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how should I merge pieces of TEAK? (for boat deck/cockpit grates)

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Blog entry by cdavissf posted 09-24-2015 03:25 PM 1532 reads 0 times favorited 9 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Hello fellow “woodies” I am not near the craftsman many of you likely are, but I am hopeful this community can help me find a solution to my project that I can apply. Effectively, I am building teak deck grates for an antique 1956 22’ shepherd runabout boat. the grates are going to be laid over top of the existing marine plywood subfloor and are purely for looks. I have 3/4” spacing (as well as thickness) on the grates surrounded by 2 1/2” border. Everything has been ripped and I am ready to “put it together”

the boat will be freshwater, and live its life on lake Tahoe in California. it will be trailered, so not exposed year round, or even in the elements during the full summer season. it will be in a protected garage. should I consider buscuits to join the corners? lap joint? mortise and tension? what about domino tenons? while the grates will manage foot traffic, the corners where these borders merge are next to the interior wall of the boat and with resting on flat surface, I suspect it should hold up well provided I make the right choices at this stage.

lastly, knowing this wood is oily, I will need scrub the wood down with acetone before applying my adhesive correct? and the glue of choice would be epoxy? urethane? thanks in advance for any time and advice you can spare.



9 comments so far

View djang000's profile

djang000

67 posts in 1598 days


#1 posted 09-24-2015 04:52 PM

I’m not nearly as knowledgeable as all 99,9% of the folks here, but personally, everything that goes on the boat is epoxy bonded. I use West System and thicken it a bit with 404 filler (it helps a bit if you have small gaps between the 2 pieces of wood, but it mostly help stopping the epoxy running off everywhere before you have the time to put clamps between the 2 pieces)

View djang000's profile

djang000

67 posts in 1598 days


#2 posted 09-24-2015 04:54 PM

(and I forgot; yes. You definitely need to wipe the wood with acetone. I usually wait 12 hours after acetone to make sure it dries properly before putting epoxy)

View MrRon's profile

MrRon

3926 posts in 2709 days


#3 posted 09-24-2015 05:27 PM

I don’t know about the epoxy’s, but the adhesive of choice for wood boats years ago was resorcinol glue. Unlike epoxies, it does require a tight fitting joint.

View Dutchy's profile

Dutchy

2019 posts in 1634 days


#4 posted 09-24-2015 07:07 PM

Maybe this will help you:

http://www.marineadhesive.nl/how-lay-teak-deck-five-steps

-- My englisch is bad but how is your dutch?

View shipwright's profile

shipwright

7174 posts in 2264 days


#5 posted 09-24-2015 07:49 PM

Are the grates removable or glued down?
How thick is the teak?
Are you just asking about the corners or about the intersections of the grate slats?
If you use the right epoxy, no prep is required. There are formulations for oily woods.
Avoid mitres as they will open up when they get wet. You want to half lap the corners. Ther grate slats are best half lapped with notches up in one direction (eg: horizontal) and down in the other. It is easiest to get these all lined up if you dado the notches in wide boards before you rip the individual pieces.
Biscuit and domino type joints are unlikely to last long.

-- Paul M ..............If God wanted us to have fiberglass boats he would have given us fibreglass trees. http://thecanadianschooloffrenchmarquetry.com/

View Richard's profile

Richard

1901 posts in 2156 days


#6 posted 09-24-2015 08:25 PM



Are the grates removable or glued down?
How thick is the teak?
Are you just asking about the corners or about the intersections of the grate slats?
If you use the right epoxy, no prep is required. There are formulations for oily woods.
Avoid mitres as they will open up when they get wet. You want to half lap the corners. Ther grate slats are best half lapped with notches up in one direction (eg: horizontal) and down in the other. It is easiest to get these all lined up if you dado the notches in wide boards before you rip the individual pieces.
Biscuit and domino type joints are unlikely to last long.

- shipwright


Whatever this Man says to do , DO IT he has built more boats than pretty much anybody on this site that I know of.

View cdavissf's profile

cdavissf

3 posts in 442 days


#7 posted 09-24-2015 10:56 PM

Shipright: thanks for your comments above (thank you to all who have replied so far actually!) this is such a terrific resource. I’m so pleased to have found this community!
The Grates are removable. they will be floating over the marine ply sub floor. the teak is 3/4” thick. I was intending to the notch the grates lapped up one direction and down the other, as you had suggested. the glue question is for both the corners, borders and the grates. I would like to use the same adhesive for the whole project.

So if I lap the corners I wont get the finished look I was hoping for? with a 45 degree angle? LOVING The feedback friends. keep it coming! thank you.

View cdavissf's profile

cdavissf

3 posts in 442 days


#8 posted 09-24-2015 11:43 PM

shipright, I think you are suggesting this? excellent solution. and finally, what epoxy would you suggest?
Thank you

View shipwright's profile

shipwright

7174 posts in 2264 days


#9 posted 09-24-2015 11:56 PM

That joint is probably OK but in my experience miter joints on the outside of a boat are just wrong. That comes from my kind of “old school” training which doesn’t envisage modern epoxies. A full half lap would look “right” to me but that said with epoxy you can probably get away with it. I tend to like the old “right way” even if modern materials have removed the need. I always put plugs in with their grain at 90 degrees to the piece they are glued into too.
..... It’s just the “right way”.
My choice would be G2, now from System Three but originally designed by Jim Peters, the genius behind Industrial Formulators of Canada. His epoxies were and are IMHO the best.

-- Paul M ..............If God wanted us to have fiberglass boats he would have given us fibreglass trees. http://thecanadianschooloffrenchmarquetry.com/

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