Stain to cover fiberglass blemishes on bright work

My husband and I are still a bit new to fiberglassing and boat building. We completed our teardrop two years ago and loved it so much we decided to give the Rhode Runner a try. In doing so, we ended up with some areas of fiberglass overlap that weren't the prettiest. I thought I was going to just have to deal with my minor imperfections. But then I had an idea to try to stain over the top of the epoxied wood to hide the small white pinholes and weave. To my amazement, it worked!!! And I wanted to share my excitement that I didn't have to accept my imperfections as permanent. I used Minwax Cherry 235 and it's an almost perfect match to varnished Okume plywood. I know it doesn't absorb the same as it would on unepoxied wood, but the purpose is more to cover the imperfections in the minimal glass work that didn't turn out as nice as I'd like it too. Can't wait to share our finished project with the forum. Aiming for end of May, first week of June, 2023! 

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RE: Stain to cover fiberglass blemishes on bright work

 ... By the way, the image above doesn't show the stain applied yet. It's all covered now to prep for varnish. 

RE: Stain to cover fiberglass blemishes on bright work

   First, excited that you're doing a Rhode Runner.  Mine has been operational for a year now, and I (and my wife and one of our dogs - the other dogs not so much) enjoy the boat very much.

And before getting to the point, I'll say that I've also used stain in just a few instances of small limited areas to try to pretty things up where glass job wasn't perfect, and found I was able to even up colors.  I was doing this in areas where I'd already stained the wood, but due to the subsequent need to sand in that area dveloped some color imperfections. The stain is able to wick into the glass a bit, then when well dried out, proceed with more over-coats of either epoxy or varnish.  So that is a good trick. But everything I've done has been with alcohol based stain.

So here is the reason I post - looks like you're putting this out as a hint that others might try.  I worry that even though nothing might ever come of it and I'm not exactly sure what problems might come up, I'd really think 3 times before I ever got oil based stain near one of these boats.  Just seems to be inviting problems with epoxy adhesion, whenever and wherever there might be need to get epoxy to adhere to that area in the future, unless preparation in that area included complete removal of all glass fibers and surgaces that had wicked up any of the stain, however far away from where it was applied.

So, maybe it never turns into an issue, but I'd think that the same effect might be achieved with an alcohol based stain, but with much less risk of problems, so thats what I'd advise.

RE: Stain to cover fiberglass blemishes on bright work

   Bubblehead, thanks for the insight! So far there hasn't been an issue with oil based stain and epoxy adhesion as it was completed just prior to varnishing. I could see it causing a problem if completed prior to a coat of epoxy application though. So far the color did solve some issues of evening out the tone. It isn't perfect, but good for our first built! More pics and feedback for CLC to follow. I think more builders should share to improve the overall effectiveness of this particular build! We learned a lot from this project for sure! 

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