Handrail and toerail finish

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graham5494
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Handrail and toerail finish

Post by graham5494 » Feb 6th, '18, 19:50

The handrails and toe rails on my Endeavour 26 need attention.

Without sanding down to bare wood - do I stain , varnish or paint them ?

If so what products or treatments should I use ?

I have lots of work to do on the boat so do not wish to spend heaps on this task.

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Gezza
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Re: Handrail and toerail finish

Post by Gezza » Feb 6th, '18, 21:00

If you want a decent result there is only one option, bite the bullit and sand to bare wood, if you don’t the result will not be very nice and you will have to spent more even more time sanding to get it right.
It will not be that bad, start with 60 or 80 grid to get the old paint off then 120 to get a smooth finish, then if you want a nice result use a maritime varnish maybe even 2 pack and give it a light rub and coat every year or two then you keep it nice for years to come and it will be rewarding. And best thing is to remove from the boat.
Or if you don’t want to spent much time now you better leave it as is and do it in winter when you have more time.
Good luck with the projects.
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colect149
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Re: Handrail and toerail finish

Post by colect149 » Feb 6th, '18, 21:29

Like my handrails, the wood in the photo seems to have faded, I tried some restorer with little effect. For now I am just leaving them. Any hints to get the colour back in the wood? When and if I have time I will start again. If I can get the colour back I will use oil rather than varnish. Once restored, a quick rub over with oil about three times a year will keep them looking good. Varnish is nice but sooner or later it breaks down and the major drama of stripping it I can't hack.
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Tinggu
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Re: Handrail and toerail finish

Post by Tinggu » Feb 6th, '18, 22:47

It's nice to have a touch of good looking woodwork, so I would recommend varnish. Once painted you cannot see the deterioration (read "rot"). Scrubbing with oxalic acid can sometimes restore faded wood colour. When I first did the job you are contemplating I did it without taking the grabrails off, to my disappointment. The next year I did again properly - basically as Gezza outlines, removing them and did the job at home in the shed, after sanding filling and fairing where necessary for the best possible grounding for the varnish.
Yes, varnish does break down, but properly prepared and with sufficient coats (at least 3) it will last several seasons. Some woods such as teak respond well to CONTINUAL oiling, if you really want to keep up the colour. Some would say teak is best left unvarnished and allowed to grey. I doubt if your grabrails are teak. If oxalic acid does not restore the colour a pot of stain should do the trick. Varnish does not have to be "marine" but definitely exterior quality and with the best UV protection you can afford.
It's really not such a big job for a great looking result.
All the above are my own opinions!
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(edited to read '...NOT "marine" ')
Last edited by Tinggu on Feb 7th, '18, 08:42, edited 1 time in total.
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garymalmgren
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Re: Handrail and toerail finish

Post by garymalmgren » Feb 7th, '18, 00:06

Well the handrails couldn't look any worse, So I would just leave them till they can be done properly.

Without sanding down to bare wood - do I stain , varnish or paint them ?

There is no way around sanding them back.
With a cheap little orbital sander and the rails removed it would be an hours work.
Nice little winter job.
Of course the tow rail will be fiddlier (?).
As to paint, varnish or stain.
I would go for polyurethane , wipe on.
As mentioned already, a touch of nice wood looks wonderful.
gary

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Bligh
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Re: Handrail and toerail finish

Post by Bligh » Feb 7th, '18, 08:48

mine need doing too and I will cut back and sand to 220 grit using a good quality aluminium oxide sandpaper on my 18v multi tool.
A clean rag and Deks Olje oil finish is my choice which will finish in matte or gloss, I prefer matte which is one can.
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apply the finish often and it will look after you.
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Re: Handrail and toerail finish

Post by davem » Feb 7th, '18, 11:25

I too have gone the matte Deks Olje route for my teak. Although a little more frequent, its very simple maintenance. I found I had to recoat soon (weeks) after the initial coats but has been pretty good since then.

If I went varnish, I would still be procrastinating about doing it !

