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Old 01-14-2020, 08:01 PM   #1
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Painting over varnished teak

I have finally come to the point that annual varnish of the boat's considerable teak needs to stop. I have heavily sanded the carved teak wing doors (yes, its a Taiwan Tub) in preparation for prime coat(s) and then a top coat of marine grade enamel. Anyone have any advice? I will wipe down with thinner. What are the characteristics I should look for in the primer? I want my top coat to stick! Can you recommend a brand primer? one or two coats? Then for the top coat, can someone recommend a color that is easier on the eyes that gloss white? While the boat is nominally white, I'm pretty sure that it is a couple of shades off pure white.
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Old 01-14-2020, 08:06 PM   #2
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I'm under the impression that teak decks can be oiled (or replaced) rather than varnished. (Glad I've opted out of having teak decks.)
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Old 01-14-2020, 09:46 PM   #3
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I am painting my teak area by area. We painted our teak handrails last year. We took it down to bare wood. Started by wiping with acetone just before priming with interlux PreKote for 2 coats. Then used Interlux brightside poly paint for 3 coats. So far they look great. Love the look over the varnished teak. It really makes the boat look more modern.
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Old 01-14-2020, 10:17 PM   #4
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Just in case you change your mind or the next owner has other ideas try this. Coat the doors with varnish to seal the wood not for looks. Then cover with white or cream colored paint. If you paint directly on the teak you will never get the paint out of the pores of the teak. You can never go back to bright. Out of the sun the varnish will last indefinitely and can be repainted numerous times.



If you or some new owner decides to go back to bright you can strip the paint layers off and sand the varnish and start all over again.
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Old 01-14-2020, 11:57 PM   #5
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Just in case you change your mind or the next owner has other ideas try this. Coat the doors with varnish to seal the wood not for looks. Then cover with white or cream colored paint. If you paint directly on the teak you will never get the paint out of the pores of the teak. You can never go back to bright. Out of the sun the varnish will last indefinitely and can be repainted numerous times.



If you or some new owner decides to go back to bright you can strip the paint layers off and sand the varnish and start all over again.


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Old 01-15-2020, 12:21 AM   #6
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I have never decided what I want to do on my boat based on what some future owner may or may not want. It is my boat, I do what I want with it. As to selling it someday, maybe, probably but every boat I have sold has sold to the first person that looked at it. And they all loved the condition of the boat, not telling me that I should not have done something. If the boat is in really good condition it will sell whether the teak is varnished or painted.
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Old 01-15-2020, 12:38 AM   #7
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Comodave,

Understood, but I'm with C lectric on this one. Not because one would be unable to sell the boat otherwise. And, not because one would be able to sell the boat for more otherwise.

I do it for the same reason I answer questions any time the new owner of my last boat calls -- I want them to be as happy as possible, enjoy it as much as possible, and waste as little time and effort maintaining it as possible. I don't want them to spend time learning what I know. The past owner, and even two owners before that, of my present vessel have been enormously generous about that to me, too. So, does it take time and energy to answer phones calls or email, look up old records, stare at a wall and try to call back to mind what I once knew? Etc? You betcha. But, does it make the world as a whole a happier place? I think so.

I think of doing little things to document and preserve the boat for future owners in the same way. It is something that costs me that might make someone happy down the line. They might want the teak back (I would). They might sand it down in excited anticipation -- and discover that it was painted because it rotted, was filled, and isn't good anymore. That is a sad day. They might also sand it down and discover it is good wood, but has paint embedded in the grain and would need to be sanded too much to be restored. That is also a sad day. The first case isn't fixable. The second is.

A quick coat of varnish isn't expensive. It doesn't take much time. It may improve paint adhesion, depending. And, it can make someone really in the future happy. So, I'd do it -- then smile if they ever called me and asked.

And, heck, I'd be the first one sanding paint off rails. Just isn't my style. I know others have different taste. I've seen some nice rails painted. It is just one of those things where preferences differ -- so owners wanting to change wouldn't surprise me.

At any rate, I see where you are coming from. Makes sense to me. It is just that this "current caretaker" has a different point of view.
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Old 01-15-2020, 12:47 AM   #8
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I get calls from my previous boat owners regularly and I am also happy to help them. Just like I said I do what I want to with my boats,so you should do what you want with yours.
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Old 01-15-2020, 08:14 AM   #9
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Even though the (large amount of) varnished teak on my boat is in great shape, I am about to start doing what Comodave is doing - painting section by section. Partly to reduce maintenance and partly to update the look of the boat.

