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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have an opportunity to purchase some 3/4" x 3 1/2" t+g African Mahogany at a fairly reasonable price . I am building my last house for me to live in (having built 3 others). The house has a front covered front porch and I really like the tongue and groove porch flooring look on this house.
Has anyone used African Mahogany as a decking material? And then specifically tongue and groove porch decking in African Mahogany?
I realize that I will probably need to prefinish the material before laying it down and welcome suggestions on what my best finish would be.
The research I have done, leads me to believe I can use it and the look is nice.
Comments welcome. Thanks in advance for your input.

Marty
 

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First things first you need to find out if its sipo or sapele. Sapele would not do so well as decking, it gets squirrelly, sipo is much more stable. Second is do you know the supplier and do they know their material. Sipo, if dried incorrectly can be a mess with cracking.

Second make sure you have ample airflow. African mahogany (sipo or sapele) is a beautiful wood when done correctly. This includes from harvest to milling profile to installation to maintenance and every step between. I don't want to scare you off because the end result can be something all the neighbors rave about for years to come.

Some things that help are having the board sent rough sawn to the states and then profiled here (this isn't so much a problem with south American woods because there are well established relationships with American companies and their south American counterparts and the product care in between). Your local mill should get it at about 8-9% mc and then profiled and hit with some 80 grit to remove and chatter marks from the moulder.

Too often you get something from Africa finished and it wasn't taken care of and turns to a mess. If your local supplier has a good relationship with a mill over there then by all means go for it. Don't prefinish the material, no point. Install with trim screws predilled. Provide plenty of cross flow ventilation (3 side walls open is great) and if you can't then make some vents on the top.

As far as what finish, if you can't get twp 100 series I always used messmers (ipe oil) with some satisfaction, if twp is available... There is no question that is the sealer to use, just made the switch and while its a bit harder to apply, its a game changer for sustainability.

Good luck and it makes a gorgeous floor.

and composite guys... Well we know what you think about wood.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Deckhead,
Thanks for the info.
I do have 3 sides open. I will check with supplier if it is sipo or sapele on Monday. The material has been sanded, no chatter marks that I could see. I plan on taking my moisture meter to check the moisture content.
I did plan on using stainless screws for fastening and pre-drilling is just good practice.
But, forgive my ignorance, what is "twp 100". I have used messmers and like you said works well.
Again, thanks for your insights, much appreciated. If i decide to proceed I will post a finished job photo.
Marty
 

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There are several species of Mahogany but, at least around here, when someone says African Mahogany they mean Khaya. I've never used it as flooring but the Wood Database does say that is a common use for it.
 

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There are several species of Mahogany but, at least around here, when someone says African Mahogany they mean Khaya. I've never used it as flooring but the Wood Database does say that is a common use for it.
Its funny how mahogany has become such a broad term, even though almost none of the "mahogany's" are genuine mahogany.

Twp 100 is a type of finish. 100 is the series or type.
 
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