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Cedar poles for verandas

We live in New Zealand. We want to use our home-grown cedar poles for the veranda but cannot get council approval.

We have some cedar whole tree poles. They include soft outer wood but are 25+ years old and have a minimum of 80 mm heart. They are protected from the weather by the verandas, but because I grew them on my property and they don't carry a durability and strength certification, the building inspector will not sign them off.

Help.
Cheers,
Pete

Asked by Pete Davies
Posted Jul 1, 2014 6:27 AM ET
Edited Jul 1, 2014 8:00 AM ET

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2 Answers

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1.

Pete,
To provide a good answer to your question, someone would have to:
(a) know what species of wood is referred to as "cedar" in New Zealand,
(b) know whether this species of wood is rot-resistant enough for the application you envision, and
(c) know something about New Zealand building codes and methods for getting approval for alternate building approaches.

Unfortunately, I don't have any knowledge of (a), (b), or (c).

While we all hang around waiting for a New Zealand reader to provide you with some advice, maybe you can describe how you intend to use the cedar poles. Will the poles be in contact with the ground (in other words, will they be partially buried)? Or will they be attached with galvanized steel clips to the top of concrete foundation posts (Sonotube footings)?

Answered by Martin Holladay
Posted Jul 1, 2014 8:05 AM ET

2.

Pete, You would have the same problem here on Canada's West Coast where Cedar is used extensively, but only a couple of species of wood are seen to be structurally consistent enough to be included in the building code tables. Types of wood not found in the code aren't specifically excluded from use, but require that an engineer approve them. The same might be true where you are.

Answered by Malcolm Taylor
Posted Jul 1, 2014 11:43 AM ET

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