Teak Conundrum.

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grandbanksbayfield

Senior Member
Joined
Nov 22, 2017
Messages
138
Location
U.S.
Vessel Name
Solvogn
Vessel Make
Grand Banks 32
The teak decks on our 1987 GB32 have had little care in the last six years. Once a year I wash them down with a lttle teak cleaner using a soft brush. Over the last couple years there has been a lot of erosion - just a decrease in thickness but no big grooves, etc, Time, weathering, and big temperature variations here in MI do their thing. The polysulfide caulking is excellent, but due to loss of wood thickness the black caulking is sticking up higher than the teak strips. I have sanded the caulking down so it is level with the wood and have gone over the whole thing with my random orbital just enough to get fresh wood. That might have taken off 1/32nd to 1/16th of the teak. At this point, everything looks great, but after another few years of this previous cycle, there will just be more oxidized wood. What could i treat the wood with to keep it from oxidizing and still have a deck that has the same non-skid quality of the grey teak? Ideas?
 
Are you brushing against the grain? Brushing with the grain (parallel) to the caulking will remove the teak quicker.
 
Are you brushing against the grain? Brushing with the grain (parallel) to the caulking will remove the teak quicker.
Absolutely not. I brush this teak sparingly, at a 45 degree angle when I can and use a very soft brush.
 
Absolutely not. I brush this teak sparingly, at a 45 degree angle when I can and use a very soft brush.
Copy. The oil conditioners will help, but I hate the stains they leave when it rains. I went to the other extreme and used Durabak on my teak decks on my old boat. You have to add sand on top or it's a skating rink. Lasted great for about three years and then it was a nightmare to remove when it showed signs of aging/peeling. Good luck in your search.
 
I used Semco sealer on the teak on our last boat. It is super simple and easy to apply. Here in Michigan one coat per season worked well.
 
I agree with Semco. Use it for years without any issue. Once applied the first time (which required thorough teak cleaning process) I just clean the deck and cap rails normally (without special teak cleaner) and reapply with a sponge brush/roller. I do this twice a year and it keeps everything nice all the time. It takes me an hour to re-apply once everything is washed so it is manageable.

I just re-applied Semco 3 weeks ago and here are some pics. I use Honeytone color.
 

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I agree with Semco. Use it for years without any issue. Once applied the first time (which required thorough teak cleaning process) I just clean the deck and cap rails normally (without special teak cleaner) and reapply with a sponge brush/roller. I do this twice a year and it keeps everything nice all the time. It takes me an hour to re-apply once everything is washed so it is manageable.

I just re-applied Semco 3 weeks ago and here are some pics. I use Honeytone color.
Thanks! Looks great.
 
There was this You tube video. The guy was working out of his boat business and seamed to know what he was talking about. But teak, I never worked with.

He claims, use acetone to remove any teal oil. Then put two thin coats of west systems on the teak. Next 3 to 5 coats of Z-spar. Anyone have any thoughts on this?
 
There was this You tube video. The guy was working out of his boat business and seamed to know what he was talking about. But teak, I never worked with.

He claims, use acetone to remove any teal oil. Then put two thin coats of west systems on the teak. Next 3 to 5 coats of Z-spar. Anyone have any thoughts on this?
We did most of our teak on deck except hand rails and grab rails this way, except over the west systems we put awlgrip including the stern. We also removed the teak from the decks and put down two layers of glass and awlgrip nonskid. Very pleased with the reduction in wood maitenance.
 

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Once a year I wash them down with a lttle teak cleaner using a soft brush. ... I have sanded the caulking down so it is level with the wood and have gone over the whole thing with my random orbital just enough to get fresh wood. ... What could i treat the wood with to keep it from oxidizing and still have a deck that has the same non-skid quality of the grey teak? Ideas?

I would suggest to limit any sanding or treatment to a minimum, if any.

The proud caulk is most easily removed with a sharp chisel. You can bend the chisel as in the picture below, in a vise, to make it easier to push along flat along the deck.

The gray is the natural color to the teak after a bit of weathering. It is the way it should be. If you insist on bringing back the original un-oxidized color you can use oxalic acid. Products like Teak Wonder, don't know if it is available in the US, have oxalic acid and work well with minimum damage. But after a couple of months the decks will return to their normal and beautiful silver-gray again.

For cleaning I would recommend you use a Scotch pad across the grain and some diluted detergent (or Teak Wonder which is a two-pack product).
 

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I would suggest to limit any sanding or treatment to a minimum, if any.

The proud caulk is most easily removed with a sharp chisel. You can bend the chisel as in the picture below, in a vise, to make it easier to push along flat along the deck.

The gray is the natural color to the teak after a bit of weathering. It is the way it should be. If you insist on bringing back the original un-oxidized color you can use oxalic acid. Products like Teak Wonder, don't know if it is available in the US, have oxalic acid and work well with minimum damage. But after a couple of months the decks will return to their normal and beautiful silver-gray again.

For cleaning I would recommend you use a Scotch pad across the grain and some diluted detergent (or Teak Wonder which is a two-pack product).
The bent chisel is a great idea. I am amazed at how good the caulking is after all these years. Two-part poured in polysulfide most likely. Most teak cleaners are oxalic acid based. I used to get it as a pure product and mix it with water. Right, it does the job.
 
The bent chisel is a great idea. I am amazed at how good the caulking is after all these years. Two-part poured in polysulfide most likely. Most teak cleaners are oxalic acid based. I used to get it as a pure product and mix it with water. Right, it does the job.
Well, that is an old photograph, maybe ten years old, and of my previous boat, a 1979 GB Cl. So those decks would have been around 35 years old.

My current decks, though, are in similar condition with the advantage that teak planks used in those days on the woodies were much thicker.
 
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