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Plugging Ipe

Posted by thinkstoomuch (My Page) on
Tue, Apr 21, 09 at 13:53

New member here. I've been reading posts on building an Ipe deck for probably six months now. Thank you to all who take the time to share your knowledge!

I've made most of my decisions/plans and am down to the nitty gritty before I actually dive in.

My question is about plugging Ipe. I have my Ipe on site, and it is 1x6. I would love to plug, but fear that 3/4 inch material is not beefy enough to handle plugging. I've spoken to one person who says plugging 1x6 is do-able(you know who you are). I'm hoping to get some feedback from others on whether or not I can plug 1x6 Ipe. I would use a 3/8ths forstner bit and pre-made plugs.

If the consensus is to not plug, I will go the Headcote route.

thanks all!


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Plugging Ipe

It is completle possible, but a little tricky.

Forstner bit is a good idea thats how I do it,you have to be really carefull with the plug drill and the pilot hole the PD cant be too deep and the PH should not go past the ipe into the preasure treated frame. Use bugle head screws,good place to get them by the box> Fasco they have a site but its really complex better to call them 1 866 327 2633, #2 2 '' long 3000 @ $158 they pay the shiping<

Most factory plugs are tapered,thats a good thing, get your form down on some ipe shorts before you go after the real thing. Remember your not Killing Snakes slow down dont tork the screws down like your fixing a leak in a Submarine just sung them up your only going into a half inch at the best.

Use tightbond 111 and a Makita 18 volt impact driver. If you dont already have one buy the kit with a drill pretty good deal and right now Makita is throwing in free stuff with a buy like that. J.

Side note>> I dont plug the whole deck I plug Detail but I know it will work if you are very Carefull. <<


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RE: Plugging Ipe

Thanks for the reply John. Much appreciated.
Do I understand correctly that the two key things are keeping the plug hole to 1/4" depth, and keeping the pilot hole to just the Ipe? If the plug hole gets much deeper, I'm assuming I stand the chance of the board cracking?
It seems to me that I could use a stop collar for the pilot hole to keep things consistent. But I'm not sure if there is something I could use to keep the plug hole consistent. Any recommendations?
Thanks for everything!
Kim


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RE: Plugging Ipe

Those two things are importent. Using the forstner bit I do the eyeball thing depending on what bit your using that is how deep it is you could make a mark on it and go with that. Its going to take forever anyway. One way to do the mark would be with tape and red spray paint.

Those stop collars are a pain for me the steel leaves a mark on the wood almost not possible to avoid it. I make a small ipe block with a hole drilled in it the size of the pilot bit,round the edges off to the point it coveres the plug hole then chuck the set up in at the debth you want.

Be sure your forstner is good with your plugs,sand the proud standing plugs with an orbital,I use a 5'' makita 80 grit pads, That machine will leval out the plugs with the deck and remove any oil marks the block might make.

Its just good form not to put anymore stress on the ipe than is needed. Show a lot of Respect to this Lumber. J.


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RE: Plugging Ipe

Thanks for all the advice John. I appreciate it. I'll play around with scraps until I feel comfortable. If at that point I still feel hesitation, I'll just use the Headcote screws.

By the way, aside from the labor involved, is there any reason NOT to plug? Will I regret plugging the entire deck down the road? I much prefer the look of plugging as opposed to seeing brown screws all over the place, but if I'll only be happy with the plugs for a couple of years, it is not worth it to me.

Kim


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RE: Plugging Ipe

Kim,

You can plug 1x Ipe with no problem. I've done it often. These days, I rarely plug, as the headcote screws are hardly visible, and a lot easier on my knees/back.

I just answered another message about plugging. Check it out.

steve


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RE: Plugging Ipe

Thanks Steve,
I checked out the other email as well. On there you said that when you use that forstner, you sink it to the depth of the cutter. I'm assuming that only applies with 5/4 Ipe - correct? I would think that would be too deep with 1x Ipe........
Would I be better off using a countersink rather than forstner?
Kim


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RE: Plugging Ipe

Kim --

Not sure if you saw them but here are pictures of my deck....I used the brown Headcotes.
They are barely noticeable.....

