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  #1  
Old 03-23-2003
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Interior paneling

Anyone have any experience with covering the cabin interior with luan/wood paneling? I am considering finishing 1/8-1/4" with a varnish or other finish/sealant and am curious if anyone has experience doing this.

Jason
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Old 03-24-2003
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Interior paneling

Years ago I helped a fellow who was rebuilding an old boat. The boat was gutted and he was redoing the interior. I had been into restoring wooden boats, so he asked me to help him make patterns for the new interior components of the boat. He had picked up (very cheaply) a bunch of sheets of damaged paneling and floor underlayment and we used this to make templates for the interior components. The original plan was that we would make all of the templates and mock up an interior all at one time over a period of weekends, and then he would fabricate all of the the interior components in marine plywood with mahogany trim, prefinish it and install it in time for the season. That did not happen. He ran out of time before the start if the season and so he decided to leave much of the mocked up interior in place to see how it worked.

The following fall (it might have been the fall a year and a few months later)I got a call from the guy to see if I would be willing to come down and help him make some new patterns. (He said he''d forgotten how I did it and besides could use a second set of hands.) When I got there, I was shocked to see how poorly this material had faired. Many of the panels had warped horribly, lost at least one layer of veneer, and many had begun to rot out.

I don''t know if the materials used in paneling have gotten any better (I doubt it) but this is not a material that I would ever use on a boat.

Jeff
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Old 03-24-2003
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Interior paneling

Jason,

I too have been thinking of going this route. I would like to use cheery plywood on bulkheads and solid cherry on the trim pieces.

I do know that most luan is exterior glued. Quality (and color) of luan plywood varies greatly and the core material can be of poor quality wood and rot easily.

The main concern I have heard is that the plywood glued over another surface may "move" (expand and contract) at a different rate than the surface it is glued to and cause it to pull away.

Bob
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Old 03-25-2003
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Interior paneling

Jason, 5 years ago I gutted every bit of wood from the interior of my boat, it had been left open to the elements and dammaged by diesel fuel in the bilge. Not having a fortune to replace with teak I chose to use luan from the local home center. On the exposed areas I lamenated mahogany over the luan,1/8". I sealed all edges and stained and varnished inside and out. All this wood included all bulkheads, cabinets and cabin sole(teak and holly). After 5 years(here in S. FL.) it still looks as beautiful as the day I put it in. I have recieved many compliments on the "fine woodwork" in Windancer..

Dave R.

Dave R.
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Old 03-26-2003
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Interior paneling

Jason
If you place stringers perpendicular to the fore/aft axis of the boat you can put wood strips running lengthwise to the boat. The stringers can be 3/8" or so thick and epoxied to the prepared hull. The strips are called batten strips by some people and are available in a variety of woods from a wood supplier. Even teak if you want to spend the money. These strips, being solid wood, stand-up well to weather and accept as fine a finish as you want to put on from oil, penetrating finsh, to high gloss varnish in multiple coats. Some 80''s Beneteau''s have this and it seems to last very well.
Cliff
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Old 03-26-2003
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Interior paneling

Jason
Couple things I forgot.......The strips are about 3/8" thick and many of the ones that I have seen are joined to the stringers with oval head, stainless screws that are not plugged. Of course you have to select the corrent length screws. If you have more specific questions, please ask.
Cliff
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Old 03-27-2003
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Interior paneling

The 30-year old boat I bought last fall had 3/8 inch varnished pine planking lining the interior. One plank at the top, next to the hull deck join and a non-opening porthole, was so rotten my finger went through it. I began pulling this away to the good wood, and found that it had been riveted and glued to the hull. After pulling off the rotted plank, the backside of the plank immediately below proved to be soft, punky wood.

I am thinking of using resin or Stop Rot to seal and harden the back of the second plank, and am considering gluing some strips to the hull to screw in the top plank and allow some air behind it. I think that would be ideal for all the planking, but think the scope of that job is beyond me. At least if the top plank gets wet and rots again from an undiscovered leak, it will be easier to replace.

I was very surprised to see the planks glued directly to the hull. In my previous boat, the planks were screwed into perpendicular strips attached to the hull.

Anyone else have experience with this? Recommendations?
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