Feather edge cladding
Featheredge boards are normally associated with fencing but they can also be utilised in cladding timber framed buildings. When cladding they are sometimes referred to as weather board or close board, and was often machined in green oak. Timber cladding can be used on the outside of a house or farm building, timber frame extension, garage, stable or car port.
Stock lengths of featheredge
Feather edge boards are machined from rectangular strips of wood which are cut at an angle to make two similar tapered lengths. In addition to standard fencing lengths we also keep 150mm boards at lengths of 2.4m, 3.0m and 3.6 metres – these are all cut from 22mm timber. We also keep 175mm boards in 4.8 metre lengths (occasionally 4.2 metres) and they are produced from a thicker 32mm sawn board. The boards are unspecified softwood and then pressure treated with preservative.
Featheredge cut from Douglas, Larch or Green Oak
In addition to our stocked 175mm featheredge boards it is possible to order custom widths of douglas fir or larch from the round, log lengths are normally 3.6m, 4.8m and 7.4 metres. When cut fresh from the round log, the ‘green’ unseasoned timber has a higher moisture content than the normal 175mm stock we keep in the Yard. It will dry out quite quickly after cutting and the surface is a soft textured, fine sawn finish, the vivid colours mellowing after several weeks exposure. Ideally the new cladding needs to be fixed while still fresh – if the boards are kept in storage for more than a couple of weeks they will start to season and may bow and twist, they will also harden making them more difficult to fix than fresh sawn. Prices of cladding are calculated by volume.
Fixing the featheredge
Battens provide the framework for fixing featheredge and an air gap should be left behind the boards to allow air to circulate and keep the timber dry and avoid fungi & bacteria growth. The size of battens will vary depending on whether you are cladding on brick or block, or if you are building say a garage or car port. As a rule of thumb the batten should be at least twice the thickness of the board being fastened to it.
We normally supply tanalised and graded timbers for this part of the job. Batten spacing is usually specified in the build documentation, but 400mm centres is recommended to provide a good fix especially for fresh sawn boards and improve control over timber movements. When cladding a building it is normal to fix feather edged boards horizontally with a 40mm lap for 150mm width boards and 40-50mm with wider 175-200mm featheredge.
Use galvanised or stainless steel fixings to avoid corrosion and possible staining. Try to fix at least 10mm from the edge of the board to avoid splitting. This allows the wood to change shape and season without fixings failing, annular or ring shank nails are preferred for fixing featheredge and are less prone to pulling out than smooth nails if the boards start to move.