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Yacht varnish - Epifanes, Lacq, Coelan, Schooner


(darlic) #1

I have some exterior wood to varnish on a boat. Many years ago i cant remember the name it was in blue tin with a boat picture on. I think it was schooner varnish not the international version, but great stuff, used to use it on freeman’s, anything that needed some life put back into it.

I am looking for some recommendations for interior exterior varnish s,and fillers- any feedback much appreciated , specially Andy ex boating man.


(Andy Crichton) #3

From personal experience, the claims about Epifanes yacht varnish are accurate. http://www.epifanes.com/home.htm Look under Products>Varnishes At least 8 coats and a nice soft bristle brush, enjoy.

Lacq yacht varnish is also from Holland, and cooked by the Jamie Oliver of oils, Willem at Vliegenthart. I am not privvy to trade secrets but it is along the same quality of ingredients as the Epifanes recipe, a blend of wood oil, phenolic resins and UV filters. I have seen a spar with 10+ coats on it, beautiful and tough.

A couple of tips I picked up from a guy called Jay Greer. Hot coating - just as the first coat of varnish starts to tack, apply a second coat. Don’t try it past 3 hot coats. Revert to normal practice.

Dont shake varnish.

Dont be too vigorous with sanding between coats else your 8 coats end up the thickness of 4 or 5.


(Andy Crichton) #4

There is a super longevity wood “varnish” called Coelan. It is a 2 stage process, you apply a tint to the bare wood (this is part of the trick to combat UV) and then multiple layers of a 2 pack clear coat.

This spar was known as the carrot stick.

Coelan is an horrendously expensive product about $120/m2. On the upside it will outlast any known wood finish in tropical climes, something mad like 5 years without maintenance in tropical climates, so it has its uses, but aesthetically it aint great, (bit like Sikkens Cetol) not at all easy to apply, and I didnt dare mess with the tint to reduce the orange.

If anyone else has come across how did you find it?


(Andy Crichton) #5

Here is all you need to know about the varnishes, wood finishes and aliphatic Polyurethanes on the market suitable for marine coatings.

The take away point I think is that whilst these test pieces have been left to deal with the vagaries of nature and a couple look like will go 10 years without “failing”, in reality, for all but Coelan and Uroxys (Awlfgrip) you cant go more than 2 years without applying a maintenance coat. All the products ket their integrity past 2 years without any maintenance, but they pretty much all experienced some sort of failure on arrises around 2 years, maybe 4 at most. In the marine world, you can’t really let that go for any length of time so apart from the PU’s, you would have your brushes out every 2 years for preventative maintenance.

Another thought is that many decisions in the wooden boat world hinge on aesthetics. So you have the option of long lasting Sikkens Cetol which I have seen used a lot on rails and detailing, but that product would not be seen dead on a classic boat where the owner wants high gloss varnish brightwork. So then you are back to choosing between varnishes that may go 2-3 years before you are on the maintenance cycle again. Or looking at Coelan which aesthetically is as “dodgy” as Cetol.

Hope that link helps though, it is a very interesting read, I think


(darlic) #6

Andy you probably haven’t heard off this there was a varnish that you could use to restore grp,somthing i am adding to my decorating kit is marine filler,quick drying easy to shape have you ever tried it,made by plastic padding,a grey colour,amazing stuff.


(jimmy_123) #7

I Found epifanes varnish to be good gear for boats use there thinners though.


(Andy Crichton) #8

[quote]Quote from jimmy_123 on April 23, 2014, 22:53
I Found epifanes varnish to be good gear for boats use there thinners though.[/quote]

Have you gone through many other varnishes in the process of finding Epifanes, Jimmy? It came down to a choice between Epifanes and Tonkinoise on paper. Happy with the Epifanes.


(jimmy_123) #9

Sorry i missed this Andy i was just recommended epifanes by boating people in the know and customer requested it i’ve never used the other sorry


(Andy Crichton) #10

Certainly is good advice with the Epifanes. The Lacq yacht varnish is also a similar super high grade varnish too, similar no holds barred approach, expensive material content, Dutch


(Andy Crichton) #11

What goes into yacht varnish?

Ask the manufacturers like @vliegenthart Plenty to see on FaceBook


(Paints and Interiors) #12

Andy - Can you run us through what the pictures show?


(Andy Crichton) #13

@vliegenthart can:

On the pic you will see bees wax (yellow pearls), collofonium resin (yellow flakes), some sample bottles of the special cooked binder we make ourselves, and other pictures you see the Chinese Tung Oil that is pumped in the cooking kettle.

These where just some random pics from stuff we use in all kinds of Lacq products so not only in our yacht varnish. (secret of the chef.)