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using pallets for external cladding  RSS feed

 
cesca beamish
Posts: 46
Location: Leicester, UK 8b,
bee forest garden trees
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hi has anyone used dismantled pallet planks for external cladding? Do the nail holes represent a problem and are they best doubled up lying vertically or overlapped horizontally?
It is for a indoor grade workshop/study room. The frame I've made was designed for horizontal cladding, eg waney edge boards, but I have just been given a load of pallet planks that are 7' long and there's plenty more. There's lots of pics of pallet sheds but I haven't found any feedback of there waterproofness.

Any feedback please?

thanks
I'm in UK, ample rain, minor winds, occasional storm
 
allen lumley
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Cesca Beamish : Make a mark on the calendar, I am about to say something nice about You-tube ! As your goal here is to salvage a sufficient number of board siding

to help with enclosing in your structure technique is going to be everything ! There are several good videos showing several ways to salvage the most amount of

materials out of pallets ! Your skills and resources will mount day by day, with time on the job.

The best possible way to protect your exterior side walls is good foundations raised several inches above grade or ground level, combine that with sufficient roof

overhang at your eaves, 90% of your work will be done. Your in the U.K. where they call this good boots and a good hat !

Resist any urge to seal off all air leaks with plastic, you don't want to live inside a plastic bag, you mentioned minor winds. there are several types of Breathable

Geo-textiles that are cheap~ish and allow air exchange that you can pre wrap your 'studio' in , this will get covered up as you add cladding

The boards should receive specifically primer to help reduce the boards tendency to twist and buckle , further paint will increase the building ability to shed water

Try to avoid mixing paints, mostly you end up with muddy colors muddy pink, muddy blue and a brown that can only be called muddy !

Good luck Big AL !

 
R Scott
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Location: Kansas Zone 6a
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Nail holes are a problem if left alone, but a scrap of metal (cut up tin can) or building felt behind the holes will let the water run back out. Or a blob of filler and then paint over them.
 
Jay C. White Cloud
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Hi Cesca,

Some general facts about wood siding...

Quarter sawn is better than "rift sawn" (plane sawn.)

Vertical attached cladding boards last, at minimum, ten times longer than horizontal cladding.

Air circulating on both sides (traditional rain screen method) is better than the boards going right up against the sub cladding or whatever is protecting the insulative layer.

Those are your basics...

Now as far as pallet wood use for this? It will depend on the quality of the wood recovered, and what method you choose for laying and/or jointing the boards. There are methods (mainly wasteful modern methods) that nail the heck out of the boards when attaching them, and others (more traditional) that use few fasteners to hardly any at all...or at least not conventionally thought of today. A double layer is going to take more wood, but depending on quality of wood, layout and method of attachment it maybe an improvement.

I deal with antique wood (some in excess of 200 years) all the time...nail holes in my experience in natural building and historic restoration has little effect, but I will admit, I am using only traditional modalities of cladding. I coresspond with Mates in the U.K. all the time that work in the Historic Restoration field...as is well know the U.K. can boast of some really fine old wood structures still standing and looking good that are over 500 years old...I think your pallet wood will do just fine...

Photos of the site and project would really help understand what you are trying to do.

What kind of wood is the pallets made of?

How thick are the walls of the structure?

How are they built?

What will you insulate with?

I have more but the photos would help probably with those...

Regards,

j
 
cesca beamish
Posts: 46
Location: Leicester, UK 8b,
bee forest garden trees
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thanks.
please what's quarter sawn and rift sawn?

The structure is roughly 8' x 16' including roof overhangs. 2x2 & 3x2 tanalised softwood frame structure on a 6x2 bed, sitting on slabs on a sandy compacted 'soil'
The pallet wood is soft wood (don't know more than that sorry) 3/4" thick and between 4 and 5" wide planks and 7' long.

The design of my frame would easily take horiz cladding boards, uprights at 2', but if vertical boards is significantly better I can add 2x2 between the uprights.

I feel my options are either
1. horiz cladding; successive boards overlapping the lower one by up to half? like feather boarding
2. vert cladding; 2 layers, top layer covering joins

I tend to prefer screws to nails myself, I'd rather pull joints tight on a predrilled screw than hit it, but would galvanised nails be suitable here? you speak of fewer fixings the better?
I've not worked out insulation or internal lining yet but my 2" framing gives a gap and internal face for fixing.

thanks ever so much

ps had the pleasure of using some 100yr old teak from a boat hull to make cupboards etc in our narrowboat- amazing stuff!
shedframe.jpg
[Thumbnail for shedframe.jpg]
timber frame shed
palletplanks.jpg
[Thumbnail for palletplanks.jpg]
pallet wood up for grabs
 
chad duncan
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http://overthegate.myfreeforum.org/about23552.html

I built a pallet breaking bar similar to the one being sold on this link. Actually, I got my diy plans from the same guy that makes these on the same site somewhere.
I have tried a couple of different methods to tear pallets apart and this one is by far the most effective and easiest to operate with very few broken boards.
 
Bill Bradbury
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Location: Richmond, Utah
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cesca beamish wrote:thanks.
please what's quarter sawn and rift sawn?

The structure is roughly 8' x 16' including roof overhangs. 2x2 & 3x2 tanalised softwood frame structure on a 6x2 bed, sitting on slabs on a sandy compacted 'soil'
The pallet wood is soft wood (don't know more than that sorry) 3/4" thick and between 4 and 5" wide planks and 7' long.

The design of my frame would easily take horiz cladding boards, uprights at 2', but if vertical boards is significantly better I can add 2x2 between the uprights.

