ipe vs mangaris for California deck

sbjaniceSeptember 11, 2007

After much research, I decided to replace my deck with Ipe! Now I am unable to find a source in Santa Barbara. The lumber company is now stocking Mangaris. Does anyone have first-hand experience using Mangaris? The alternative is for me to use 3/4 Ipe (which I can get), rather than 5/4. My deck is approx. 300 sq. ft. on the second story, and it gets full afternoon sun. Thank you.

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I would defently go with the 3/4 ipe. John

    Bookmark   September 12, 2007 at 7:38PM
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You are not limited to what your local supplier offers. I went opposite coast, the freight was offset by no tax, and I saved $2000 over all for exactly what I wanted.

    Bookmark   September 14, 2007 at 11:06PM
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Thank you...do you have a suggestion for a supplier? I've been calling California lumber yards and they either can't get it, or don't return calls, even after they said "oh sure, we have it in stock, I'll get you a bid." I'm ready to build, but can't find the material.

    Bookmark   September 15, 2007 at 6:58PM
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East Teak Lumber 800 338 5636 J.

    Bookmark   September 15, 2007 at 8:48PM
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Another source to try, Austin Wholesale Decking, 512-834-1200, ask for Fernando. Shipping from Tx. to Ca. would be offset by tax savings as stated above.

I have used mangaris here in Austin & it does make a nice looking deck, however imo ipe is the top dog in the decking world. It's got a nice redish color with straight grain & no knots. It does need to have a finish put on right away as it does tend to check more so than ipe.

I use 3/4" ipe on most jobs because of cost savings, on low to the ground decks I recommend using 5/4 decking tho.


    Bookmark   September 16, 2007 at 11:21AM
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How did it turn out? We are in SB as well and are having the same experience. Did you order out of state? Are you happy with the Ipe?



    Bookmark   July 18, 2008 at 12:28PM
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When I built my deck I went with Advantage Trim and Lumber in buffalo they also had free shipping when I ordered. I don't know if they still do but it seems they always had some sort of sale going. It took me along time to decide if I really wanted to order online because I could not see what I was getting. After the wood arrived I was glad I did it looked better than my local supplier and a lot cheaper too.

    Bookmark   July 19, 2008 at 8:47AM
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My husband and I own a small construction company in Camarillo, California. A lot of our work is done in Ventura, so sea and sun are always considerations to be dealt with.

He has constructed three Mangaris decks of various sizes and the clients are extremely pleased with them. We have four calls from friends of our clients who also want Mangaris decks.

The oldest of these decks is a couple of years post construction and it looks as good as the day he completed it.

We have a really good guy at Stock Lumber who is more than helpful at procuring materials. David loves working with Mangaris.

    Bookmark   September 24, 2008 at 2:44PM
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I'm starting a deck in 5 days and I still can't decide between ipe or mangaris. The deck will be about 18" above ground (clay), wrapping around an above ground pool, with at least 6 hours exposure to direct sun and scorching heat in the summer months. The ipe I can get is air dried, 3/4 inch thick and costs $3.25 lf while the mangaris is kiln dried 1 inch thick at $2.25 lf.
I wish to go with mangaris because it's more attractive, affordable and thicker than ipe. However, I need more evidence that mangaris is just as good as ipe in my particular conditions (around the pool, hot sun). I read that it cups and warps more than ipe. Is that happening regardless of the quality of installation and method of fastening? Also I read about ipe checking, and is 3/4inch for ipe good enough for close to ground decking?
I am hopping to get some current opinions as the information I read about the ipe vs mangaris is quite a few years old. Please help, time is running out..

    Bookmark   September 16, 2010 at 2:22PM
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It may be a bit too late for you, but I've built two decks in the San Francisco area using Mangaris. Both decks looked great until the first winter and then cupped horribly. On the first deck, I cut groves and used ipe clips to secure the boards. The next summer, I went back, rented a floor sander and top-screwed/plugged everything. The second deck was just top-screwed. I don't know how it managed to do it, but it cupped just as badly as the first. I'm about to hit it with my orbital sander to at least take down the ridges.

