Varnish Off, Varnish On – Part 1

She’s 35 years old this year. Like an aging movie star, it is time to take a short sabbatical for a little nip, tuck, and polish. For the next month or so, Archimedes has checked in to  Native Brightworks on Lake Union for some desperately needed brightwork work.

As you can see from the following “before” photos, it is definitely time. This is what most of the cap rail looks like.



The hand rails are no better.


Native Brightworks is going to refinish the cap rails around the deck and flybridge, and the hand rails all the way around the boat. We’ve decided to take a more unusual approach with the grab rails. These old boats have a lot of teak. In our case, all the grab rails are teak. These are time consuming to sand and varnish. So time consuming that we could probably replace them all with stainless for the cost of refinishing them. We have decided to sand them down and let them age naturally. I think this will give them a good look and contrast the nice varnish everywhere else.

The stripping and sanding begins.


Courtesy Dick Ehlers – Native Brightworks


Courtesy Dick Ehlers – Native Brightworks


Courtesy Dick Ehlers – Native Brightworks


Lots of work goes in to this. After sanding, the railings and stantions will be removed, the varnish work completed and everything bedded and reassembled.

Dick Ehlers from Native Brightworks has kindly provided these photos of the work in progress. More to come …

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