Well, this project
has turned into a complete disaster.
I went to all the local hardware
stores and spoke to the "experts" there. I decided to go with Cabots Spar Varnish. It is supposedly marine
quality stuff, dries hard but maintains some flexibility and is high gloss.
I took all 10 of the removable floor hatches home, stripped them to bar wood, filled the cracks between the teak and holly strips with epoxy and then gave them 6 coats of the stuff, sanding between each coat after giving it 24 hours to dry. They turned out looking great.
Then I tackled the floor in the boat. I belt sanded it to bare wood, repaired lots of cracks and dings, and then after sanding with 220 I gave it a coat of the Cabots. Then I waited 2 days (one more than the instructions) and gave it another coat.
5 days later it is still a gooey mess. It is dry to the touch and you can walk on it but any attempt to sand results in a sticky, gooey mess. Sandpaper instantly clogs and the surface becomes a sticky mess. Just under the surface, it is not dry and is apparently not going to dry. So I am now tackling it with scrapers, rags and mineral spirits to remove all this crap. Basically, over a weeks full work down the drain and back to square one.
I have no idea what to use and I am worried that whatever I end up with will not match the finish of the Cabots on the removable pieces so I will end up having to strip those and refinish them again as well (another weeks work gone).
Before choosing the Cabots, I did test a fast dry water based varnish on one of the removable pieces. It looked terrible. After 3 coats the grain of the wood was still not filled, it was going to take dozens of coats to get any buildup and gloss so I abandoned that crap.
I have no clue what to use... but some pretty good ideas on what NOT to use!
The Coelan stuff that was linked is interesting... but I cannot find any info on dealers or stuff like dry times and compatibility.