Veranda PVC from Home Depot for core material

Discussion in 'Materials' started by BrettinVA, Nov 4, 2017.

  1. BrettinVA
    Joined: Nov 2016
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    BrettinVA Junior Member

    Hello everyone. I've seen a couple people mention using the PVC lumber alternative called Veranda which is available from Home Depot. I know that epoxy doesn't bond well to PVC unless the material is prepped - I've read a couple articles about that - one good one from Epoxyworks.com. My question is has anyone actually used it and were the results acceptable?

    I bought a couple of the 1x2s and they shape easily on my router and bend nice once you put some relief cuts in them but I haven't glassed them to anything to test yet.
     
  2. gonzo
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    gonzo Senior Member

    What do you plan on doing? I have successfully glued non-structural parts to PVC. Also, I've used PVC on cockpit drains that were epoxy/fiberglassed to the hull. However, both ends of the pipe are inside a hole, so the stresses on the glue joint are very small.
     
  3. fallguy
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    fallguy Senior Member

    I used pvc pipe to build a pair of outriggers for my canoe. I prepped the pvc by rough sanding it, and then the entire pipe was bedded into 403 and epoxy. Like gonzos job, the stress on the glue joint is balanced and the stress is actually very little to be honest.

    The thing I'd be careful about is how Veranda would work with other core materials, like whether it would have a different thermal expansion coefficient. So, for example, you use it for a board outside that sits ontop of some better marine core. But then the sun hits the combined parts and one moves differently. (CTE)

    Also, not sure the weight or anything technical as I can't find a TDS. Personally, I'd avoid.
     
  4. ondarvr
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    ondarvr Senior Member

    I didn't look into the details on that exact product, but polyesters typically bond very well to PVC with a little prep work. You'll need to check the results with epoxy you plan to use.

    The issue with deck boards is they're normally heavy and pricy, and don't add strength, plus these have a contoured bottom that would be difficult to work with, so they wouldn't make a good core. You can use the PVC trim boards which are normally lighter and cheaper, and will work better.
     
    Last edited: Nov 4, 2017
  5. Mr Efficiency
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    Mr Efficiency Senior Member

    I wasn't aware those "plastic" wood substitute products were actually PVC, but you can easily test the bond of your epoxy with a sample piece.
     
  6. ondarvr
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    ondarvr Senior Member

    Not all of them are PVC, some are blends of recycled products, the bond to those can
    Be iffy.
     
  7. BrettinVA
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    BrettinVA Junior Member

    At this point I'm thinking of using some of the 1x2s on a dock box I'm rebuilding just to see how they work. I think the material in sheets may make a decent core for some panels but may be too flexible for anything like a deck. I used corecell on my last project and am always checking out new options even though I've always been a fan of working with wood.
     
  8. Steve W
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    Steve W Senior Member

    I'm not sure about the fake wood deck boards but there is a cellular PVC sheet material made by Vycom called Celtec which we use quite a bit of. It comes in 4x8 sheets in all the usual thicknesses and bonds well and is about 35lb/ft3 so reasonably light. By cellular I mean it is foamed with a solid skin. You can buy PVC plumbing pipe in solid or cellular pvc and it looks the same. A lot of the foam cores we use such as Airex and Divinycell are also PVC . I only fairly recently discovered this material while working on my sons boat at Ft Pierce in Florida and they sell Celtec at Fiberglass Supply Depot and had some glassed samples and they were impressive. Oh, did I say its fairly cheap and we have our local Seeleye Plastics warehouse bring it in for us. Now I havn't explored this but I think they sell various profiles of moldings out of something like this at the big box stores which might be worth a look. It should go without saying that proper prep is required for bonding just like any smooth surface material. Btw, whenever i use pvc pipe on boats for non plumbing purposes I sand with 80 grit, wipe down with acetone then spiral wrap with 2" glass tape overlapping by an inch using epoxy or VE and when cured, sand it then bond it in.
     
  9. PAR
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    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    No, the PVC planking stuff (and extrusions) from the big box store isn't good for anything except heavy trim replacement, that don't require it to bear any weight or very much heat or even much UV exposure. Simply put it's barely able to hold it's own weight. Try this, get a 48" length of 1x2 of PVC and clamp one end in a vice. Next measure the amount of defection just from its own weight, of course from the loose end to the ground. Now clamp a 1x2 of spruce, pine or whatever you have the same length in the same vice and check the difference. Now comes to fun part, place a 5 pound weight on the loose end and again measure the distance to the floor. Swap the real wood for the PVC piece and run the same weight/defection test and see where you stand, assuming it doesn't break from this 5 pound test. Occasionally I use this stuff (PVC) to make faux ribs in glued lapstrake builds. It bends with a heat gun very easily, so shaping them in place is fun and fast. They hold fasteners poorly, but can be glued with some special prep. The heat from the sun in the afternoon will easily and quickly cause them to sag under their own weight, they expand and contract a lot with temperature changes, etc., etc., etc.
     
  10. Steve W
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    Steve W Senior Member

    NO no, I'm not suggesting that the pvc foam molding type stuff would be suitable as a substitute for wood, but with glass on each side it may work for some uses, just the same as the celtec does, but i did say i havn't explored it. The OP said he had purchased some 1x2 material so I don't think he is talking about the plastic deck boards. I'm guessing it is higher density than the H80 pvc core foam we use all the time in boat hulls which is also not stiff without the structural skins. You can't compare a core foam without skins to wood. I will have to actually take a look at the stuff, iv'e only seen it in passing but never stopped to take a close look.
     
  11. gonzo
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    gonzo Senior Member

    It's pvc trim that works well in wet locations or outside windows, etc.
     

  12. Steve W
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    Steve W Senior Member

    Yes, I gathered that. I personally don't have a use for it since we always have sheets of Celtec in stock but what I do know from using that is that at 35lb/ft3 it is best used with glass skins and I would guess this other stuff would be the same. There are a few applications where it works alone but not that many. I will pick up a piece and compare it to the Celtec, it may be of use for some folks who don't need or have access to full sheets.
     
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