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  #1  
Old 03-31-2006
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Teak Finishing

I just built a new electrical and electronics cabinet, magazine rack and it is faced with solid teak trim. I am at a lost as to what to use to finish it with. Should it be Cetol regular, or light. Should I use a varnish, or just a teak oil, or should I use a high gloss varathane which is currently on my bulkheads. I have been given different opinions of some friends and they have conflicting views.
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Old 03-31-2006
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I would not use cetol inside. Varnish is probably the best choice. Teak oil is easy and looks good, but requires maintenance and the wood stays oily to the touch. Varnish used on interior holds up really well. I prefer varsnish on outside too - but cetol is much less work to maintain. However, if you don't maintain your cetol, it really looks like crap. I like the varnish because it really shows the wood off. Incidentally, I should mention that I don't have a lot of teak on my boat, and I actually like sanding.
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Old 03-31-2006
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Ronbye,
I agree with Susan's interior teak finishing recommendations. However, even though your existing polyuethane is high gloss, to my taste, a high gloss finish is too reflective for interior surfaces and shows every imperfection. A high quality satin varnish, applied with a bristle brush, is the way to go for interiors.

Although I also agree that 12 coats of varnish on exterior teak provides the ultimate finish, bringing out the wood's grain with incredible depth, I would have to be a masochist to use it on my boat's forest of teak. For me Cetol Natural (Light) was the logical choice. Looks great with 3 to 4 coats initially and only one maintenance coat per year. I prefer to be a cruiser than a blue-tape jockey.

Steve
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Old 03-31-2006
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Thanks for the replies. A friend of mine who is a finshed carpenter also recommended Cetol light, on the teak for the inside. He also suggested that I sand off the varathane finish on the bulkheads and redo them with the cetol light. He also told me to stay away from using cetol on the teak floor that I have.
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Old 03-31-2006
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Perhaps I should have made myself clearer. I advise the use of satin varnish for ALL interior teak, in your case, after removing the existing finishes and sanding to bare wood. It IS the best interior finish and what we are presently considering for our Nauticat, due to it's beauty and durability. Interior finishes do not get the abuse exteriors do so require less frequent refinishing.

Cetol Light is what I used for all our exterior teak, and there's a lot of it. Cetol is semi-translucent, but much more opaque than varnish. It also has an orange hue which some people don't care for, although not as prevalent with the Light formula. I chose Cetol for it's lower maintenance & fewer initial coats requirement.

Best of luck with your project.
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Old 03-31-2006
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I always use varnish, I like the look of it better than most non-varnish types of finish, easy to apply and realy shows off the wood.
glossy is easier to keep clean, but isn't for everyone. the flat/lowgloss type can make the interior look darker, which also makes it look smaller.

Ken.
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Old 03-31-2006
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Do what you like.

I always find the teak finishing threads to be interesting because of the variety of what people like. There's no one answer for either interior or exterior. What I have used on the interior and has held up well is Minwax Quick Dry Gloss Polyurethane. It's easy to apply and tough, and the gloss happens to blend in with the original finish on the interior teak of my Pearson.

Something else I found that works really well to restore tired interior teak finishes is Minwax Wipe-On Poly in the clear gloss. I've used that on the teak fids in the galley where the finish had worn off the top edges. They look good as new now. I've also used it on the folding table in the salon with really good results.

On the exterior I like Epifanes Woodfinish, gloss. (Yes, I prefer gloss all around.) It builds up quickly and has been quite durable with just a maintenance coat every year. Plus it has that varnish look that I like so well. I've tried about everything there is for the exterior and like this one the best.
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Old 04-02-2006
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I have been refinishing the interior of The Phoenix with Tung oil and I like the outcome. Available in high or low gloss to suit your taste.
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Old 04-05-2006
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I prefer varnish for interior work ... any old oil-based varnish. I wait for it to cure then flat sand and hand rub with a mix of fine grade pumice, rotten stone and oil to produce a FINE satin finish. The 'hand rubbing' develops the irridescent glowing 'patina' of the wood ... you cant get that from 'satin'-varinish-in-a-can.
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Old 04-05-2006
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RichH,
Years ago, I knew an old furniture craftsman who refinished antiques using varnishes, burnished with pumice & linseed oils, followed by hand-rubbing with imported finishing waxes. The use of these ancient traditional wood finishing methods intrigued and impressed me. Back then, seeing how time consuming the process was, for even a small furniture piece, I never learned how to do it myself.

Faced with the upcoming task of refinishing my boat's interior teak and limited time to do it, I was looking for a simple but effective process. Stripping the pilothouse surfaces to bare wood will be necessary, the remaining 3 cabins just need a cleaning and maybe topcoating. I now wonder if this fine process is really worth all the effort, or will "satin" luster varnishes be nice enough.

This photo is of the pilothouse from a brochure of a new 33 ft Nauticat:




My boat's pilothouse interior condition last year during the survey:





I don't know what technique Nauticat Yachts used on the interior teak, but I assumed low-luster varnish would be sufficient. Would the pumice technique be a better choice for restoring my boat to the "showboat" condition in the first photo?

Steve
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Last edited by TrueBlue; 04-05-2006 at 11:07 AM.
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