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Thread: Coconut timber

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    Coconut timber

    Been reading it could be the timber of the future, good for decking, flooring, furniture, eco-friendly etc.

    Untreated it isn't eaten by bugs. It's very hard, so can't be nailed once dried. Not sure if the poles are strong enough to be used structurally. We had an old tree and the locals cut it up with a chainsaw to use as roof battons. I'd expect there's a bit of it around.

    Anyone have further info on prices and availability?



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    Yeah, I did google, stuff sounds good, just wondering about it in LOS.

    Once felled our tree was marked with a string line and then a chainsaw cut it into 4x2 pieces. Was interesting to watch.

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    We have a lot of coconut trees around here. The wood is very fibrous and strong for its weight. But if left out in the weather it turns to powder in a couple of years.

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    we have got a lot of coconut wood flooring in our bungalows in phanom. it is a type of hard wood . must be keep dry..or varnished /sealed.

    looks good aswell.

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    Is it expensive?

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    Needs to be planned well ahead in abundance. Takes years to mature and to be of real practical use....

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    Needs to be planned well ahead in abundance. Takes years to mature and to be of real practical use....
    What timber that isn't attacked by termites doesn't take years to mature? From what I've been reading coconut trees are in abundance, when they stop producing coconuts they are chopped for timber.

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    A friend of mine here in Chachoengsao has just framed a small roof with cocount timber. Very cheap comparatively. He chose his planks very carefully and is considering staining them with a preservative later on. He reckons it's difficult to get a smooth finish with coconut but it isn't a problem for him as the framing isn't visible.

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    Owen Geiger posted about coconut timber recently on his blog: naturalbuildingblog.com/coconut-wood/

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    Another coconut timber anecdote:

    Untreated cocount floorboards are installed in a building in the Daruma Eco Farm in Sriracha. They were laid as an experiment and have lasted over three years so far. The owner thinks they'll have to be replaced in another two or three years - he has occasionally seen piles of dust that indicate it's being eaten by something.

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    The wood is very fibrous and strong for its weight.

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    like bamboo, it is Ok for a house that you expect to degenerate in a few years before you move on to the next bit of forest to burn down

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    Quote Originally Posted by DrAndy View Post
    like bamboo, it is Ok for a house that you expect to degenerate in a few years before you move on to the next bit of forest to burn down
    Probably true if untreated. The roof frame of the house of my BIL in the Philippines has coconut for its frame and is still as new after more than 20 years.

    I remember talking with a Tourist from Germany in the Philippines who looked at the large open roof construction of a beach restaurant. He is a carpenter and the head of the department in Berlin that is setting the training and examination rules for trainees. He marvelled at the roof construction and said those beams are tiny in comparison to the pine wood beams he knows and wondered what wood it is. He had already seen that roof stand up to a heavy storm so it must be strong enough. I could tell him it is coconut lumber.
    "don't attribute to malice what can be adequately explained by incompetence"

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    So if "coconut-lumber" is treated when ready to use it will serve most structural tasks...mmm...interesting, thank you.

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    Quote Originally Posted by DrAndy View Post
    like bamboo, it is Ok for a house that you expect to degenerate in a few years before you move on to the next bit of forest to burn down
    DrAndy is right. We looked into this many years ago and decided to give it a pass. Still would today.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Takeovers
    Probably true if untreated. The roof frame of the house of my BIL in the Philippines has coconut for its frame and is still as new after more than 20 years.
    well, that is a surprise

    what do they treat it with against water intrusion?

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    Quote Originally Posted by DrAndy
    well, that is a surprise what do they treat it with against water intrusion?
    Sorry, I have no idea. For an older part of the house I think they have painted it with used car motor oil. That seemed to work too but I would not recommend it.

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