Proper nails on a cedar fence?

mike7300May 9, 2007

What are the proper nails that a contractor should be using on a cedar fence? I have heard that galvanized nails react with the cedar and can cause bleeding. Is this true?

Also, does anyone have any feedback on using cyprus wood instead of cedar for an outside fence. I talked to a contractor recently who told me that cyprus lasts longer and looks just as good as cedar.


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Redwood,cedar, cypress are all great exterior woods. Personally i wouldn't put one spsecies over the other as they are all great.Redwood and cedar hold a close resemblence, cypress differs somewhat, so it's a personal decision for you what would look the best for your project.

As far as fasteners,i would dump using nails and go with screws. Double hot dipped fasteners are claimed to be free of staining, but if it's in your budget, i would go with stainless steel.

Here is a link that might be useful: nails and screws

    Bookmark   May 9, 2007 at 9:08PM
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Stainless steel fasteners---screws or nails---are better and will not stain/corrode.

But, those cost more, up to twice as much.

Any nail used in fencing should be ring shank or equivalent. Because the fence wood tends to expand/shrink during heat/cold cycles and humidity changes---which cause smooth shank nails to loosen.

Both cedar and cypress weather to a gray shade. Cypress is a bit more hard and weather resistant than cedar.

    Bookmark   May 9, 2007 at 10:25PM
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I'll guarantee that galvanized do bleed - I walk by a neighbor's fence twice daily and see just that effect. Only ever use stainless steel if you don't want stripes running down the wood.

    Bookmark   May 9, 2007 at 10:39PM
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I'm gearing up to build a fence and have been reading whatever I could find. I read some accounts of cypress that quickly rotted, and couldn't make sense of the differences in people's experiences until I found an article (can't find it now) that explained only "low country" cypress, which is native to wet, swampy areas, is rot-resistant. Other cypress varieties may be, according to the article, no more rot-resistant than pine.

    Bookmark   May 10, 2007 at 5:46AM
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As a couple of others have mentioned, stainless steel ring shank nails should be used with cedar/redwood if you want a stain-free installation.

Yeah, they cost more...but the additional cost over what non-stainless costs is negligible when compared to the overall budget for the fence.

The last 2" square picket cedar fence I did, the cedar alone cost a little over $5K, and I ordered that straight from the sawmill up in Canada.

A 25 lb bucket of stainless ring shanks? About $120.


    Bookmark   May 10, 2007 at 9:04AM
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