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Go Back   SailNet Community > On Board > Gear & Maintenance
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  #1  
Old 04-16-2007
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Sealing Wood

I made a new floor board for my boat out of "teak and holly" plywood, and it needs to be sealed. I've read that it is a good idea to use West System as the first coat followed by some sort of urethane. But when I used West System as a hole filler in the deck, it dried to an amber color, as the instructions said that it would. Was that because I was using the filler in the epoxy, or will it dry to an amber color on my wood as well? Obviously I would like for it to dry clear so that the wood color will show through the sealing.
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Old 04-16-2007
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The color is due to the filler most likely, as West Systems and System 3 dry to a clear finish normally. However, most epoxies will yellow under UV exposure... so they do need to be protected via some sort of finish.
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Old 04-16-2007
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West will darken in the can with age, as well (the hardener).
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Old 04-16-2007
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Goldspar is excellent for T&H soles - no sealer necessary.

Goldspar Varnish
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West System epoxy has a blush, which would need to be washed off. I used Mas Epoxy the other day and it was clear as a bell.
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Use several coats of the epoxy on the bottom and edges of the flooring - this is to keep mosture out of the ply, otherwise it may delam or get staining.

Use a wood finish on the top, Ultimate Sole Welcome to Ultimate Marine Products, Inc is excellent if you dont mind the $, or something like Cetol Marine Light andClear.
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Cetol is not for use on soles . . . too soft.
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Helmsman Spar Urethane is used by many on soles.
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Old 04-16-2007
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Great idea

I like the idea of going with the West System on the bottom and sides of the piece, and then some other protection for the top part that can be seen. I'll investigate the various finishes you suggested. Thanks a lot.
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Old 04-16-2007
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I've used Minwax Helmsman on my last Sabre and on this one. In fact, I just finished it two weeks ago. It came out great and is very durable.

Maybe someone can fill me in on why people use epoxy as a first coat. The urethane is a great sealer, especially when you have greater than 3 coats on the wood (I have 5 and add a coat about every other year as scratches develop). As for delamination and staining, my attitude has always been that if I have that much water in the interior, I have bigger problems that worrying about stains! That said, The underside of my three bilge boards are epoxied to seal out the moisture. But the surface is straight urethane.
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