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Old 03-08-2014, 08:29 AM   #1
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Sealing screws in teak

We are refinishing the rub rail this week. I have removed the steel strip. When i goto reattatch it, should i use a bit of sealant or adheisive on the screws?

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Old 03-08-2014, 08:35 AM   #2
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Greetings,
Mr.T. I would highly recommend Dolphinite (sp?)
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Old 03-08-2014, 12:26 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom.B View Post
We are refinishing the rub rail this week. I have removed the steel strip. When i goto reattatch it, should i use a bit of sealant or adheisive on the screws?

Thanks-

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I would. Water can wick down the screw into the wood. You'll be protecting the screw and the wood.
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Old 03-08-2014, 12:50 PM   #4
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Hi Tom.B,

In my opinion (IMHO), sealant in a screw hole, either through teak or any other wood exposed to moisture, is not necessary. Given a proper pilot hole diameter, or given replacement of the same screw size with what was originally extracted, the metal-to-wood clearances are so tight as to simply extrude the sealant upwards past the screw head. You are then left with the issue of removing that sealant to install your plug, if your application uses plugged fasteners.

Again, IMHO, the best method of plugging such a screw fastener is to use a proper plug cutter in the parent wood, and seating the plug using ordinary spar varnish. Waterproof, easy to remove when you eventually must remove the fastener(s) for service, and not prone to damaging the plug bore upon removal. Don't be tempted to use some sealer to seat the plug, or (aaarrrrggg) epoxy or some other glue, as you or the next guy that needs to remove the plug will not be a happy camper.

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Old 03-08-2014, 01:17 PM   #5
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Peter,
After seeing your post I removed mine.

Your first paragraph may be flawed though in that wood expands and contracts so the screw may not fit the hole very well in certain weather conditions. Also a proper hole for a wood screw has three parts. The pilot hole for the threaded "screw" part, The larger hole for the smooth shank and finally the cone shaped "countersink" part. One can do this in 3 separate operations or buy a drill bit that looks a bit like a screw that does all three at once.

My Willard may be a bit unique in that all the screws on the cap rail are machine screws. When I took them out I was worried the nuts would fall off and I'd never get a new one on. Did'nt happen. They either used nuts imbedded in the FG or used the machine screws like self tapping screws or drilled a straight hole and tapped to fit the machine screw. I really don't know. All the screws came out w/o a hitch and went back in tight.
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Old 03-08-2014, 03:26 PM   #6
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I would put a dab of caulking around and into the screw holes. As you tighten, the stuff will squeeze out and contact the screw shaft.

A tiny dab to keep the mess down. I often use a toothpick or somesuch to do this since directly from the cartridge you will apply way too much. All you need is enough to close the hole entry into the wood. Squeeze a bunch of the goop onto a heavy paper towel and then take the dabs from there. It will stay sticky for more than long enough to work well.
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Old 03-09-2014, 02:41 PM   #7
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Hi Eric,

This discussion reminds me a bit like picking flyshit out of the pepper. No big deal either way, nor any "right" way, nor any need for much disagreement anywhere. And I'm not keen on debating how many angels dance on the head of THIS particular pin!

My premise in my posting was mostly based on many, many years experience with both above-water, and underwater screwed fastenings into a variety of woods in a variety of applications. In particular, I seriously doubt that there are any carvel planked wooden boats that are fastened using a sealant of any kind. And those underwater fasteners are submerged 100% of the time. Yeah, the wood gains moisture, both through the fastener holes, and through the wood grain itself. This moisture tends to swell the planking, rendering the fastener watertight.

Same principal applies in Tom's original posting-the rub rail will absorb moisture, both through the fastener hole, and through the rail itself. So what? The moisture absorbed via the fastener will NOT promote rot, nor degradation of the rail, to any perceptible (or measurable) degree. It's an inevitable fact of using wood near water. Using a bit of sealer on the screw before installation will do little, if anything, to change the physics in this application. It will simply add some hassle factor in application of, and cleaning of, the sealer.

I think there's a common misconception that wood must remain 100% watertight, firmly sealed to penetration by moisture, to have a long life. Tain't necessarily so. But again, in this application, no big deal either way.

Very respectfully yours,

Pete
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