Options for finishing an oak frame

Options for finishing an oak frame

Options for finishing an oak frame

oak frame
This is Mains Bridge II at Dumfries House in Scotland

Once we have constructed your oak frame, whether it is a porch, a bridge or a whole building, we can finish the oak in several different ways. This removes any dirt and working marks that may be preset after the construction phase.

oak framed woodland cabin
This woodland cabin was built for a private client in Suffolk, with oak from their woodland.

Planed or sandblasted? Machined or hand-finished?

We always recommend leaving oak to grey naturally over the years, but this is a slow process, and in the meantime the oak will need an initial clean up to remove any machining marks.

A hand-finish will always give you more control over the finished product. However it is a more time-consuming and costly process, and depending on the project, a machined finish might be more appropriate.

A machine-planed finish gives a smooth feel to the timber and remove any bandsaw marks.

A hand planed finish will result in what’s known as an ‘axed’ or ‘adzed’ finish, a rougher, more natural finish. This is more fitting when installing a new timber into an existing historic oak frame.

A sandblasted finish is the quickest way to remove undesirable marks, however it does dull the timber down and removes sharp edges. Sandblasting is usually done when there will be no more water ingress into the building.

A hand sanded finish is more selective about what marks are removed and leaves the timber with more character.

The cleaning process is often overlooked and can be a costly and time consuming part of the build process.

Want to learn more? Have a read of our post on green oak framing.

oak frame
This oak framed ‘goal post’ structure was inserted into a historic oak truss in this listed barn conversion, which is now a stunning B&B in Cumbria.

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