by Scott Gibson
If you're looking for an easy way to enliven an Azek or Trex deck, consider adding a ready-made inlay from Just Decks.
Just Decks is a Whiting, N.J., company that has been installing custom decks for 26 years. Its venture into the inlay business began when the owner installed an 8-foot-wide compass rose in his own deck. He started making a smaller, ready-to-install version after customers saw photos of it on his website and contacted him to ask about availability.
In addition to the compass rose shown here, the company makes an inlay of a pair of dolphins. The patterns come as completely assembled units ready for installation.
The designs are available in three different shapes: a 33-inch square, a 33-inch octagon, and a 36-inch circle. The round version comes with an MDF template for routing a matching circular recess in the deck.
The company recommends the inlays be installed over solid blocking between joists, and supplies a dozen Cortex fasteners and plugs for installation.
Turnaround time is about one week. The patterns are $300 each; a contractor discount is available.
Scott Gibson is a writer in East Waterboro, Maine.
Just Decks, 732/240-4872
Turn wasted space into something useful
The space beneath many decks is a sort of black hole where old bicycles, garden hoses, and Fido's lost tennis ball eventually come to rest. One way to convert at least part of that area into useful storage is with Azek Building Products' new In-Deck Storage Kit.
Unlike storage boxes built on top of the deck, this one is designed to fit between deck joists on standard 16-inch centers. The lid is capped with the same boards used elsewhere on the deck, and when closed, it is flush with the deck surface and can support as much as 500 pounds.
The plastic storage bin provides more than 17 cubic feet of storage and is designed to prevent water infiltration so items like cushions for outdoor furniture can be stored safely in inclement weather. Spring-loaded supports keep the lid from slamming shut.
Azek introduced the storage kit at this year's International Builders' Show; one idea that cropped up there was to offer drain plugs in the bin so it could also be used as a cooler.
The kit includes a 6-foot-long box, brackets, and hardware. It retails for between $1,000 and $1,200 and is available nationally. - S.G.
Azek Building Products 877/275-2935
One deck board, two colors
Plastics manufacturer Inteplast is now offering synthetic decking with a different color on each face. Cevn decking is part of the company's line of PVC building products, which also includes the Tuf board brand of trim, molding, and railing.
The decking has a core of cellular PVC and is wrapped in capstock that resists fading, stains, and scratching more effectively than wood and many synthetics, according to the manufacturer.
Inteplast says the decking has advantages for both deck builders and retailers. Builders have two possible colors in the same deck board, giving them greater flexibility and creative potential. Retailers can display two colors in half the shelf space of conventional decking.
Other advantages cited by the company include high fire resistance, low maintenance requirements, and the ability to recycle the material into new decking or other PVC products at the end of its service life.
Cevn is currently distributed by Pennsylvania-based Wolf to dealers in 19 eastern states, and the company hopes to move into additional markets. Dual-colored decking is 1 inch thick and 5 1„2 inches wide and is available in 12-foot, 16-foot, and 20-foot lengths. Color combinations include Weathered Wood/Rustic Walnut, Fireside/Canyon Brown, and Driftwood/Summer Sand. Single-colored fascia and single-colored deck boards for stairs and special applications also are available.
The manufacturer did not announce pricing. - S.G.