Some questions on wear after 2 months of paddling...

Hi all,

 I finished my C16 in the end of May, and have been out about a dozen times since then.  Yesterday as my wife and I were launching in the Annisquam River, she mentioned some dark spots on the deck.  She pointed out what she was talking about, and sure enough, there are dark splotches on the deck which look like the shape of water droplets and have a darker hue then the rest of the mahogany.  Tried to rub them off, but to no avail.  I'm pretty sure they're in the glass or epoxy or (eek!) the wood itself.  Now, I put 6 coats of high gloss epifanes on this boat, to a perfect coffee table finish (which is unfortunate considering all the scratches now punctuating the keel line).  In addition to the spots, I am also seeing a pattern of weave when I look at the glass at the right angle.  I know that I could not possibly have worn through 6 coats of varnish in 2 months, most of which have been inside my garage (where I store the boat), but is it possible that the UV protection offered by the varnish is already wearing down??   

My greatest fear with the spots is that I let water spots sit on deck too long the other morning while the boat was sitting on the car, and that water magnified the sun to 'burn' spots into the wood.  The odd thing about this hypothesis is that a few of the spots are visible in a cloudy area of deck where I sanded into the glass, perfectly showing the grain of the wood like there was no glass there at all.

 Should I take this thing out of commission for a few weeks and lay down another 6 coats of varnish?  I'm totally at peace with the scratches that rocks have imparted on the hull (it is a kayak after all, and gets a lot of use), but the water spots are really bothering me, and I'm worried that they've done irreparable damage to the deck.  

Ideas?  Condolences?  



6 replies:

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RE: Some questions on wear after 2 months of paddling...


I too used Epifanes on my WD12, launched 2nd week in June, though I think we have had it out at least couple dozen times including two full days, dawn to dusk with no ill effects (except all the regular scratches).  I used Sikkens on my previous boat but switched to Epifanes as they were out of stock of the Sikkens. 

When I picked up the can, the store owner pointed out that the one I had did not have UV protection so I switched to the maximum UV can, it is a little darker tint.  Perhaps you go the wrong can.

RE: Some questions on wear after 2 months of paddling...

P.S. the can without the UV was rated exterior, just no UV.  It is good when covering something that does not need the UV protection the way fiberglass does.

RE: Some questions on wear after 2 months of paddling...

This stuff was definitely the right varnish.  

 I'm debating taking a week in August to strip the varnish off the bottom of the hull and coat with graphite.  It has become clear that bright-finished wooden kayaks and a rocky exposed New England coastline do not mix well!   



RE: Some questions on wear after 2 months of paddling...

I have one Duck with the epoxy graphite and one with varnish.

They will both have epoxy/ graphite by next spring. Sooner if I find time to do so before hand.

Its not that the epoxy graphite doesnt get marked up, but it doesnt "sratch like varnish, and it just looks like it is doing its job versus damageg!!

Definitely the way to go!




RE: Some questions on wear after 2 months of paddling...

You also mentioned seeing the pattern of weave.  This sounds like a common occurrence called "print through".  It happens when the boat gets hot.  I don't recall what the fix is but you should be able to find it by searching for "print through" on this forum or the web.

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