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islandmarty
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Re: Handrail and toerail finish

Post by islandmarty » Feb 7th, '18, 12:32

I hope the deks olje is good I just bought 4l gloss to do my masts and maybe the main boom and gaff.
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Re: Handrail and toerail finish

Post by zebedee » Feb 7th, '18, 13:29

Tinggu wrote:...Some woods such as teak respond well to CONTINUAL oiling, if you really want to keep up the colour.
davem wrote:I too have gone the matte Deks Olje route for my teak. Although a little more frequent, its very simple maintenance. I found I had to recoat soon (weeks) after the initial coats but has been pretty good since then.
islandmarty wrote:I hope the deks olje is good I just bought 4l gloss to do my masts and maybe the main boom and gaff.
I hope you like climbing your masts?
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graham5494
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Re: Handrail and toerail finish

Post by graham5494 » Feb 7th, '18, 15:17

Well it appears from the majority opinion , that I will need to do the hard yards ! Such is life !

Okay, what I would like to know is how has the existing brown colour come about , is it from ageing of the original varnish or shellac ?

Is the majority opinion that the timber itself is teak , or could it be mahogany ? My knowledge of Australian woods basically comprises plywood and pine !

I do need some thicker paint for the toe rail (see picture) will polyfilla do the trick ?

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Gezza
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Re: Handrail and toerail finish

Post by Gezza » Feb 7th, '18, 16:07

Hi graham, to me, the brown on your grab rails seems stain when you sand it it will come back to the original wood colour. As for that toe rail, I would get some new wood, it would be less work because that one is busted. I don’t think it is teak, but if most of the toe rail looks like that you might as well replace the lot and you can get any decent would because you would not have to match. I think trying to fix that would be the same amount of work and a disappointment. As to what wood would be best for a toerail / rub strip and where to buy it I am sure someone here would know.
Looks like you will be busy this winter.
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Tinggu
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Re: Handrail and toerail finish

Post by Tinggu » Feb 7th, '18, 17:45

I know that if I had a beautifully varnished wooden toe rail all nice and shiny it would not be that way for long. It would get banged up in no time. Perhaps oiled teak might keep its looks. Our boat came with aluminium toerail and I'm grateful I did not have to pay for it. Is there a cost effective plastic product that would wear well and look great? (apart from 2" poly pipe)
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Jack
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Re: Handrail and toerail finish

Post by Jack » Feb 7th, '18, 19:07

I too need to do my teak grabrails. I have heard that the timber goes “blacker” (for the lack of a better word) over time when using Deks Olje? Is there any truth in this?
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garymalmgren
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Re: Handrail and toerail finish

Post by garymalmgren » Feb 7th, '18, 19:13

Graham
Teak has always been expensive.
Endeavours were not top of the range boats so my guess is that it is not teak and probably not mahogany either.
The toerails and cappings need replacing (down the road), but if they are not leaking leave it till later.
I suspect by your photo that you will need to remove the old timber, screws and calking and start again from scratch.
Not a huge job, but time consuming. If you don't have the time to finish, don't start.
When you do tackle it, look at plastic substitute wood for the job. (Decking or other use)
1. It is available and you will save the time spent running around trying to chase down affordable timber (if the stuff exists).
2, It will not rot, warp or split,
3, It has the ability to bounce back from dings.
4, You don't need to sand, paint or vanish it.

Just sail for now and think about repairs later,
gary

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Re: Handrail and toerail finish

Post by zebedee » Feb 7th, '18, 19:59

garymalmgren wrote:...
When you do tackle it, look at plastic substitute wood for the job. (Decking or other use)
1. It is available and you will save the time spent running around trying to chase down affordable timber (if the stuff exists).
2, It will not rot, warp or split,
3, It has the ability to bounce back from dings.
4, You don't need to sand, paint or vanish it.
I was thinking the same thing; I would think that Ecodeck would be ideal for toerails. The stuff looks good, is reasonably flexible, can be cut and machined with woodworking tools, and stands the UV much better than anything that was ever part of a tree, without any painting or oiling. I used Ecodeck to replace the storm board slides and the trim across the rear edge of the sliding hatch on Roller Coaster 6 years ago; it hasn't visibly weathered at all.
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Re: Handrail and toerail finish

Post by Tinggu » Feb 7th, '18, 22:27

https://www.bunnings.com.au/our-range/brands/e/ekodeck
Uninspiring colours but otherwise looks like a great option.
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DIGGER-NZ
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Re: Handrail and toerail finish

