Brightwork on the Western Flyer

Bright work?  What is it and why do they call it so?

DONE – Three days of prep time (two hours each day X two people) and three coats of Cetol’ing (2.5 quarts of Cetol Natural) to do the boats top and bottom rails.  Next week we may tackle the windows and all remaining twenty acres or so of teak onboard.  Some people actually really enjoy doing this type of work.  If you are one of them – inquire within – you’re hired.

The last time Patti and I tackled this project the boats teak was in far worse shape.  Old weathered, cracked and peeling product (Northwest Washington weather) was what I needed to sand down to bare wood.  A five inch orbital sander takes it down fairly easy.

According to Wiki bright work is any exposed metal and varnished woodworking; though more recently it is more often just referring to the woodwork part of the boat.  In our case, the TEAK, and we have tons of it, along with lots of exposed metal (stainless steel railing and bronze windows).

Our boat is fiberglass however, it’s beauty is in the teak interior and exterior rail work. Teak wood has been used in boat building for over 2,000 years for its high strength and resistance to rot.  Let’s see how it holds up to the SoCal weather.  The last time Patti and I tackled this project, (two years ago) the Western Flyer was in Portland, Oregon.  


The metal part on our boat is the stainless steel that also requires polishing.  The Western Flyer has a fair share of all four metal, brass, teak and fiberglass.  Just like gps and chart plotters that have made our lives easier in the boat navigation ways then so has the development of improved UV-absorbers and filters in the chemical composition of the various marine varnishes.  In our case we use Cetol vs varnish.  There is a difference.  Three coats is sufficient.

My new friend Chris, a local live aboard deserves credit for jump starting this project.


Chris was worth his fee in the quality control aspects of this job.  Prep work is the key!  Recently applied Cetol in the picture above.


About trawlercat

Retired and now moving on from the cruising life jeeps, adventure bike, gardening, and travel. Always in search of the next great adventure!
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