It’s Beginning To Look a Lot Like . . . Time To Buy Ipe Decking?

Ipe boardwalk in Ocean City

Ipe boardwalk in Ocean City

As we North Americans start seeing the white stuff fly and get ready to celebrate the winter holidays, building decks is probably the last thing on our minds. As the temperatures steadily decrease, the “wintery mix” has long since buried our memories of last summer’s BBQs. However, lumber suppliers like J. Gibson McIlvain are gearing up to purchase all the Ipe Decking materials our customers will need for the summer. Due to environmental and legal factors, we need to purchase most of the Ipe we’ll have for the entire year between January and March. As our lumber yard fills up with high-quality Ipe, we can offer the best selection and pricing to those who place their orders earlier in the year.

In order to save money on Ipe, you can strategically plan your purchasing as well as opt for short or odd-length boards. However, for those who simply cannot afford this premium species, there are many viable alternatives.

Shipment of Ipe en route to J Gibson McIlvain

Shipment of Ipe en route to J Gibson McIlvain

At the same time, Ipe is really the only hardwood decking product that has a lifespan topping 40 years. Its remarkable density and hardness contribute to its high fire rating and nickname of “Ironwood.” Its strength is matched only by its beauty, with its reddish brown coloring typical of tropical hardwoods.

The Grade A Ipe we carry at J.Gibson McIlvain Lumber is clear of defects on either 3 or4 sides. Its consistent color and clarity mean that it will resist tearout when planing and will boast cathedral grain patterns. (Of course, quartersawn Ipe does include some raised grain areas, as typical for all quartersawn boards.)

In order to provide our customers with the Grade A Ipe they seek, we take quality control seriously and work closely with only the most reputable Brazilian mills.

Stack of Ipe logs

Stack of Ipe logs

When you understand the buying seasons of Ipe, along with some basic supply-and-demand principles, you’ll be better able to understand the way pricing works. While our desire isn’t to price-gouge anyone, the earlier you place your Ipe order and the larger the order is, the better the price we’ll be able to offer you. So many factors come into play, when it comes to pricing, and the Brazilian rainy season is a huge piece of the puzzle.

Because we’ll be getting in all the Ipe we’ll be able to get for the decking season before spring hits, we’re placing our orders before the end of the year. If you’re able to plan ahead enough to place your order by early spring, you’ll save over those who purchase the same exact amount and quality of Ipe decking later in the summer, or in several different shipments. While we aren’t out to frustrate any of our customers, we simply must cover our overhead and submit to the buying seasons of this precious species.

j gibson mcilvain lumber companyJ. Gibson McIlvain Company

Since 1798, when Hugh McIlvain established a lumber business near Philadelphia, the McIlvain family has been immersed in the premium import and domestic lumber industry. With its headquarters located just outside of Baltimore, the J. Gibson McIlvain Company (www.mcilvain.com) is one of the largest U.S. importers of exotic woods.

As an active supporter of sustainable lumber practices, the J. Gibson McIlvain Company has provided fine lumber for notable projects throughout the world, including the White House, Capitol building, Supreme Court, and the Smithsonian museums. Contact a representative at J. Gibson McIlvain today by calling (800) 638-9100.

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