Ipe is one of the finest natural wood decking materials on the market today.  Thompson Mahogany Company has been a leading importer of Ipe decking for 20 years.  We maintain one of the largest inventories of Ipe in the United States and have a wholesale customer base throughout the US and Canada.

Pronounced “e-pay”, Ipe is widely recognized as one of the hardest and most durable timber species in the world. Its wide color variation provides a striking appearance on decking, siding and other uses. It is naturally durable and resistant to rot and decay, making it an excellent choice for exterior applications. It not only lasts a long time, but has the beauty of an interior hardwood. Ipe is a popular natural alternative to PVC or composite products. It outlasts other popular wood decking species such as treated Pine, Cedar, Redwood and Douglas Fir.

We offer a wide selection of Ipe sizes used for decking boards, joists, treads, risers, skirting, posts and hand rails, as well as heavy timbers for boardwalks and structural applications. We also carry pre-grooved (PG) and tongue-and-groove (T&G) profiles, and offer custom millwork for special profiles or sizes. Ipe deck facing is air-dried (AD) and for outdoor use only. Thompson Mahogany also stocks all the accessories – fasteners, sealers, cleaners, and finishes  – to complete your deck.

Ipe Railing Profiles

Thompson Mahogany offers the following stock Ipe railing profiles:

Sub-Rail

Use this profile for the top and bottom runners of your railing. Screw your 2×2’s or balusters in place between these boards.

Ipe Subrail

Rail Cap – Curved Top

Use this profile for the top hand rail by fastening it from underneath through the sub-rail.

Ipe Railcap Round

Rail Cap – Flat Top

Use this profile for the top hand rail by fastening it from underneath through the sub-rail.

Ipe Railcap Flat

Hand Rail

Use this profile for small handrail or stair cases.

Ipe Handrail

Handrail Assembly
This cross-diagram and photo shows how to assemble the handrail parts.

We can custom-mill various profiles and sizes by request, please call for details and pricing.

Ipe T&G Porch Flooring

Thompson Mahogany offers 1×4 and 5/4×4 Ipe Tongue-and-Groove (T&G) Porch Flooring for exterior covered porches. Ipe T&G Porch Flooring typically runs in random odd and even lengths from 7′ to 20′.

1×4 T&G Profile
This profile measures net 11/16″ x 3″.

TMC-Ipe-1x4-TG

5/4×4 T&G Profile
This profile measures net 15/16″ x 3″.

5/4x4 T&G Porch Flooring Profile

See our T&G Porch Flooring page for more information. We can custom-mill various profiles and sizes by request, please call for details and pricing.

Ipe Siding

Thompson Mahogany offers standard shiplap siding profiles for exterior vertical spaces. Ipe Shiplap Siding typically runs in random odd and even lengths from 7′ to 20′. Our standard profile measures net 9/16″ x 4-3/8″ face. Also known as “lap and gap”, we can custom-mill various profiles and sizes by request, please call for details and pricing.

Sizes – Ipe decking typically runs in even lengths from 8′ to 20′. Depending upon the dimension, we may have odd lengths (9′, 11′, etc.) and we may also have shorter stock – “shorts” – from 2′-6′. We may also have longer pieces at 21′ or 22′. Please call or contact us to find out our current stock levels, sizes and lengths available as they vary at any given time. We also offer millwork services for special sizes or profiles.

Wholesale Minimums – Thompson Mahogany does not require minimum orders for its decking. Stocking program customers as well as non-stocking customers may buy in units or job lots through our “One Deck at a Time™” program. Please note that there is a price difference in wholesale unit orders and wholesale job lot orders. Contact us for pricing details.

Downloads:

Thompson Decking Products Linecard – Printable reference of all of our decking products

You may also be interested in:

Why Hardwood Changes Colors?

