Features January 2011 Issue

Boat Maintenance: 18-month Checkup on Wood Finishes Test

Practical Sailor rates varnishes and varnish alternatives as they search for the best exterior wood coating.

Testers rated dozens of wood finishes—including one-part varnishes, two-part varnishes, synthetic systems, and teak oils—after the test panels faced a year and a half of Florida weather exposure. Find out how the finishes ranked for ease of application, gloss, appearance, and durability. Still going strong in the ongoing long-term test are 20 of the original 22 one-part varnishes and all six of the original two-part varnishes. As a group, varnish alternatives such as Interlux Sikkens Cetol, teak oils, and teak sealers struggled to make the 18-month cut, but nine remain in the test. Products that were doing well 18 months after application include coatings from Interlux, Coelan, Pettit, HMG, and Nautiking. The report also includes a brief look at a new product, Vermont Natural Coatings PolyWhey, which was applied to PS's Cape Dory 25 test boat. This unique coating's base is whey, a byproduct of cheesemaking, rather than oil.

To continue reading this article, you must be a paid subscriber.

Subscribe to Practical Sailor today and save 72%.

Here's what you'll get:

  • Immediate access to this article.
  • Access to more than 2,000 Practical Sailor articles like this.
  • Each new monthly issue delivered to you.
  • Recommendations of the best electronics for your boat.
  • Money- and hassle-saving tips for finding your dream boat.
  • Help installing new equipment and gear so you'll get it done right the first time!
  • Ratings on the newest paints, coatings and materials to keep your boat ship-shape.

Your satisfaction to Practical Sailor is guaranteed. Subscribe today to see why hundreds of thousands of sailors trust us as their #1 source of boating information.

 

Subscriber Log In

Forgot your password? Click Here.
Already subscribed but haven't registered for all the benefits of the website? Click here.