Varnishing - again!!

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Garry R

Varnishing - again!!

Post by Garry R » Tue Jan 06, 2009 12:40 pm

You would think after several boats that I would have mastered (more or less) the art of varnishing but there is still one aspect which defeats me occasionly. Varnishing the Merlins - clinker built of course - I find it difficult on the outside of the hull not to get vertical runs on the surfaces which present themselves for varnishing on a vertical plane. ie the bottom of the hull with the boat upside down is fine where planks are presented horizontal but at the bow where it meets the stem often gets a vertical run. It is as if the varnish runs into a pool at the lands and goes into the vertical run where it overflows. Am I just putting too much on at a time or do you just have to keep an eye on it and brush them away risking dragging the surface nearby and ending up with a mess! I dont have the same problem with the Firefly and its smooth hull. I am using either Blakes Duragloss or International Goldspar.

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neil
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Re: Varnishing - again!!

Post by neil » Tue Jan 06, 2009 1:47 pm

The technique that I found that worked for me was apply varnish with a small roller (I found the ones I bought were nearly the same width as plank) then a light brush over with a Jenny Brush. The key is lots of thin coats - I think the Tideway had about 14 coats, but I found I could get a coat on in the morning before leaving for work and one in the evening. I did a quick flatten back every 3 or 4 coats.
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Re: Varnishing - again!!

Post by Michael Brigg » Tue Jan 06, 2009 1:59 pm

I think the brush you use can be an important issue. A small (ie 1 inch or smaller) "used" brush which for want of a better term is (like myself) thinning on top, I think is likely to give an uneven cover and is less good at brushing out pooled areas and perhaps is less good at providing a thin even spread. There is a greater need with an old or small brush to "sqeeze the brush" to get that last Sq. inch of cover.

Conversely a bushy new brush perhaps @2inch size will allow a faster cover, thinner coat and will brush out better because the varnish you go back to is still quite thin. The bushier brush will also pick up/absorb any excess residue more easily.

Then of course there is temparature. Warmer thinner paint will spread better. Perhaps a small addition of thinner if it is cold. As you say, I suspect that Clinker boats perhaps need a thinner application to avoid these runs.

I would try a slightly bigger, good quality, brand new brush.
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Re: Varnishing - again!!

Post by roger » Tue Jan 06, 2009 3:40 pm

Roller for me every time now. As Neil says you can get thin coats on and more frequent.
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Re: Varnishing - again!!

Post by RichardB2 » Tue Jan 06, 2009 5:47 pm

And don't forget ( not many people know this) when you have finished varnishing instead of cleaning the brush each time you finish just get a paint kettle half filled with linseed oil and suspend your brushes over the kettle with about a 3rd of the brush submerged in the oil, gravity forces the bits out of the brush and into the oil leaving a nice clean tool to work with next time, you will never have to clean your brushes again! When the time comes to varnish remove excess oil with clean rag (otherwise the varnish being oil based takes longer to dry) and off you go! :wink: Doesn't work with 2 pack though. :(

As for the varnishing I have had this problem in the past and as mentioned in an earlier post rollers would seem the best option. I'll have a word with Steve Jevons who works with Laurie Smart (only up the road - 5 mind drive) and ask how he manages to produce the perfect finish each time on vertical surfaces with a brush, i'm sure he will tell me that it is down to 40+ years of experience! Will come back with some info soon.

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Re: Varnishing - again!!

Post by Ancient Geek » Wed Jan 07, 2009 9:44 pm

I am the world worst painter & varnisher but I've been shown and told by the best!
The trick I was always told was to thin the bloody stuff down and apply VERY thinly in a warm temperature or at least a rising temperature gradient, oh yes and The Colman Boat-Man in Oulton Broad said wear good clothes to make sure there's no dust and fluff and the stuff goes where its supposed to!
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Re: Varnishing - again!!

Post by Rupert » Thu Jan 08, 2009 12:08 am

Wearing a cagoule rather than a wooly jumper helps on the dust front.
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Re: Varnishing - again!!

Post by Ancient Geek » Thu Jan 08, 2009 1:28 pm

Swimming trunks on a summers morning was the real thing they say! Varnishing better done in the warm. Not helpful at this time of the year!
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Re: Varnishing - again!!

Post by Rupert » Thu Jan 08, 2009 1:34 pm

Ancient Geek wrote:Swimming trunks on a summers morning was the real thing they say! Varnishing better done in the warm. Not helpful at this time of the year!
The Summer we had in 2008 I think you'd be racing to see whether the hypothermia hit before the varnishing was finished!
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Re: Varnishing - again!!

Post by roger » Thu Jan 08, 2009 7:35 pm

I am told the old coach builders used to suspend the coaches over a bath of water and stood in the water to keep the dust down.
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Re: Varnishing - again!!

Post by Michael Brigg » Thu Jan 08, 2009 9:13 pm

Are we on the cusp of developing a new sport here??

Perhaps we should include the website below on the links page!! :lol:

http://www.extremeironing.com/
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Re: Varnishing - again!!

Post by DavidC » Thu Jan 08, 2009 9:22 pm

Apart from preparation, preparation and more preparation I make sure I dust and hoover the workshop before starting. Then run the filter for a couple of hours to make sure as much dust has been removed. I suggest wearing the disposable paper overalls as they are coated to prevent dust sticking. Obviously the door needs to be closed and I lightly water the floor where I am working with a fine rose on the watering can to make sure dust does not rise.

As to application, you need the best quality brushes and practice, practice and practice. Hand varnishing a 55 foot schooner hull and deck houses was good practice! No runs allowed!! :? :? :?

Garry R

Re: Varnishing - again!!

Post by Garry R » Fri Jan 09, 2009 10:50 am

Bought jenny brushes from ebay

http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/ws/eBayISAPI.dll? ... 0020256257

Very quick delivery and a good price. Can really recommend

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Re: Varnishing - again!!

Post by Nigel » Fri Jan 09, 2009 6:30 pm

Hi all,

I picked up a Dulux floor varnish roller the other day - about 6 inches wide, very short pile. My local cheap shop was knocking them out for 99p.

If anyone wants one, I can see if any are left and bring them to Whitefriars.

Nigel

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Re: Varnishing - again!!

Post by Ed » Fri Jan 09, 2009 6:50 pm

imho

those are the tools you need:

very short pile small rollers....and Jennybrushes....and thinners.

oh....and a good 1.5in brush for the edges...and tack-rags....and sandpaper....and wet'n'dry

and some good weather....and a little warmth....and shade....and...and ....and


cheers

eib
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