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Author Topic:   Varnishing Outdoors
SeaHag posted 06-02-2003 08:23 PM ET (US)   Profile for SeaHag   Send Email to SeaHag  
I am "going for it" and varnishing all of my wood with Epifanes WoodFinish Gloss.

My concern is the gunnels. I have taken all the wood off the boat with the gunnels being the obvious exception. I can work on the other pieces inside.

The best "controlled" environment that I can get for the gunnels is a covered carport, in which I will still be subjected to the humidity / dew of South Louisiana.

Is the humidity factor (sometimes 100%) going to create a nightmare? Any creative ideas in how to facilitate this application would be appreciated

minimontauk posted 06-02-2003 08:50 PM ET (US)     Profile for minimontauk  Send Email to minimontauk     
What are the "gunnels"? Do you mean the wood side ledger/seat supports? If the weather is damp enough, the varnish may go cloudy on you. I would think the dust and pollen would be a problem also. Can you create a temporary "dustproof" structure by wrapping your carport in platic sheet or tarps? If so, you could use a home dehumidifier inside your enclosure. This would also tend to pull some of the dust out of the air. I am currently varnishing all my mahogany inside my garage with a small space heater to keep it warm and dry. I swept and vacuumed, and spray the floor with a little water before working to keep the dust down to a minimum. Good luck.
OutrageMan posted 06-02-2003 10:27 PM ET (US)     Profile for OutrageMan  Send Email to OutrageMan     
He is referring to the wood located on the top of the gunwales.


SeaHag posted 06-02-2003 11:38 PM ET (US)     Profile for SeaHag  Send Email to SeaHag     
peetmin posted 06-03-2003 03:06 AM ET (US)     Profile for peetmin  Send Email to peetmin     
Seahag- I have been involved in the same project with my 1987 22' revenge. I too chose the Epifanes and this evening applied my fourth coat. I do not have the sanitary set up that "mini" has suggested building. From time to time a bug or airborne partical has landed in the varnish and it has been no problem. I either remove and restroke the area or wait till its dried and remove.
I don't believe we have the same humidity levels out here in the Northwest that you might, so I have no comment on that. I will say this I am shocked and amazed at the results as well as very satisfied so far and I have been looking at it for the last five weeks. Every coat seems to smooth things out a little more than the last one.
I believe that I am becoming obsessed with this, please send help. Regards,pb
Montauk posted 06-03-2003 09:10 AM ET (US)     Profile for Montauk  Send Email to Montauk     
Varnish in the morning right after the dew burns off, the varnish will have enough time to dry by evening.
lhg posted 06-03-2003 07:54 PM ET (US)     Profile for lhg    
I did my teak gunwales (Outrage 25) outside, in the mornings (ten in a row!), while boat was still in shade. But the climate was 70-80 and no humidity. Direct sunlight will wrinkle up & wreck the fresh varnish.

Be sure you are using a Spar Varnish with high UV inhibitors. I use Z-Spar's Flagship brand. Directions on can should tell about humidity tolerance.

When you re-install the console teak door frames and other items, you MUST NOT use the original Whaler screws or finishing rings, as they will "punch through" your varnish, and cause it to go fast.

I pegged all of the original screw holes to get rid of the countersinking, then re-drilled a straight hole through the new peg. I then installed the frames with pan head machine screws with a washer underneath the head. Looks very nice and doesn't damage the varnish skin. When a trim ring is called for, such as the trim strips at the console base or RPS sides, a fender washer goes under the trim ring.

SeaHag posted 06-03-2003 08:53 PM ET (US)     Profile for SeaHag  Send Email to SeaHag     
Thats a great point about the washers. Fortunately the only location I have them is at the base of the console.

All other areas are secured by SS screws from the inside out. It makes a really sharp finished frame.

ratherwhalering posted 06-03-2003 08:59 PM ET (US)     Profile for ratherwhalering  Send Email to ratherwhalering     
I cannot agree with lgh more. I also plugged the old and tapped the new, over a year ago, and it still looks fresh off the brush. (peetmin it only gets better, wait until the 7-8 coat!) I also used the Z-Spar's Flagship, and regard it highly. Here's one tip that has worked out nicely. The trim strip above the louvered doors can be mounted from the inside of the door frames by tapping new holes and usind wood screws that go through the frame and bite into the trim. (don't try to tap into the new plug) Countersink the heads so the back of the frame is flush. Use wood screws from inside the console to secure the top of the frame to the console. It looks sharp.
Over the LINE posted 06-04-2003 08:35 AM ET (US)     Profile for Over the LINE  Send Email to Over the LINE     
I've done outdoors varnishing in New Orleans during the summer (slip kept boat, no choice). Just watch the weather and do it early enough in the day to let it dry before the next morning dew. Other than that, you don't have too many choices unless you can find a large garage to work in or want to move.

Good Luck

awlgrip2 posted 06-04-2003 06:45 PM ET (US)     Profile for awlgrip2  Send Email to awlgrip2     
Try using JapDry in your varnish. Follow the directions on the can, will dramatically reduce your dry time and does not affect longevity. Good Luck
SeaHag posted 06-04-2003 11:00 PM ET (US)     Profile for SeaHag  Send Email to SeaHag     
where is a source for JapDry?
Cicada posted 06-05-2003 10:21 PM ET (US)     Profile for Cicada  Send Email to Cicada     
I think JapDry is short for Japan Drier. Commonly used to speed drying time in artist oil colors. Available at art supply stores usually in small quantities. Probably also available at a good paint store.


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