Join Date: Feb 2000
Location: Annapolis, Md
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Here is my answer based on the time when I owned wooden boats. In the 1970''s and 1980''s I owned a Folkboat and later a 1939 Stadel cutter. Based on my experience, expecially with the Stadel cutter which we kept in Sarasota, Florida I cannot discourage you strongly enough to avoid using polyester resin for the project that you are considering. That is a very short term solution that will be even shorter term if you float the deck over mold wax. The only way that that could work would be to build up enough thickness in the polyester/glass that the polyester and glass formed an indendent structure. That would probably require a layup schedule with a layer of roving, a layer of mat and a layer of cloth. That will add a lot of weight, cost and labor.
The best results that we achieved in replacing deck coverings was by sanding the substrate down to bare wood (in our case we had different species of wood to contend with which included sections that were teak, cedar, and fir plywood.) We then replaced any dubious fastenings and repaired any rot that we encountered. We then sealed the exposed surface with several coats of epoxy resin to reduce movement. After sanding the sealed wood, we came over the top with a layer of fiberglass cloth in epoxy resin. Where we had fairing to do, this was done over the cloth using reinforced (short strand fiberglass) epoxy resin. Where we had more than a glazing thickness to fair we laid either another layer of cloth or a mat like material that was made for epoxy but which I understand no longer is made. When all the fairing was completely we rolled out several layers of epoxy and then primed the decks and painted them with a high grade alkyd paint. The few areas that we did in Polyester lasted an extremely short time compared to the sections that were done in epoxy which still looked new when we sold the boat quite a few years later.