is a great idea for non slip
This is particularly useful on that beautifully varnished cabin sole or
You've spent hours making it, sanding it
and varnishing it but it’s
gong to be slippery when wet.
But most non-slip solutions for boats are going to spoil the appearance
of the varnished wood.
This idea is similar to
sprinkling sand onto wet paint or varnish except that you use a water
soluble 'grit' such as coarse sea salt, which when the varnish or paint
is dry is washed off to leave a stippled surface.
Looking for Boat Varnish?
method on varnish not only gives a clear finish but is also a softer
less harsh non-skid surface, much kinder to bare feet.
an ideal ‘grit’ to use on a wooden boat, though you could use anything
that is water soluble, however I wouldn’t use sugar or anything which
could make a sticky mess or attract insects.
So, when you've sanded off ready for that final coat you can if you
wish mask off the areas to be made non-slip.
Having glossy frames around the non-skid areas will look better than
just doing the whole area.
It will look even better is you can radius the corners.
Now, lay a thick coat of varnish within the masked areas making sure
you go right up to the edges of the tape.
Then before it dries sprinkle the coarse salt, as evenly as
possible over the wet varnish.
A sieve or kitchen sifter of some sort will help in getting an
The salt just needs to sit on the surface, don’t rub it in as
it needs to be washed off when you have finished.
the non slip areas are dry brush off or vacuum any loose
salt, take off the masking tape and then finish varnishing the smooth
Once the whole area is completely dry then you can wash off
the salt to reveal the clear non slip areas.
For areas such as companionway steps traditional, gritty non
skid solutions while they may not look as good will give better grip
and be safer.
Normal masking tape if it is left stuck on for too long will be a devil
That bright colored electrical tape is a much better option
for those of us weekend boat builders who need to leave it in place for
any length of time.
I am perfectly aware that the majority of Wooden Boat aficionados are sensible folk. However, I need to point out that I am an amateur wooden boat enthusiast simply writing in order to try to help other amateur wooden boat enthusiasts. And while I take every care to ensure that the information in DIY Wood Boat.com is correct, anyone acting on the information on this website does so at their own risk.