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Old 08-08-2016, 05:58 PM   #1
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Sealing Teak?

I have been around boats since I was a young kid, but I have never had teak decks until we purchased our current boat two years ago. The teak is in the cockpit, and the swim step area so we have about 250 sq. ft.

We are currently stripping, and applying stain every six months and it is a P ITA .

I have read about sealers for teak,but it appears to be geared towards furniture. So my question, is there a way to seal teak for several years and yet still retain A nice looking deck, and some friction for the walking surface with wet feet? IE, not slippery like a varnish?
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Old 08-08-2016, 06:03 PM   #2
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"Nothing at all" is best. Anything else compromises the performance and vastly increases maintenance purely for the sake of cosmetics. If that is what is ultimately the one and only objective, Semco is the best stuff I've seen and users seem happy with it.
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Old 08-08-2016, 06:16 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by caltexflanc View Post
"Nothing at all" is best. Anything else compromises the performance and vastly increases maintenance purely for the sake of cosmetics. If that is what is ultimately the one and only objective, Semco is the best stuff I've seen and users seem happy with it.
+1 ^
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Old 08-08-2016, 06:29 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by caltexflanc View Post
"Nothing at all" is best. Anything else compromises the performance and vastly increases maintenance purely for the sake of cosmetics. If that is what is ultimately the one and only objective, Semco is the best stuff I've seen and users seem happy with it.

^ This!

One of the great things about teak decks is they turn a lovely natural light gray color. All one has to do is give it an occasional light cross-grain scrubbing with a soft brush with salt water and perhaps a bit of Dawn soap.

Folks make a mountain out of a molehill .

Should one prefer a golden/honey color rather than light gray then try Semco or some other "preservative". However, be prepared for a reduced lifespan, constant maintenance, and problems (leaking into sub-deck, etc.) down the road. Enjoy Gray!!!
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Old 08-08-2016, 07:03 PM   #5
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I am using the Semco, Natural color.


It is my understanding that providing oil periodically keeps the teak happy, and helps retain the natural oils within the wood. False?
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Old 08-08-2016, 07:04 PM   #6
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[QUOTE=Giggitoni;467701]^ This!
Folks make a mountain out of a molehill .
QUOTE]

Nope, just a simple question what others are doing.
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Old 08-08-2016, 07:10 PM   #7
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I`m in the "nothing/as little as possible" camp. Every time you work it more wood disappears, my decks redo with glued not screwed fresh teak cost a heap.
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Old 08-08-2016, 07:17 PM   #8
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[QUOTE=Fletcher500;467714]
Quote:
Originally Posted by Giggitoni View Post
^ This!
Folks make a mountain out of a molehill .
QUOTE]

Nope, just a simple question what others are doing.
No offense intended. In fact, I thought about leaving that sentence out!

Teak decks that are left natural gray but kept clean last a long time...Forty plus years are common.
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Old 08-08-2016, 07:31 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by Fletcher500 View Post
I am using the Semco, Natural color.


It is my understanding that providing oil periodically keeps the teak happy, and helps retain the natural oils within the wood. False?
False. And anyway, how do you measure the happiness of a piece of wood?
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Old 08-08-2016, 07:48 PM   #10
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I'm liking that SEMCO sealer...

When I sanded the deck I made the first cut with 60-grit - then went back across for finish sanding with a 120-grit - then applied the semco... something of a mistake... the surface in the areas with efficient 120-grit sanding are pretty slick.

On the fly bridge I knew better so did not finish sand with the 120-grit... no slippery problem with semco on 60-grit sanded teak.

For the cap rail I did finish sand...

Beautiful.
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Old 08-08-2016, 08:11 PM   #11
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Thanks for the feedback.


The Admiral likes the color, and I also prefer the Semco Natural, so I will continue to stain it annually.


However, instead of twice a year, I will go to once, and just keep the teak clean... and happy.


White fiberglass is easy, but the teak flooring underfoot is a nice feeling. + and - .
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Old 08-08-2016, 08:30 PM   #12
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I don't care for the gray look at all as to me it just looks like neglect. I know all the stuff about teak, worked with it for years, but I think it looks better with something on it to bring out its beauty. And I would have to disagree that leaving teak with nothing on it is better for sub deck leakage than having some oil on it. That makes no sense.
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Old 08-08-2016, 08:31 PM   #13
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I've never had a teak deck and view it as sort of a yachtie thing.

But I've had teak cap rails for over 10 years and usually varnish them. But in Alaska I used a soft (relatively) high oil varnish some of the time. But mostly I used Linseed oil and Turpentine in various percentages depending on the conditions at the time and how many coats I had already down. Typically more Linseed oil on final coats and more turpentine when getting started. Raw Linseed oil for first several coats and boiled thereafter and if drier is desired add some "Japan Drier".

