The Wonderful World of Cedar

- IT WON'T ROT:  Cedar wood is used exclusively in our outdoor-grade products and is renowned world-wide for its unique weather-resistant properties.  Cedar fibers contain oils that act as natural preservatives to help the wood resist rot and decay making it excellent furniture material for moist or humid climates. These properties also make Cedar a very popular material for hot tub and sauna areas.

Cedar has been used for generations for roofing and shingles, fences, fence posts, planking for small boat hulls and, of course, for outdoor furniture.  A Western Red Cedar fence post will last up to 16 years in the ground. Furniture left out year round, untreated and uncovered, even in Northern rugged winters, will last a minimum of 8 to 10 years. Furniture that is brought inside or covered for the winter will easily last twice that long.



- IT SMELLS GREAT:  Naturally occurring organic compounds called (thujaplicins) give off that richly distinct cedar aroma that smells so good to humans but makes the wood highly unattractive to insects, moths and other pests. This is why Cedar is also a choice material for closet liners and blanket storage chests.


- A NATURAL ALTERNATIVE TO CHEMICALLY TREATED WOOD:  Much of today's outdoor furniture consists of chemically treated materials. These materials hold up outdoors because they are soaked in a toxic stew of chemical preservatives that are strong enough to require warning labels for those who handle it. The three primary ingredients in pressure-treated woods are: copper, arsenic, and chromium.

A controversy exists on the extent of arsenic exposure due to physical contact with CCA wood surfaces. Such surfaces include playground equipment, decks, and picnic tables built using CCA treated wood. Studies have shown that virtually no inorganic arsenic is absorbed through the skin, but is readily taken up by ingestion. Thus, the potential exposure is hand to mouth, and therefore, children are considered the most vulnerable to this potential risk. Read more on this here!


- IT STAYS COOL:  Cedar has an incredible thermal co-efficient, meaning even on hot days, it is cool to sit in. Its bacterial and fungal resistance coupled with the fact that Cedar is 80% the strength of Oak, makes it the most desirable wood to use for building outdoor furniture.


- JUST SAY NO TO CHEAP PLASTIC CRAP:  Unlike plastic or resin furniture, Cedar will not bow or sag over time, or crack and break easily.  You will rarely come out to find your new patio set blown across the yard; and if you do, you may have more serious problems to worry about.  Your Cedar furniture will not become dull sun scorched and faded, but rather will hold its handsome appearance year after year.  Unlike plastics and resins, Cedar is not made from petroleum and there are no toxic by-products.  It is a renewable and all natural product you will enjoy for years to come.



Finishing Options


More About Cedar Lumber...

Eastern White Cedar:  (Thuja occidentalis)
This small sized tree (40' average) is a native of the northern New England and the Eastern Canadian forests.  It grows much slower than its Western counterpart and is harvested at a smaller diameter.  Thus, white cedar generally has a few knots and blemishes, and is nearly impossible to get in a clear grade.  
The wood is a soft creamy white in color when freshly milled and sanded, but will weather to a silver-gray if left untreated.  EWC remains subtly aromatic, and the characteristic fragrance just adds another dimension to its universal appeal.  White Cedar is more "local" and is avaliable at a lower cost than the Western. 
Dimensional lumber and logs are subject to the natural process of "checking" as the wood dires and cures, but will not affect the integrity of the product in any way. 
Biology of Eastern White Cedar
Western Red Cedar: (Thuja plicata)
This species is a native to the northwest coast of the U.S. and southwestern Canada.  Due to the climate and growing conditions these trees can grow incredibly large (200' or more) and can live over 1000 years.  Most of these trees grow coastally, but can occur in wet, cool, and moist areas inland. 
The wood in its natural unfinished state, has a richly textured tactile grain combined with a glowing palette of warm, mellow tones ranging from light amber to deep honey brown.  No man-made material can duplicate the depth of cedar's natural luster. Over time the color will also weather to a soft gray or can be treated with a sealer to keep it looking new and preserve the coloration. 
All of our WRC stock is clear grade and free of any knots and is also subtly aromatic.  It comes from farther away then our native White Cedar, has a limited availability and thus costs a bit more. 
Green Mountain Ski Furniture,  Route 100,  Waterbury, VT  05677     ph:  802.324.1717
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