I would like to know what is the best wood to use for outside projects. I would like to hand one of the monogram signs from my door but unsure of what would be the best wood to use for this project. Please help! Thank you!
Virtually any wood will be fine with an appropriate finish. Plywood tends to be a little more dimensionally stable if exposed to direct sunlight.
Cedar is one of the main go-tos for an unfinished outdoor sign (and if you have access to a planer, people are always ripping out old cedar fences which they are often happy to allow you to dispose of for them). If the sign will get wet or you live in a high-humidity region, avoid normal plywood unless you can finish it very well (Marine-grade / signboard plywood does not laser well and may have harmful compounds in the glues). Avoid buying new redwood for conservation reasons, but jump on any old redwood deck planks that someone may be replacing with Trex. Redwood does not need any kind of finish.
Thanks. SW FL definitely qualifies as humid.
Good luck! I made an outdoor, multi-layered sign from proofgrade ply for my parents, sealed, re-sealed, and then sealed again… or so I thought. I was rushed for time and missed a few edges. It didn’t last a year in their damp Nor-Cal valley location with all the coastal fog etc. Once the layers start to delam it’s over I wish I had dipped the whole thing in polyurethane. Ended up making a new one from acrylic.
I made some from 1/4" MDF - cut on a CNC router, not the laser. They’ve lasted over three years now.
Oh wow. Sorry to hear that. How has the acrylic one been holding up?
it was holding up great after 2.5 months, back in mid-february. I haven’t been able to visit since then. I figure they would mention something if there was an issue… maybe!
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