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Outdoor Tiki Bar help
Grand Member (first year)  

Joined: May 13, 2005
Posts: 5
From: baton rouge
Posted: 2009-11-28 1:19 pm   Permalink

I'm building a tiki bar in my car port (it's actually a "boat port" Iím told) and need some design opinions. I looked into all sorts of building materials and I think I have decided on tongue and groove cedar planks for the bar top. It's very humid here in Louisiana, and I was worried about the sides and bottom of whatever material I used for the top. Plus, the cedar is readily available and doesnít cost all that much. I'm hoping the planks add a little nautical feel too. My problem is I don't know how to finish the edges. I'm going to use polyurethane finish to give the top a little depth and fill in the beveled edges between the planks. I just donít know what to put on the edges. My initial thought was obviously bamboo, but Iím not sure how weather resistant it is and how to notch it to get it around the planks before I started pouring the poly in. FYI the boat port has a back wall and the side walls come out about 4' from the back wall. The rest is open. The back is where I'm putting the bar. Any help would be appreciated!

[ This Message was edited by: dash 2009-11-28 15:45 ]

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Chip and Andy
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jul 13, 2004
Posts: 2277
From: Corner table, Molokai Lounge, Mai-Kai.
Posted: 2009-11-28 1:29 pm   Permalink

Pics or drawings would help, many of us drink and therefore have a hard time keeping decent spatial relations in focus....

How 'deep' do you plan on pouring the bar top stuff? That may drive you to a solution..

Bamboo is way more weather resistant that you think it is. What ever finish is on the bamboo, maybe not so much.

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Grand Member (first year)  

Joined: May 13, 2005
Posts: 5
From: baton rouge
Posted: 2009-11-28 3:41 pm   Permalink

this is my "boat port".

I dont have a boat, and I've always wanted a tiki bar... so it's being "re-purposed". XD
as you can see it's only semi protected from the elements. the bar is going against this back wall

it's going to be 42" high at the top, and about 18' wide. I just started framing it in, but stopped to figure out the bar top finished edge question. I'm going to pour the poly about 1/4 to 1/3 in deep... but I'm open to suggestions. Deeper is fine if need be.

[ This Message was edited by: dash 2009-11-28 15:43 ]

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Trader Bob
Tiki Centralite

Joined: Nov 29, 2009
Posts: 75
From: Gold Coast, tropical paradise
Posted: 2009-12-04 2:30 pm   Permalink

Hi Dash
Good to see someone else doing a Tiki bar I decided to build one in the lower rooms of my house. There is not much research material in Australia for this stuff and I have had to search the internet for ideas. It will be a very slow process for me cause I work 6-7 days a week and this leaves me not a lot of time.
Some of the things I have thought about are

You need to plan what appliances you intend on using in your bar area and set out the electrical sockets/power points and wiring for light fittings ect before you can start fitting out the framework, this also includes plumbing work if you are making a wet bar, I am using bamboo ply to line the walls and ceiling, so I have to run all the wiring and piping for water behind it. I sat in the area and tried to visualise where everything was going it took me weeks to decide on the final layout.

My Bar
My bar top is 18 inches wide and I was going to have the standard 42 inch bar height. Because I don't have much room in the bar area and the lower counter is only 20 inches wide, if I leave the lower counter at the standard 36 inch height, this only gives me about five inches of splash back height and not much work space on the lower counter free from the top counter. so I am going to drop the lower counter to 33 inches, and I will go 1 inch higher on the top counter (43"), this will give me around 9 inches of clearance between the two. I will have 5 inches of overhang on the top counter at the front, just enough to allow leg space so you can sit close to the bar, I think the norm for and bars and breakfast bars is 8 inches of overhang. The bar is 9 feet long. I made the top out of two 9"x1.1/4" inch pieces of Australian hardwood I glued and doweled them in the middle.
Good luck with your bar and keep posting pictures of your progress.
Trader Bob

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