Adding siding details

The process of deciding on how to proceed with the vertical siding detail has been a real challenge. After two days and probably 1000 trips up the ladder holding up the various sizes and colors of datum boards (the band around the house) and vertical siding, Liz and I were stuck in a stalemate of completely different opinions. She wanted light, I wanted dark, so to break the impasse we decided to select out our darkest boards and cut them to a custom size on the table saw, but when we actually put up a few of them it really didn’t look good either of us. The boards looked too narrow and the color was just weird and not in a good way. I felt like there wasn’t enough contrast to pull off the two tone effect and something about the color just seems wrong as well. Frustrated with having killed nine of our best dark boards on the table saw, we decided the risk of getting the dark band wrong was probably worse than the risk of lighter boards looking too plain, so we went light instead.

I cut the datum board with an angle on top to drain water, a rabbet in back to receive the shiplap, and a drip groove on the underside of the front edge, and then Liz painted the flashing to match the windows, and we installed it and nailed up a few more pieces of horizontal Cor-a-vent.

After screwing up (literally) a patch of the siding I was blown away when I stepped down off the ladder and it looked dramatically lighter than the nearly identical horizontal boards beneath! It was then we both realized that what we were reacting to earlier wasn’t an issue of light or dark it was a strange issue of sheen and light reflectivity. It turns out that viewed at any angle other than straight on the vertical siding reflects dramatically more light. This suggests that dark might have been the way to go after all, (see pic) but at this point we just need to keep moving forward, it looks decent and I’d much rather be on a ladder building things.

– Brian

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