wood finish

Discussion in 'Boatbuilding' started by metin_mehel, Dec 14, 2014.

  1. metin_mehel
    Joined: Jul 2009
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    metin_mehel mech.eng.

    Hello.
    I wonder some boats have natural wood looking I know they are plywood? Is there any method that shows okoume plywood as mahogany wood?
    Thanks
     
  2. gonzo
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    gonzo Senior Member

    You can veneer on top if you want the finish to be a different species of wood. You can varnish plywood with no problem. Are you asking about a hull looking like it is planked?
     
  3. philSweet
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    philSweet Senior Member

    Yes, but this is tricky. The normal stains you might consider are waxy and will not help when you go to epoxy over them. The stains will also tend to lift the grain, and you can't sand after you stain plywood without pulling the fibers and making a damned mess of things. The best thing to do is pigment the first few coats of finish and then make darned sure that you never have to cut the finish back that far. Or, you can go ahead and just use a waxy stain anyway and then not rely on any glued joints or laminations for strength. The cuddy on my skiff was done this way, Minwax mahogany stain over okume plywood, then glassed with 6 oz deck glass and a good UV epoxy. It lasted for over 20 years in tropical Florida, getting fresh varnish two or three times a year. The only problem was at the deck to cuddy joint where I got some rot, but that was a design flaw more than the fault of the materials. One good thing was when, after 20+ years, I went to take the deck down to plywood, the fiberglass peeled off like frogskin. The veneer was pretty thin, like 0.4 mm, so I had to be careful sanding. But the area was small, and I was able to restain the wood a bit darker and still get a half decent appearance.

    You can also buy raw dyestains in powdered form and experiment with your own concoctions. Follow the link below for water based stains, but test for grain lifting on scraps first.

    http://www.wdlockwood.com/main.html
     
  4. Mr Efficiency
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    Mr Efficiency Senior Member

    Lightly tinting the clear finish, with one or more colours, which I think is what PhilSweet is suggesting, is the obvious way to get a colour nearer to what you desire, but of course replicating grain patterns is another matter.
     
  5. metin_mehel
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    metin_mehel mech.eng.

  6. PAR
    Joined: Nov 2003
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    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    Mahogany is quite unique with it's grain qualities and difficult to create in a faux finish with stain or painting techniques. Some of these qualities can be hidden to a large degree with stain, but a close look will reveal what the real species actually is. Okoume and mahogany are very different grain wise. Mahogany is a coarse grain species, Okoume not so much, hence the difficulty. Marenti, if finished bright can fool most folks and many more, if staining removes the silica sparkle, indicative of the mahogany's.

    This said, most can't tell the difference if a relatively dark (typically quite red) stain is applied. Yes, you can stain first then epoxy over it, but you should use a pure stain, not an "all-in-one" type of finish, which is more common in today's market. If electing to stain, use a straight oil base and let it dry several days, before applying epoxy. You can also use a tint in the epoxy, saving a few steps.

    The examples you've listed:

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    are not mahogany faced plywood, but solid mahogany, which may or may not be veneers. Clearly the above has a solid mahogany covering board and king plank, though the hull and deck certainly could be a veneer, but just as likely not.

    This boat:

    [​IMG]

    is a plywood build and no one would confuse it with mahogany in any regard.
     
  7. outdoorplay
    Joined: Dec 2014
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    outdoorplay Junior Member

    yes and there are many different looks you can get.

    rice paper, on which a custom design is printed or drawn,
    then it is coated with epoxy, resin,
    The paper absorbs the epoxy and turns transparent, leaving only the design. I have see some people us it like a inlays, looks beautiful when done right.
    here is a link, they use it a lot in lures but have a lot of other uses, I am planing on doing one that will make it look like a abalone inlay

    http://www.hawaiilure.com/catalog/shells.html
     
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  8. metin_mehel
    Joined: Jul 2009
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    metin_mehel mech.eng.

    This is my catamaran. Stitch and glue method. Plywood panels were atached to eachother. I covered it with glass fiber and painted. But in my new boat I want wood finish. So what should I do on this different color plywood panels? Thanks.
     

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  9. outdoorplay
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    outdoorplay Junior Member

    you have to paint it white first, then buy witch ever wood grain you want then glass over it it.
     
  10. Mikeemc
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    Mikeemc Junior Member

  11. PAR
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    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    Doing bright finishes on wood requires meticulous wood working skill, regardless how it's applied. You can use plywood, veneers, a faux finish (butt ugly usually) or solid wood, but the quality of the finish and assembly has to be dead nuts, simply because you don't have putty and paint to hide your sins.

    Care of these finishes is also the hardest of all to keep looking good and in good condition, so be careful what you wish for.
     
  12. outdoorplay
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    outdoorplay Junior Member

    Mikeemc thanks for sharing that link learned a new a new technique, Thanks

    Par hit the nail on the head, if you want High gloss, do not short cut anything and before trying the first time, have samples that you can play with, other wise you will need to live with some imperfection
     
  13. gonzo
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    gonzo Senior Member

    If you want a bright finish, the color and grain has to be matched on all pywood and lumber. That requires going through a lot of material to find the right ones.
     
  14. metin_mehel
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    metin_mehel mech.eng.

    Above pictures there is a monohull boat which has been build by plywood. Mine is also plywood but monohull seems considerably better. Do you know how?
     

  15. PAR
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    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    Again, bright finishes require a certain level of expertise. Matching grain, matching color, knowing how to even out color, selecting pieces suited for bright finishes, etc., plus the craftsmanship to execute the build, with the precision necessary under bright finish.

    From a technical point of view, the sailboat I've pictured above is pretty poor quality, in terms of wood selection and pattern matching. They've used rotary peeled plywood, which just looks terrible under varnish, with it's wild grain patterns. The side of that boat has a good bit of blotchiness, which suggests the builder didn't seal the grain first, so varying densities within the panel, absorbed more or less color. The two runabout appear to be professionally built and the quality shows in wood selection and finish.
     
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