Cruisers Forum

Join CruisersForum Today

Thread Tools Rate Thread Display Modes
Old 01-04-2014, 14:27   #1
Registered User

Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: Apalachicola, North Florida
Boat: 1969 Morgan 28, Stiletto 27
Posts: 171
Dingy floor - Varnish or Urethane?

I am refinishing the sectional floor boards of my Achilles dingy. They are sanded and ready to apply a finish.

Can anyone recommend a coating that wil seaaal the plywood, and stand up to some very heavy usage? I haven't used urethane, and am considering spar varnish.

Any suggestions or relevant experiences? Thanks in advance for your help.

Your WORKING IQ is your regular IQ, divided by the number of boats you own.
Bestathook is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-04-2014, 14:37   #2
Registered User

Join Date: Apr 2010
Posts: 153
Re: Dingy floor - Varnish or Urethane?

I used Interlux gray bilge paint (one part polyurethane), but it's not very pretty (the boards were originally gray, so it seemed logical).

My pal with the wonderful old schooner recommended Epiphanes varnish for the sole of my sailboat.....said it's really hard and durable......he's even used it for countertops. So that's what I'm currently's gorgeous.....we'll see how it holds up.

Frankly, I've come to regard any painting or varnishing tasks as ongoing maintenance.....helps my attitude.

SailPenelope is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-04-2014, 14:52   #3
Senior Cruiser
Jim Cate's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: May 2008
Location: cruising SW Pacific
Boat: Jon Sayer 1-off 46 ft fract rig sloop strip plank in W Red Cedar
Posts: 9,117
Send a message via Skype™ to Jim Cate
Re: Dingy floor - Varnish or Urethane?

I don't know how you use your dinghy, but if you are a cruiser making a pretty, shiny, slippery sole for it is a bad idea IMO. We carry lots of crap in our dink, we track sand, mud, shells, rocks and other materials unfriendly to varnish into the dink every day. Propane tanks, anchors, other heavy and hard items get tossed in to a heaving dinghy... you get the idea!

So, if I had a dink with timber floorboards, I'd be looking at epoxy sealer followed by one of the water-based industrial walkway "paints". These are extremely durable, have unequaled non-slip grip and are inexpensive. Kiwi Grip is a similar product with the price elevated to reflect its "yacht quality" status. We've used one called "Sports-Cote", available here in Oz, costs about ten bucks a litre. The drawback to these products is their frankly industrial appearance, but to us this is a minor thing. YMMV.


Jim and Ann
s/v Insatiable back in MBTBC marina, waiting for next eye jobs to be done
Jim Cate is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 01-04-2014, 18:00   #4
Senior Cruiser
FSMike's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Bahamas/Florida
Boat: Solaris Sunstar 36' catamaran
Posts: 2,562
Images: 5
Re: Dingy floor - Varnish or Urethane?

Jim Cate has it right -
It's much better to leave your dinghy floor dingy lol.
Sail Fast Live Slow
FSMike is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-04-2014, 18:55   #5
Marine Service Provider

Join Date: May 2012
Location: New Orleans
Boat: We have a problem... A serious addiction issue.
Posts: 3,221
Re: Dingy floor - Varnish or Urethane?

Three coats of neat epoxy as a sealer, then non-skid deck paint.

- If animals weren't meant to be eaten then they wouldn't be made of food.
Stumble is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-04-2014, 19:35   #6
Registered User
ozskipper's Avatar

Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: NSW Australia
Boat: Traditional 30
Posts: 1,979
Re: Dingy floor - Varnish or Urethane?

As stumble said. The Non skid coat . Its then most important.. You can add some fine sand to your final coat, use a non skid paint, or sprinkle coarse sugar over the final coat (then use lots of hot water after to remove the sugar leaving a rough surface)

ozskipper is offline   Reply With Quote


Thread Tools
Display Modes Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Varnish over Polyurethane? And PU over Varnish? MarkJ Construction, Maintenance & Refit 8 06-08-2013 15:31
CDI Perfect Pitch Urethane Propellers tfsilver Propellers & Drive Systems 2 11-12-2012 05:48
Varnish or Urethane Tony B Construction, Maintenance & Refit 2 18-10-2012 04:18
Recommendation on Dinghy - Solid Floor vs Wood Floor dick auge Our Community 5 04-03-2012 23:47
To VARNISH... or NOT to varnish............. High Cotton Construction, Maintenance & Refit 9 30-11-2007 11:22

Our Communities

Our communities encompass many different hobbies and interests, but each one is built on friendly, intelligent membership.

» More about our Communities

Automotive Communities

Our Automotive communities encompass many different makes and models. From U.S. domestics to European Saloons.

» More about our Automotive Communities

Marine Communities

Our Marine websites focus on Cruising and Sailing Vessels, including forums and the largest cruising Wiki project on the web today.

» More about our Marine Communities

Copyright 2002-2015 Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 23:53.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2016, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Social Knowledge Networks
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2016, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.

ShowCase vBulletin Plugins by Drive Thru Online, Inc.