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Varnish ...How many quarts ?

Discussion in 'Traditional All-Wood Construction' started by asc67, Apr 30, 2009.

  1. asc67

    asc67 Curious about Wooden Canoes

    I'm getting ready to order some varnish for the Willits canoe refinish and was wondering how many quarts to order for the project. I will be doing the ouside and inside of the canoe.
     
  2. Mark Adams

    Mark Adams all wood nut

    Hi,

    You could probably count on one quart per coat, per "side". Assuming you wanted to put 4 coats on, inside and out, figure 2 gallons of varnish. The thing to keep in mind about a Willits is that it is the varnish that keeps out the water. More varnish is better.

    HTH
     
  3. Dan Lindberg

    Dan Lindberg Ex Wood Hoarder

    Mark,

    You must put it on a lot thicker then I.

    When I was varnishing my strippers or painting a W/C, I would figure/use just over 1/3 qt per single side, ie, just 1 coat on the outside (or inside).

    For 5 coats of paint I would use just a little less then 2 qts total.
    This also assumes little loss, ie, you'll use more if you use a roller.

    For this project, I (FWIW) would order 3 qts. Or maybe 1 gallon if I had some spare cans to repackage it into.

    You don't want to work out of the container, either a qt or gallon, poor it into a small cup or other container and keep the main container closed or the solvents will evaporate and the varnish will start getting thicker.

    This gets more important as you get closer to the final coat, the early coats don't matter as much, but after 4-5 coats, you will be looking for it to be done. :)

    Dan
     
  4. MikeCav

    MikeCav Restorer/Videographer

    I tend to agree with Dan on amount of varnish needed. His recommendation to pour off smaller amounts into a cup to work from is also a good idea, though he didn't mention the reason why. Every time you touch the brush to the canoe, you pick up dust, hairs and other crud from the wood, or previous coat. When you put you brush back into the varnish container, some of that crud mixes in with the varnish. If you are working directly from the quart or gallon varnish can, the crud to varnish ratio goes up dramatically. By pouring off into a cup, you can reduce this.
     
  5. OP
    OP
    asc67

    asc67 Curious about Wooden Canoes

    Thanks guys, I have found both Epiphanes gloss and Z-Spar 1015 Captains locally so I won't have to order online. Being a painter I know about not working out of the can.
     
  6. Dan Lindberg

    Dan Lindberg Ex Wood Hoarder

    Mike,

    Yes, that's another reason, contamination of the remaining varnish (or paint),
    but I've found that just having the can open for long periods of time allows the solvent to evaporate and the varnish tends to get thicker and doesn't flow as well.

    Steve, now you've set the bar/expectations high. be sure to post pics when you are done.
     
  7. Dan Lindberg

    Dan Lindberg Ex Wood Hoarder

    Mike,

    Yes, that's another reason, contamination of the remaining varnish (or paint),
    but I've found that just having the can open for long periods of time allows the solvent to evaporate and the varnish tends to get thicker and doesn't flow as well.

    Steve, now you've set the bar/expectations high. be sure to post pics when you are done.

    Dan
     

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