    Bookmark   October 5, 2010 at 8:01PM
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Top-screwed decking can only cup in the following situations:

1. the screws snap
2. the pilot holes are drilled into the joists
3. the screws are too long. 2 1/4" is absolute maximum length screw to fasten decking. Shorter is better because as the framing moves with the seasons the short screws are less affected by the joists shrinking 1/4" as they dry out.
4. the ventilation is so poor under the deck that all kinds of moisture is causing havoc on the wood.

Top-screwing is the MOST reliable way to fasten deck boards. If you are having a problem with top-fastened boards, refer to the above.

    Bookmark   October 6, 2010 at 11:58AM
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My guess is #4, because the deck is very close to the ground and there's a solid wood skirt around the joists. I'm still amazed, though, that the force of the boards cupping was strong enough to pull all those screws loose.

I'm going to pull off the skirt and replace it with 1/4" welded-wire. I doubt that any of the cupping will reverse itself, but the added ventilation can't hurt...

    Bookmark   October 8, 2010 at 1:17PM
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While the skirting is off run a couple of fans through the frame for a few days. J.

    Bookmark   October 8, 2010 at 4:15PM
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We installed a 12x33 Mangaris deck 2 years ago. Our house is in West Los Angeles. The deck gets partial sun. Ipe was tempting but several thousand dollars more expensive. The beautiful red-orange color doesn't last, but it's still a tough and beautiful wood. No signs of wear from our 50 lb dog. No signs of termite intrusion, mold or rot. The deck is a low platform against the house. 2 sides have a double step down to the backyard. The other side has a high railing with box benches.

We just cleaned it for resealing with Biowash deck oil. The deep cleaning brought out its original red. We'd love to find a way to keep that color without chemical sealants or expoxies. Also, it just rained before the oil could cure. Waiting to see if we have to start over when the rain clears up.

We finished with Biowash a couple of years ago, and just spent a day scrubbing it all off to reapply. It doesn't cause water to bead up after about 6 months, but fortunately we haven't had problems with mold or cupping, probably due to the local climate which is dry most of the time.

    Bookmark   October 17, 2010 at 5:23PM
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This question for The Clam on your installation on the West Side. We're looking at installing the Mangaris after looking at the options at Stock Lumber. With the cupping issues some folks are noting, I am curious about how you secured your wood to the joists. Top Screw, clips, etc.? Also, what thickness of Mangaris did you use? They're having a special right now at Stock on 1x6 so it's tempting.. but we want to make sure it's going to last.

    Bookmark   June 24, 2011 at 6:31PM
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I built a deck for a hot tub approx 12'x12'with 1"x6" mangaris about 7 years ago. I used 2 1/2 inch stainless steel screws. I used a tapered pilot bit for predrilling and countersinking. The screws were then plugged. I finished the deck with a natural oil based stain. Pressure washing and staining every other year has maintained the deck in good condition. It is located in Oak View Ca.

    Bookmark   July 7, 2011 at 10:15PM
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I'm the Territory Manager for BlueLinx (we are a wholesale distributor to lumber yards and home centers) in Southern California and we are the exculsive distributors for Mangaris and we also distribute Ipe as well.

Mangaris and Ipe do have some similar characteristics but one of the big differences is that all Mangaris products are Kild Dried and most all of the Ipe material sold for decking is air dried. Mangaris is dried down to 10-12% moisture content and Ipe will be 19% or less.