I like Brightsides and have used it a lot. Using Brightsides I believe you can paint over the varnish (if it’s in good enough shape). For now at least I am planning on using a 2 part and with that you can’t paint over a one part paint so stripping is required.

Whatever you use, follow the instructions for that paint.

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Old 01-15-2020, 09:51 AM   #10
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I have finally come to the point that annual varnish of the boat's considerable teak needs to stop. I have heavily sanded the carved teak wing doors (yes, its a Taiwan Tub) in preparation for prime coat(s) and then a top coat of marine grade enamel. Anyone have any advice? I will wipe down with thinner. What are the characteristics I should look for in the primer? I want my top coat to stick! Can you recommend a brand primer? one or two coats? Then for the top coat, can someone recommend a color that is easier on the eyes that gloss white? While the boat is nominally white, I'm pretty sure that it is a couple of shades off pure white.
First off, I need to say that's a sexy boat you got.
Second off, make it so that us kids can strip off the paint and go back to varnished teak when its our turn to care for the boat.
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Old 01-15-2020, 09:54 AM   #11
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Coat the doors with varnish to seal the wood not for looks. Then cover with white or cream colored paint. If you paint directly on the teak you will never get the paint out of the pores of the teak. You can never go back to bright. Out of the sun the varnish will last indefinitely and can be repainted numerous times.
This is very good advice!!
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Old 01-15-2020, 11:37 AM   #12
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I prime teak with Smith's Penetrating epoxy prior to painting. It makes a good bond with teak.

I used Brightside paint in the past but now use System Three two part water based LP paint.
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Old 01-19-2020, 06:00 PM   #13
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For those who have used Brightside on exterior wood, how did it hold up? How often did it need to be redone,etc.

Ken
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Old 01-19-2020, 06:18 PM   #14
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For those who have used Brightside on exterior wood, how did it hold up? How often did it need to be redone,etc.

Ken
About 3 years in Florida sun but it is easy to touch up or recoat. You donít have to strip all the old paint or take it down to bare wood like you do with varnish to refinish. It doesnít look like a two part/yacht but from 5 feet away it looks pretty good.
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Old 01-19-2020, 07:28 PM   #15
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Since my boat is in Michigan and stored inside for half of the year according to Interlux I should get around 6 years. Then a scuff sand and recoat.
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Old 01-19-2020, 07:42 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by Comodave View Post
I am painting my teak area by area. We painted our teak handrails last year. We took it down to bare wood. Started by wiping with acetone just before priming with interlux PreKote for 2 coats. Then used Interlux brightside poly paint for 3 coats. So far they look great. Love the look over the varnished teak. It really makes the boat look more modern.
We did that in 2016. Preparation as above. Used Awlgrip. First year looked great, second year too, but then from year 2 to 3, started seeing blisters. Now, 4 years later have some big blisters.

Have since read that it is simply impossible to paint teak as it has too much oil in it and will get out sooner or later.
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Old 01-19-2020, 08:12 PM   #17
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Here in the PNW on a boathouse kept boat, the Brightside lasts a long time but loses shine at around 5 to 6 years.

The System Three water based LP hasn't been on long enough to evaluate.
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Old 01-19-2020, 10:05 PM   #18
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I used bright side white over an oil based primer on a walnut post I made for my mailbox here at the dirt house. Northern Wisconsin. Covered with snow, lots of rain, direct sun. hit with shrapnel from the lawnmower, hit with salty, sandy sludge from the snowplow.

It lasted great for 4 or 5 years and is starting to peel now after about 7 years.

I am satisfied, I will use it over the varnish on the teak this spring with a little sanding to rough it up a bit.

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Old 01-20-2020, 11:37 AM   #19
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It sounds like Brightside still holds up at least twice as long as varnish and of course only a couple of coats required. I was going to start painting some exterior items using 2 part, but that requires bare wood or only 2 part or 2 part primer underneath. If I use Brightsides, I can go directly over sound varnish. I'll probably try it on the dinghy cradle first.

Thanks for the input.

Ken
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Old 01-20-2020, 12:49 PM   #20
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If we had that much exterior teak I would also be tempted to paint - agree it may make the boat look more modern. But the only exterior teak we have are our handrails. Under the covered sundeck we have teak floor, teak wet bar, teak wing doors and teak cabin door. I have sanded and varnished all of that (except floor) with Pettit Flagship and it looks great - have to confess I do love the look of shiny varnished teak.
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