Af­ford­able tim­ber prod­ucts

The Courier-Mail - Weekend Shopper - - Weekend Shopper - - AN­DREA LUNT

AS ONE of the most pop­u­lar build­ing ma­te­ri­als in Queens­land, tim­ber com­bines raw, nat­u­ral ap­peal with sig­nif­i­cant eco qual­i­ties.

The Week­end Shop­per is a rich re­source for lo­cat­ing all types of tim­ber prod­ucts, from sec­ond hand and an­tique items for that rus­tic look, through to newer, treated op­tions.

For those build­ing or ren­o­vat­ing a cot­tage, Queens­lan­der or post-war prop­erty, find­ing af­ford­able tim­ber in the Shop­per can help re­duce the over­all cost of the project.

There is a dif­fer­ent range avail­able each week, in­clud­ing hard­wood posts, fence pal­ings, gates, weath­er­boards, balustrades, lat­tice, floor­boards, ar­chi­traves, rail­ings, doors and win­dows in­clud­ing case­ment and sash styles.

Prod­ucts come in dif­fer­ent va­ri­eties, from soft­woods such as pine to hard­woods like Brush­box.

Tim­ber miller and im­porter Podge Mur­phy will hap­pily tell any­one about the ben­e­fits of tim­ber.

Mr Mur­phy, of En­deav­our Tim­ber Prod­ucts at North­gate in Bris­bane, reck­ons tim­ber beats other ma­te­ri­als such as con­crete and plas­tic hands down.

“ Tim­ber is bril­liant,” Mr Mur­phy said.

“ Tim­ber has nat­u­ral vari­a­tion, life and warmth; tim­ber has a smell and feel to it – it is emo­tive. Con­crete is dead and plas­tic is in­ert.”

If forested re­spon­si­bly, the use of tim­ber in construction can of­fer a va­ri­ety of en­vi­ron­men­tal ben­e­fits.

As a re­new­able and biodegrad­able re­source, it takes con­sid­er­ably less en­ergy to pro­duce than other ma­te­ri­als such as con­crete, in­su­lates nat­u­rally and helps re­duce green­house gases.

Not all va­ri­eties are sus­cep­ti­ble to ter­mites and bor­ers, and there are suc­cess­ful meth­ods of treat­ing tim­ber pre-construction to pre­vent in­fes­ta­tions.

In places such as the Sun­shine State, where tim­ber is a tra­di­tional build­ing re­source, our homes not only pro­vide shel­ter but of­fer an ef­fi­cient method of stor­ing car­bon, sim­i­lar to trees in the for­est.

Tim­ber struc­tures also ra­di­ate an aes­thetic ap­peal that has seen Queens­lan­der-style homes be­come one of the state’s favoured build­ing styles.

For in­te­rior use, Mr Mur­phy said Aus­tralian va­ri­eties such as Brush­box and Iron­bark were some of the most cov­eted, while Spot­ted Gum pro­vided a pop­u­lar op­tion for deck­ing.

He said over­seas va­ri­eties in­clud­ing Kwilla of­fered a good qual­ity, af­ford­able al­ter­na­tive as well.

While there are some is­sues as­so­ci­ated with tim­ber, such as the pos­si­bil­ity of ex­pan­sion and con­trac­tion in dif­fer­ent tem­per­a­tures, Mr Mur­phy said the ben­e­fits far out­weighed the po­ten­tial prob­lems.

“Off all the ma­te­ri­als to work with tim­ber is the least for­giv­ing but the most re­ward­ing,” he said.

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