June 19, 2019
See how well wood weathers, at our “weathering station”
Cladding and decking on display at Vastern Timber’s weathering station
Thanks to an innovation grant from the Forestry Commission, Vastern Timber has set up a unique weathering station at our Wootton Bassett sawmill.
The station helps prospective customers see how cladding could look on their building after a period of natural weathering. It will also give us long term data on the above ground durability and performance of various timber species. It’s designed to test the weathering of timber cladding and decking, and faces exactly North, South, East and West to simulate the various elevations of a building.
Tom Barnes, managing director of Vastern Timber, said “The weathering station was funded from the Forestry Commission Innovation grant. We were awarded this funding in 2018 to help further develop our Brimstone product range of thermally modified British woods.”
“It is both a technical test of timber species over the long term in in typical use situations and an opportunity for clients to see for themselves how the wood will look after a period of exposure. We’ll also use the station to test various coatings on the timber to determine how well they last.”
A “realistic” test station for timber cladding and decking
Tom explained that when testing wood externally, often testing stations position the wood samples at forty-five degrees. He said “while this fits in with the various test standards it is not particularly realistic. Generally exterior wood is used vertically as cladding or horizontally as decking – and so we have designed our test station to be realistic and practical.”
I don’t know of any other timber company or indeed any research facility that has a weathering test station of this scale.
Vastern Timber test products for the long-term
Tom is passionate about the importance of testing timber timber in ‘real-life’ conditions. He said “We are absolutely committed to understanding our products in terms of how they behave in the short, medium and long term, and we try our best to communicate this knowledge to our customers.”
“Combined with data from EPH Dresden, a centre of wood modification expertise, the information we gather from our weathering station will provide us with an unprecedented level of first hand research. We are also testing how various coatings such as the Osmo UV range fare over time.”
Visitors are welcome to Vastern Timber and can view the wood weathering station outside our showroom. To find more about our timber cladding and decking, or our weathering station, contact us.