Stain or varnish tiller?

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Konsortium
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Stain or varnish tiller?

Post by Konsortium »

I've stained my teak handrail etc with a honey tone wood stain/sealer. It really looks good and the wood looks like brand new teak. My question is: is it ok to stain the tiller or is there some type of convention that dictates that the tiller gets varnished. I had always intended to varnish but the stain looks so good and is so easy I'm now inclined to stain. I also thought a varnished tiller might become slippery in exactly the weather conditions you really need a solid grip. Your advice please!
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Re: Stain or varnish tiller?

Post by Konsortium »

I've stained the tiller. It looks fantastic!
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Re: Stain or varnish tiller?

Post by Nigel Birch »

Have you got a canvas cover for it? Will preserve the life of whatever you use....
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Re: Stain or varnish tiller?

Post by TyroSailor »

My Centaur has one, made from the leg of a pair of jeans by the look of it. Lovely and shiny inside - I hope to be able to use it soon!
Experience: That which would have been most useful five minutes before you acquired it.

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Re: Stain or varnish tiller?

Post by Jolly Roger »

The tiller on my Fulmar has a thick, but soft, varnish coating. However it has been damaged over time and water was seeping into the wood. I think it is afrormosia, but was going black in places. I have stripped the affected areas and left to dry. This has reduced the strength of staining. Shortly I will be removing the tiller from the tiller stock and removing all fittings. The wood will then be bleached and sanded back to an even colour, even the screw holes will be cleared with a small drill. Then 6 to 8 coats of polyurathane varnish will be applied. Once fully hard, it will be refitted. In my opinion there is no better finish you can have than a good gloss varnish finish, but the handle will be lightly sanded with 400 grade wet and dry for better grip.
Roger
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Re: Stain or varnish tiller?

Post by bill_in_london »

Hi Roger

Sorry to jump in the thread, I have exactly the same scenario with my tiller and am planning to strip and revarnish as you describe.

Could I ask which varnish you're going to use?

How long between coats? Should it get a light sanding between?

Thanks

William
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Re: Stain or varnish tiller?

Post by Jolly Roger »

William

So far I have not yet varnished my tiller, but I have now bought the varnish to do it. I have changed my mind against a polyurathane varnish and bought some Le Tonkinois Vernis No.1 traditional varnish from the Southampton Boat Show. The main reason to change is the polyurathane is a hard finish that sticks to the wood, but Le Tonkinois soaks into the wood. This means small knocks to the polyurathane varnish can break the seal and allow water under the varnish. Le Tonkinois will pentrated the surface of the wood and stop water entering causing further waterstaining. It can also be easily patched if damaged without complete new coats, that is a real bonus for keeping things looking good.

Le Tonkinois varnish has an execellent web site with full details and online ordering. http://www.letonkinoisvarnish.uk/varMain.html
Roger
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Re: Stain or varnish tiller?

Post by bill_in_london »

Thank you
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Re: Stain or varnish tiller?

Post by Hillary »

I have just varnished my tiller. It was bare wood although when I took the metal fittings off there was slight remains of varnish underneath, my guess is the tiller had not seen varnish in many, many, years. I sanded the wood lightly to reduce the black staining around metal fixings. Then I made up a first thin coat of Epifanes varnish thinner and Epifanes varnish 50/50 and poured this through all the bolt holes and painted it on as a first coat, being thin it soaked into the wood better than undiluted varnish. I then lightly sanded and followed with 2 coats of Epifanes varnish. Then sanded again. I have put on one more coat of varnish with 2 more coats to go but already What a difference! Now the Tiller positively glows. I was not going to sand between coats but decided after re-reading the instructions that I would and I can now totally see the reason as any small bumps and undulations get smoothed out and the next coat goes on with a smooth surface. When it dries it looks like glass. Can't wait to do the rest of the wood on the boat.
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Re: Stain or varnish tiller?

Post by Jolly Roger »

To remove black stains in the wood, you can bleach them out rather than sand them. Liberon make a wood bleach, but you can also use the cheapest supermarket bleach (it is unscented) diluted at 5 parts water to 1 part bleach. Leave until the black disappears, if necessay multiple coats may be needed. When satisfied wash repeated with fresh water until there is no bleach smell. Leave to dry, lightly sand to remove any raised grain and then varnish.

Hillary. I tried Epifanes in the past and found the surface was not as hard wearing as I was expected in a Mirror dinghy. Just hope it is hard enough for you.
Roger
Concerto Fulmar FR38
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