Solid timber tables and outdoor garden furniture

TK Tables make outdoor furniture from a range of timber types and multiple finishes, including ironbark, red gum, merbau, hardwoods, treated pine and cypress pine.

The choice of material and how you have it finished can totally change the look of the furniture, but its often a balance of where the furniture is paced as well as the desired finish.

Treated pine is one of the most commonly used outdoor timbers in Australia. It has been relied on for generations to provide dependable protection against termites and decay which ultimately will extend the life of your furniture.

A common question often asked is Will my timber shrink ?

Raw Treated Pine Timber
 Long straight grain with knots and a soft timber. Now used extensively outdoors simply because it weathers well. It is a soft timber. The same look as many of the new treated pine fences. If untreated it will weather into a greyish colour. Great for a bench seat or table. Treated pine is relatively stable and will not shrink as much as other timbers. It has already been air dried or kiln dried. The surface and edges are far more complete than new red gum sleepers.
treated pine timber sleepers
Dressed Treated pine timber will provide a smooth finish and expose and highlight the grain. If left untreated it will weather greyish and minor surface cracks become more obvious. Used for picnic tables the smooth finish of dressed treated pine timber
The simple difference between Dressed and Reeded treated pine. the smooth finish of dressed treated pine timber
Because of the light colour nature of the timber, pine and hardwood can be vanished with tints to get a colour tone that best suits the surroundings. Alternatively outdoor furniture can be give a couple of coats of polyurethane to harden the surface and give is a low maintenance shine. Oiled furniture needs re-oiling regularly (6mthly) whereas polyurethane can last for years. the variety of colours that timber can be stained
A dressed Treated Pine timber finish that has been clear lacquered to preserve the natural colours. Used on timber tables and timber furniture that needs a smooth finish. a glossy timber finish
Recycled railway sleepers have been in the ground for a long time and provide a beautiful rustic look. The timber itself is in perfect condition but the surface has weathered. They will have multiple holes where spikes were withdrawn and minor impressions of the steel tacks and underlying rocks. There is likely to be cracks, splinters (which we remove obviously) and some surface decay. We only use 'A' grade railway sleepers for our furniture as these still have many more good decades left in them if they are above the soil line. Timber used for some furniture is made from A grade red gum railway sleepers
New red gum timber is primarily used for making railway sleepers and garden retainer walls. It can be used to make outdoor rustic tables and will normally have some imperfections, notches, grub or sap holes etc.. part of the sleeper may have the sharp edge missing. The sleepers are not as rustic as used railway sleepers as they have no weathered as yet. These sleepers will shrink over time as they loose their moisture content. The surfaces are rough sawn and will weather into a grey but will retain its strength for decades. The grain is twisted and the timber is extremely heavy. Used for bench seats and tables. A 200mm wide new red gum sleeper can easily shrink by 10mm or more over time. A stong and colourful timber used in furniture and retaining walls
Dressed red gum timber starts to expose the beautiful underlying grain and patterns within the timber. Dressed red gum is obviously smooth and the redness is more pronounced. Used for timber furniture that will eventually be oiled. There is a big difference between new and aged red gum timber. Aged red gum has already shrunk to its final sizes and has a low moisture content. It can be dressed and will stay smooth. New red gum timber has high moisture content and whilst it can be dressed to a smooth finish, it will continue to dry out and loose some of its smoothness as it shrinks and stabilises. The grain exposed in dressed red gum timber
Polished or oiled red gum timber speaks for itself. The furniture comes alive with colour and beauty. A timber table, picnic table or bench when dressed and oiled looks a million dollars. It is also smooth so it is easy to wipe spills. a red glossy finish when red gum timber is oiled
Ironbark and Greygum are extremely silimar and comes in Red and Grey and is so dense that it doesn't even float. No wonder it is a tough as nails and its very resilient to weathering. The material is very hard to work, limiting some applications requiring fine detailing. The heartwood is highly durable (Class 1), allowing for wide range of external applications.
 Applications include heavy engineering, marine structures, poles, sleepers, framework, flooring and decking. Its appearance is similar to redgum but id does not have the large vein holes and imperfections of redgum. We use it extensively for outdoor tables.
ironbark sleepers
Tassie Oak or Victorian Ash are a common furniture timber that has a very light colour to it and lends itself to staining almost any colour. It should always be oiled to get that gloss and grain to come out. A perfect candidate for sheltered areas. Smooth dressed and oiled hardwood timber
Merbau often seen and used for decking is a tough red timber that also lasts well and has long straight grain. When oiled it has a darker red finish than standard red gum. Its a great hard wearing furniture timber used for tables. It is difficult to sometimes get larger sections. smooth dressed and oiled merbua timber

Our Definitions :

Raw timber may have sharp edges and splinters.

Sanded timber will have the rough spots and splinters removed, however it is not a smooth finish. This is the minimal quality that we use in our furniture.

Dressed timber has been machined and has a smooth finish ready for staining or varnishing.
Recycled 'A' grade railway sleepers are partially dressed but still retain some of the round characteristics as indentations may go beyond the dressing process )eg spike holes or deeper impacts.

With such a range of diversity in finishes it is really up to you to decide what will best suit your needs.

As a guide as you go down this list, the price of the material increases and so does the table bench or furniture item that is made from it. However, remember that this furniture will be around for a long long time so the investment is worthwhile.

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