I don't like to put powerful solvents, mineral spirits, etc on my boats teak. Here is a hippies link to a comapny who's tung oil is pure, no harmful additives and reasonably priced. They aso sell a product called citrus solve that I believe is an all natural product that you can use to cut the oil 50% for the first couple of coats fo better penetration: Pure Tung Oil Finish - Wood Finishing - All Natural Finish - China Wood Oil - Real Milk Paint ®
That being said I have used the boats I have owned over he last twenty years as real word practical test beds and have tried many ways to keep teak looking beautiful. In the northeast where the sun is not as harsh as in some other locales if you want to use oil it is my experience that you will be re-applying aproximately every three months and this will become a downward trend of the teak looking darker and darker, until it finally turns ebony color. When you apply oil you are essentially coating the wood with a liquid food
, that mildew, mold
and other types of organisims like to munch on as well as a coating that dirt and anyting else that is floating around likes to adhere to. Every time you recoat if you don't clean teak down to that nice light blond color you won't acheive the beautiful warm hand rubbed oiled effect that people like so much.
Now here's something that you will never hear from the manufacturers of the so called " Teak Oils", teak doesn't need protection, as a tropical hardwood the natural oils in the teak are what protects the wood. There are places on my vessel that where the teak has never seen any type of product ad the wood looks as good as it did wen installed 35 years ago. In my personal teak pathway to enlightenment I have become convinced that in the future I will be leaving the wood to weather