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Spar Varnish, I seek a BROWN hue on final product.. NOT orange

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Forum topic by Blackfin29 posted 09-23-2019 12:13 PM 995 views 0 times favorited 17 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Blackfin29

125 posts in 678 days


09-23-2019 12:13 PM

A search did not yield this answer and I do hope this to be my final Varnish question… ughhhh

After many attempts to move away from a spar varnish for a teak table, I’ve come full circle and believe Spar Varnish really is the product I should stay with for the fact it see’s some sun, and lots of humidity fluctuation.

Price of product NOT a consideration.

I want to avoid a finished product having an “ORANGE” or dare I say “red” look once dry.

I’m using a brown teak, and would like to enhance the “BROWN” in the wood…

I’ve last used Interlux Goldspar varnish, and it’s just to ORANGE for me.. I can’t take looking at it.

—— Is there a spar varnish out there that will tend to dry more BROWN ???

Thank you all SO much for patience as I work through this debacle….

Lou


17 replies so far

View Redoak49's profile

Redoak49

4183 posts in 2498 days


#1 posted 09-23-2019 01:20 PM

I would try a water based spar urethane.

View bilyo's profile

bilyo

850 posts in 1612 days


#2 posted 09-23-2019 02:00 PM

You might try adding some color to which ever varnish you choose to use. Just be sure to get colorant or dye that is compatible (water, oil, or alcohol based). Or, you could use a dye color directly on the wood that will counter the orange color of the varnish.
Otherwise, +1 to the water based spar urethane.

View John Smith's profile

John Smith

2014 posts in 672 days


#3 posted 09-23-2019 04:36 PM

on another woodworking forum, a guy used the Sikkens Cetol Marine Teak finish
on his mahogany swim platform on his boat.
I will try to get in touch with him to see how “brown” is the “brown” that he wanted.
if you are near a marine store such as West Marine, maybe that have a sample board you can look at.

.

-- I am a painter. That's what I do. I paint things --

View Fred Hargis's profile

Fred Hargis

5747 posts in 3002 days


#4 posted 09-23-2019 04:38 PM

I’ve never worked with Teak but I wonder if it’s that wood with the oil based finish (?). Check out the waterborne options, but read the label…some of them are tinted to mimic their oil based counterpart; it usually says if it is on the label. A tinted product may give you that same color you’re trying to avoid.

-- Our village hasn't lost it's idiot, he was elected to congress.

View John Smith's profile

John Smith

2014 posts in 672 days


#5 posted 09-23-2019 05:02 PM

authentic teak is oily. it must be wiped down thoroughly with acetone
right before putting any kind of finish on it. teak has the natural ability
to replenish the surface oil once it has been removed. so if you wait more
than 24 hours after the acetone, the oil will be right back. and you may
have less than satisfactory results in the finish you apply.
I don’t know of anyone that has used a water based finish on real teak.

.

.

-- I am a painter. That's what I do. I paint things --

View Fred Hargis's profile

Fred Hargis

5747 posts in 3002 days


#6 posted 09-23-2019 05:08 PM

Good point, a waterborne may not work that well.

-- Our village hasn't lost it's idiot, he was elected to congress.

View wildwoodbybrianjohns's profile

wildwoodbybrianjohns

302 posts in 56 days


#7 posted 09-23-2019 05:57 PM

Agree with John, I would shy away from using water-base anything on teak.

-- Wildwood by Brian Johns: It is wiser to find out, than to suppose (S. Clemens)

View Sark's profile

Sark

197 posts in 869 days


#8 posted 09-23-2019 06:38 PM

Sikkens Cetol is a great product if you use their oil based finishes. They also have a water-based finish. Used both. The oil base is the much better performer. All our outdoor furniture is done with Sikkens. I don’t think that you can use Sikkens as a top coat over some other finish. So read the directions before you buy.

I do think you will be happy with the product as long as you like the color. The finish has a lot of pigment in it. It wears away without flaking and then its time for a new coat. They have a number of different stain colors so you could probably mix a couple to get the hue you want.

View bondogaposis's profile

bondogaposis

5540 posts in 2860 days


#9 posted 09-23-2019 06:42 PM

I would not use a water base finish over teak, the oils in the wood will lift it in no time.

-- Bondo Gaposis

View John Smith's profile

John Smith

2014 posts in 672 days


#10 posted 09-23-2019 07:19 PM

Lou – here are the photos of the swim platform I mentioned above.
it turns out that the man was not satisfied with repairing the old mahogany
platform so he built a new one out of teak.
the photos tell the story – he said the Sikkens went on well but was a little thick.
first photo of the new platform is bear teak with no finish.

.

