About to pull the trigger on an IPE order. Have a quote from East Teak and Advantage. I know that John likes East Teak. I was hoping to hear from customers of Advantage.
Advantage's quote is about 8% less, not huge, but not insignificant either
I ordered from ABS which is think is Advantage. They seemed more willing to answer questions on the phone, were very helpful and get back to me within an hour via email. My problem with them is, I ordered on August 26th and still have not received my wood. They said "it was held up at the port" and they can only release the entire shipment at once. The next email I got said they received "some" but not all. (humm, sounds suspicious). I would check with both, see who has it in stock and go with them. Im hoping this doesnt delay me, my contractors are working around it, but my gut is telling me, its not going to be here any time soon.
ABS wood is Advanced Building Supplies, not Advantage. I too ordered decking from ABS and dimensional wood from East Teak. I received good service from both (slightly faster response from ABS) and both arrived late, though not as late as Linda's. :-(
One thing with East Teak they dont sell something they dont have. Also after the lumber has left the yard its up to the trucking Co. East Teak and I use ConWay most of the time I get the order in two working days. J.
I was hoping to get some feedback on the quality of Advantage's decking. My primary concern is quality, followed of course by price and service.
weedy: any thoughts on the quality of lumber from East Teak versus ABS?
I bought dimensional lumber from East Teak and decking from ABS, so it's an apples-to-oranges comparison. But here's my general description of the garapa wood from both. You can also see lots of photos in my "now showing" thread:
East Teak: 2x4s, 4x4s, and 2x6's were all straight, uniform color, and smooth, as though fresh from the sawmill. They got fuzzy, gray, and checked a bit between the time they arrived and the time I got the last of them installed. All factory ends were treated with Anchor Seal, but we re-applied after install, as they still started to check.
ABS: Deck boards varied in color and were a noticeably different color than the East Teak stuff. They were all a couple inches longer than the nominal length, though not by a consistent amount (e.g, 12-footers were 12'2"-12'5"). The ends were all treated with Anchor Seal. Most were pretty straight and a Bowrench easily took care of them; just a few took a significant amount of brute strength. Some boards had gunches on them (my term for anything that makes it not a perfectly smooth surface), so I had to put that side down or, if near an end, cut it off.
The tardiness of both orders was due to the shipping companies they contracted. In the case of ABS, the wood sat bundled up for 4 days while a driver's truck broke down, got fixed, and then the driver decided to quit, so the shipper found an alternate to transport it.
Thanks for the feedback Weedy.
I just finalized the list and will place the order tomorrow. I have not heard back from East teak after a few days, so will more than likely go with Advantage and save $400.
I just wanted to update on the wood I received from Advantge Lumber (IPE Depot). It may be helpful to others.
Ordering was simple. They send an itemized estimate with shipping in an email. There is no surcharge for credit card use which makes it convenient.
Wood arrived as promised in a covered truck on a couple of skids. It had to be unloaded by hand.
Overall the wood was in very good condition, albeit a little dusty. Boards were pretty much straight with no or very little checking. Only one board out or 1400 lf was not usable and one had a small end chip (most likely due to transport).
They replaced the one board. Other point on notice was a fairly high degree of variation in the color. Some boards are deep brown and some are orange brown. Not necessarily a ba thing as mixing the boards will give a nice varied look and character. Some boards could also benefit from a light sanding.
Overall, a good source for IPE. I would order again from them.
I used advanced for a deck this summer but have a good bit of experience with teak. We had a customer here in Atlanta purchase an all teak fence from us for her backyard. No expenses spared. We called East Teak and got perfect service as far as I can remember.
Here is a link that might be useful: Unique Fence Designs