'hairy' okoume

Hi all,

 So I haven't even put epoxy to wood yet, but here I am on my second post.  I'm wondering which side of the okoume most people use for their finished exterior since marine ply has 'good' veneers on both sides.  I noticed while lining up my scarfs last night that the nice side of the wood (the side opposite manufacture stamping and stickers) has some hairy grain to it, almost as if it wasn't planed closely enough in the finishing process.  This side also has the most beautiful swirls and color, and would be gorgeous on the exterior.  My question:  do people typically choose the manufacturer's recommended 'good' side (non-marked) or just pick and choose accordingly?  This won't effect my scarfing tomorrow, but I'd like to have an idea before gluing on the sheer clamps on Sunday.  I guess my main worry is sanding down all the rougher grain and potentially breaking through the veneer (but its just so beautiful!).



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RE: 'hairy' okoume

I personally build strippers instead of s&g's, but wood as you describe in cabinet building I find a lot.  I use the side with the most beauty.  You can calm the fuzzies with a light skim coat of epoxy before you glass.  Wet sand it down to knock off the high spots, glass it, and you should be fine.  But Lazslo seems to have some real good tricks in this department.  I have learned a lot from his comments about epoxy.


RE: 'hairy' okoume

Rather than sanding the fuzzies, I would use a card scraper, pulling in the direction of the grain.  This will remove the standing grain without digging in, or the danger of sanding too deep.  Like KK says, after you add epoxy, and especially if you are glassing, you should be fine.

Super-hard Milled Scraper (set of 4)

CLC sells these card scrapers:



RE: 'hairy' okoume

   Another good way to remove hairy grain is to  sand the wood with 100-150 grit then use 220grit  after sanding to 220 use a damp cloth to raise the grain- wipe down the wood- when dry lightly sand with 220 the wood will be smooth as glass. I use this method on all my wood projects including the kayak I'm finishing.



RE: 'hairy' okoume



Thanks. I have been obsessing about my scarfs so much that I never really thought that it might be a good idea to have the imprinted side of the wood as the outside so I could paint over it - duh!

Best scarfing tip I found was to set the blade very shallow. I started with mine a tad deep and although I had impressive curly q's of wood coming off it did create a divott or two. And of course sharpen.


RE: 'hairy' okoume

Thanks for all the input...  I faired the completed scarfs last night and they came out pretty nice.  Only had one small 'break-through,' and its such a narrow line I doubt anyone but me will notice.  I had used 1.5 mil vinyl sheet plastic between panels.  I decided not to tape off the panels, and instead used a combination of scraper and sander to get off the excess epoxy (not too much flow out of the joint).  I also played around with the heavy grain, and it feels like a good shot with 120 grit will knock it down enough. 

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