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Go Back   Striper Talk Striped Bass Fishing, Surfcasting, Boating Build Stuff: Custom Plug & Lure Building, Rod Building Plug Building - Got Wood?

Plug Building - Got Wood? Got Plug?

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Old 06-18-2017, 11:40 AM   #1
Diggin Jiggin
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shelf life of spar varnish

So all the needles I sealed with it this winter are splitting, so apparently mine is past it due date. I honestly have No idea how old it is, I have been buying quarts and just kept topping it off to keep the gallon can filled to prevent air from getting in.

I know I've read on some threads that the quarts/gallons may not be the same now due to VOC requirements.

I like using the spar varnish on maple. Am I better off buying quarts (vs the gallon ?)
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Old 06-18-2017, 02:17 PM   #2
ProfessorM
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If it was me Dave I would epoxy seal the maple. I usually start fresh with new quarts of satin spar every year. It never seems to make it from winter to following fall to not coagulate. It is the quarts that are not compliant and what you want. The size of the amount does not require it to be compliant.
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Old 06-19-2017, 03:02 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ProfessorM View Post
If it was me Dave I would epoxy seal the maple. I usually start fresh with new quarts of satin spar every year. It never seems to make it from winter to following fall to not coagulate. It is the quarts that are not compliant and what you want. The size of the amount does not require it to be compliant.
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Thanks Paul, I may just go the epoxy route. I stripped 6 and epoxy sealed them this weekend. But the one thing I do like about the spar varnish is if you want to, you can leave them soaking for longer and plugs pickup weight which is something I was messing with this winter... I ruined some darters one year soaking too long but for needles sometimes the extra weight is nice and doing it that way distributes it more evenly than if i just added more lead.
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Old 06-19-2017, 08:02 PM   #4
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I have had better luck with birch with splitting issues and pretty equal in weight. Interesting use of letting needles get heavier using sealer. good idea.

"A beach is a place where a man can feel he's the only soul in the world that's real"
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Old 06-20-2017, 06:13 AM   #5
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Even though I have unlimited access to hard maple, I prefer birch also. Like Paul mentions, specific gravity is very close making them virtually same in weight volume. I purchase 5/4 birch h for the shop and mill to size. If any interest in some birch, feel free to PM me.

Billy D.
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Old 06-20-2017, 07:48 AM   #6
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I think spar varnish lasts a long long time as long as you pour what you need to use through a strainer and close the lid tight. If your needles were cracking, I would think that the varnish was not thinned enough and did not penetrate your maple.
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Old 06-21-2017, 07:46 PM   #7
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spar varnish

I would add that any air space left between the remaining varnish and the top of the contain will hasten the thickening of the varnish, even if it is cut. You can blow wine preservative or Bloxen in to the can to remove any oxygen, or you can add clean marbles to the container bring the level to the top and flip the can over. Been doing this for years and will make the varnish last much longer in the can.

Some of the reason the plugs will take on weight after prolonged soaking are the rays found in hardwoods, these carry food transversly through the core of the tree. As the thinned varnish penetrates the lure more sealer is soaked into the stock,adding weight. Trial and error are the only way I know to add weight by this process, but it would vary greatly from plug to plug.

Given that the epoxy coating used on plugs is not completely waterproof, I would suspect the structure of the maple plug would allow more water penetration. The birch on the other hand has a better structure to(somewhat interlocked) to hold off splitting. Just my 2 cents
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Old 06-22-2017, 08:25 AM   #8
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I haven't turned birch before but I will try some next winter. Until this season I really hadn't had any splitting issues with the soft maple and I really enjoy working with & turning it.
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Old 06-22-2017, 08:39 AM   #9
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I've found that if you heat maple or birch in a toaster oven prior to dropping them in the sealer they seem to seal better...

.. place some clean brick or stone in the sealer can to take up as much space as possible.to displace the air. then put a piece of plastic film on then hammer the lid down.. I use the same sealing oil for a few seasons... and strain periodically... ...but I use Tung oil

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Old 06-24-2017, 08:52 AM   #10
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Spar varnish or any varnish/poly for that matter is not meant for submersion.This is why the finish is failing and the plugs are splitting.
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