May 14, 2008


I'm the keeper of the teak aboard the boat. Happily, there is very little teak to keep on a Hunter 290. Topsides, just the aft rail seats and the hatch handle. Below we find quite a bit more teak real estate, but it's protected from the weather down there (if all is going according to plan) and easier to maintain.

But topsides, under the sun and rain, teak weathers. Some sailors prefer a naturally weathered teak. It turns a silvery gray and minds its own business. Other sailors go to great lengths to keep their teak varnished and shiny. I admire their dedication, but it's tough work -- more work than I think recreational sailing should present. Still other sailors, myself included, prefer the luster of oiled teak.

If you're of the oiled luster school, and you dwell in a small, city condominium with no basement, garage or backyard, and you're the keeper of the teak, when it's time to do the scrubbing, sanding and oiling, you pretty much have to give over your kitchen to the process.

And you must never underestimate the importance of your ancillary tools.

I've just finished cleaning, sanding, vacuuming and wiping down my teak rail seats. Now I can't seem to locate my teak oil. So I'll let the seats dry overnight, plan to visit West Marine after work tomorrow, and check back in after I've applied the first coat of oil.

Meantime, visit your local farmers' market!

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