Hidden Deck Fastener Installation

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Ipe Clip® Installation Instructions

step 1 installing ipe clip

Step 1: Installing the First Deck Board

Apply DeckWise® JoistTape™ or a bead of exterior adhesive to each joist approximately 3/8 " in width. For adhesives, you may want to do this as you go so, that, it does not dry before completion if you have a larger area to install. While adhesive adds hold-down strength to the boards, it does not prevent wood rot. JoistTape™ prevents joist wood rot as well as seals around deck screws.Even though joists may seem even, changes in weather can cause board movement. Both JoistTape™ and/or adhesive will also help prevent squeaking from uneven joists in the future.

step 2 installing ipe clip

Step 2: Drill a 1/8" pilot Hole

Use a 1/8 " drill bit to pre-drill a pilot hole for the initial face- driven screws. Drill deep enough to penetrate the deck board and NOT the underlying joist material. (All Ipe Clip® Hidden Deck Fastener systems, 175 count and above, include a 1/8 " High Speed Drill Bit. We suggest using the 3-in-1 DeckWise® Drill & Drive™ (not included in Ipe Clip® Fastener kits), which has a 1/8 " drill bit, 3/8 " countersink bit, and screw gun T15 tip that will help speed up this process.)

step 3 installing ipe clip

Step 3: Drill a 3/8" countersink hole approximately 3/8" deep

Use a 3/8 " countersink bit to bore a hole approximately 1/4 " to 3/8 " deep (depending on your deck board thickness) for each screw to be hidden by a hardwood plug. Be sure your countersink bit is sharp and leaves a clean edge.

step 4 installing ipe clip

Step 4: Drive a deck screw through the countersunk hole

Next, securely drive a deck screw down into the countersunk hole into the joist below. (All Ipe Clip® fastener kits, 175 count and above, have extra stainless steel deck screws included in them for starter boards.) Wood plugs will next be installed into the holes to hide the deck screws and create a smooth, blemish free surface.

step 5 installing ipe clip

Step 5: Put a drop of glue in the countersunk hole

Place a dab of wood glue (Gorilla Glue® is suggested) into the countersink hole from the above steps. This will secure the wood plug from popping up in the future. Plus, it will act as a moisture barrier, sealing the countersunk hole and screw.

step 6 installing ipe clip

Step 6: Insert a wood plug into countersunk hole

Insert a 3/8 " tapered (or Extreme ribbed) Hardwood Plug and tap it down with a hammer so it fits snug into the hole. Wipe away any excess glue that may squeeze out. NOTE: We always encourage finding the wood grain in the plug and aligning it with the deck board grain. This will help ensure the plug is hidden as much as possible.

step 7 installing ipe clip

Step 7: Flush cut any plug material

Once the plug is hammered in and the glue is dry, remove any excess plug material protruding above the surface of the deck board. You can accomplish this by using a flush cut pull saw, belt sander or an orbital sander with 80 grit sand paper.

step 8 installing ipe clip

Step 8: Sand for hardwood oil finish

Sand smooth all areas where a plug was installed so that plug is flush with deck surface. A round, random orbit sander with 80-120 grit sand paper works best. When sanding is finished, we suggest using Ipe Oil® for a beautiful natural wood color on your entire deck

step 9 installing ipe clip

Step 9: cut slots for Ipe Clip® Fasteners

Use a biscuit jointer or a router (with a 5/32 " X 1/2 " slot cutting bit) to cut a slot in the edge of deck board above each joist. You will want to center this groove in the board so there is a symmetrical profile for best results using the Ipe Clip® Hidden Deck Fasteners by DeckWise® .

NOTE: pre-grooved deck boards are now available from many decking suppliers. If you are using pre-grooved decking, skip this step and proceed to step 10.

Step 1: Installing the First Deck Board

Apply DeckWise® JoistTape™ or a bead of exterior adhesive to each joist approximately 3/8 " in width. For adhesives, you may want to do this as you go so, that, it does not dry before completion if you have a larger area to install. While adhesive adds hold-down strength to the boards, it does not prevent wood rot. JoistTape™ prevents joist wood rot as well as seals around deck screws.Even though joists may seem even, changes in weather can cause board movement. Both JoistTape™ and/or adhesive will also help prevent squeaking from uneven joists in the future.

