With all of the basic framing and foundation set in place, the time had come to get the actual wood for the deck itself. Given that there is a lot of variability in the quality of Ipe (the Brazilian hardwood we had chosen for our deck), Anderson and I went out to the vendor (Ashby Lumber) to hand-select every piece of wood that would go into our deck. At $4 a linear foot (for 5 1/2″ x 3/4″ boards), and with a desire to minimize waste, we wanted to make sure we got boards that were straight, unmarred, and just generally beautiful.
Anderson and I drove out to the large Ashby Lumber yard in Concord and spent about an hour picking out all of the wood we’d ultimately use in the deck:
We bought a bunch of 20-foot long 2x6s to act as support for our wood during transport (since the boards could have been damaged otherwise), and then hand-loaded everything onto a forklift in preparation for delivery:
One note here: I had done some calculations to determine how many boards of each length we would need. Boards came in two-foot increments, from 8 feet to 20 feet in length. Unfortunately, as it turned out, we needed more wood of certain lengths than Ashby Lumber had in stock, which meant swapping out some boards for longer lengths. The clash between theory and practice…
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