yes I have been to Sherwood's a time or twoallan, I bought my boxes from Rossman, all cypress, but I don't think nobody's really selling any old growth stuff that will last a lifetime nowadays.
I painted all of my boxes...except for one. It has weathered a great deal over the last couple of years, darkening with mold and mildew and the naturally aging of the wood. I can't see it lasting as long as the other boxes being as it simply has not got that extra shell of protection.
Will the trouble and expense of painting be worth it in the long run?....time will tell. Some people say it will...some say it won't. What I feel confident in saying, though, is that the white painted boxes are cooler than the darker unpainted one....I haven't made any tests or anything but the darker box should readily absorb more solar energy than the white ones. Being here in south Alabama I wanted to help keep the temperatures down in the summer as much as I could. Whatever the case, I don't regret painting them and do feel that it has added a good bit of protection from the weather to them. Btw, do you trade any down at Sherwood's?
Have you considered using ECO wood treatment? They make some pretty remarkable claims as far as it's preservation capabilities. There's been a few threads discussing it...Most opinions I've read seem to like it but there didn't seem to be a lot of long term information. I decided to give it a try and dipped some of my new boxes this year...we'll see how they do.
My boxes are pine, however, I did have someone give me a couple of store bought cypress boxes which I decided to also dip...The ECO gives most wood, including cypress, a really nice, dark, aged look.
It's SUPER SIMPLE to use, mixes up with pretty much the consistency of water, dip your boxes and done!
Here's a look at the cypress boxes i dipped.