Step 2: Drill a 1/8" pilot Hole

Use a 1/8 " drill bit to pre-drill a pilot hole for the initial face- driven screws. Drill deep enough to penetrate the deck board and NOT the underlying joist material. (All Ipe Clip® Hidden Deck Fastener systems, 175 count and above, include a 1/8 " High Speed Drill Bit. We suggest using the 3-in-1 DeckWise® Drill & Drive™ (not included in Ipe Clip® Fastener kits), which has a 1/8 " drill bit, 3/8 " countersink bit, and screw gun T15 tip that will help speed up this process.)

Step 3: Drill a 3/8" countersink hole approximately 3/8" deep

Use a 3/8 " countersink bit to bore a hole approximately 1/4 " to 3/8 " deep (depending on your deck board thickness) for each screw to be hidden by a hardwood plug. Be sure your countersink bit is sharp and leaves a clean edge.

Step 4: Drive a deck screw through the countersunk hole

Next, securely drive a deck screw down into the countersunk hole into the joist below. (All Ipe Clip® fastener kits, 175 count and above, have extra stainless steel deck screws included in them for starter boards.) Wood plugs will next be installed into the holes to hide the deck screws and create a smooth, blemish free surface.

Step 5: Put a drop of glue in the countersunk hole

Place a dab of wood glue (Gorilla Glue® is suggested) into the countersink hole from the above steps. This will secure the wood plug from popping up in the future. Plus, it will act as a moisture barrier, sealing the countersunk hole and screw.

Step 6: Insert a wood plug into countersunk hole

Insert a 3/8 " tapered (or Extreme ribbed) Hardwood Plug and tap it down with a hammer so it fits snug into the hole. Wipe away any excess glue that may squeeze out. NOTE: We always encourage finding the wood grain in the plug and aligning it with the deck board grain. This will help ensure the plug is hidden as much as possible.

Step 7: Flush cut any plug material

Once the plug is hammered in and the glue is dry, remove any excess plug material protruding above the surface of the deck board. You can accomplish this by using a flush cut pull saw, belt sander or an orbital sander with 80 grit sand paper.

Step 8: Sand for hardwood oil finish

Sand smooth all areas where a plug was installed so that plug is flush with deck surface. A round, random orbit sander with 80-120 grit sand paper works best. When sanding is finished, we suggest using Ipe Oil® for a beautiful natural wood color on your entire deck

Step 9: cut slots for Ipe Clip® Fasteners

Use a biscuit jointer or a router (with a 5/32 " X 1/2 " slot cutting bit) to cut a slot in the edge of deck board above each joist. You will want to center this groove in the board so there is a symmetrical profile for best results using the Ipe Clip® Hidden Deck Fasteners by DeckWise®.

NOTE: pre-grooved deck boards are now available from many decking suppliers. If you are using pre-grooved decking, skip this step and proceed to step 10.

Tools Needed

Electric Screw Gun, Bits & Tips

Used to drill pilot holes and for installing the stainless steel screws. ( A cordless screwgun with an adjustable clutch is recommended so torque can be properly set to avoid over-tightening of screws.) Use a 1/8 " drill bit and a 3/8 " countersink bit or the 3-in-1 DeckWise® Drill & Drive™.

DeckWise® JoistTape™

Used to prevent joist wood rot as well as seals around deck screws.

Caulk Gun & Exterior Construction Adhesive

Used as a leveling agent for uneven joists.

Biscuit Jointer *

Common cabinet maker tool, available at most hardware stores & home centers) - Used to make a slot in the edge of the deck boards to allow insertion of the Ipe Clip® fasteners.

Router *

Can be used if you do not have access to a biscuit jointer, a #20 biscuit cutting router bit (also called a 5/32 " slot cutting bit) will work fine. This method is actually preferred by some installers.

* Not required for use with pre-grooved decking.

Made in the USA

Made in the USA

All DeckWise® Hidden Deck Fasteners are proudly engineered and manufactured in our US facility.

