Sunday, September 23, 2012

Refinishing Log Railings

Throughout the spring and summer seasons we've been incrementally and gradually cleaning and power washing various railings, decks and benches to get them ready to finish with Sikkens Log and Siding coating. I say finish rather then refinish because these railings, decks and benches etc... have never been given even a single coat of anything.  I see that quite a few people out in the country do not bother to coat their decks or railings or posts or whatever and they pretty quickly get a dull, old looking finish.  I guess they figure that since it's pressure treated, it doesn't need to be coated with anything.  I prefer to finish outdoor workmanship myself rather than wait for nature to give me that old dilapidated look.  So here is what we've been doing and the results are quite pleasing.

Below is the Birches Deck before we started the work.

The Birches Deck before we started the work.  This is pressure treated wood that has never been given a stain, finish or coating of any kind.  It looks old and dilapidated the way it is and not very inviting for guests to sit out on.  So we're going to turn it into a fresh new finished deck.

Looking up on to the deck

Birches Stairway and landing
The first thing to do is to apply a wood cleaner and brightener.  We use a product called TimberWash which we obtain from an online log home supplier called  This liquid concentrate is an oxidizing chemical which loosens the mold and dirt and allows the wood to be cleaned easily with the power washer. The liquid is applied liberally with a brush and worked into the wood grain and left for at least 20 minutes to do its work.

This what the landing looks like after being scrubbed power washed.

The deck itself before...

Here you can see how much is coming off the wood with the power washer.

...and after. The bench and railings have already been partially coated with the Sikkens Log and Siding product.

So the deck looks more like this now.  It still needs 2 more coats of Sikkens in order to have it looking its best and we hope to get there before the end of the year.  Otherwise it will have to wait until next spring.

Same process for the log railing at the back of the birches

The Tea house is also undergoing the cleaning and finishing process.

Here is some of the detailed woodwork at the Tea House as it is in the process of being cleaned.

And finally, we're doing the same thing in the entryway of the Log House

As we complete these projects I'll be updating this blog entry to show what it will look like when done.

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