I have seen many Ipe and Mangaris decks cup, and I can tell you it is always due to improper installation. Two of the biggest reasons why this happens is #1, lack of air ventalation. I you read the installation instruction for either Mangaris or Ipe it will call for a minimum of 12" off the ground and if the deck is within 24" it needs to have open air flow. Meaning you can not skirt or use fascia material from the deck all the way down to the dirt. #2 reason is using the wrong fasteners, we do not recommend using any type of hidden fasteners for either Ipe or Mangaris Red (we do allow the use of Tiger Claw TC-G clips to be used with our 5/4x6 Diamond Mangaris) as we only suggest to use a #10 x 2-1/2" Stainless Steel Screw or you can also plug the screws using the Starborn Pro Plug system. If any one has more detailed questions please contact me at scott.morris@bluelinxco.com

    Bookmark   February 29, 2012 at 12:16AM
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We live in San Francisco & we are putting a rooftop deck on...we are trying to decide what would be the best looking & lasting deck material.
Today we looked at Mangaris 1" X 6"- 16' planks. After reading this forum, I'm not sure Mangaris (or even Ipe..which I haven't heard of) would be the right product. We will have limited, if any, ventilation below our deck.
It's a roof deck, so it will only be raised slightly above the sloped roof below to allow for the deck planks to be level..maybe 1" on the one side & 3 1/4" on the other side.
So much was mentioned above about cupping related to ventilation & I'm not sure if we will have much ventilation.

Any suggestion for rooftop deck material with this type installation?


    Bookmark   August 12, 2012 at 11:58PM
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Hello my name is Scott Morris and I have previously posted comments on here before specifically about Mangaris (Red Balau) and Ipe decking. I have spoken to and met with several people in the Southern California area. I have worked for BlueLinx (a wholesale building materials distributor of Mangaris and other decking products) for 8 years as well as 20 years experience on the retail lumber side.

As in my earlier post, the biggest issue with any hardwood decking is in the installation. I have included the complete installation guidelines for you to read. The biggest issues always seem to be,

#1 Improper or lack air ventilation under the deck
. #2 Gapping in between each board. Kiln Dried product will require 1/4" gapping on a 1x6 board while products like Ipe that are only Air Dried will generally require only 1/8" because they will shrink up over time and become 1/4".

#3 Fasteners used on the decking. Hidden fasteners are usually not recommended for hardwood decking. Screwing the board down through the face has about 4x the holding power of a hidden fastener. You should either use a stainless steel screw, a plug system with stainless steel screws or a system like the Kreg Deck Jig that screws in at an angle on the side / edge of the board.

#4 Is oiling / sealing the product. You either need to oil all 4 sides prior to installation with a good penetrating oil, or, leave all 4 sides raw and allow the board to weather to a natural silver gray color. This is popular in larger commercial applications like the LA Zoo, Disneyland, boardwalks near the beach and several larger outdoor shopping centers about the LA area.

I have recently opened my own wholesale direct to the public distribution for hardwood decking products. I offer Kayu Batu (Red Balau, same as Mangaris Red) which is a Class A flame spread rated hardwood decking with a 25 year warranty and Siap (pre-finished) hardwood decking exclusively in Southern California. I also have deck tiles available in 20"x20" and 40"x40" sizes, as well as 6' & 7' "shorts" than can be used for fencing with an additional savings of up to 30% compared to the longer length materials. All my products are at very competitive pricing, usually 20-30% less than what you will find at the large retail lumber yards. This is because I buy direct and I'm the exclusive distributor of Kayu International decking products in Southern California. You can call or email me to check pricing on all my products, 818-456-9777 or hardwooddeckingdeals@yahoo.com . I'm in the Los Angeles area in Pacoima. Will call or delivery is available to all of Southern California.

Here is a link that might be useful: Kayu International

    Bookmark   May 15, 2013 at 4:26PM
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I live in a Ca Fire Zone, so need decking which meets the State's requirements for 'ignition resistance.' Do I have choices other than composite? I had decided on Massaranduba, but my Planning Dept. won't approve it unless I can offer verification it meets the State standards.

    Bookmark   May 19, 2013 at 12:00PM
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did you ever find your certifications

    Bookmark   April 23, 2014 at 5:56PM
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