the rain screen experiment

Looks like there was a bit of dust on the lens when I took this photo.  It actually captures the varying colors of the beetle kill pine quite nicely.  The usual yellow and orange pine is dissected by a blue and gray stain. 

It seems unfair, the pine beetle gets all the credit for killing trees, when, technically it’s a fungi carried by the beetle that slowly strangle the core of tree.  The beetles prefer living trees, boring tunnels in their skin.  In fact, I’m sure the beetles don’t even know that they are the cause of the massive kill-off of trees here in the nearby Rocky Mountains.

While the additional waterproofing layers and furring strips added time to the labor on this project, the rough sawn 4/4×6″ beetle kill pine will hold up much better as a siding material used in a rainscreen application.  After generously applying two coats of a stain/sealer on all surfaces of the siding, they were spaced, leveled, and attached using 3 inch deck screws.

In theory, air circulating over all four sides of the “screen” will allow the wood to age more gracefully than conventional lapped wood siding. 

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3 responses to “the rain screen experiment

  • Josh

    How has this beetle kill wood siding held up for you? Im looking at using this on an upcoming project.

    • benchmarkstudio

      So far so good. It’s been a little over three years since we installed the beetle kill siding – the sun has bleached out much of the blue stain that you see in beetle kill, but the wood itself is in great condition. We did use a wood preservative to slow the effects of UV light, and like any wood product it requires maintenance. We’ll probably re-apply a stain/preservative at five years.

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