Subscribe or Renew Membership Subscribe Renew

Repairing rot on porch beams for Arts and Crafts historic preservation

jacksonduane's picture

I'm trying to keep the integrity of the end of the beams on the porch, which really were meant for a So. Calif. 1914 design, not the Pacific NW. Is there anything else out there besides an epoxy fix, or capping with some copper, to keep these viable? I dug out some rot apprx 2 yrs ago and put the epoxy on, the photo shows how much that has degraded. I need to try and keep the proportions as close to original as possible for historic purposes, and not zing off some of the ends if I don't have to. These beams are structural to the porch roof. Thanks for any ideas!

Rainwater lands on top of the (post #211755, reply #1 of 4)

Rainwater lands on top of the beams and is absorbed into cracks in the beams and sucked into the joint between beam and fascia.  It's the water sitting there for days on end, with no way to dry out (if anything can ever dry out in the PNY) that leads to the rot.

Unfortunately, if you simply dig out the rot and fill the hole with epoxy, that introduces a waterproof, vaporproof barrier that traps the moisture in the wood.

I don't have any specific suggestions, but you need to make the beams shed water better, and you need to assure that they can dry out, without any moisture traps.  Probably copper caps would work pretty well, but you need to somehow get air under them, I suspect.

Of all the preposterous assumptions of humanity over humanity, nothing exceeds most of the criticisms made on the habits of the poor by the well-housed, well-warmed, and well-fed.  --Herman Melville

Thank you, good point about (post #211755, reply #3 of 4)

Thank you, good point about trapping the moisture!

Some sort of flashed caps are (post #211755, reply #2 of 4)

Some sort of flashed caps are going to be the only answer. Copper, aluminum or lead with copper as my first choice.

Florida Licensed Building Contractor, 50 years experience in commercial remodeling, new homes, home remodeling and repairs and all types building maintenance.

Thank you! (post #211755, reply #4 of 4)

Thank you!