varnish wet sand rubbing compound Schooners

I'm just finished painting the hull of my kayak with brightside; came out beautiful and finished putting 6 coats of varnish.  Now I've just read that Interlux also recommends not wetsandint and buffing out the varnish; just like their brightside.  The brightside is one thing; it flow out great and is on the hull.  I'm in denial regarding the varnish.  It's hard to imagine that I wouldn't have a better short and long term appearance with the wetsand to 1600 plus grit followed by rubbing compound routine.  Has anyone done this with Schooners (gold) product.  Any advise?

What varnish can you wet sand and buffer for final finish.  I thought you can do this to them all.  I've had great results in the past. 


thanks in advance


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RE: varnish wet sand rubbing compound Schooners


very quick response, as always, from Jay at Interlux

Hi Brad,

Unfortunately we recommend that you do not wetsand/buff/compound Schooner Gold or any varnish/topcoat within the Interlux product range. The reasoning would be that when doing so you are actually doing more harm to the coating then good. Sure the process would absolutley work to remove imperfections and ensure that the surface is as smooth as possible. However when doing so you will end up creating an uneven level of gloss and you will also end up weaking the coating by reducing the film build. See, as these products cure the resin will float to the top of the paint film. This resin not only supplies the gloss of the material, but provides the durability/integrity of the coating as well. Once this resin build has begun to be reduced, you will see a reduction in the gloss but you will also end up weakening the material. The weakening of the material would end up causing the varnish to breakdown prematurely. Based off of these likely negative effects on the varnish, we recommend that you do not wetsand, buff or compound the material, but rather leave it alone. We cannot stop any individuals from proceeding along with some wetsanding/buffing/compounding if they truly desire to do so, however those individuals should be aware to the likely negative effects on the coating and expect the varnish to look good initially, but breakdown significantly quicker then if the coating were left alone.
I am also sorry to say, but we do not offer/produce a coating which is suitable to wetsand, buff or compound. These types of coatings are generally acrylics, which are weaker to begin with and don't really hold up all to well.
I apologize for the inconvenience and hope that this helps to explain it a bit more.

RE: varnish wet sand rubbing compound Schooners

One of the CLC professionals recommended thinning the Schooner varnish with 10% mineral spirits and 10% Pentrol. I did that on my last finish job and I loved the way the varnish applied and as well as the final outcome. It flowed well upon application and the final product looked much better than the unthinnned application of Schooner varnish

RE: varnish wet sand rubbing compound Schooners

I am using the Zspar Captains varnish and the first 2 coats went on too thick for my my preference.  After talking to Matt at CLC I thinned it with 10 percent Penetrol and it flows better, still leaving a few brush strokes.  I will try the addition of 10 percent mineral spirits on the 4th coat.  How many coats are most of you guys using and what are you sanding with between coats?  I am thinking of launching tomorrow after my 4th coat(today) and wait until October to get that "perfect" finish and put it away for the winter so it will harden/cure good for next spring.   I used Brightside Sea Green for the bottom, it looks OK(great from 5 feet away).  I did not thin the Bright side, are any of you guys thinning the Brightside Paint?


RE: varnish wet sand rubbing compound Schooners

I just finished my Guillemot today.  I used the Schooner varnish and it worked great.  I never used varnish before and I thought that it was going to be hard to work with.

I used the Schooner varnish straight from the can with out any thiner. I used a foam brush and it flowed great, without any brush marks.

I worked in my basement at 70 deg. and 55% humidity.

I dulled the finish with a Scotch Bright pad between coats.  I have three coats on now.  In a few weeks, after the varnish has hardend, I will sand it smooth with 400 grit and put one more coat on.


RE: varnish wet sand rubbing compound Schooners

On my Shearwater I wet sanded with 400 grit before the final coat and did the same before I refinished it last winter. I used Schooner Gold thinned with mineral spirits and Penetrol (as per Joey) and this worked fine.

On my wife's boat I used Schooner thinned the same way and did not wet sand. I find that letter a reason to do less work and that's just fine with me.

Your boat is looking great, Lou! 


RE: varnish wet sand rubbing compound Schooners

I thinned both the brightside and the schooners gold with 333

The brightside went on suprisingly easy and came out near perfect.  Mirror finish, no brush strokes, one small drip and a very small amount of dust, which I would like advice on how to take down. 

the varnish went on pretty well, no brush strokes showing but a couple of drips.  Unfortunately I decided to use some of the carbon fiber eye straps that added difficulty to varnish around and was were the drips developed.  I wished I didn't go with these.. I would of been happier installing eye straps that came with kit.




RE: varnish wet sand rubbing compound Schooners

bright side and schooner gold

RE: varnish wet sand rubbing compound Schooners

RE: varnish wet sand rubbing compound Schooners

Really nice, Brad! What model boat is that?


RE: varnish wet sand rubbing compound Schooners

Thanks Dan

It's a shearwater 17 hybrid.  My first attempt with strip and glue. 

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