Space between decking planks

Discussion in 'Builders' Talk' started by Jonesy, Sep 15, 2004.

  1. Jonesy

    Jonesy Member

    I have all the tools, all the timber, sa blooming great box of great think shank "green" 8x2.5" decking screws, a cordless drill and two spare batteries. Trouble is I have no idea what the gap should be betwene the deking planks, or why. The planks are 125mm wide and 38mm thick, grooved.

  2. Jonesy

    Jonesy Member

    ...and my spelling is atrocious!
  3. jasonb

    jasonb New Member

    5-6mm should allow for drainage and expansion / contraction without the risk of trapping stilleto heels and childrens fingers. Use a scrap of wood as a spacer, its quicker than trying to measure. Check every so often with a tape to make sure you are keeping parallel.

  4. gadget man

    gadget man Screwfix Select

    I use a 4" nail to space the boards, nail head stops it falling through!!
  5. Dewy

    Dewy New Member

    And I'd use a good weedkiller on the ground beneath then cover with a weed control membrane before covering it with gravel. The decking would provide a good insulation for the soil beneath and help with the germination of any seeds that are blown in or dropped with bird droppings.
  6. owen

    owen New Member

    As gadget man says, a big nail will give the required clearance, about 3-4mm is sufficient. Get a 4" square peice of decking board, and hammer the nail through the centre - even less chance of it falling through then! Two of these make excellent spacers, one at each end.
  7. Measure2cut1

    Measure2cut1 New Member

    The replies above are for gaps of between 3mm and 6mm. It may be worth determining the length being decked and vary the spacing to avoid cutting a board at one end. Or if a board has to be sliced, to avoid a very thin slice.
  8. wilma

    wilma New Member

    A vert good point, you can see where he gets his name from!
  9. bodget&scarpers

    bodget&scarpers New Member

    fixed my own at 6m/m and gap in some places is now 14m/m :(
    just done 1 4 client and told him a 2m/m gap,which is now 5m/m!!!!
    so tthink it b me last one :)
  10. Mr. Handyandy

    Mr. Handyandy Screwfix Select

    Did my own decking. No gap. Busted my arms trying to squeeze them all as tight together as I could(some boards were well banana'd). Glad I put no gap. Three months later, regular 6mm gap. Boards were fresh and tanalised when purchased. I expected the shrinkage. They were sold as 144mm but I measured them when new at 148-149mm.
    Handyandy - really
  11. dunc

    dunc New Member

    Fit them about 2mm apart. They will shrink and the gap will open up to 5-6 mm. And that is enough.
  12. jasonb

    jasonb New Member

    Lot depends on the wood, Tanalised is usually wet so will shiink a lot, hardwood does not tend to move very much.

  13. Jonesy

    Jonesy Member

    Thanks all.

    It's been a while since I asked for help but I'm glad I asked. Put in a gap at 3mm and now its about 5 or 7mm which is fine.

    Thanks again.

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