Ipe vs Composite Decking

Ipe Decking vs Cedar Decking

Wholesale Ipe Decking Stock Information

4/4

</p> <p>Nominal SizeNet SizeGradesDryingLengths
1 x 23/4" x 1-1/2"Premium, FASAD8’ - 20’ Evens
1 x 43/4" x 3-1/2"Premium, FASAD8’ - 20’ Evens
1 x 4 Pre-Grooved3/4" x 3-1/2" PGPremium, FASAD8’ - 20’ Evens
1 x 4 Tongue-and-Groove11/16" x 3" TGPremium, FASAD8’ - 20’ Evens
1 x 6 Shorts3/4" x 5-1/2" ShortsPremium, FASAD3’ - 6’ Odds/Evens
1 x 63/4" x 5-1/2"Premium, FASAD7’ - 20’ Odds/Evens
1 x 6 Extra5/6" x 5-1/2"Premium, FASAD7’ - 20’ Odds/Evens
1 x 6 Pre-Grooved3/4" x 5-1/2" PGPremium, FASAD7’ - 20’ Odds/Evens
1 x 6 Extra Pre-Grooved5/6" x 5-1/2"Premium, FASAD7’ - 20’ Odds/Evens
1 x 83/4" x 7-1/4"Premium, FASAD8’ - 20’ Evens</p> <p>

5/4

</p> <p>Nominal SizeNet SizeGradesDryingLengths
5/4 x 41" x 3-1/2"Premium, FASAD8’ - 20’ Evens
5/4 x 4 Pre-Grooved1" x 3-1/2" PGPremium, FASAD8’ - 20’ Evens
5/4 x 4 Tongue-and-Groove15/16" x 3" TGPremium, FASAD8’ - 20’ Evens
5/4 x 6 Shorts1" x 5-1/2" ShortsPremium, FASAD3’ - 6’ Odds/Evens
5/4 x 61" x 5-1/2"Premium, FASAD8’ - 20’ Evens
5/4 x 6 Pre-Grooved1" x 5-1/2" PGPremium, FASAD8’ - 20’ Evens
5/4 x 81" x 7-1/4"Premium, FASAD8’ - 20’ Evens
5/4 x 101" x 9-1/4"Premium, FASAD8’ - 20’ Evens
5/4 x 121" x 11"Premium, FASAD8’ - 20’ Evens</p> <p>

8/4

</p> <p>Nominal SizeNet SizeGradesDryingLengths
2 x 21-1/2" x 1-1/2"Premium, FASAD8’ - 20’ Evens
2 x 41-1/2" x 3-1/2"Premium, FASAD8’ - 20’ Evens
2 x 61-1/2" x 5-1/2"Premium, FASAD8’ - 20’ Evens
2 x 81-1/2" x 7-1/4"Premium, FASAD8’ - 20’ Evens
2 x 101-1/2" x 9-1/4"Premium, FASAD8’ - 20’ Evens
2 x 121-1/2" x 11"Premium, FASAD8’ - 20’ Evens</p> <p>

12/4 and 16/4

</p> <p>Nominal SizeNet SizeGradesDryingLengths
3 x 42-1/2" x 3-1/2"Premium, FASAD8’ - 20’ Evens
3 x 62-1/2" x 5-1/2"Premium, FASAD8’ - 20’ Evens
3 x 82-1/2" x 7-1/4"Premium, FASAD8’ - 20’ Evens
3 x 122-1/2" x 11"Premium, FASAD8’ - 20’ Evens
4 x 43-1/2" x 3-1/2"Premium, FASAD8’ - 20’ Evens
4 x 63-1/2" x 5-1/2"Premium, FASAD8’ - 20’ Evens
4 x 83-1/2" x 7-1/4"Premium, FASAD8’ - 20’ Evens
4 x 123-1/2" x 11"Premium, FASAD8’ - 20’ Evens</p> <p>

Timbers, Rails, and Plugs

</p> <p>Nominal SizeNet SizeGradesDryingLengths
6 x 65-1/2" x 5-1/2"Premium, FASAD8’ - 20’ Evens
8 x 8 (Rough)7-1/4" x 7-1/4"Premium, FASAD8’ - 20’ Evens
8 x 8 (Full)8" x 8"Premium, FASAD8’ - 20’ Evens
Subrail - 5/4x41" x 3-1/4"Premium, FASAD8’, 10’, 12’
Railcap - 5/4x6 Flat Top1" x 5-1/2"Premium, FASAD8’, 10’, 12’
Railcap - 2×6 Curved Top1-1/4" x 5-1/2"Premium, FASAD8’, 10’, 12’
Hand Rail - 2×4 Flat Top1-1/2" x 3-1/4"Premium, FASAD8’, 10’, 12′</p> <p>

Do you need your Ipe kiln-dried (KD)? We have the on-site kilns and experienced kilnsmen to do the job. Call us for pricing and lead times.

