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Old 19-03-2016, 04:59   #16
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Re: Does all marine varnish darken the wood?

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Originally Posted by sailingfarmer View Post
It may be that the sun darkened the wood itself being in the Florida sun for a decade or so...even below the surface ... I notice older boats near me with the same hue as well... but boats that have had been regularly varnished lighter...
The effects of the Sun don't stop at the surface. Just as you can get sunburned while wearing clothes, or a Thermal Imager can see what's going on inside of a structure.
Even multiple coats of paint don't fully stop it all, nor for that matter, sheet steel. Some frequencies of light are going to get through unless you go to extraordinary lengths to stop it.

I mean if they had cameras in the '80's, which could see inside of deep underground structures from space... It gives you some idea how tough it is to stop all "light".

Also, even though the wood's no longer alive, it's still subject to cumulative UV damage, just like anything else. For example, jib sheets left attached to a sail on a furler, or... your skin.
It all adds up.
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Old 19-03-2016, 05:30   #17
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Re: Does all marine varnish darken the wood?

Teak will darken when exposed to UV and probably moisture in the air... sand some leave it in the sun and air...it darkens....

Varnishes are a relatively clear material which sits on top of the wood... locks in to the slight texture of the surface.

Open a can of varnish... pour it into a clear glass.... is it as clear as tap water? NO.. it has a yellowish orange tan color. THIS adds to the underlying color and acts like a stain... tinting the wood.
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Old 19-03-2016, 05:42   #18
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Re: Does all marine varnish darken the wood?

I find that here in Florida, mold, mildew and oxidation can go pretty deep. As much as I absolutely hate to use it (eats the pith/soft grain), I have had good results on really grayed teak with Snappy Teak Nu Part 1 and 2, then sand. I dilute it to have better control and rinse, rinse, rinse with a brush. I know I lose as much as a sixteenth of an inch doing this...once....

As for finish, I have gone to two+ coats West 105/207 Special Clear then 6+ coats AwlSpar then 4+ coats AwlBrite. Has good depth and color and stays that way with infrequent AwlBrite recoats.

I really like E-Bond penetrating epoxy for a lot of things but it will turn orange then dark red then black on teak...I would rather not remember why I know this...

I used to own a Ron Amy, Formosa 44' (Spindrift 43') lots and lots of teak. It took me around 40 hours, for 2 coats, twice a year with touch ups in between. I tried everything back then, nothing lasted like this West/AwlSpar/AwlBrite system. (Except maybe Cetol that turns teak into a Formica look over time, still doesn't last as long)


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Old 19-03-2016, 10:07   #19
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Re: Does all marine varnish darken the wood?

Cetol over very well sanded old Grey teak comes out darker than I'd expected. This was the teak flavored Cetol so I assume it had a slight tint in it, plus the UV additives. Chose it for reported ease next time around, just a local sanding and repcoating rather than total surface refinishing. Fingers crossed on that.
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Old 19-03-2016, 11:15   #20
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Re: Does all marine varnish darken the wood?

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I have tried 4 types of marine varnish on my outside teak. 25 years ago I think varnish didn't darken the results as they do today. Perhaps that's the UV protectant that is being used now. I remember less darkening in years past. I notice others have darker teak as well... Epiphanes, Schooner, Spar, you name it... they even look darker in the can.
I would not try to varnish teak even if it is that old. I think I would oil it. Not bull **** teak oil save some money and get linseed oil.
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Old 19-03-2016, 11:32   #21
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Re: Does all marine varnish darken the wood?

Teak oil in Florida lasts about three weeks, same with linseed.


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Old 19-03-2016, 11:54   #22
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Re: Does all marine varnish darken the wood?

Any with UV protection does darken it ...yes. If you were to compare interior vs exterior in a glass it would be obvious.
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Old 19-03-2016, 11:55   #23
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Re: Does all marine varnish darken the wood?

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Teak oil in Florida lasts about three weeks, same with linseed.


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Maybe multiple applications are needed. Teak is by nature is oily. After 25 years exposed to the sun?
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Old 19-03-2016, 13:00   #24
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Re: Does all marine varnish darken the wood?

I'm refinishing teak plywood on the interior of a 1984 Pearson. The color is mostly orange, but the new plywood, when oiled looks brown. Any ideas on how to get the new wood to match the old?
I used Cetol Clear on my exterior teak, and it came out amber.
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Old 19-03-2016, 13:08   #25
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Re: Does all marine varnish darken the wood?

I think next time I have this problem I will just use Clear Lacquer... all the woodworkers in Panama use Clear Lacquer when they want to bring out the quality of the wood... it is harder and clearer...
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Old 19-03-2016, 14:17   #26
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Does all marine varnish darken the wood?

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Originally Posted by RSB333 View Post
I'm refinishing teak plywood on the interior of a 1984 Pearson. The color is mostly orange, but the new plywood, when oiled looks brown. Any ideas on how to get the new wood to match the old?

I used Cetol Clear on my exterior teak, and it came out amber.

The best way is to strip, clean, sand a representative piece of the interior, then go to a veneer shop (or mail sample) with your intended coating and have them help match the color and grain to what you have. Then have veneer laminated to ply...

You can mess around with oxalic (wood bleach) to lighten the dark or stain the lighter/orange to match the dark.


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Old 19-03-2016, 16:11   #27
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Re: Does all marine varnish darken the wood?

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Originally Posted by RSB333 View Post
I'm refinishing teak plywood on the interior of a 1984 Pearson. The color is mostly orange, but the new plywood, when oiled looks brown. Any ideas on how to get the new wood to match the old?
I used Cetol Clear on my exterior teak, and it came out amber.
Be very VERY careful sanding interior veneer. Most people will blow thru the teak top layer in spots and it will never look the same.
Read my earlier post regarding matching.


The sun doesn't darken teak at all, it makes it lighter. Seen that many times including teak boards just laying in the wood rack with one end that gets sun bleached out from the sun.
Oils, mildew, dampness darkens it.
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Old 19-03-2016, 17:05   #28
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Re: Does all marine varnish darken the wood?

RE: Cetol

The best way to do Cetol is to put 2 coats of the pigmented type (natural or teak) on first and then build up clear Cetol on top. Every autumn I wash and put 2 or 3 coats of clear on my bowsprit, and it is good for another year. This way it does not build up pigment and get the orange ("Trump" or "Boehner") look.

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Old 19-03-2016, 18:38   #29
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Re: Does all marine varnish darken the wood?

Raw teak left outside in the weather darkens--yes--but the UV isn't the reason. Typically it's darkening because of dirt which contains iron oxides and those iron oxides are what darkens teak. So--not the sun, it's the dirt in the air.
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Old 19-03-2016, 20:52   #30
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Re: Does all marine varnish darken the wood?

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Originally Posted by sailingfarmer View Post
I think next time I have this problem I will just use Clear Lacquer... all the woodworkers in Panama use Clear Lacquer when they want to bring out the quality of the wood... it is harder and clearer...
How well does clear lacquer stand up outside? I've always wondered.

Tks/Len
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