All South Africans know CCA poles. They are commonly used to construct fences and as electricity poles. CCA poles are particularly useful within an agricultural context, and these timber poles are responsible for many signposts around the country. However, it is important to note that not all wooden poles are equal. That is because all timber poles have not been treated.
For a timber pole to be optimally functional it must be CCA-treated. CCA stands for chromated copper arsenate. This is a treatment that is applied to the dried wood under extremely high pressure. The purpose of CCA treatment is to extend the life of timber products.
It is vital that wooden pole suppliers stock treated poles. Trading in untreated poles will put you at risk because they will not last as long as their treated counterparts. Happy customers are the best advertisement for your business! It makes sense to offer customers the most long-lasting timber products available.
Different treated timber options for wooden poles suppliers
CCA is not the only timber treatment option available. Creosote poles are also sometimes used in construction. While creosote is also a timber treatment its composition is different from CCA. It is an oil-borne preservative and can be applied in several ways. Creosote can be applied using vacuum pressure, or by way of hot and cold open baths. Chromated Copper Arsenate is water-borne.
DIY creosote is also available. This is a liquid that can be painted onto timber to help preserve it. It has a strong smell and is very dark in color. Some people have adverse reactions to creosote which can irritate your eyes and skin. When applied in this manner creosote does not offer wood as much protection as it does when creosote is applied as part of the pressure treatment process.
It is important to note that there are quite a few other key differences between creosote poles and CCA poles. Let us take a closer look at some of these to help you make the right decision for your business or project.
CCA poles vs creosote poles at a glance
At Sabie Poles, we deal in CCA-treated poles exclusively. This is because we prefer its quality over that of creosote poles. When it comes to bleeding, leaching, and evaporation creosote poles score lower than the CCA-treated bulk timber for sale at our farm. We also know that customers like to be able to customize the colours of the timber they purchase from wooden pole suppliers.
Now we have established why we have chosen not to deal in creosote poles. It is time to take a closer look at various types of CCA poles you can choose from for your next construction, agricultural, or gardening project. But before we examine the various CCA-treated pole sizes we are going to learn more about the treatment process. This is important knowledge if you are buying timber to sell it on.
How is a CCA pole made?
The actual treatment process has been around for a long time. In fact, it has been in use since as early as 1933. During the pressure treatment process, a CCA solution is applied by making use of vacuum and pressure cycles before the wood is given the opportunity to dry. The arsenic and copper are used to defend the timber from the elements as well as from fungi and insects like wood borers. The chromium seals the other elements into the wood, reducing the risk of leaching.
Here is a quick overview of the process followed at Sabie Poles before our products are sent off to wooden pole suppliers:
We trust that this has armed you with all you need to know if you are interested in buying timber from us. Various well-known retailers choose to partner with us in securing the bulk timber for sale on their shelves. As we mentioned earlier there is a variety of CCA treated pole sizes available that can be used for many different applications.
Sabe Poles’ CCA treated pole sizes
Anyone interested in buying timber poles will be happy to know that they come in various sizes.
Suppliers of CCA poles can acquire the following products from us:
- 50/74mm diameter poles, lengths ranging from 1.2m to 8.4m
- 75/99mm diameter poles, lengths ranging from 1.2m to 10m
- 100/124mm diameter poles, lengths ranging from 1.2m to 15m
- 125/149mm diameter poles, lengths ranging from 1.2m to 15m
- 150/174mm diameter poles, lengths ranging from 1.2m to 15m
- 175/199mm diameter poles, lengths ranging from 1.2m to 15m
- 200/224mm diameter poles, lengths ranging from 1.2m to 15m
As you can see the variety of sizes is suitable for different applications. That is because there are so many different uses for wooden poles both within the home as well as outside. The larger poles are useful when it comes to construction. They are therefore ideal for building log homes or to use as support beams. On the other hand, the smaller poles are often used to create wooden structures like jungle gyms, to construct garden rails, or to create fencing. Most buyers will have a specific purpose in mind for their timber poles. They should therefore have an idea of the size needed.
When buying timber poles clients do not just need to be mindful of the CCA-treated pole sizes. They also have to be aware of the different hazard classes on offer. The H Class system is used internationally to ascertain just what degree of attack or “hazard” timber will be able to endure. When buying timber in South Africa you can choose between five different hazard classes.
If South African timber suppliers want to guide buyers to make the best possible purchase decisions they will need to know how the buyer wishes to use their wooden poles. Suppliers of CCA poles would do well to stock a wide variety of bulk timber for sale. This clearly applies to sizes as well as different H classes.
At Sabie Poles, we offer tanalized CCA-treated timber poles in the following hazard classes.
- H2 – Suitable for internal applications. These poles have also been given an insecticidal treatment.
- H3 – Suitable for external applications above ground. This timber can come into contact with the elements (weather), but not with the ground.
- H4 – Suitable for in-ground contact applications. This wood can withstand decay well so it can come into contact with the ground.
- H5 – Suitable for wet soils or even in-water applications. Able to withstand severe decay and can handle wet conditions.
H6 – Suitable for application in sea (salt) water. Wooden poles in this hazard class can stand up to marine decay.
We are proud to say that all our treated timber poles have SABS approval. As a Mpumalanga-based timber manufacturer who is already working with some of the top suppliers of CCA poles in South Africa, we would love to see how we can help any new suppliers or contractors. Reach out to us for more information. If you are looking to acquire bulk timber for sale we would love to hear from you.
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