Here's a link to the thread that shows my deck after staining:
http://ths.gardenweb.com/forums/load/porch/msg102139206681.html

And here's a close-up pic of the screws prior to staining:

Hope this helps.

mike

DSCF1971


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RE: Plugging Ipe

If you use a forstner bit for the countersink, drill the countersink before the pilot hole. One of my doofus helpers started off by pilot drilling a bunch of 5/16" holes for some Ipe picnic tables. We were using stainless carriage bolts to assemble them. The idea was to use a 1" forstner bit to make a 1/8" countersink so the heads of the carriage bolts would seat flush. Needless to say, the countersink didn't really work out after the pilot holes were drilled through. I told that guy if we were paying him to make kindling all day there is cheaper material to use. He looked at the chewed up boards with the hacked-out craters and said "we could flip them over and try again..." Maybe he thought more practice would improve his technique. He couldn't understand why the forstner bit was walking all over the place. This guy was not the finish carpenter I expected.

Like John says, "you're not killing snakes" Slow down and think about the order of operations. Practice the process on a few pieces of scrap. It sounds so easy to say but people rarely take the time to practice. They always rush into things before figuring out the learning curve.


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RE: Plugging Ipe

Thanks for the pics Mike. I see you used Penofin. For your end cuts, did you just use the Penofin, or did you use anchorseal? I'm still undecided on the approach I will use.

Aidan M - that is one of those hindsight funny stories. Actually, probably never funny to you! I will be sure to practice practice practice before touching an actual deck board. I'm a perfectionist, so that is my nature!

I hope this deck turns out as nice as I see it in my head! My plan is Ipe decking, white Azek for facia/stair risers etc, and TimberTech Radiance Rail.

Kim


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RE: Plugging Ipe

I used Anchorseal on the end cuts. I was real careful not to overapply or get it on the face of the board. Used a $1 sponge brush.
Not sure if it made a difference. I did get some checking and cupping anyway.
Here is a thread with pics:
http://ths.gardenweb.com/forums/load/porch/msg0522545417778.html

I havent checked the boards lately to see if the checks closed up.....


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RE: Plugging Ipe

Kim,

I don't use 5/4 Ipe anymore. The cutter is about 5/16, and that will work in 3/4" Ipe. If you're skeptical, then don't go that deep. The forstner will make a cleaner cut than the countersink, but then you still have to drill the pilot hole (afterwards)

Aidan,

That's funny, but not for you...I'm sure.

steve


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RE: Plugging Ipe

I plug almost every deck I do, and like to use the snappy countersink bit. It has a great hex screw that keeps the bit from spinning.
http://woodsshop.com/PROJECTS/Mill/Construction Mill/m19.htm
Set the pilot bit length to just enter the joist ~ 1/4".

I order the (very nice) 3/8" tapered plugs from East Teak.
http://www.eastteak.com/

Here is a link that might be useful: Snappy Bit


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RE: Plugging Ipe

Hey Joe!! and thanks for the tool link Im going to have to check out that little thing. J.


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RE: Plugging Ipe

Beautiful work Joe! Thanks for chiming in. Do you agree with the others here that as long as I am careful, plugging 1x Ipe is not a problem?

I do have one more general question. How far ahead can I get before I circle back to plug the holes? Should I go one board at a time? A few at a time? Can I wait until the end of the day and plug all the holes that I accomplish that day? I understand that the quicker you get them plugged, the better off you are, but I don't know the context of "quick" when it comes to this stuff!
Also curious to know what your finish of choice is. Anchorseal/no anchorseal. ???

Thanks to everyone! I'm so excited to start my project! I'll post pictures when I'm done, but I can assure you that is going to be a ways away!

Kim


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