This system gives a rich warm color like varnish but no gloss or build. No build in the amounts I've used. Typically I've recoated every 5 or 6 weeks (several coats - rather sloppy) actually more like two coats for recoat. The surface is a bit tacky especially just after applications but I have always been able to sit in the rail and then after standing up finding no traces of oil on my pants .. completely dry. But if you use enough oil it may be user unfriendly in this way.

Most here on the forum use CPES (or something like that) to "seal" teak. I think it's an epoxy. I think there are disadvantages but I can't remember what they are. But if you want to change your mind you can't remove cured penetrating epoxy w/o removing the wood down to the limit of penetration.
The book "Brightwork" by Rebeca Whitman is considered the bible of brightwork and they do mention epoxy but I can't remember if it's penetrating or over coating.
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Old 08-08-2016, 09:13 PM   #14
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On the front decks I use SeaFin sealer sold at most marine stores. The back deck which is canvss enclosed has floor gym varnish. The exterior teak has peditt marine varnish. For weathered wear areas epoxy is applied first, followed with at least 3 coats of varnish. Varnish uv protects the epoxy.
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Old 08-08-2016, 10:46 PM   #15
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Phil Fill,
Do you use a penetrating (CPES or whatever) or a regular top coat epoxy?
Do you ever put more epoxy on and then follow w more varnish?
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Old 08-09-2016, 05:40 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 78puget-trawler View Post
I don't care for the gray look at all as to me it just looks like neglect. I know all the stuff about teak, worked with it for years, but I think it looks better with something on it to bring out its beauty. And I would have to disagree that leaving teak with nothing on it is better for sub deck leakage than having some oil on it. That makes no sense.
You really think oil waterproofs the calking and bungs and planks? I don't see how either approach affects leakage myself. You place a high value on cosmetics, so the only "neglect" involved is neglecting cosmetics. To me, engaging in activities that lower the non-skid functionality and/or require removing layers of wood via sanding and chemical cleaners, is "neglect".

I think a good "tell" on functionality is serious high end sport fishing boats, the majority of which have unsealed/finished cockpit decks with oiled or sealed combings and varnished trim. Those decks get bloody and if anyone had an excuse and the money to seal them, it would be those guys. Exhibit B would be Navy boats.
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Old 08-09-2016, 07:53 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fletcher500 View Post
I am using the Semco, Natural color.


It is my understanding that providing oil periodically keeps the teak happy, and helps retain the natural oils within the wood. False?
I don't think Semco counts as "oil".
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Old 08-09-2016, 08:45 AM   #18
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From Chris Craft...


New 2016 Runabouts, Sport Boats, Cruisers and Sport Yachts.
Teak Care

To keep the teak on your boat in tip-top condition, we would recommend the following:
- Rinse your teak decks regularly with fresh water or mild cleaners to remove stains and pollutants. Spills from suntan lotions, motor oils or oily foods should be wiped off as much as possible with a clean rag or paper towel.
- When cleaning teak decks, scrub across the grain with a soft plastic bristle brush. Scrubbing with the grain, particularly with a stiff bristled brush, will take the softwood out of the teak plants, making them ridged, and shorten the life of the deck.

- Teak contains natural oils that prevent it from rotting, even when left unfinished and exposed to the weather. These natural oils
and regular cleanings will preserve your decks far into the future. There is no need to add coats of teak sealers or oils, other than for the cosmetic appearance.

- Tip: If you wish to maintain this appearance, use a teak sealer rather than oil. Oils darken the wood, making it hotter and more slippery, negating teak's natural non-slip surface.

Even the Navy seems to have lost its way with teak....

https://blog.usni.org/2010/01/27/see...-of-teak-decks
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Old 08-09-2016, 09:20 AM   #19
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Caltex wrote;
"You really think oil waterproofs the calking and bungs and planks? I don't see how either approach affects leakage myself. You place a high value on cosmetics, so the only "neglect" involved is neglecting cosmetics. To me, engaging in activities that lower the non-skid functionality and/or require removing layers of wood via sanding and chemical cleaners, is "neglect". "

The OP talked only about sealing teak, not about sealing decks. Oil applied to a teak deck is simply a "dressing" to make it look nice and to protect the wood from salt, spilled beer, fuel ect. Oil will not seal bungs or seams .. even caulked seams. One needs to put sealer under bungs and caulking/sealer in seams.

I read some in the book "Brightwork". The author Rebecca says don't use oil. The solvents in oil break down many caulkings and most oils are fungus food. Can cause blackening of the wood in damp weather.
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Old 08-09-2016, 09:50 AM   #20
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For bright work and teak decking
Get a shed
Keeping the sunlight off your boat is a big factor.


I have tried sealer and I found them slippery when wet and on places like swim grids it will only last a year before flaking and peeling
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