NOTE: I originally posted this December 2014 on Sage Marine’s BLOG. In a short time the BLOG will be closed – stupidly. I am reposting this information so it is not lost.
Exterior and interior wood, to me, makes a sailboat ‘salty’ and appropriately like, well, a boat. From my early days, when my folks started sailing, a proper boat required some wood showing. When my folks went looking for a family boat a few 100% wood boats were considered (though only for a short time).
To give full disclosure my father is a forester, and so wood was really mandatory.
The boat that ‘made the cut’ was a Cheoy Lee 32. She was one of those boats that the builder put as much teak on board as possible for a fiberglass boat. All that wood required maintenance. In learning to care for all that wood the family made some mistakes … but over time we had a system that worked very well.
As a result of caring for all that teak I have two strong opinions:
For this discussion I am going to focus on teak, meaning if you read ‘wood’ I am referring to teak.
There are many options in treating teak. The ‘best solution’ is up to each person’s preference. My preference is teak oil. Teak oil is the fastest and easiest system for maintaining teak in ‘ship shape and Bristol condition’.
On AIR BORN, the demo Sage 17, all the teak is oiled. This results in a matte finish that brings out the teaks ‘warm’ colors. It take me all of 20 minutes to apply a coat of oil all of a Sage 17’s external wood. The teak oil used is Star Brite Premium Gold.
To maintain the teak finish apply a new coat or two every three or four weeks the boat. You can go much longer if the boat is covered.
That’s it! Really, that is all that is needed. Honestly this is 1/10th the work required to apply varnish (or similar product).