The Rot Doctor


Subject: Sailboat mast trim
Date: Wed, 07 Jun 2000

We have recently purchased a 1987 Freedom Sailboat. There is a piece of trim that circles the mast where it passes through the cabin. This piece is for decoration only. It has water damage and the layers of plywood (it is composed of about 6-8 layers of plywood and has a veneer of teak) are separating. It would be costly and a pain to try and replace this piece. Any suggestions on how to give it a little more "body" and improve the appearance? Thanks for any help. Barbara W.


Sure, adding body is easy. First saturate the piece with CPES (Clear Penetrating Epoxy Sealer), which will penetrate deeply into the wood and eliminate all fungi, bacteria and the like, and fill micro-cracks and holes. After giving the CPES a couple of days to ventilate away the carrier solvents, you can go back and apply the Layup & Laminating Resin to the larger open areas and that will about fill things up for you. The piece will be there when the rest of the boat is gone.

For appearance we'd suggest first cleaning/sanding the piece, then applying the CPES. The CPES will color the wood to about the same extent as a coat of clear varnish. The L&L Resin is basically clear and won't change the color with the CPES under it.

All epoxies are gradually deteriorated by UV light. So after a week or so we'd recommend that a couple of coats of a marine-grade varnish be applied to the trim. This will protect the epoxy and keep the piece looking nice.

I would think our smallest units of each product would be plenty: 2-pint unit of the CPES and a 12 oz unit of the L&L Resin.

Come on back if you have additional questions.