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sleepers as decking

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  1. #1
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    Default sleepers as decking

    Hi all am new here, so you have probably been asked this before, but can i use 200x50 or 75mm sleepers as decking boards on a deck 4m long by 2.4 wide with no joists. i have already put my posts and bearers in bearers are 150x75mm hardwood posts are steel 2m spacing, they are 2.2m from house i like the look of the sleepers and would like to run them from my house out to bearers but do not want to use joists, can i do this????

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    Simple answer is yes. But I recommend at least three but preferably four bearers supporting that length of sleeper in order to prevent them springing.

    Here's mine....well the front one anyway. The back one is similar. 200x50 River Red Gum sleepers, dressed in thicknesser and oiled. This front deck springs a little as there's only two bearers under it despite the 1800mm width. Back one has double the bearers and is near bullet proof.
    dsc00305.jpg
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  3. #3
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    ok what about 200x75mm would they flex to much over 2.2m as well, i am wanting a look like the deck is floating it is only 600mm off the ground and i want to plant aroung the posts so they cannot be seen. any other options to get this look?

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    You'd need to use telegraph poles rather than sleepers as decking to avoid bounce in a 2.2 metre span...
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  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by renv8 View Post
    Hi all am new here, so you have probably been asked this before, but can i use 200x50 or 75mm sleepers as decking boards on a deck 4m long by 2.4 wide with no joists. i have already put my posts and bearers in bearers are 150x75mm hardwood posts are steel 2m spacing, they are 2.2m from house i like the look of the sleepers and would like to run them from my house out to bearers but do not want to use joists, can i do this????
    Hi renv8,

    Just to give you a bit of info on my deck.

    I did a deck out of sleepers (3.0 x 5.5 mtrs) using 200 x 50mm sleepers for the deck with 100 x 100 mm joists @ 750mm centers and have no bounce at all. I sanded the sleepers and let it weather which has resulted in the look I was after which was like a boardwalk.

    Best of luck,
    Sabre

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    Moondog did this with redgum sleepers for a verandah some years ago. It looked great. The issue with it was that the sleepers tended to cup badly as they dried, and there was a lot of shrinkage in the timber as it dried. He says, one screw on each end until they dry, then screw down permanently. Alternatively, buy them six months in advance and allow them to dry sufficiently before fixing. They may need to be planed flat.
    I am not responsible for anything that Moondog says!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Cecile View Post
    The issue with it was that the sleepers tended to cup badly as they dried, and there was a lot of shrinkage in the timber as it dried.
    Landscape grade sleepers will do that. They tended to be from too far out on the log and weren't as dimensionally stable. I had the relative luxury of a mill close by so the shrinkage and cupping has been less of an issue because I was able to get fresh sawn 2nd grade timber and sometimes 1st grade for the 2nd grade price. Our experience has been that it is better to fix the red gum down hard when juicy (after buzzing smooth and oiling) to prevent the warpage - order of magnitude easier to work with too in terms of cutting drilling and planing (despite the weight).

    That still won't help the OP.
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    Put them on their edge, use threaded rod spaced at 800mm through the lot with stainless steel tube as spacer and bolt at ends.
    Cost is greater but looks good.

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    Quote Originally Posted by cherub65 View Post
    Put them on their edge, use threaded rod spaced at 800mm through the lot with stainless steel tube as spacer and bolt at ends.
    Cost is greater but looks good.
    Wow! I can see that deck now. Awesome!

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    Quote Originally Posted by cherub65 View Post
    Put them on their edge, use threaded rod spaced at 800mm through the lot with stainless steel tube as spacer and bolt at ends.
    Cost is greater but looks good.
    Holy cow! That'd probably work and look brilliant but the cost would indeed be spectacular.
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    Thanks for the replies they gave me some good ideas, first idea is going down to the mill just down the road and asking what it will cost to cut 200x100mmx2.4m hardwood sleepers, these will still give the look i am after and bounce should be minimal, i can live with a small amount of bounce.

  12. #12
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    just wack another bearer through the middle other wise you are wasting your money, 2100mm is to big to span even the 100mm thick timber will twist bow

  13. #13
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    Lots of talks with the mill, i am going with 100x50mm joists at 1m centres with 3 outer joists at 200mm centres and running the 2 outer sleepers in a herringbone pattern with the centre sleepers running parallel to the house. drew a sketch it should look good a bit more work than first design but will look way better. yes i will have to have joins in the 4m length but i will stagger them to make it look better.

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