Focus on good design and clever construction

Photos by Joe Wood.

Nestled into a steep California hillside, this private perch has a panoramic view of coastal San Diego. The deck was built by Woods Shop Creative Builders atop a monolithic footing and curved retaining wall installed by Cementrix of La Mesa, the masonry contractor that provided the landscaping. A segmented 2x8 bottom plate, fastened with wedge anchors and epoxy to the concrete, underlies 2x6 joists framed 16 inches on-center and blocked, with extra joists sistered on for the cantilever. The rim joist is laminated clear vertical-grain redwood (five layers) with a TimberTech composite fascia, and the decking is ipe. Clear vertical-grain old-growth western red cedar rail posts attach to the rim joist with 1/2-inch through-bolts; the end posts are also fastened to the framing with DeckLok brackets. To form the segmented cap rail, Joe Wood through-splined and glued sections of yellow balau. On the stair, the posts are cedar, and the handrail is laminated red balau. All the wood was sanded and, to allow it to age to a natural gray, sealed with Monochem Aqua Seal II, a clear water-based water repellent with no UV screen. — Laurie Elden