Tropical Hardwoods

In recent years, hardwood decking has become very popular. These are decking materials imported from other countries, primarily from South America.

Hardwoods have a beautiful, dark rich looking appearance, having much the same look as woods typically used for interior work. They are virtually clear of knots, very dense, and extremely resistant to rot and decay.


Tiger Deck

Own the natural beauty of strong and durable hardwood - Tigerwood Decking! Tiger Deck has a complete product line with every accessory for your deck! Their patented stainless steel fastening system virtually eliminates pre-drilling while concealing the fastener, allowing only the beauty of the wood to stand out. Tiger Deck is naturally resistant to insects and fungi and comes with a 25 year limited warranty.

Color when fresh is light orange to reddish brown and is more or less conspicuously marked with vertical blackish bands of variable spacing. There is often a variegated grain appearance which produces a very striking and beautiful mottled figure. Continuous unprotected exposure to sunlight turns the color more reddish and accentuates the black striping but eventually turns it a uniform silver-grey. The grain varies from straight to intercrossed; the texture is fine and homogenous; and the luster generally high.

Tiger Deck is very resistant to insects and fungus. No dangerous chemicals are required to protect integrity of the wood, however, an environmentally safe UV sealant such as Penofin can be used to preserve natural color and beauty of the wood.


Tiger Deck 001
Tiger Deck 002
Tiger Deck 002

Features and Benefits:

  • FSC® Rated - Meets rigorous standards for environmental, economic and social criteria.
  • Superior Strength - 1x6 Tigerwood decking can replace cedar or redwood 2x6 decking. It is almost twice as strong as pine and many times stronger than plastics or composites.
  • Superior Stability - Wood characteristics allow the boards to resist twisting, bow, cracks, and cupping with little movement from season to season.
  • Fire Resistant - NFPA Type 1
  • Natural Wood Product - Tigerwood does not contain any harmful chemicals.
  • Cost Competitive - Available at similar prices to other high quality decking materials, like the clear grades of redwood or cedar and composites
  • 25-Year Durability - Extremely long lasting natural wood lasting 2-3 longer than typical North American softwood deck products.
  • Conformance & Reliability - First hardwood to have ALS grade rule standards and to have deck boards stamped.

Tigerwood Allowable Decking Spans




40 psf

60 psf

100 psf

1 x 6




5/4 x 4




2 x 6




Spans are for horizontal decking. Diagonal decking spans will be less.

Hardwood Deck Installation Guidelines

Keep decking boards clean, dry and out of direct sunlight. Make sure that you have planned for sufficient ground-side ventilation. A minimum of 12 inches of air circulation beneath the deck is vital to its dimensional stability.

Cutting and Edge Sealing
Carbide-tipped saw blades and power tools are recommended for cutting hardwoods. After cutting, it is recommended that you seal the cut end with AnchorSeal preservative. This will further reduce the possibility of end checking.

For ultimate deck beauty, install hardwoods using a hidden fastening system, such as Tiger Claw. This concealed fastening system will reduce the need for pre-drilling while leaving your deck free from exposed fasteners. When installing decking with face screws, it may be necessary to pre-drill because of the extreme density of hardwoods.

When hardwoods are left to weather naturally over time, their color will transform to a beautiful silver gray. No further finishing is required. However, to maintain the original deep color, we recommend Penofin Penetrating Oil Finish Exotic Hardwood formula.

Hardwood Decking Expectations

Tropical hardwood decking products are among the best choices for exterior wood decking. Hardwoods are generally more durable, more resistant to scratching, easier to clean, and more beautiful than alternative products such as cedar, redwood, or treated softwood.

A tropical hardwood deck is NOT a piece of furniture. It will not hold its original color over time. It will not be perfectly stable. In an exterior environment, all types of wood will move as they take on and lose moisture. Wood will check when it dries out. It may even split, requiring the replacement of boards over time.

Graying out or silvering is typical with hardwood decking. We do not recommend this with any hardwood since they will check more if left untreated. To keep your tropical wood deck looking good, we recommend pressure washing or sanding, followed by an oil coating. A good quality oil finish will last one to two years. After that time, the decking will again begin to gray out or silver.

Cupping is also typical in hardwood decking, especially in close to ground applications, and in applications where the hardwood is applied directly to another piece of wood for use as fascia. This is sometimes called wrapping. The problem with this installation technique is that the moisture will enter the piece during wet weather and then is only allowed to dry out from the side that is exposed to the air. The board will always cup in this situation. Anytime there is a difference in moisture content from one side of the board to the other cupping can occur.

We have seen examples of 5/4x6 Ipe decking applied with a hidden fastening system with 12' of clearance under the deck (excellent ventilation), and still some minor cupping has occurred.

While hardwoods hold up well to the effects of weather, they too require regular maintenance to preserve their dark, rich appearance. And while they may have similar appearances to interior wood when new, weather will cause the wood to 'move' slightly as it ages. With proper care and maintenance, hardwood decks give a rich, elegant look, which is simply not possible with synthetic materials.

845 South Holmes Ave. St.Louis, MO 63122 (314) 966-3325 Fax: (314) 966-5301
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