Unhappy with transom

Loved building the wherry, so beautiful but the plywood transom on my kit lacked any grain figure and had a pale yellowish color. It didn't match the interior ply. The interior had a rich, redish color and the transom was paler and yellow.

I tried a water based stain but the results were unsatisfactory. The okuma in this piece mildewed easily with any water and I had to sand it back. I finished the boat with epoxy and 3 coats of varnish. Everything looked great except the transom, front and back.

After looking at it for 2 years I couldn't stand it any longer. After emails to varnish manufacters which got no where, I decided to experiment. I found that mixing a small amount of dark red enamel paint into glossy spar varnish worked very well.

The transom still does not have any distinctive grain figure but the color and tone match the interior.

3 replies:

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RE: Unhappy with transom

What we have done a number of times is to glue a second (usually thinner) transom right over the old transom.  We're just finishing a transomectomy on our 12-year-old Chester Yawl, which after 100,000 miles of cartopping had suffered from fading of the okoume transom.  Since the perimeter of the varnished transom is painted, the seam between old and new transom is invisible.  It looks like a new boat.  

RE: Unhappy with transom

Interesting solution, John. A friend had suggested veneer but it looked like more work than I had in mind..

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