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Old 24-04-2013, 08:28   #1
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How to Make New Teak Look Old?

OK, I know how to sand, clean, bleach, oil, etc to make old teak look nice and newer but don't know how to age new teak to make it look older.

I had to repair damage from the PO to the teak rub rail which requires cutting out and replacing about a 2 foot section. So now I have a nice, shiny, brown, smooth piece of teak that sticks out like a sore thumb in a 30 year old rub rail. Perhaps more appropriate, the 30 year old rub rail looks like the sore thumb compared to the new teak. Regardless they don't match at all.

I can clean/bleach/oil the old teak so the color will match the new a little better but the grain in the old teak is aged as well, with the hard parts of the grain standing proud of the soft parts.

So does anyone have any suggestions on how to make the new teak look older? Some ideas I have come up with but not yet tried.

- By some method abrade the new teak to eat away some of the soft grain: pressure washer, sand/soda blasting, non-wire brush wheel for a drill.

- Chemically etch away the softer grain. Some teak cleaning systems use acids to clean the teak, oxalic is one if I recall. What if i used more/stronger/longer acid solution on the teak? Would that damage the teak too much and not just remove some of the grain?

Any ideas appreciated.


Thanks
Skip
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Old 24-04-2013, 08:36   #2
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Re: How to make new teak look old?

Power wash it. It will remove the soft section of the wood leaving hard ones in place.
Do not over do it!
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Old 24-04-2013, 08:42   #3
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Re: How to make new teak look old?

Teka it. It will remove some soft grain from the new wood, and make the old stuff look new again. Careful, it eats flesh!
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Old 24-04-2013, 09:23   #4
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Re: How to make new teak look old?

I have a reclaimed wood business and when we have to cut off an end due to rot or a required lentgh it leaves a "New" looking cut and no one wants it to be so obvious if they are buying a hand hewn beam that is 200 yrs old,so what to do? Get your self some steel wool and put into a glass jar add some vineger(Large Mayo. Jar filled halfway with vineger will do)The next day it should have eaten the steel wool and looks like dirty water,simply brush on the wood and it should add a nice patina...I have not done this with teak but it works with Long leaf yellow heartpine and white oak...I supplied all of the Log buildings and antique wood that you would see if you watch the Columbia Pictures movie "The Patriot" and this is a "tool of the trade" that they tought me...Works great! good luck
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Old 24-04-2013, 09:40   #5
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Re: How to make new teak look old?

Won't the flecks of steel wool rust in salt water environment?
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Old 24-04-2013, 09:42   #6
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Re: How to make new teak look old?

Wait a few years. Works every time.
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Old 24-04-2013, 09:50   #7
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Re: How to make new teak look old?

Quote:
Originally Posted by noelex 77 View Post
Won't the flecks of steel wool rust in salt water environment?
The vineger will dissolve everything,dont know about the salt water...
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Old 24-04-2013, 10:10   #8
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Re: How to make new teak look old?

The problem with the all chemical methods is they deplete the wood of its natural oil.
In case of vinegar, you would have to pretreat the teak with sodium hydroxide or some organic solvent to remove the oil -otherwise it wouldn't work.
I would go with any mechanical method unless you want it look old an rotten.
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Old 24-04-2013, 10:57   #9
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Re: How to make new teak look old?

Quote:
Originally Posted by tropicalescape View Post
I have a reclaimed wood business and when we have to cut off an end due to rot or a required lentgh it leaves a "New" looking cut and no one wants it to be so obvious if they are buying a hand hewn beam that is 200 yrs old,so what to do? Get your self some steel wool and put into a glass jar add some vineger(Large Mayo. Jar filled halfway with vineger will do)The next day it should have eaten the steel wool and looks like dirty water,simply brush on the wood and it should add a nice patina...I have not done this with teak but it works with Long leaf yellow heartpine and white oak...I supplied all of the Log buildings and antique wood that you would see if you watch the Columbia Pictures movie "The Patriot" and this is a "tool of the trade" that they tought me...Works great! good luck
Thanks but initially it's not the color or patina I'm looking for but the surface texture of the grain. After I get the grain to match if the color isn't right then I'll keep this in mind.
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Old 24-04-2013, 10:57   #10
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Re: How to make new teak look old?

"Bleaching" teak is kind of misunderstanding of chemistry. Bleach is an alkali. You acidize teak to return it to its new looking brown color. You would bleach teak or apply some other sort of alkali to make it gray and old looking.

Vinegar is a mild acid. Sodium Hydroxide, NaOH, or what is more commonly called Lye, is the active ingredient in most drain cleaners which is an alkali.

Adding any chemical would wash out some of its natural oil.
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Old 24-04-2013, 11:01   #11
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Re: How to make new teak look old?

Quote:
Originally Posted by noelex 77 View Post
Won't the flecks of steel wool rust in salt water environment?
Well from the few dregs of chemistry that remain in my brain I think a metal in an acid will react to form a metallic salt. In the case of acetic acid and iron something like ferrous acetate. It would require unreacted iron left in the liquid (which seems like a strong possibility) to leave rust spots.
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Old 24-04-2013, 11:04   #12
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Re: How to make new teak look old?

Move to the tropics and wait a couple of months. Works regardless of any coatings or not
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Old 24-04-2013, 11:30   #13
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Re: How to make new teak look old?

Quote:
Originally Posted by David M View Post
"Bleaching" teak is kind of misunderstanding of chemistry. Bleach is an alkali. You acidize teak to return it to its new looking brown color. You would bleach teak or apply some other sort of alkali to make it gray and old looking.
Quite correct that bleach is alkaline but I was using the term bleach (perhaps incorrectly?) in the context lightening, as in old teak that has gotten dark vs the chemical bleach like sodium hypochlorite. Now that you mention it maybe the lightening of old, darkened teak is more a part of the cleaning process instead of the acid step.



Quote:
Originally Posted by David M View Post
Vinegar is a mild acid. Sodium Hydroxide, NaOH, or what is more commonly called Lye, is the active ingredient in most drain cleaners which is an alkali.
Commercially NaOH in the US is also called caustic soda. I think drain cleaners may use NaOH and KOH (aka caustic potash) or both.

Quote:
Originally Posted by David M View Post
Adding any chemical would wash out some of its natural oil.
I'm thinking that that the old teak has already lost a lot of the natural oils in 30 years so maybe removing some of the oils from the new might improve the match with the old.
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Old 24-04-2013, 11:31   #14
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Re: How to make new teak look old?

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Originally Posted by s/v Jedi View Post
Move to the tropics and wait a couple of months. Works regardless of any coatings or not
Well I am in Florida. Almost tropics. Sure feels tropical today.
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Old 24-04-2013, 11:55   #15
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Re: How to make new teak look old?

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Teka it. It will remove some soft grain from the new wood, and make the old stuff look new again. Careful, it eats flesh!
I was thinking about TEKA or something like that. But isn't the main ingredient of the Part A just caustic soda like David M mentioned? If correct then I can buy a TEKA kit for $25 or 6000 gallon tank truck of 50% caustic soda solution for $200/ton. Maybe I can order a sample.
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