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IndustryArena Forum > WoodWorking > General WoodWorking > How to finish and waterproof wood
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  1. #1
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    How to finish and waterproof wood

    How to finish and waterproof wood?

  2. #2
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    Re: How to finish and waterproof wood

    Well, I think you can just use varnish or something for this purpose.

  3. #3
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    Re: How to finish and waterproof wood

    The only thing that I'm aware of that comes close to waterproofing wood is epoxy (which is subject to degradation from UV exposure). Best to topcoat with an exterior varnish (or better yet, paint). By the way, UV inhibitors are just that. They resist for a time, but ultimately break down on exposure.

  4. #4
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    Re: How to finish and waterproof wood

    If you really need it to be "waterproof" you can soak it in penetrating epoxy, Home of Smith's Original and Genuine Clear Penetrating Epoxy Sealer which will work better than a top-coat alone, although top-coating it afterwards is advised. But nothing made of wood lasts forever outdoors.
    Andrew Werby
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  5. #5
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    Re: How to finish and waterproof wood

    What are you making? Waterproof can mean many things here. Best course of action depends on intended use. If it's outdoor furniture, it's one thing, if it's a boat, something else entirely.

  6. #6

    Re: How to finish and waterproof wood

    west systems has epoxy that the boat builders use .I've built a number of wooden boats and the only bad thing about epoxy is that it sucks to work with , otherwise the stuff is tough to beat for waterproofing wood and longevity
    As far as uv goes , thats dependent upon the epoxy being used . There is a difference between uv resistant and uv protection , protection means that it's specifically designed to handle regular uv exposure . Since almost everything will eventually break down with enough uv exposure then nothing is bullet proof , but it's a far cry between a decent flex coat vs 5 minute epoxy

  7. #7
    Community Moderator ger21's Avatar
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    Re: How to finish and waterproof wood

    West System recommends 3 coats of epoxy, and at least 3-5 coats of varnish over the epoxy.
    Gerry

    UCCNC 2017 Screenset
    http://www.thecncwoodworker.com/2017.html

    Mach3 2010 Screenset
    http://www.thecncwoodworker.com/2010.html

    JointCAM - CNC Dovetails & Box Joints
    http://www.g-forcecnc.com/jointcam.html

    (Note: The opinions expressed in this post are my own and are not necessarily those of CNCzone and its management)

  8. #8

    Re: How to finish and waterproof wood

    I've never used any varnish but I've painted over it . For the time it would take to break down the epoxy I'd have lost interest in what ever I'd be using it on . I've got 20-30 yr old fishing rods with wraps that are epoxy coated and the coated guide wraps are no different than new aside from normal wear . Vs the numerous black fishing caps I've worn on my head which all eventually turned to gray
    One of my old boats is sitting along side the house , the paint is all pealed from it and the wood for the most part is rotten . Except at the stitch and glue seams which were all epoxy coated , the epoxy and wood underneath the coating doesn't really look much different from when I built it . Eventually it'll be an epoxy frame if I leave it long enough to completely rot away

  9. #9
    Community Moderator ger21's Avatar
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    Re: How to finish and waterproof wood

    Yes, paint is a more durable finish than Varnish, as it blocks the UV. But Varnish is your best option when you want to see the wood.
    Gerry

    UCCNC 2017 Screenset
    http://www.thecncwoodworker.com/2017.html

    Mach3 2010 Screenset
    http://www.thecncwoodworker.com/2010.html

    JointCAM - CNC Dovetails & Box Joints
    http://www.g-forcecnc.com/jointcam.html

    (Note: The opinions expressed in this post are my own and are not necessarily those of CNCzone and its management)

  10. #10

    Re: How to finish and waterproof wood

    definitely for some , I used tremclad which isn't anything great but it sure does stick . My point was that the paint has long peeled off the boat and everything is rotting around the epoxy coated wood which hasn't changed at all . The problem with epoxy is it's so ignorant to work with that getting a finish as clean and smooth as varnish isn't going to happen , so on a clear finish I'd agree with using varnish over top for aesthetic reasons . Aside from that , for simple waterproofing I can't see anything outlasting epoxy

  11. #11
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    Re: How to finish and waterproof wood

    Hi unstuckable - epoxy is good but will yellow with age. If you want to clear coat it with std paints and varnishes such as polyurethanes then these degrade over time as well. UV is pretty tough on these sort of things. Plus wood expands and contracts quite a bit so brittle coatings fail over time. Epoxy has good elongation so will stretch and shrink with the wood but needs a topcoat with a good UV inhibitor in it to retard yellowing. Something to look for is polyaspartic coatings used in the concrete and industrial coatings. PAE is quite stretchy, thin so will penetrate timber nicely and does not yellow. It's a relatively new compound but has been around long enough that we know it works.

    Most coatings fail on wood/timber if the humidity is up on the day of application, most paints except acrylics or PVAs do not get on well with water. Timbers job is to transport water so it sucks up tonnes of the stuff easily....Epoxy is such as well it will not stick if water is around. If this is furniture then keep it warm inside for a few days to dry out then apply your sealer coats. Once these are dry or cured then you can final sand, then apply top coats.

    Apply coats on a falling temperature so the timber does not outgas and make 100's of tiny bubbles in the surface. There are many processes to learn depends on what you are coating and what it needs to do.eg a chair or a boat?

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Polyaspartic

    https://www.duluxprotectivecoatings....polyaspartics/ (this ones not clear but they are out there)

    https://www.omegapaints.com.au/view-...artic-coating/

    cheers Peter

  12. #12
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    Re: How to finish and waterproof wood

    I guess you got the result from other fellow members but if you need more structured information, it might help you
    https://www.bobvila.com/articles/how...terproof-wood/

  13. #13
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    Re: How to finish and waterproof wood

    Bob Villa? No disrespect intended, but...........Bob Villa?????? I don't see anything there that really speaks to water proofing. Providing a water resistant wood finish, perhaps, but certainly not water proofing.

  14. #14
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    Re: How to finish and waterproof wood

    I believe, it depends on the material you've chosen. It depends on the purpose of your wooden detail and other parameters. Anyway, in any professional store you will find everything you need. I always do this way, just come to a shop assistant and ask my questions.

  15. #15
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    Re: How to finish and waterproof wood

    To give a complete waterproof base for wood, it involves several process. As in prepping, priming and painting. Afterwords, there are different methods for water proofing such as oil options, using sealants or staining. In my opinion use boiled linseed oil for a protective base. Let the oil absorb and dry completely. Further seal it with polyurethane, varnish, or lacquer.

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