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Old 08-10-2013, 09:20 AM   #1
gar
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Question Teak & Holly floor refinishing advise

I am planning to have a built-in dining seat removed from my trawler to make more salon space for more comfortable seating. The floor is finished off the same way under the seat, but the presently exposed floor is in bad shape. Lot of scratching, some areas lighter than others from sun fading. I was thinking I would belt sand the floor, then stain and varnish. The flooring is fine under the old finish. Any thoughts on what products to use for this project would be appreciated. Thanks
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Old 08-10-2013, 09:31 AM   #2
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I am not sure that I would stain it. Teak and holly has a distinctive color and staining might mess that up. I would strip the existing finish and carefully sand it down to new wood, recognizing that the top is just a veneer. A belt sander might be overkill. An orbital sander will be less likely to sand through the veneer.

IMO any polyurethane varnish for floors that you can buy at Home Depot or Lowes will work as well as anything with a marine label on it.

David
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Old 08-10-2013, 10:17 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gar View Post
I am planning to have a built-in dining seat removed from my trawler to make more salon space for more comfortable seating. The floor is finished off the same way under the seat, but the presently exposed floor is in bad shape. Lot of scratching, some areas lighter than others from sun fading. I was thinking I would belt sand the floor, then stain and varnish. The flooring is fine under the old finish. Any thoughts on what products to use for this project would be appreciated. Thanks

Do not use a belt sander!, spend the money and get a good quality 6" orbital ( porter cable is my favorite 6" ) with a integral dust hood, connect it to a shop vac that you set outside the boat.
The finished product will be worth the cost of the sander .. and you will get to have a great tool for the future. Use extreme caution as a lot of boats use teak veneer and it's very easy to sand through leaving a really ugly spot that is there for eternity.
Thin the first coat down to get it to penetrate.
Good Luck
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Old 08-10-2013, 11:42 AM   #4
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I agree with the comments on the belt sanders. A belt sander will give you and uneven surface and you wont be satisfied with the finished product. You will end up with minor groves and gouges. Having used belt sanders in the wrong applications in the past, you will put in a lot of time and hate it when the finish shows you all your mistakes.
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Old 08-10-2013, 12:26 PM   #5
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Belt sanders can be hard to control and way to aggressive .Stick with the orbital.Don't rush the finish. A little hand sanding with 320 will take out any of the orbital scratches.I wouldn't do any staining either . The stain will find the deeper scratches from sanding and stand out. I would thin the finish . It makes it flow better.
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Old 08-10-2013, 01:01 PM   #6
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Belt Sander way too agressive.

Typically, veneered plywood, which is probably what you have, has the surface of teak and holly only about 1/28" thick. Very easy to sand through with a belt sander.
As someone mentioned earlier, use a good Random Orbit Sander. I prefer Porter Cable. I would start with 320 grit and see how much progress you are making. If not making progress, step down to 220 grit. I wouldn't go any courser than that because the existing floor has uneven wear and as others have said earlier, it is very easy to cut right through the top veneer. You will however need to sand some of the existing surface to get the color even. Teak generally sands very easily and will leave a brown dust.
I have never and will never stain teak. It may appear dull brown when sanded but will brighten up to a redish brown after applying a finish.

If at all possible, don't go any finer than 220. The 320 grit is just to see how much material has to be sanded.

When finished sanding, vacuum up the dust and then wipe clean with lacquer thinner or acetone. I prefer white cotton rags over paper towels. The paper towels dent to disintegrate and particles get caught in the grain of the teak. The lacquer thinner or acetone will remove any natural oils in the teak before applying the finish.

This sounds harder than it actually is. Just use common sense.
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Old 08-10-2013, 10:41 PM   #7
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I am a third generation floor finisher and agree 100%, don't use a belt sander! I have a full line of Porter-Cable sanders from an antique 220 volt floor sander on up and recomend the orbital highly. For previously finished sole I would start with nothing less than #150 more likely #80 or #100 but I have been doing this for over 50 years. If it is a veneered floor you may not be able to get all the scratches out before blowing through. The vac attachment will save a lot of clean up. Be sure to vacuum before finishing. Tacking as mentioned is always a good idea

Agree with everyone else, don't stain. Over time and exposure to light the sole will even out. Use any finish meant for use on floors. You don't need a marine finish. The stuff from Lowes or HD is fine.

Feel free to pm me or give a call 860-885-8382.

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Old 08-12-2013, 06:42 AM   #8
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For a finish you might chose bowling alley or gym style finishes.

These are created to be more no skid when wet .

A different issue,

A lower gloss finish on any surface will reflect light less , hopefully easing sea sickness problems underway..
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Old 08-12-2013, 07:10 AM   #9
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Not to be the voice of decent here, but I just refinished my floor this past winter and used a belt sander with a great deal of success. If you are aware of the aggressive possibility of the tool and keep it moving, it will do well. It really saved time. BUT... our floor was quite thick (not veneer) and I was able to use 60 grit. I had deep scratches too and horrible stain that needed removing. We refinished with about eight coats water-based clear. Your results may vary... Mine were by no means 100% pro looking job, but it's 100% better than it was and I am very happy with the results.
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Old 08-12-2013, 11:08 AM   #10
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I've done several boats with new teak and holly and also refinished a teak parquet floor at home. No stain, I use Minwax Polyurethane Clear Semi-Gloss.

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Old 08-12-2013, 12:48 PM   #11
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Here's a link that talks about refinishing salon floors. Take a look at post 3.

Refinishing Salon Hardwood Floors
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Old 09-23-2013, 07:00 PM   #12
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Tom, This is not related to this thread, but I read on a previous thread you related how you had your fuel tanks cleaned. Could you please provide me with the info. on who did this work? I need to have mine opened up & cleaned like you did. My email is glsweezy@gmail.com. Thanks Gary
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Old 09-23-2013, 08:45 PM   #13
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Here is the link to the thread: Skinny Dippin's Tank Cleaning: A Trip Report

Have fun ;-)
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Old 09-24-2013, 09:28 AM   #14
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Thanks, Tom. I had my fuel 'polished' by a service at my slip, but tanks were 70% full, and never opened and cleaned by hand, just a flex hose wand in the top of the tank. Now I'm at a boatyard having several things done & one is to replace a leaking access plate gasket on the top of one of the tanks. So much gunk is still on the metal parts of the fuel senders that they are recommending having the tanks drained & done the way you did. I am nearly full, so I need to run them down & get it done the right way. I will give your guy a call & try to set it up on my fall run south. Thanks again.
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