Watch Our Installation Video

Ipe Clip® Installation Instructions Con't

step 10 installing ipe clip

Step 10: Predrill a Pilot Hole (For Hardwood Decking Only)

Insert one Ipe Clip® fastener into the groove of the deck board above each joist. Where two boards meet on a single joist, only one fastener is needed. Drill a 1/8 " pilot hole at a 45° angle for each screw when installing Ipe Clip® fasteners into hardwood decking. You only need to pre-drill through the hardwood. This is to avoid splintering and to make sure the decking is pulled tight to the joist by the screw in the next step

step 11a installing ipe clip

Step 11A: Screwing Ipe Clip® Fastener (Use [11A] For Hardwood Decking Only)

Run the stainless steel screws at approximately a 45° angle through the hole in the center of the Ipe Clip® fastener, through the deck board, and down into the joist. It should not take much torque to fasten the deck board. Once the board is snug to the joist you can install the next fastener on the next joist. A screwgun with a clutch setting works great for this as you can turn the clutch down to avoid overdriving screws. Fasten each board using one fastener and one screw per joist.

END-TO-END-BOARDS: How to Install “Butt Joints” (Hardwood & COMPOSITE Deck Material)

Where two boards meet on a single joist, the preferred method is to use a sister joist parallel to the main joist. Install 2 (two) Ipe Clip® Hidden Deck Fasteners — one on each joist — where the boards meet. However, only one centered fastener can be installed at their meeting point.

step 11b installing ipe clip

Step 11B: Screwing Ipe Clip® Fastener (Use [11B] For Composite/PVC Decking Only)

Run the stainless steel screws straight down through the center of the Ipe Clip® fastener and into the joist. It should not take much torque to fasten the deck board. Once the board is snug to the joist you can install the next fastener on the next joist. A screwgun with a clutch setting works great for this as you can turn the clutch down to avoid overdriving screws. Fasten each board using one fastener and one screw per joist.

step 12 installing ipe clip

Step 12: Installing the Next Board Over the Exposed Side of the Fastener

Slide the next deck board onto the installed Ipe Clip® fastener protruding from the previous deck board. Again, if pre-grooved decking is not being used, use a biscuit jointer or a router (with a 5/32 " X 1/2 " slot cutting bit) to cut a slot into the edge of the next deck board above the joist. Keep in mind, this next board will also have Ipe Clip® hidden fasteners installed on it’s opposite edge for fastening, and so forth. NOTE: When using Ipe Clip® ExtremeKD® or Extreme4® fasteners, use the DeckWise® Deck Spacer tools provided to ensure that fastener legs are not crushed while keeping your deck boards tight. Remove spacer tools as soon as any deck board is fastened

Repeat steps 10-12 until all deck boards are installed up to the last board

step 13 installing ipe clip

Step 13: Installing the Last Deck Board

On the last deck board, fastening clips will not be used and it is necessary to fasten the outside edge with surface screws. These surface screws can be concealed by countersinking a 3/8 " hole and using the wood plugs supplied. It is also recommended to apply a small amount of construction adhesive on the outside joist for securing the last or outside edge deck boards.

Recommended Tools and Wood Oil Finish

Drill and Drive tool kit case opened

Using the DeckWise® Drill & Drive™ tool to build your deck makes predrilling, plugging, and driving screws much faster than standard drilling and driving.

Ipe Oil can exotic finish for hardwoods

Coat decking with proper deck finish after installation to reduce any wood shrinkage or movement. Ipe Oil® or similar product is recommended.

Joist Tape barrier flashing protection

DeckWise® JoistTape™ is a polyethylene waterproof wood flashing using a rubberized asphalt mastic adhesive. Easily apply to decking joists, around deck support posts and over ledger boards.

Helpfull Installtion Tips

  • Do not over tighten screws. They should be flush or slightly above the surface of the Ipe Clip® fastener.
  • If the fastener is tipping down when screw is installed, making the next board difficult to slide on, reinstall the screw to stand it more vertical. The screw should be installed at approximately a 45° to 65° angle.
  • Use an end wax on end grain cuts to help prevent checking. Ipe Seal® or similar product is recommended.
  • The Hardwood Wrench™ is a self- locking board straightening tool with 1,100 pounds of bending force and works seamlessly with Ipe Clip® Hidden Deck Fasteners to hold deck boards straight while fasteners are being installed.

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