Installing the cedar shiplap siding, part 1

Started putting up the siding today. We were a bit slow to start due to working around the wheel well, but slow and methodical once underway.

Our siding is mixed-grain 5 inch wide clear red cedar that we bought for a very reasonable price from Building Materials Resources and coated with 2 coats of hazelnut tinted Timber Pro.

The shiplap is more time-consuming to put up than tongue and groove because it needs to be double face nailed, and we are choosing to pilot and screw so when the time comes in 20 years this stuff can be taken off the exterior completely intact and flipped over for a fresh face and a new life on a shed or a chicken coop. Thinking like this is how you make the most out of precious materials. By doubling the lifespan we’re effectively cutting the embodied energy and environmental impact in half.

The fellow we bought the wood from called it ‘nickel gap’ which we assumed meant that it could be gapped with nickles. This works surprisingly well, with the board sitting on top of the nickels and holding them in place even if you’re not holding onto it. We really like the 2 inch # 8 GRK fin trim screws we’re using to fasten the siding. The heads are really tiny but very positive with the torx drive head, and the gold color reminds us of bronze.

Like all siding there’s a tendency for things to creep which is why it’s important to stay vigilant with the level, the straight edge, and the occasional snapped line. It’s pretty easy for heights to become uneven and if it gets more than about an eighth out you start to notice it and there’s no good way to get things back without messing up the gap reveal.

We both really like the look of the mixed grain. For the most part exposed cedar is either clear vertical grain or tight knot. Tight knot isn’t a look that I like and CVG can feel kind of sterile at times so it’s cool to have an opportunity to put up something less common.

– Brian

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