Charred Timber Cladding: The Complete Guide

Charred Timber Cladding, also known as Shou sugi ban or yakisugi, is a traditional Japanese wood charring technique that allows for a rustic, burnt timber look through lightly torching the exterior of wooden planks. This creates a beautiful, burnt finish on the timber cladding which provides additional benefits other than pure aesthetics.

What are the benefits of Charred Timber Cladding?

Charred timber cladding has numerous benefits that ensure the longevity and beauty of the stunning wood variety.

Is charred timber water and fire resistant?

Charring timber creates a layer of carbon throughout the burning process, which in turn provides a higher level of water resistance compared to raw, untreated timber. This charring technique also provides a level of fire resistance, with the outer charcoal layer making the inner core harder to penetrate with heat, therefore reducing the burn rate.

Does charred timber repel rot & insects?

The charring technique is a great rot deterrent! Charring timber naturally removes some of the nutritional value found in wood that bugs, insects, and termites generally eat, making it less desirable.

Does charring wood make it stronger?

Charring wood does make the timber structurally stronger; this is because when timber is exposed to fire, the timber grains are fused tighter together resulting in more durable, stronger wood. This of course comes with the caveat of purposeful lengths of exposure, as when timber is left in fire for too long it will begin to deteriorate and produce unattractive burns and cracks.

How long will it last?

To determine how long your charred timber cladding will last, it really depends on which type of timber material you select for your next project. At Cedar Sales, we work largely with Western Red Cedar, a timber that is easy to work with and stands the test of time. Factors that will affect the lifespan of your charred timber will include where it has been installed, if it is sun-facing, weather conditions (how often it gets wet) and the quality of the installation. Western red cedar is generally a sturdy wood that requires little maintenance, but with the proper care, your charred timber cladding could last decades, potentially up to 50+ years!

Which Timber is best for charring?

Western Red Cedar is ideal for charring as it is easiest to perform the process on without the occurrence of burning or scorching. Western Red Cedar in a Knotty Grade responds best to these transformative processes that create different visually appealing effects. Western Red Cedar is also fire rated, has acoustic properties, provides thermal protection as well as unrivalled structure, performance, and sustainability.

How do you finish Charred Timber Cladding?

Even though the charred finish adds a layer of natural protection, it is still recommended that you seal your cladding with a protective oil. At Cedar Sales, all of our timber cladding materials are custom made and come pre-finished, making it easier for you to choose the ideal style for your next cladding project.

Charred Timber at Modinex

The new BeachClad range in Knotty Grade Western Red Cedar is designed to produce the effect of charred or age-weathered timber. Our new rustic, seasoned timber allows architects to specify their desired aesthetic from the outset, resulting in distinct natural charred effects. There are many applications including external cladding, coastal areas, bars, pubs, clubs, retail fit-outs, and commercial spaces.

Set your next project apart and specify BeachClad, learn more about the range or request a free sample.

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