Post by DIGGER-NZ » Feb 9th, '18, 08:44

Hmmm ecodeck has me interested. My rails are falling apart. How well does it bend to shape?
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Re: Handrail and toerail finish

Post by zebedee » Feb 9th, '18, 11:15

It's relatively flexible, certainly no less than timber of similar dimensions.
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garymalmgren
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Re: Handrail and toerail finish

Post by garymalmgren » Feb 9th, '18, 12:21

I think the trick to get it to bend around the outside of the deck line is thickness.
The product that Tinggu tagged from Bunnings is 23 mm thick.
You won't get this to bend tightly.
And I suspect that if it were bend and afixed it to the hullside the springback pressure would be too strong.
I think most of these products are made for decking so 23 mm will be the standard thickness.
The outer rubbing strip (the piece that is afixed to the outside of the hull on the deckline) only needs to be 13 to 15 mm thick.
So you would need to get hold of thin material or rip the ecodeck to an appropriate thickness.
A search for the desired thickness would be the way to go.
Gary

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Re: Handrail and toerail finish

Post by zebedee » Feb 9th, '18, 12:44

A thicknesser (yes, that really is the legitimate name of a serious piece of equipment) will reduce ekodeck to whatever thickness (not thinness; that would be a thinnesser!) you need. One more reason to acquaint yourself with your local men's shed if you don't know anyone who owns one.
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Re: Handrail and toerail finish

Post by luke.sleeman » Feb 17th, '18, 00:26

I stripped all my brightwork back to bare wood and re-varnished it with some feast Watson marine spar varnish:

https://www.bunnings.com.au/feast-watso ... h_p1561089

I chose it because it was one of the only finishes in Bunnings that had 'marine' in the name. It's actually been holding up very well.

If I was to do things again I would use international Woodskin:
http://www.yachtpaint.com/gbr/diy/produ ... dskin.aspx

Apparently it's a porous finish more like a stain. It's supposed to last much longer than regular varnish and degrade more gracefully.

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Re: Handrail and toerail finish

Post by davem » Feb 17th, '18, 06:20

DIGGER-NZ wrote:Hmmm ecodeck has me interested. My rails are falling apart. How well does it bend to shape?
I was just thinking, I wonder if ecodeck would become easier to bend with the judicious use of a heat gun ?

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Re: Handrail and toerail finish

Post by Bligh » Feb 17th, '18, 08:15

I did a google on bending and it can be bent with heat, I have bent timber in the past using a steam box and imagine that this would give you an even temp across the length of the material, I think it is waterproof so it should work and you only need a length of PVC pipe not much bigger than the material, plug on end and have a steam source, mine was a 4 litre oil can full of water on an exploder with a hose going into the tube and plugged with a rag, leave to steam for about 20-30 minutes and it should be an even heat, take out and place on former and clamp.
The other option I could think of would be a heat post, a heated metal tube about 4" in diameter and gently apply the material and bend carefully, this is how luthiers bend the timbers for instrument bodies.
The tube should be hollow with a blowtorch heating the inside.
I have never worked with the material but after reading about the composition I imagine it should work.
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Re: Handrail and toerail finish

Post by byrdsworth » Feb 17th, '18, 09:20

This is what I did mine with

sanded back and poly rub on finish

Image

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Re: Handrail and toerail finish

Post by Slammin » Feb 17th, '18, 15:24

I've used the ecodeck as a garden border around the swimming pool. The colour isn't great but that's personal choice. It's very easy to work with. It's heavy. It's easy to bend almost too easy. Think of it more as sawdust and plastic dust compressed together and extruded. It's been a year in the sun and rain now and looks as new as when I put it down. It also gets incredibly hot. To fit it on as a toerail I would leave it in the sun all day and just screw it on. For a short beamy boat if the curve seemed too tight I would just route a few points on the tightest bend. Wood would be nicer and alloy toerail isn't impossible to obtain.

I think a group buy and aproaching an alloy extruder would be smartest. Apparently they have the moulds but not enough demand to do a run. A simple flat profile with a nib at the top and cutouts would be easy peasy. I've looked into it recently for a friend and I think it would be feasible. You just need enough hands up.
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