Red Cear for planking a hull.

by Thomas Morley
(UK)

I am wondering if Red Cedar could be used to plank a hull.

What I really need to know is, Will it hold a screw?

Or is it too soft?

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Red Cedar
by: Frank

Red Cedar is the softest of the cedars.

Because of its tensile strength, it’s bendability and good gluing properties it is excellent for strip planking and cold molding veneers.

With small strip built boats where the wood is glued and encapsulated within epoxy and glass cloth the wood is effectively being used as a core.

It is not normally used for normal planking.

It’s lack of density mean that it is not the ideal wood for fastening with screws, when used in the domestic construction industry it is recommended that fasteners should be about one-third longer than those used to fasten hardwood species.

And fasteners should be corrosion resistant such as brass, silicon bronze, hot-dipped galvanized or stainless steel as iron fastenings will discolor the wood, especially in the presence of moisture.

Western red cedar does tend to be rot resistant, but these traits are strongest in old trees, younger growth lumber may not be as durable.

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