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Old 20-08-2017, 05:44   #1
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Teak advice

I need to freshen up my interior cabin teak. no need for a complete redo as the wood is in very good shape for a 1987 Mirage 29. what should I use? Teak Oil with a cloth? furniture polish with a cloth? other? thanks.
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Old 20-08-2017, 15:28   #2
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Re: Teak advice

It sort of depends what's on it now. Most likely, it is sprayed matte varnish. If it was varnish, paste wax works a treat, or, dare I say it, light sand and re-varnish. If you decide you want to re-varnish, something we did, that we liked the looks of, was to leave the flat panels matte, but did all the trim bright. Where it's bright, the light reflects off it, and it makes it look sparkley clean. The bright is harder (the flatteners soften the matte), therefore holds up to wear better.

I have used oil on varnished teak, the results didn't last long enough for me. And when we had plain oiled teak, and went where it was hot and humid, green mold grew in the oil. I sanded all of that back, and varnished, and the mold stayed away.

Ann
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Old 20-08-2017, 15:36   #3
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Re: Teak advice

One of the most lovely finishes is hand rubbed varnish. It's a lot of work but the results are spectacular...gives the teak a warm almost luminous glow and looks like oiled wood, but without the drawbacks of straight teak oil that Ann mentioned.

It's also a good solution for older "dinged up" interiors. Glossy varnish, even matte varnish, can show off flaws where a more subdued finish tends to hide them.
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Old 22-08-2017, 04:31   #4
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Re: Teak advice

are you talking about Spar Varnish? I have noticed two things about our teak. one - it feels a bit sticky. two - it marks quickly and goes whiteish with water (I.e. condensation from a cold glass of water will leave a ring). does this help identify the current finish? thanks
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Old 22-08-2017, 04:35   #5
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Re: Teak advice

another question. I have used varnish on exterior wood before and didn't like it. didn't last. since this is interior wood, why not use urethane or varathane instead?
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Old 22-08-2017, 12:12   #6
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Re: Teak advice

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Originally Posted by leefromcanada View Post
I need to freshen up my interior cabin teak. no need for a complete redo as the wood is in very good shape for a 1987 Mirage 29. what should I use? Teak Oil with a cloth? furniture polish with a cloth? other? thanks.
Old fashioned teak on teak on teak can get a bit dreary and dark. Most people will not do anything radical about it because teak is expensive and considered untouchable. However - consider painting at least some of the teak in a lighther colour (yeah - with paint!) - and get a more modern and inviting look. Check out some newbuilds and see what they have done to make the interior up to date. Most of them do it because teak is too expensive - but still it looks better than the old wood on wood look.

Just an opionion - dont kill me
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Old 22-08-2017, 16:19   #7
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Re: Teak advice

Anyone who paints exotic hardwood should be flogged, keel hauled, and THEN hanged!!
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Old 22-08-2017, 22:44   #8
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Re: Teak advice

Damn Right
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Old 23-08-2017, 04:57   #9
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Re: Teak advice

you are right cfodk that lighter wood (sometimes painted) can create a more modern look. however, I would rather not paint the wood, nor would I want to darken it further with teak oil. at the moment, the wood is medium colour. hoping for something to treat the old wood other than nasty varnish.
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Old 23-08-2017, 14:48   #10
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Re: Teak advice

leefromcanada,

Hi, Lee,

I have had that white ring business happen, with shellac. Never with good quality varnish.

If the varnish is feeling sticky, it is time to strip it, and start over. When it's that soft, it is very fragile, you can scrape it off with your fingernail. Once you're back to clean, bare wood, you can deal with it as you will. If you're really brave, you might even consider spraying it with an airless after it has been cleaned with acetone. Obviously, you need respiration equipment, and REALLY GOOD masking, to do it that way. Or, Google French Polish, that is another way.

Lastly, use the best varnish you can find, and the best brushes, and have at it. I recommend putting in flatting agent for the last coat, on large panels. You can make it as dull as you need to hide blemishes, but if you leave the trim bright, it will still look good.

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Old 23-08-2017, 15:32   #11
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Re: Teak advice

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Originally Posted by leefromcanada View Post
are you talking about Spar Varnish? I have noticed two things about our teak. one - it feels a bit sticky. two - it marks quickly and goes whiteish with water (I.e. condensation from a cold glass of water will leave a ring). does this help identify the current finish? thanks
Your teak is oiled. If it's sticky and turns white when it gets wet, it might benefit from being refreshed. Just wash it with teak cleaner (making sure you don't scrub with the grain with anything too abrasive) and reapply a decent teak oil. I've had very good luck with Watco teak oil which you can get at home depot. I apply several coats, letting them soak in and harden between coats. You're done when you have an even finish.

The oil will get sticky if it's been put on too thickly, in my experience. Also, condensation can cause it to "sag" and then the migrated oil is sticky.
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Old 24-08-2017, 04:20   #12
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Re: Teak advice

yes - sounds like oil to me. i know what old varnish looks like and this is not it. do I brush on, or wipe on, teak oil? do I wipe off access like I would with wood stain? thanks
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Old 25-08-2017, 18:23   #13
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Re: Teak advice

I have used a diluted bleach and water solution to wash out old oil from my interior teak. You will be amazed how the oil will run from the wood. The bleach also kills any unseen mold and freshens the interior. I remove all soft goods and applied the bleach solution with a spray bottle. Do a light brushing as needed and hose it off. Comes out bright and clean. There are a variety of tones/shades of teak oil. I found the Watco brand from home depot to be the darkest. Check your marine stores for a lighter shade of oil if thats what you prefer.
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Old 25-08-2017, 18:42   #14
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Re: Teak advice

Great info from all, thank you.

I literally finished sanding a 53 foot motor yacht. It was fun doing the first 3/4 then it was like "there's more"...ugh !

The previous had used polyurethane over stain. Very difficult project. I used teak oil and nothing else yet. It looks beautiful !

I am hesitant to put anything else on it after all the prep work.

I have SPAR which looks like a pretty good option ?

Thanks
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Old 25-08-2017, 18:59   #15
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Re: Teak advice

I have done a lot of brightwork. My customers have always insisted on using their own choice of varnish but some were willing to accept my advice on which finish was best. Your teak oil finsh looks spectacular now but won't last long without frequent cleaning and reoiling and eventually you will wear the soft grain out of the wood. A superior solution is to varnish. My old favorite was made by McCloskeys who sold out to Ace Hardware. A rep told me they still make it. Ace just puts their label on the can! But my new favorite is Epifanes. Pricey but wow...worth every penny. Now here's the real trick...search for an authentic badger hair brush. They don't make them anymore. I wore one out and put up with imitations for some time before I found one from an elderly retired gent who painted his whole life. They are amazing. I had been told they were and never really believed it but they put on an even, level, glass like coat.
And for your exterior don't stop when 4 coats seem good enough. 6-8 coats is best with 2 coats a year after in the tropics or at least one coat further north.
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