You guessed it: Western Red Cedar
Due to the phenols and other natural properties of Western Red Cedar against rot and decay, it is great for use in damp areas, including bathrooms and saunas. It is also very flexible and resists warping under heat and humidity. Because it is a low-density wood, it is a great insulator and heats quickly. And, it smells great!
Because your sauna will reach high temperatures and cool off when not in use, the Cedar will expand and contract a great deal. To reduce the chance of cupping, we recommend using narrower dimensions of materials, such as a 4” tongue and groove (T&G) product for the walls for optimum stability. And while knotty grades are easier on the pocketbook, we recommend using clear grades of materials, as the knots tend to heat up faster and get hotter and may become uncomfortable to the touch.
When shopping for your materials, keep in mind, that because a sauna is generally a small space, shorter lengths of materials can be used and sometimes come with a discounted price.
Special “Thanks” for Michael S from Arizona for sharing these gorgeous photos of the Western Red Cedar sauna he built using materials he purchased from us.
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950 B Fountain Street, Burlington WA