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Old 12-05-2022, 04:03 PM   #1
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Canvas covers for teak railings

My 47ft. Grand Banks is being varnished and I'm curious about canvas covers for the handrails etc. I'm in Anacortes. Any advice would be appreciated. Thanks Ed
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Old 12-05-2022, 05:50 PM   #2
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Most canvas shops can make them for you. You just have to remember to put them on.
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Old 12-05-2022, 06:20 PM   #3
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I am in Vancouver BC and Saltspring Island.
My boat came to me with Sunbrella covers for all of the varnish. The rail covers hang down to the bulwarks on the insides, where they are snapped on and hang well below the bulwarks on the outsides, where they have pockets for 1l water (oil, beer, whatever) jugs. Those covers are the full length of each side, snapping together at the pulpit and to the stern cover at the stern. I used them for the first 5 years while I waited to get into a shelter, but have seen scant use since then. They help a lot to reduce the damage of winter weather on the varnish. With covers, I was able to keep up with the varnish by putting on a new coat at least once a season. With a shelter I still need to do the rails (horizontal varnish that suffers most) almost every season, but sometime I can go a little longer, so I would put the effectiveness of Sunbrella covers at 50% compared to a shelter.
I also tried a Lohman custom cover for a month. I found it more work to install and to take off than the Sunbrella covers, by a huge margin. I think the full boat Sunbrella cover may be more effective than the rail covers as it doesn't touch the varnish and keeps 100% of the rain off. That was experimental to see if I could give up the shelter. In my peculiar circumstances I kept the shelter and resold the used Lohman cover.
I remain on that program.
Any kind of cover will help with the upkeep.
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Old 12-05-2022, 07:19 PM   #4
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These should be very easy to make. Buy a commercial sewing machine and you will likely pay for the machine on this one project. Sailrite has lots of how to videos.
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Old 12-05-2022, 09:42 PM   #5
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Weebles had caprail covers when I purchased in 1998. They are a PITA to put on, and a PITA to remove so I left them on all the time even when I went out, at least for day cruises. I think you have to decide whether you'd rather take them on/off, or varnish more frequently. They lasted me over 10 years in San Francisco.

For handrails, would be fairly easy to make. For caprails, a bit more difficult due to cutouts for cleats and leather chafe protection.

A side note- the snaps rattled a bit when it was windy. Annoying when trying to sleep. Might not be an issue with handrails, but sure was with my caprails.

Nothing more beautiful than a GB with fresh brightwork.

Peter
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Old 12-05-2022, 10:47 PM   #6
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We just added these rail covers to our GB42C when in Oak Harbor. An excellent job was done by R&B Canvas out of Mount Vernon and since this a company operated by the actual workers who have years of experience, they came in at a fraction of the cost. BTW: they also did a stellar job of a whole Bimini enclosure on our Californian 52 - again at a fraction of the costs of other quotes.

Contact is Moises Pacheco at rbcanvas98273@gmail.com
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Old 12-06-2022, 06:03 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mvweebles View Post
Weebles had caprail covers when I purchased in 1998. They are a PITA to put on, and a PITA to remove so I left them on all the time even when I went out, at least for day cruises. I think you have to decide whether you'd rather take them on/off, or varnish more frequently. They lasted me over 10 years in San Francisco.

For handrails, would be fairly easy to make. For caprails, a bit more difficult due to cutouts for cleats and leather chafe protection.

A side note- the snaps rattled a bit when it was windy. Annoying when trying to sleep. Might not be an issue with handrails, but sure was with my caprails.

Nothing more beautiful than a GB with fresh brightwork.

Peter
I agree with Pete. If you are going to cover them you might as well paint them. Its a treat to walk down to the dock and see the brightwork all done up. I am at the end of our dock and have people walk down specifically to compliment the bright work. Makes the time, effort, and $$$ worth it.
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Old 12-06-2022, 06:33 AM   #8
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I agree with Pete. If you are going to cover them you might as well paint them. Its a treat to walk down to the dock and see the brightwork all done up. I am at the end of our dock and have people walk down specifically to compliment the bright work. Makes the time, effort, and $$$ worth it.
In my case, I ended up painting my caprails. Two layers fiberglass then faired and sprayed with Alexseal. It added about $2k to the price of having the boat painted. My goal: unless someone drops a toothpick on deck, no exposed woodwork.

PeterClick image for larger version

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Old 12-06-2022, 06:55 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by mvweebles View Post
In my case, I ended up painting my caprails. Two layers fiberglass then faired and sprayed with Alexseal. It added about $2k to the price of having the boat painted. My goal: unless someone drops a toothpick on deck, no exposed woodwork.

