) here anymore, I haven’t seen building places stock it for yonks. Used to make house trim etc from it.
    Im a bit wary of Paulownia and Hoop pine, they’re soft/er than WRC and I dunno about their decay resistance, although thats a bit debatable given that the boat is encased in “frozen snot” as Phil so eloquently put it. I actually half like working with it!!! Spose I would have to given the size of this project.
    Another factor I’m considering is that the DF and WRC are reasonably fast growing and that augers well in the environmental regard. Yes I know some may be old growth, but young trees sooner or later become old.
    Last edited by Andrew Donald; 05-14-2019 at 06:41 AM.

  21. #21
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    Default Re: Australian timbers

    Vic Ash (also called Tasi oak) which is actually several species can be had in long wide boards with lovely straight grain and no knots. It has similar physical properties to American White oak except it glues well. At around 700kg per cubic metre it is a little heavier than what you're looking for, but still worth keeping in mind for keel, deadwood, floors, etc. I used lots in my boat including laminated deck beams, steam bent cabin carlins etc (steams very well).

  22. #22
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    Default Re: Australian timbers

    SBR, didn’t you find it a bit expensive? Also didn’t it turn black when steamed? I would’ve thought in WA you’d go for maybe Jarrah or Kari?
    I will check it out though perhaps for cabin trim etc. it varnishes nicely.
    This boat is built upside down (I prefer to fibre glass down Hand and planking would be easier) so if the keel etc was made from any hardwood it would add maybe add 30% to the weight bill. The keel has be made up then suspended up in the air while the frames are put in.
    Last edited by Andrew Donald; 05-14-2019 at 07:36 AM.

  23. #23
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    Default Re: Australian timbers

    Meranti comes from all over South East Asia. It is also known as Lauan and Phillipine Mahagony. I would be surprised if you can not find it, it's one of the most common woods on the international markets.
    If you want to try something more domestic Camphor Laurel would also work instead of DF. I heard it glues well with all adhesives and no environmental concerns for cutting it down. Durable and keeps the boat smelling fresh.
    Paulownia should be reasonably durable in humid conditions, but exactly how durable actually depends on the age of the tree and it's actual density. But if you can stomach the price of WRC then go ahead.

  24. #24
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    Default Re: Australian timbers

    Quote Originally Posted by Andrew Donald View Post
    I made contact with a Tassie supplier today and they only supply Taswegian builders with the Huon and Celery etc. They run a timber bank wher builders can go. They gave me another number but I think I’m leaning to Gypsie’s way of thinking. The prized stuff is too precious to entomb.
    I can get fair quality DF for somewhere south of 4K per M3 which I’m happy with. Works out at about $27/m for 150x50. I found Marine Timbers prices a bit scary for just Hoop.
    Still thinking about WRC for planking, although soft the designer specifies sheathing anyway. So many boats have been built with it, it cant be that bad can it? Also its got some rot resistance despite what some say.

    Good info too Chris
    Send a PM to brucemoffatt and get the name of the supplier I mentioned. By the way, hoop pine is certainly not softer than WRC! WRC is very soft and expensive now.

    Rick

  25. #25
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    Default Re: Australian timbers

    Thanks Rick . Got out Bootle and you’re right cedar is very soft on the Janka scale, with DF and Hoop very nearly equal (also so close in most aspects as to not be separable) at about double the rating. One good thing about WRC is it’s apparently resistant to termites, which is a big plus where I’d be building.
    I’ll PM Bruce now and also get a price of WRC today.

  26. #26
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    Default Re: Australian timbers

    Quote Originally Posted by Larks View Post
    Hi Andrew - not entirely sure what you mean by “laminated” in terms of hull construction. Do you mean like a strip plank build or perhaps a multiple diagonal lay up (ie double or triple)?