-- I am a painter. That's what I do. I paint things --

View CaptainKlutz's profile

CaptainKlutz

1891 posts in 2003 days


#11 posted 09-24-2019 12:59 AM

If you want brown varnish, make it brown?
Pick your favorite highly rated spar varnish, and add a toner dye to get exact color you want.
Hardest part is which brown? LOL

https://www.finewoodworking.com/FWNPDFfree/011190044.pdf

It takes some testing, but is very easy to make most any color except white or black.

You will find all kinds of posts with different folks having different preferences for what dye to use. :-)
IMHO – all of the color fast dyes behave roughly same. Most are even using same base dye powders from same chemical company (Keystone/Millikan). Most times the biggest difference is concentration available for purchase.

Here is my choices:

- Transtint dyes are one of the easiest to use. Come premixed and has a range of brown wood colors. They are strong, but weaker concentration than professional grade dye concentrates. Mixing Transtint into solvent based varnish requires mixing color into small amount of paint thinner first, then adding solvent to varnish once the color is dispersed.

- Commercially have used Sherwin-Williams Universal Dye Concentrates. for years coloring various polymers. The challenge is smallest size sold is quart, they cost $100-$150/qt depending your wholesale/retail price, and quart concentrate makes gallons of stain or many hundreds of gallons of toned finish.

- Mohawk recently released a line of dye concentrates. One Page 32 of this pdf catalog. They come in quarts and 2oz bottles. 2 ounce is right size for my hobby shop, and retail cost is less than same Transtint size. They include a color called perfect brown, which helps reduce the amount of dye used to make any brown. Both of my Mohawk wholesalers gave me a Product News sheet, and on back was formula chart for mixing dye concentrates to reproduce the most common dye stain colors used in Ultra Penetrating Dye stain product line. Not sure if this is readable:

Even has YouTube mixing example: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=77VjqdUB9XQ

Have only made a couple of small NGR test batches, and coated wood coupons; so my experience is limited. These Mohawk dyes work like Transtint, except maybe little more concentrated. Plus I can buy 4 colors and make the 10-12 dye colors I commonly use. The Prefect Brown diluted was exact color needed for toning some washed out steamed walnut coupons too.

As Always, Test before using any finish on your project, and YMMV

Best Luck!

-- I'm an engineer not a woodworker, but I can randomly find useful tools and furniture inside a pile of lumber!

View Sark's profile

Sark

197 posts in 869 days


#12 posted 09-24-2019 01:16 AM

John, the swim platform looks great!
CKlutz, I didn’t know about Mohawk’s dye concentrate. Thanks. I did note that on their catalog it says not for outdoor use, or something like that. I’ve used TransTint dyes a lot, and I think they are also are recommended for interior use. I suspect that dyes are more susceptible to fading than pigmented stains.

View SMP's profile

SMP

1392 posts in 415 days


#13 posted 09-24-2019 02:03 AM

Correct, dyes tend to fade with sunlight. Certain colors more/faster than others. So a brown that is a mix the reds will fade faster, etc.

View Blackfin29's profile

Blackfin29

125 posts in 678 days


#14 posted 09-24-2019 02:31 AM

Holy crap… This forum is unreal. You guys have been so darn patient with me I can’t even begin to thank you all.

Let me digest some of this and figure out a direction…

John Smith thank you, I have some research to do on that post.. wow.. loaded with info

CaptainKlutz… You also have my wheels turning now.. jeeeez..

Just got in from a night of fishing, but standby because more questions ????? are on the way…

Dye has me curious….

View CaptainKlutz's profile

CaptainKlutz

1891 posts in 2003 days


#15 posted 09-24-2019 08:58 AM


CKlutz, I didn’t know about Mohawk’s dye concentrate. Thanks. I did note that on their catalog it says not for outdoor use, or something like that. I’ve used TransTint dyes a lot, and I think they are also are recommended for interior use. I suspect that dyes are more susceptible to fading than pigmented stains.
- Sark

True. Direct sunshine will fade most dyes over time.

Yes, would need to use a pigment powder for more permanent color. Trouble is it tends to muddy or cover up the grain. Plus, add to much and you have ‘paint’. :)

My logic for suggesting dye?
- Spar varnish has high levels of UV inhibitors. So there is hope a dye color will last awhile.
- Most any outdoor project in direct sun/rain will need to be re-coated every couple of years. Which means don’t need lifetime fade resistance from dye.
- OP wanted to remove the orange tone from spar varnish. Dyes provide a solution.
Adding very small amounts of blue dye is common solution used with many polymers to get water white or clear color, when the base resin has some yellow/amber natural color.
Orange tends to push brown towards mahogany (red-orange) brown color. Since the red fades more easily with UV, over time it migrates to amber tone. Amber brown is also called burnt umber – a very common definition for plain old ‘brown’. :-)

Finishing any wood project is a compromise. That is why there are so many different color options.

YMMV

-- I'm an engineer not a woodworker, but I can randomly find useful tools and furniture inside a pile of lumber!

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