Re: coloured varnish?

Posted by Dave Houser on Jul 15, 2005

Adding Japan colors to varnish has been done for years in woodworking and is an easy way to add color to a kayak. I went the aniline-dye route and it is a pain. The dye needs to be applied to the bare wood which cannot be done evenly after any epoxing i.e. gluing seams or splices. In fact it should be done before cutting and drilling the panels because the cut end grain dyes darker. But then the tools mar the dyed wood so you must epoxy seal coat the dyed wood prior to cutting the panels. But then you have to sand the seal coat to apply the glass cloth but not through to the dye. And you cannot round the chines and shears or you will sand through the dye. So that is why the green kayak on the cover of “Kayaks You Can Build” has sharp cornered seams with a color-accented filler. A real pain but it does look sharp.

Color the varnish or paint. But you know Okoume looks damn good with just plain epoxy and varnish.

In Response to: Re: coloured varnish? by Walt on Jul 15, 2005