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  1. #1
    Chris_Robb's Avatar
    Chris_Robb is offline Registered User
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    Default Varnish or Woodstains

    Good article in Sailing on the new generation of Microporous wood finishes.

    I have used Varnish for 5 years now - and it is hard work, at least 3 coats a year (if you can find a dry day to do it in the UK) The article says that products like Novatech are better - much less work etc.

    I agree that they probably last better, however, when I bought my boat the teak doghouse was covered in black gunge and there was a tin of a wood stain product that had been used before. So does it go black with age?

    Finally, Do they really look as good as Varnish?

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  2. #2
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    Default Re: Varnish or Woodstains

    &gt;Do they really look as good as Varnish? No
    I found that the Microporous wood finishes lay on a bit thick and look like a paint job.
    A product I found recently @ B&Q is a garden decking stain. It finishes matt, gives a light stain and most important (to me) gives a degree of waterproofing.


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  3. #3
    Chris_Robb's Avatar
    Chris_Robb is offline Registered User
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    Default Re: Varnish or Woodstains

    I agree - first and formost - waterproofing. If there were more reliable varnishing days I wouldn't be considering a change, however..... I still like that ultra high gloss look - especially on the teak rails round the 'poop deck'. Getting a small bronze cannon to mount there as well! Black powder can make a hell of a mess - I believe!



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  4. #4
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    Default I\'ve been using....

    Sikkens on my wooden gaffer for 4 years now. I won't pretend it looks as good as really well maintained varnish, but it looks very much tidier than blackened peeling varnish. Its really easy to apply and maintain.

    I use 'pine' which is light enough to still see the grain through. Some others, like Sadolin, look almost like tea coloured paint.

    It is expensive though, but I'd give it a very high recommendation.

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  5. #5
    philip_stevens's Avatar
    philip_stevens is offline Registered User
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    Default Re: Varnish or Woodstains

    As Nigel says, No. They don't look as good a varnish.

    Although, in saying that, in previous years, I have used different makes of varnish, Burgess wood sealer, and last year, G4. G4 was a big mistake, as it requires varnish to make it UV resistant, and after a month or so, started to peel/flake off.

    So this year, I have stripped it back to bare wood, applied an extremely thinned coat of Rustins matt varnish, then a normal coat of Rustins matt. I only had time to apply two coats, but another two coats will be done in a few weeks time. The first thinned coat soaked right into the wood, and gave a good base for the normal matt varnish.

    I didn't think it would look good in matt, but it does. In fact, I have just matt varnished the garden seat. First coat was the same thinned matt, and the next two coats were the normal matt varnish.

    Last year, I stripped the coating off the floor boards, and after applying thinned matt, I put on three coats of Rustins satin finish. The floor is still as good and non-slip with the satin finish.

    <hr width=100% size=1>regards,
    Philip

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Varnish or Woodstains

    This is the hunt for the Holy Grail isn't it. Four years ago on the advice of the Surveyor I splined some serious shakes in the cabin sides and then epoxied a thick mahogany veneer over the top to create an entirely new finish. So now to do the perfect brightwork. Two coats of Blake's Woodsealer - very nice, easy to apply felt as tough as nails followed by four coats of 2 pot polyvarnish. Great for year 1 - 3 topped up with two coats of polyvarnish each year. End of last year - ugh - a nasty opaque bloom has developed in two places in quite large patches. It is like a fawn coloured paint and appears (I've yet to fully investigate) to be in one of the first layers of varnish ie 6-8 coats down depending on how much I abraded each year before recoating. There is no sign of any failure in the surface of the coating nor blackening of the timber suggesting dampness coming though from underneath. Why fail after three years? Is the rest going to go the same way? How do I repair it so it doesn't look like a charity blanket? Blakes can't tell me. Any suggestions?

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  7. #7
    philip_stevens's Avatar
    philip_stevens is offline Registered User
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    Default Re: Varnish or Woodstains

    Looks as though you will have to do as I did (post above yours) and take it back to bare wood again.

    It sounds as though water has penetrated the top layers of varnish down to and between a layer that did not bond with the previous coat.

    A sod of a job, I know. I have just done it. But try the varnish I have used, Rustins. It "appears" to be OK. The matt coating I have put on it not "yacht varnish", but the tin of gloss I have, but not used, is.

    <hr width=100% size=1>regards,
    Philip

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Varnish or Woodstains

    I know you're right but I don't really want to hear that!

    Seriously what does bug me is that because I really tried to get a good finish on this, I checked the coating meticulously each year and could see no indication of any failing of the coating. One place where it is is so easy to see that I know I checked out that part. So what's to stop it all happening again. I don't mind the hard work but I really would like to know that I've found the error and avoided repeating it. A chum I know won't have varnish or anything else and has painted all his brightwork a curious brown colour. From 30 ft it looks like varnish!


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  9. #9
    EagerV's Avatar
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    Default Re: Varnish or Woodstains

    try Sikkens Marine Cetol. Looks very good, particuraly neutral. Very easy to apply and after 3 coats has a shine so looks almost as good as varnish.
    Good luck

    Nigel
    Albin Vega "Eager Vega"

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  10. #10
    Chris_Robb's Avatar
    Chris_Robb is offline Registered User
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    Default Thanks for your comments

    I'm going to try a small area of cap rail round the stern with Novatech, and see what happens.

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