PeterAttachment 134257
Sounds like a good solution. Cheaper then a half dozen coats of varnish. I bet they look nice.
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Old 12-06-2022, 08:28 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mvweebles View Post
In my case, I ended up painting my caprails. Two layers fiberglass then faired and sprayed with Alexseal. It added about $2k to the price of having the boat painted. My goal: unless someone drops a toothpick on deck, no exposed woodwork.

PeterAttachment 134257


I too love the look of nice varnished wood - as long as itís someone elseís boat. If I had such a boat again, I would glass over and paint or gel coat just as Weebles did. On our current boat I deleted all the exterior wood and itís 100% FRP and maintenance free other than normal wash and wax.
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Old 12-06-2022, 08:38 AM   #11
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I too love the look of nice varnished wood - as long as itís someone elseís boat. If I had such a boat again, I would glass over and paint or gel coat just as Weebles did. On our current boat I deleted all the exterior wood and itís 100% FRP and maintenance free other than normal wash and wax.
Around 2002, I delivered one of the last N46s built. It had glassed caprails - love at first sight for me. I really liked the look and I've lusted after it ever since. I'm very pleased with the choice for Weebles. I did a poor job of maintaining brightwork in San Francisco. Can't imagine Florida when she finally gets there.......

Peter

Edit: TT mentions paint or gelcoat. I asked the same question on the forum a while back. Steve D gave a good response about gelcoat being more porous than paint, especially when painted vs as release layer of a female mold. My takeaway was paint; hands-down.
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Old 12-06-2022, 10:32 AM   #12
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When I put the boat away for winter or a month I put covers on. Without them we are in parade form. With Awlwood doesn't matter on way or another. I cover almost all the teak.
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Old 12-06-2022, 10:36 AM   #13
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I painted mine and love the look.

About five years ago I took my hatch covers home for the winter and totally refinished them, they really looked great. I had custom vinyl covers made for them, Elastic around the bottom for easy off and easy on. Five years later they are still in place, I never once removed them. Why bother? I didn't need the light from the glass and they still opened with the covers in place. Plus I dont have to store them when underway.

I wonder what my hatch covers look like under the covers?

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Old 12-06-2022, 10:37 AM   #14
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Around 2002, I delivered one of the last N46s built. It had glassed caprails - love at first sight for me. I really liked the look and I've lusted after it ever since.

Well, I donít think they did it again until my boat in 2020.
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Old 12-06-2022, 12:47 PM   #15
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There is a difference in the effectiveness of covers depending on climate, in my experience. If I kept a GB in Anacortes, I'd put very high priority on a covered slip, as it protects both from sun and rain. Your boat (not just the varnish) will age half as fast. In Saltspring, weather (rain and snow) are probably more of an issue that intense UV. Down here in California, or in the Caribbean, sun and UV are much worse than in the PNW or NE. Sunbrella covers are better protection against UV than rain.

If you have covers made, be sure to research Subrella UV transmission (they publish data). Basically dark colors inhibit UV much better than light colors, and white is by far the worst color to use, it lets about 25% of the UV through.
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Old 12-06-2022, 01:39 PM   #16
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Two summers ago my wife made sunbrella covers for the brightwork on the boat. The stern rail was somewhat difficult because of the complex shape, but the amount of time she spent sewing was less than my time scraping and varnishing. One of the best timesavers ever. Highly recommend for anyone with brightwork, even in WA or BC.
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Old 12-06-2022, 02:50 PM   #17
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I can say that in California, hand grasp covers on a prior boat made the brightwork last at least 4 times as long.
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Old 12-12-2022, 02:21 PM   #18
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I am in the Sea of Cortez and have varnished cap rails and handrails. I have custom sunbrella covers on the handrails and need covers for the caprails. My maintenance expert advises I need to have the varnish retouched every 6 months.
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Old 12-12-2022, 04:25 PM   #19
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On my 79’ Grand Banks Europa, after having the cap rails and life rails stripped and covered with Cetol, I had covers made for both the hand rail and the cap rail. They have done wonders for keeping the rails protected. Yes about very 2-3 years you may need to apply a coat or two, but I’m glad I had the covers made. Actually she looks pretty good with the blue covers.
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Old 12-12-2022, 07:32 PM   #20
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I have a boat in Anacortes and made covers for the cap rails on my Krogan 48 this past year. I have a SailRite sewing machine and it was a fun project. Made them of Sunbrella with a underlying padded material so the fabric wouldn't scratch in windy conditions. You will certainly pay for the sewing machine, fabric, and then some if you do it yourself. (not sure why the boat pics are turned sideways, but you get the idea, it can be done)
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