    Have you considered western red cedar? I sailed a Mal Hart built triple diagonal glassed cedar Ingliss 47 in the ’93 Sydney Hobart and it made for a strong and beautiful hull - bright finished on the inside.
    Hey Greg how you going? Nice to see you here.
    To do something good
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  27. #27
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    Default Re: Australian timbers

    Cedar may grow tall quickly but i think it adds girth slowly. Hence the nice tight grain.
    It is prohibitively expensive for me.

    Which of the cutters are you thinking?
    Why not consider building it all out of Oregon?
    As far as i know we get a lot of our Oregon from New Zealand at the moment. A relative of mine did (maybe 4 years ago) a very large deck in Philippine Mahogany (a type of cedar) from NZ too. Apparantly a plantation had just come on line for harvesting over there.
    It's all fun and games until Darth Vader comes.

  28. #28
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    Default Re: Australian timbers

    Quote Originally Posted by Andrew Donald View Post
    Yes Larks (Greg?) laminated everything,keel, the whole works. Planking is strip planked then two layers of veneers. Gartside designed it with DF framing and WRC planking, decks and cabin. The whole boat is sheathed. It’s looking like that will be the way I would go when/if I do it. Cheapest,lightest to work with etc etc.
    I vaguely remember you bought a log of Huon. Do you remember the cube rate?

    Rumars, Not sure if we can get Meranti ( correct me if I’m wrong but doesn’t it come from Indonesia?) here anymore, I haven’t seen building places stock it for yonks. Used to make house trim etc from it.
    Im a bit wary of Paulownia and Hoop pine, they’re soft/er than WRC and I dunno about their decay resistance, although thats a bit debatable given that the boat is encased in “frozen snot” as Phil so eloquently put it. I actually half like working with it!!! Spose I would have to given the size of this project.
    Another factor I’m considering is that the DF and WRC are reasonably fast growing and that augers well in the environmental regard. Yes I know some may be old growth, but young trees sooner or later become old.
    Hi Andrew - the cube rate varies quite a bit depending on the quality of the log, ie the three logs that I looked at were:
    Log No Size (m3) Price Inc GST price/m3
    47 0.452 3480.00 7699.12
    78a 0.305 2079.00 6816.39
    83 0.565 4972.00 8800.00

    I paid 2079.00 including GST for log 78a below through Randal at Tas’ Specialty Timbers - he was great to deal with and made sure he understood what I was trying to achieve to provide the best log to suit -(I’d originally settled on the more expensive log 83 but when he inspect it more thoroughly he advised against it because he didn’t think I’d get the width that I need for my cabin sides from it). I shipped it through Was’ Freight, Sam Hess, also very helpful and great to deal with
    cheers
    Greg

    Huon Pine Log No 78a
    mm mm m m3
    Slab No 1 340 x 25 x 4.2 0.036
    2 350 x 25 x 4.2 0.037
    3 330 x 25 x 4.2 0.035
    4 320 x 25 x 4.2 0.034
    5 335 x 25 x 4.2 0.035
    6 335 x 25 x 4.2 0.035
    7 220 x 25 x 4.2 0.023
    8 210 x 30 x 4.2 0.026
    9 270 x 25 x 4.2 0.028
    10 230 x 25 x 3.6 0.021
    Total 0.305 M3
    Description…furniture wood, sap wood on the turn (just discolouring), sprinkling type birdseye, log symmetrically shaped.
    Larks

    “It’s impossible”, said pride.
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    “It’s pointless”, said reason.
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  29. #29
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    Default Re: Australian timbers

    Quote Originally Posted by WX View Post
    Hey Greg how you going? Nice to see you here.
    Thanks Gary - all good mate
    Larks

    “It’s impossible”, said pride.
    “It’s risky”, said experience.
    “It’s pointless”, said reason.
    “Give it a try”, whispered the heart.

    LPBC Beneficiary

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  30. #30
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    Default Re: Australian timbers

    Rumars, either #109 or #207.

    Yes Oregon is looking a very viable solution presently. Mob here in Melbourne gets in Canadian stuff of very high grade. Some I got off them a while back was better than 30 rings/inch. NZ stuff has a low ring count generally. WRC is getting very hard to get apparently and its about 4 1/2 to 5k per m3.