TMC understands that your customers want to buy everything for the project in one place if possible. That’s why we offer all the accessories in job-lot quantities so you don’t have to buy a pallet of stain just to complete an order. We keep the following accessories in stock:

Ipe Decking / Wood Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

What spans can I expect from Ipe?

Due to the strength of Ipe, you can expect the following spans:

  • 1x (net 3/4″) – up to 16″ on center
  • 5/4x (net 1″) – up to 24″ on center
  • 2x (net 1-1/2″) – up to 32″ on center
  • Diagonal patterns may require shorter joist spacing

We recommend that you check with your local building code before deciding on joist spans.

What grades of Ipe do you sell?

Thompson Mahogany Company provides “premium” all heart grade which gives a truly outstanding appearance.  Our decking boards come  “three sides clear” (one clear face and two clear edges).

Can Ipe be installed on existing SYP pressure treated framing?

Yes, although we recommend that a professional inspect the integrity of the existing framing to ensure it is stable, usable and passes your current city code requirements.  We carry the necessary component parts to frame the undercarriage of Ipe decking.

Can Ipe be painted?

It is our experience that due to the wood’s density, oily nature and alkalinity, Ipe does not accept most paints.  For more details on painting Ipe, please contact us to discuss.

How do I maintain that original dark, rich color?

Ipe will weather to a silver patina if you leave it in its natural state.  Depending upon your exterior conditions, it can noticeably turn within a few months and can be fully gray within a year.  Should you wish to keep the wood rich and dark, apply an oil-based UV inhibitor finish specifically designed for hardwoods such as Ipe.  There are numerous available brands, and we recommend Messmer’s UV Plus for Hardwood Decks.

Species Information

Ipe (Brazilian Walnut, Lapacho, Pau Lope™)

BOTANICAL NAME: Tabebuia spp.

Family:  Bignoniacae

Other Common Names: Amapa(Mexico), Cortez (Honduras, Nicaragua, Costa rica), Guayacan (Panama), Guayacan polvillo (Colombia), Flor Amarillo (Venezuela), Greenheart (Surinam), Madera Negra (Equador), Tahuari (Peru), Ipé (Brazil), Lapacho Negro (Paraguay, Argentina)

Distribution:  Throughout contentinental tropical America and some of the Lesser Antilles.  The tree grows on a variety of sites, from ridge tops to riverbanks and marsh forests.

The Tree: May grow to 140-150 feet in height wtih trunk diameters of 6 feet.  Frequently to heights of 100 feet and diameters of 2 to 3 feet.  Boles are clear to 60 feet and more, with or without buttresses.

General Characteristics: Heartwood olive brown to blackish, often with lighter or darker striping, often covered with a yellow poweder, sharply demarcated from the whitish to yellowish sapwood.  Texture is fine to medium; grain straight to very irregular; rather oily looking; without distinctive odor or taste.

Weight: Basic specific gravity (ovendry weight/green volume) .85 to .97; air-dry density ranges from 66-75 pcf.

Mechanical Properties: First and third sets of data based on the 2-in. standard; second on the 1-in. standard.

Moisture Content (%)
Bending Strength (PSI)
Modulus of Elasticity (1000 PSI)
Maximum Crushing Strength (PSI)
Green (73) 22,650 2,920 10,350
12% 25,360 3,140 13,010
12% (24) 22,500 3,010 14,000
12% (44) 28,000 3,350 N/A

Janka side hardness is 3,060 lb. for green material and 3,680 lb. at 12% moisture content. Forest Products Laboratory toughness average for green and dry material is 404 in.-lb. (5/8-in. specimen).

Drying and Shrinkage: Generally reported to air-dry rapidly with only slight checking and warping.  Kiln schedule T3-C1 is suggested for 4/4 stock.  Shrinkage green to ovendry: radial 6.6%; tangential 8.0%; volumetric 13.2%.  Movement after manufacture is rated as small.

Working Properties: Moderately difficult to work especially with hand tools; has a blunting effect on cutting edges, finishes smoothly except where grain is very roey The fine yellow dust produced in most operations may cause dermatitis in some workers.

Durability: Heartwood is very resistant to attack by decay fungi and termites; not resistant to marine borers.  T. guayacan however, is reported to have good resistance in Panama waters.

Preservation: The wood is reported to be extremely resistant to preservation treatments.

Uses: Decking, siding, railroad cross-ties, heavy construction, tool handles, turnery, industrial flooring, textile mill items, decorative veneers.