Restoring our teak decks

Some people love teak decks, some people hate them. We are firmly in the first group. To me, real, seaworthy boats have teak decks. But I understand why others, faced with a significant cost of repair, choose to pull the decks off and go with non-skid fiberglass. Lower cost, and lower maintenance in the years to come. I’ll admit that could be us in a few years.

It started small. Like most repair projects. A few open seams in the deck caulking, a few exposed screw heads. With winter approaching, it seemed prudent to address these little issues now. We just need to fix this little spot here, that little spot there. And like most projects, it grew. And then grew some more. In the end, we just about did it all. I suppose I should correct that last statement. We (Kim and I) didn’t actually do any of it. Mike Thomas of Thomas Marine Interiors did all the real work.

Mike removed all the bad caulking and re-caulked all the seams. This is really time consuming work. Very labor intensive. And it appears to require lots of blue masking tape.

We were very fortunate to have extended fantastic and dry weather during most of the this process. The sun gods really did shine on Seattle this year. Mike was able to complete most of the job without weather delays.

Courtesy Mike Thomas

Courtesy Mike Thomas

(You can see where we had a bit of an accident with some oil from the windlass. This should weather out by next summer.)

After Mike had attended to most of the seams, it became apparent that other work should be addressed at the same time. Seems the seams between the deck and the fiberglass had been caulked with silicone at some point in the past. It had discolored and was peeling off in many areas. Sooo … it made sense to fix all that. Once we got all that done, it did not seem reasonable to leave it un-sanded. Sooo … Mike took care of that for us also.

Now the decks are beautiful. Smooth, flat, and water tight. There is nothing like a nice teak deck. Mike did a great job.

We have probably got one, maybe two good sandings left in the thirty-four year old teak decks. With luck and bit of care, the work we did should last for a long time.

If your decks are in need of some work, Mike Thomas is the guy to call.

No more work on the boat this year. Really.

4 thoughts on “Restoring our teak decks

  1. beautiful!…we are looking at buying a GB 32 where they replaced 1/2 the decks with fiberglass. i want to put them all back to teak…any idea how much that would cost?

    • I am sorry, I don’t know the answer to your question. I do know that it can be very expensive to replace teak decks. The cost of teak is high and decks require significant labor to install. You might post your question on the Grand Banks forums at http://www.grandbanksowners.com/gbb/index.php. There are lots of knowledgable folks there.

  2. Your decks look great. I have recaulked many of my seams, but have not done the sanding thing yet. Since my boat is wood, the deck underlayment is plywood.

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