    Gary, I keep looking at EBay and Gumtree but the stuff on there thats any sort of quality is generally more exxy than new stuff!!!!! And then you’ve gotta fart about with holes, nails and usually big knots.

    Greg , Thanks for that info. Just as I suspected Tassie stuff is outta my league. I reckon I’d need about 6m3 for #207 and that’s just the planking, deck and cabin cladding. Still have to factor in framing stuff but at least Oregon is a more comfortable 4K per m3.

    I rang Trend timbers and they reckon they’ve had two cubes of Hoop on order for 18 months but cant get it. Dunno if that says something about payment of invoices or not!!

    Another factor I’ve just thought of is that WRC can raise allergies pretty easy apparently. It’d be a shame to get 6m3 and find I can’t use it after cutting up 1m3
    Last edited by Andrew Donald; 05-15-2019 at 12:47 AM.

  31. #31
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    Default Re: Australian timbers

    There's apparently Paulownia, and Paulownia......
    A mate of mine used it very successfully in a strip-planked David Payne design, from these guys I think:
    http://paulowniatimber.com.au/marine.php
    Not as strong as WRC but lighter, not as bad for allergies.

  32. #32
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    Default Re: Australian timbers

    Quote Originally Posted by Andrew Donald View Post
    SBR, didn’t you find it a bit expensive? Also didn’t it turn black when steamed? I would’ve thought in WA you’d go for maybe Jarrah or Kari?
    I will check it out though perhaps for cabin trim etc. it varnishes nicely.
    This boat is built upside down (I prefer to fibre glass down Hand and planking would be easier) so if the keel etc was made from any hardwood it would add maybe add 30% to the weight bill. The keel has be made up then suspended up in the air while the frames are put in.
    It wasn't too bad, but I did a lot of shopping around. There's a world of difference between a proper timber warehouse and something like bunnys. A big timber merchant will have better prices, and much better stock to choose from. Yes it does go black in places, but it seems only on the surface. In any case it all ended up painted. Should be easy enough to rig some temporary structure (like a pair of gantrys) from which to hang your keel timber. The same structure can be used later when you're ready to turn her over. There are many jarrah boats on this coast. Jarrah was dirt cheap back in the day. As a lad I spent a couple of years crewing on a jarrah H28. But, it isn't cheap now, and it is not fun to work with unless you love sharpening tools every hour. Kari, great white ant food. Good for rub rails. Not my preferred boat timber. Unlike jarrah and Kari, Vic ash is now grown in plantations, so I can have my boat and still sleep with a clear conscience.

  33. #33
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    Default Re: Australian timbers

    When I built my ply on frame boat I used Hoop Pine purchased from Mathews Timber in Melbourne for the frames, stringers and general fitting out. Mathews Timbers were excellent to deal with.
    I also used Hoop Pine marine ply and all was encased in epoxy. Time will tell on how it stands up but I found it easy to work with.

  34. #34
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    Default Re: Australian timbers

    Quote Originally Posted by Andrew Donald View Post
    I made contact with a Tassie supplier today and they only supply Taswegian builders with the Huon and Celery etc. They run a timber bank wher builders can go. They gave me another number but I think I’m leaning to Gypsie’s way of thinking. The prized stuff is too precious to entomb.
    I can get fair quality DF for somewhere south of 4K per M3 which I’m happy with. Works out at about $27/m for 150x50. I found Marine Timbers prices a bit scary for just Hoop.
    Still thinking about WRC for planking, although soft the designer specifies sheathing anyway. So many boats have been built with it, it cant be that bad can it? Also its got some rot resistance despite what some say.

    Good info too Chris
    The Boat Bank stuff is for Tassie builders only but there's apparently other celery top, etc available, you could try Britton Timbers, Smithfield

  35. #35
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    Default Re: Australian timbers

    My “greenie” nerve is going off Tassie timbers let alone the price,see #28

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