varnishing inside cockpit

I searched, but could not find anything on this specific question.

I would like to put a coat of varnish inside the cockpit (mainly on floor) for UV protection.  However, since I only put 1 fill coat of epoxy on, there is still an evident weave pattern inside the hull, which helps keep a non-skid surface.  I have lightly sanded, but obviously only hit the high parts of the weave pattern (did not sand through weave).  Will the varnish still stick OK?  I was under the impression that varnish will not stick well to shiny (un-sanded) epoxy, that's why you need to sand the outside so well, so I am wondering how it will do on the low parts (between weave) in the cockpit.

Any experience from others is appreciated.  

Thanks, Kathy

5 replies:

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RE: varnishing inside cockpit


I didn't sand the interior of my cockpit (4oz cloth) at all, and I painted it with exterior oil-based paint.  Has held up fine so far (and given the lack of attention to the interior (i.e., drips, runs, gobs of epoxy from the deck glue job), it looks a lot better now!

If you decide to go with varnish I'm sure others will chime in.  Based on the discussion about primer (see first post) you may be right about varnish over clear epoxy.

Good luck,


RE: varnishing inside cockpit

I have sanded the inside of the cockpit mostly to get off the sharp edges of epoxy/fibrglass.  I didn't think about keeping it non-skid in there, but that is a thought.  Maybe sanding it lightly for you would be good, like with 220 grit, just enough to get the varnish to stick.  But by the time you get a good seat in there and footbraces, along with the thigh braces, maybe you don't have to worry about the skid factor.  And then once it gets wet, it becomes a moot point anyway.

RE: varnishing inside cockpit

I lightly sanded inside the cockpit and put on a single coat of System 3 WR-LPU (clear satin) which is a water-based 2-part polyurethane made specifically for boating/marine use.  It's the same thing I put on the outside of the kayak.  So far it seems to be holding up.  If it doesn't long-term, I'll report back.  Makes it look much better!


RE: varnishing inside cockpit


You should be fine with the WR-LPU, especially if you crosslinked it. I used the pigmented version on my sailing dinghy and it has held up very well.



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