View Full Version : Protecting OSB from the elements

04-18-2012, 07:55 PM
We have been using portland cement combined with a high quality glue (Exterior Wood Glue) and water for a protective covering for our OSB panels. Well we are noticing it chipping a bit and we do see some cracking. Does anyone have another suggestion for covering OSB? We have the Labyrinth of Time which is outside in the elements. This is the same method and product we use to cover our EPS foam, which does fine. Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks to all in advance.


04-18-2012, 08:37 PM
Cover your osb with spider lath first then cover with the mortar...it won't come off then.


Bradenton Haunted Trail
04-18-2012, 08:55 PM
I hate to be the barrer of bad news but OSB is about the worst product made for exterior use it hold 5 times the water as plywood. You will need to seal all edges front and back with a waterproff sealer of your choise. And you will also have to dry them out using a dehumidifier if you want to make sure all the moisture is out of the OSB. This can be done by putting a dehumidifer and your wood under a plastic tent like structure. Good luck


Allen H
04-18-2012, 10:59 PM
When I started the trail X years ago I made OSB panels. I painted them every year to match our theme (anything but black) and they held up pretty well. I think they have about 10 layers of latex paint on them now, they weigh a ton and ever since that first year I use ply. I knew the OSB was crap, but at the time it was 1/4 the price.
Paint them with a sprayer, every year if you can. Silly, but it really helps mine out.
Allen H

04-18-2012, 11:16 PM
1st try painting with a oil based paint/primer to keep the wood from swelling and the curls down.

04-19-2012, 09:55 PM
We have been building outside structures with this stuff for 6 years now, and for the most part they have been holding up greatly. no expensive fancy sealers, just coat the entire board (sides and top and bottom is important, this is where the water absorbs) with latex paint and you should be fine. We have brutal rain, and sometimes heavy snow here in VA and very hot summers. OSB is the way to go, it holds up great with simple latex paint. Just make sure your boards are built well and supported well and you shouldn't have any warping problems... and... we even use interior paint (because its cheaper) and it works just as good as any expensive paint.

If you want though, you can cover these boards in stucco (sold in 5 gallon pails just go to a stone company to get it cheap, thats what we do) we paint it first then apply stucco, then coat it again in paint if you want.. then you have cool textured walls and it protects the board (the stucco works good on eps foam also) good luck!

04-20-2012, 08:14 AM
Are there fire marshall issues with using OSB?

04-20-2012, 08:51 AM
It's outdoors, fire marshalls don't care about it if it's outdoors.

04-20-2012, 10:45 AM
Are you leaving this attraction up year around or just during the Halloween season?

Because first and foremost I have several attraction that we build out of plywood and we leave them set up year around... they last about 7 or 8 years. But when you think about all the money you'd spend taking it up and down its cheaper to simply leave them out and 8 years later rebuild everything from scratch. So... whatever works for you. We have our wood painted and treated with primer exterior paint, so that helps, but if they are going out just during the Halloween season I wouldn't worry about it. They'll last for 20 years.


04-22-2012, 09:20 PM
Yes, we leave them out year round. I found a fence and barn paint that is asphalt or tar or something like that. It smells terrible but I have noticed once it dries it repells water. It will ruin a brush or roller and as I said it stinks but it is cheap and seems to work. We bought a 55 gallons drum so I hope it works in the long run. Thank you everyone for your suggestions and help. It is greatly appreciated.


Scenic Art Productions
04-24-2012, 12:14 AM

I have some options you can do to fix this. It would be easier for you to call me. I have a few questions to ask you about the current state of the OSB panels.

Talk to you soon,
Robert Travis
Scenic Art Productions