Redwood for base and window molding????

rychncMarch 6, 2007


I am building new home and instead of the traditional pine or oak molding we were thinking of using redwood. We used redwood for exposed roof rafters for our porch and we love the rustic red and yellow colors. Surprisingly, redwood over the Internet plus shipping is cheaper than what my local suppliers charge for red oak. The only problem I see is redwood is very soft and untreated will easily show scratches. We prefer not to use a stain that will change the color of the natural red and gold tones. Here are my questions:

Does anyone use redwood for base and window molding? If so, what natural stain/lacure/vanish treatment do you suggest to help protect the wood and reduce dents and scratches? If not, what additional issues do you see using redwood?


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I used redwood for window trim in my shop, because I had some sitting around. It's nice. I wouldn't use it for base, where it would have to contend with brooms or vacuum cleaners; there's not much you can do to protect it.

    Bookmark   March 6, 2007 at 7:33PM
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Thanks for the response. Are you saying it would be a BIG mistake to use redwood for base molding? People use pine all the time.

    Bookmark   March 6, 2007 at 11:52PM
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Redwood is considerably softer than pine. I don't know that it would be a BIG mistake, but it would be delicate. I've seen whole rooms paneled in redwood, and I like it; just don't expect it to take a lot of abuse. If you have big, open rooms and don't tend to bang into stuff, you'd probably be fine.

    Bookmark   March 7, 2007 at 8:12AM
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The company who is selling me the redwood suggested applying polyurethane and using shoe molding for extra protection. I was considering using red oak with a clear lacure for the base molding and redwood 1x6 S4S for window and door trim. The redwood cost $1.7/lf and the oak $2.05/lf. I also have pine windows and dark maple hardwood floors. I prefer NOT to overly stain the wood - I would rather have the natural colors come out even though I have a variety of wood spieces. Suggestions?

    Bookmark   March 7, 2007 at 8:53AM
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