I feel my options are either
1. horiz cladding; successive boards overlapping the lower one by up to half? like feather boarding
2. vert cladding; 2 layers, top layer covering joins

I tend to prefer screws to nails myself, I'd rather pull joints tight on a predrilled screw than hit it, but would galvanised nails be suitable here? you speak of fewer fixings the better?
I've not worked out insulation or internal lining yet but my 2" framing gives a gap and internal face for fixing.

thanks ever so much

ps had the pleasure of using some 100yr old teak from a boat hull to make cupboards etc in our narrowboat- amazing stuff!

First quarter sawn is a log sawn into quarters before boards are sawn from the log; this cuts horizontally through the grain, making the face grain of the board much tighter and easier to work. Plain sawn is boards taken straight from the log, resulting in many boards with a tricky face grain. It looks like you've got a plain sawn pine/ fir mix there.
In order to attach the boards vertically, you will need to horizontally attach the 2x2's that you mentioned over a weather resistive barrier. I like the old standby, asphalt impregnated felt. This will divert rainwater as well as air, so at the sill you want a metal flashing that goes under the felt. This way when a little water gets under your siding, it will not enter the structure, but fall to the ground. Felt absorbs a bit of water, but this will dry because of the air channel.
I don't really like board and batten which would be the easiest method, but unless you have a table saw or router that may be your only solution.
The most important parts of siding come before the siding goes on! Make the WRB and flashings tight enough to not need the siding.
I use stainless steel siding nails if the fasteners are exposed as in board and batten, but galvanized should be fine for non-exposed fateners. Screws should be exterior grade or SS.
Good luck and remember the details!
 
Jay C. White Cloud
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(Hey Bill don't hate me too much for a bit of a critiquing-editing of you response to Cesca......apologies if I crossed a line...)

Quarter sawn wood, is "sometimes" milled the way Bill has suggested. Though we often render cants (i.e. tree - log - bolt - cant) into quarter sawn stock without using the "quartering modality" of milling. Instead we rely on a swing blade saw and/or selective band milling, with very careful turning of stock, which yields more board footage and better grade "quarter sawn" stock. As Bill did suggest, there are milling methods referred to as "quartering" and this does yield "quarter grain timber and boards," (as well as wasting a lot of wood.) However, quarter sawn means (Bill's description was...good...but perhaps not complete) that the annular rings of the tree run at 60° to 90° to the face of the stock as viewed from the end of the material. This wood distorts much less, is very dimensionally stable, and shrinks more in thickness than in width compared to "plain" or "rift" sawn. High end furniture, flooring and general woodworking is always made of "quarter grain" stock. Rift sawn stock has the annular rings forming a "smile" shape on the end of the stock, and are always less than 60° to the face.

The dominate board shown in you photo does appear to be a type of Conifer species, as Bill suggested, with the "pith" (inside of the tree) facing up and the top end (crown or leafing portion) of the tree facing the photographer. Reading grain is a must for good woodworking and especially advance systems like "green woodworking" and timber framing modalities.

Now what I am about to write is partly subjective and partly methodolgy of a give style...

In order to achieve vertically use of the board stock, you will indeed have to have nailers...These do not have to be 2"x2" (50mm x 50mm) stock. They can be, but the minimum thickness is 20 mm (~3/4") and can go up from there depending on the "rainscreen" system to be used. I do not condone any wall diaphragm design that does not have and engage an "active" "rainscreen wall system."

What Bill describe is considered a "passive" rainscreen as the nailers are running only horizontally and the is not positive drafting effect within the cladding system. So to achieve an "active system" you must, as Bill suggested, wrap the structure in something like rockwool board, filter cloth, or building paper if using just loose fill insulation. We do not condone or use any types of "plastic warps" in any of our wall systems AT ALL. Most...if not all...actually fail in real world application of achieving good permeability for moisture migration/mitigation. Once the framework of the structure is clad in you chosen method, "vertical" nailers in line with key structural features are put on, the horizontal, thus forming an air space for a proper "active" drafting effect to take place behind the siding.

We have seen modern copies of "Shingled Capes" in Maine's maritime region built and needing residing in a few years with pealing paint and other issues while their neighbors home has pine shingles over 100 years old that are still in excellent condition...The difference? Active rainscreen and not shingles nailed up against plastic or tyvek house wrap...

We side with almost always vertical siding (like board and batten) as this is the most traditional in many places we work and the types of siding we find on vintage architecture we restore (not always though.) Vertical boards also last much longer, as I have said before, than boards that are laid horizontally. I would further suggest that with the proper "rainscreen system" the battens can actually be omitted if not engaged as part of the attachment method. What I mean by that is, when installed "traditional board and batten" or "little board-big board" it is the "batten or little board" that receives the fastener, thereby "cleating" the wider board to the wall assembly without any nails in it, thereby letting the larger board expand and contract with the seasons. It could also be possible to take your pallet boards which are not very long and recut them into 500 mm (~16" or more) lengths and laying them like "shakes." (Shakes are heavy and think shingles) We have done this many time over the years.

Good luck, and let us know how thing progress...

j

 
Bill Bradbury
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Location: Richmond, Utah
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Cesca, yes Jay is correct once again; I use a lot of wood straight from the mill, but I have never milled wood myself and as such have given an incomplete answer. Thanks Jay for informing me as well.
I also agree with Jay that an active rainscreen system is better. We typically kerf the backs of the 2x2's with a dado blade, but I didn't want to complicate this too much. The other thing that I didn't include and should have is the detail at the bottom of the wall is a 2 part flashing that sits on a ledger board. We call the upper flashing Z-bar, but it's more like an upside down N. The felt goes over the top of the flashing and the lower groundsill flashing goes under the lower leg, with the lower leg covering the fasteners. This allows expansion/contraction while maintaining water tightness.
The other thing I noticed in the photos is the window header looks a bit undersized to me.
 
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