Ask SAIL: Teak Deck Removal

We are removing the teak deck from a 1972 Swan 43. We will not be putting any teak back on and will be looking to apply nonskid and paint. I have taken all the fixtures off and removed all the old teak.
Author:
Publish date:
Updated on

Q: John Miess, sailmail@sailmagazine.com

We are removing the teak deck from a 1972 Swan 43. We will not be putting any teak back on and will be looking to apply nonskid and paint. I have taken all the fixtures off and removed all the old teak. Now we have black gooey stuff everywhere that I have not been able to remove. I talked to the yard where the boat is stored, and they want to try to grind it away, but I really don’t like the idea. Are there any other means to removing this mess?

Don Casey Replies

Casey-head-250x300

That black goo is likely an oil-based mastic, given the vintage of your boat. There are a number of mastic removers on the market that will dissolve old mastic into a liquid that you essentially mop up. But you have to be cautious that the remover will not also dissolve the fiberglass. I would try a soy-based product, perhaps the one manufactured by Franmar called Bean-e-doo. I have no first-hand experience with this product, but have seen reports from other boatowners that it works well. The bad news is that it will still be a dirty and demanding job. You have to keep the mess away from everything you do not want it on, you have to absorb up the oily residue, and you have to thoroughly degrease the stripped surface (probably with xylene). You will also need to seal all screw holes before you start, as letting this oily mess penetrate the porous core material would be a disaster. The good news is that there could be an easier way. Nautor/Swan is a cradle-to-grave boat company, meaning they not only build sailboats, but maintain and refit them. The removal of a 40-year-old teak deck cannot be something they rarely see, so an email to customercare@nautorswan.com might get you reliable information on both exactly what the goo is and how best to remove it.

Related

TOTW_PromoSite

SAIL's Tip of the Week

Presented by Vetus-Maxwell. Got a tip? Send it to sailmail@sailmagazine.com Check the waypoint  Most errors with GPS and paper chart navigation are caused by the operator punching in the wrong numbers or plotting the lat/long incorrectly. The surest way to double-check a ...read more

Furlex-Electric

Gear: Seldén’s Furlex Electric

Furl Power Seldén’s Furlex Electric offers an easy path into the world of sweat-free headsail furling. The compact unit can be retrofitted to an existing manual Furlex unit or installed as a replacement for whatever you’ve got now. Its DC-DC converter accepts your boat’s 12V or ...read more

11_DSC8423Tom-Zydler

Cruising: Nova Scotia

There’s a unique cruising ground that combines access to urban locations with easy escapes to wilderness and nature. Its native people may be the friendliest on the east coast of North America. Its coastline runs 250 nautical miles in a straight line, but that should be ...read more

01-LEAD-shutterstock_727849660

Boat Monitoring System

Boat Oversight In a world where you can track your friends’ locations in real time and stream yourself live on the internet, it should come as no surprise that you can also keep a close eye on your boat from the comfort of home. In fact, not only is there a plethora of options ...read more

pilot_saloon_42-_en_navigation_11

Boat Review: Wauquiez Pilot Saloon 42

Old salts grouse about modern aesthetics. It’s just what they do, and the hard lines and spartan interiors of today’s production boats give them many reasons to complain. French builder Wauquiez, however, seems to consistently be able to marry contemporary elements with ...read more

JuneWaterlines

Sights and Stories Cruising the Caribbean

Though I hate to think of myself as a “disaster tourist,” I can’t deny one of the things I was most curious about as I sailed south last fall to visit St. Martin, the Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico was how much hurricane damage I would see. I’m sure no one needs reminding that ...read more