Billabong Garden Furniture
Picnic Table Maintenance Instructions
No matter what coating your picnic setting has, or how long it has been in stock at our factory, it will require the bolts be tightened a few times until the timber has settled. To do this you need a 15mm socket spanner and a strong arm. Tighten them until the bolt head starts to pull into the timber. Occasionally this needs to be done immediately after delivery, especially if your furniture has travelled a long distance from our workshop.
We are often asked why we do not use kiln dried hardwood, the main reason is the cost, which is more than double. Although it would eliminate a lot of shrinkage and the need to tighten bolts, we have seen it twist and split as often as non KD hardwood. When we manufacture our picnic settings we butt the boards up tight, however, once the timber has shrunk you can expect a gap around 5-10mm between the boards. If your preference is KD hardwood please ask for an individual quote.
As soon as the wooden surface feels rough or looks dry, you should give the picnic setting another coat of Aussie Clear. The best way we have found is to use a general purpose sprayer and just spray it on thick. After an hour use a tough piece of cloth worked in a circular motion to remove any pooling on top. It is best to saturate the ends of the boards as this reduces splitting caused by the timber drying quickly. The surface should be dry enough to sit on after 24 hours. Not only is Aussie Clear Australian made, but we conducted our own tests (cut a board up into short lengths, coated them and put them on the roof of the factory) over three years and it out performed all other similar products available at the time.
All Australian native timber will twist, warp and bow to some degree. If your setting develops a twist that makes it impractical to use, please contact us. If one of the legs does not sit flat on the ground because of a twist it is best to loosten the board above he leg and put a piece of packing between them. In the majority of cases this happens because the piece is sitting on an uneven surface.
If your outdoor setting stains concrete, slate or pavers etc.
This can look very bad but is temporary. It fades very quickly in the sun and has usually completely gone within a couple of months. Once the setting has been out in a few showers of rain the tannin will have leached from the timber surface and it will no longer be a problem. If you want to avoid getting the stain in the first place, the only way is to leave the setting out in the weather until you have a few decent showers. If you sand your setting heavily it may start to leach tannin again. We have seen a 100 year old fence post that was recycled into a table leg and it still leached tannin over the concrete. Varnishes or kiln drying will not stop the staining.