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  #1  
Old 02-24-2005
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Teak Treatment in the Tropics

Acres of lovely new wood are sprouting upon Diva, and in a few weeks I''m going to have to decide what product to use to keep it lovely.
For the first time in my boat-owning life, I''m not trying to reclaim woodwork from the neglect and/or abuse of my predecessors, but have a clean slate to start with!
So, given she''ll be in the Carib for at least the next 5-7 years; and given that my time on her is going to be limited to a month here, a month there...I''d rather not spend that month sanding and varnishing. My question is: what finish will hold up best in the brutal UV, heat and salt environment she''ll be in? I think I''ve narrowed it down to a choice of two products: either Epiphanes or the new formulation of Bristol. The latter makes some enticing claims about durability, but I wonder what this (2 part) finish will be like for small repairs—ie, will I have to strip down to bare wood and start all over again on that whole piece? The price is a good 50% higher than Epiphanes as well. Has anybody used the new Bristol yet?
Thanks in advance for any wisdom shared!
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Old 02-25-2005
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Teak Treatment in the Tropics

I love teak it is a beautiful wood for sure. The stuff is a pain in the butt to keep up with nothing last very good in the tropical sun. I did my wood last spring and went cruising for three month to Florida June-Sept and the varnish three real good coats were history bare wood yellow creeping crud.I have tried Epathane and regular varnishes with little luck from ether. I am going to try some other tricks but I am haeding south again and maybe oil the teak and th hell with all that sanding just tape and wipe it on done for a couple of weeks to a month.
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Old 02-25-2005
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Teak Treatment in the Tropics

After years of yacht service and the life-sucking, thankless job of varnishing other peoples teak, I have carefully avoided using teak as much as possible on my own boat. I had several customers (two years ago) have me strip off different areas of their teak (transom of a Grand Banks Trawler, for one) properly condition and treat the bare wood, then carefully apply the required coats of the newest, best, epoxy varnishes on the market. It began to yellow, crack and peel within a year. (Naples, Florida)

I wanted to try something else and might have an answer, but haven''t been at it long enough to be sure. I was hoping to avoid the ''taping off'' thing with oil and went for a simpler, cleaner oil, and finding nothing readily available, mixed some up. I got a quart of pure paraffin (clear smokeless unscented lamp oil - any good hardware store) a quart of tung oil (home depot) and a pint of lemon oil (hardware store) and mixed them together in a gallon jug. I don''t have to tape anything off. I put it on once a week, just like Mom used to do furniture. It looks good and smells good and seems to work. We''ll see. I REALLY like how quick and easy it is. Takes about ten minutes to do the boat.
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Old 02-25-2005
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Teak Treatment in the Tropics

Forget varnishes and oils. Consider one of the modern 2-part + 2-part urethane/acrylics. They are close-enough ''visually'' to varnish and can be hand-rubbed and buffed (if you are a fanatic). My present job on a ''teakey'' is now 6 years old (with one major repair). "Honey Teak" or "Smith & Co. 5yr. Clear" are the names of some of these products. Apply three coats of base for long lasting coating. Expensive but amortized over the time they last ... are sure worth it.

Not butt ugly or butt ugly-lite like Cetol.

Oil? you GOT to be kidding... all that nice black brightwork you see on old boats --- thats an oxidized oil finish. If you must use oil, add 25% oil based varnish to it to make it last and give good coverage.

Honey Teak: www.signaturefinish.com
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Old 02-25-2005
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Teak Treatment in the Tropics

Okay, I''ve really got to look into this Signature Finish stuff. Rich, you''re the third person to recommend it to me. You say your teak job is 6 years old? In what kind of sun/heat/humidty conditions?
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Old 02-26-2005
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Teak Treatment in the Tropics

I''m located in the chesapeake. Some friends of mine, located in Fla, recommended this stuff to me- they get 5 years before major restoration. First applied, its a bit like dilute ''butter scotch'' - but quickly fades to clear amber. Im a ''former'' varnish-aholic and used to build up oil based varnish coveried with urethane varnish covered with 2part linear urethane clear .... and still couldnt get 2-3 yrs. before lifting. this stuff reallly ''sticks'' to teak. Dont use on non-teak such as Iroko, ipe, aframosa, etc.

Usually you need to laydown a single quick coat of clear for yearly maintenance, scuffing first with a scotchbrite pad. I double the coats and overcoat every two years - and lay it on thick with an airbrush ... for MORE gloss than varnish. Most apply it with a soft ''artists'' brush.
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