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Old 09-15-2021, 05:17 AM   #1
Paul Y
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The never ending bed sealing question...

Morning All.

Bed wood. To varnish or oil, that is the question, Horatio....

Done a search and had a look on the Mar-K site for advice but everybody likes to give their opinion so asking again.

Woody is going to be used so I am moving away from varnishing the bed, really don't fancy painting the rather nice Oak boards I have black so looks like I will be using an oil of some description.

Done a little tester on what will be the underside of the boards, with boiled linseed oil, teak oil and something I found in the shed called Danish Oil. Jury is still out on what I prefer, might come down to what is the most cost effective.

So, my question is when oiling the bed do you do all of the surfaces? Or do you paint/varnish the underside for more protection and then oil the top and sides?

I am no wood worker, thankfully my father is so I have somebody who knows what they are doing to cut the boards to the correct sizing, and really only want to do the job once so advise away!

Would also like to see your beds just because I like pictures.

P.
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Old 09-15-2021, 09:20 AM   #2
cwcarpenter98
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Re: The never ending bed sealing question...

I ended up doing my own test comparison by accident because I didn't use the right product for the finish I chose 4 years ago. Back in the summer of 2017, I put new wood in that my dad and I cut to fit. I used a pecan colored stain and sealer combo which looked great. (First picture)

My truck sits outside in all weather, so the sun and weather damage took its toll. After only 3 years, I needed to re finish the wood again.

For the second time around, I sanded the wood smooth and replaced the one corner board that held water under the mounting flange of the bed, thus rotting out. Since I still had some stain leftover from the first go, I used that again. The color turned out great in my opinion, but, just that stain wasn't going to give me the long lasting finish I desired.

After 2 coats top, bottom, and sides of the stain, I procured some Spar Urethane to finish off the look. I was on a slight time crunch because it was the week before I was going back to school last summer (2020). I applied 2 coats of spar on the bottom of the boards, and I think I did 4 coats on the top and sides. It turned out much better than I was expecting and is probably the nicest part of my truck. (2nd and 3rd pictures. Can see the replacement board in these)

The last two pictures show how it looks after a year of sitting out in the Georgia weather.

Since I do use my truck to haul stuff, I have scratched the spar in a couple places. I am seriously considering getting a rubber bed mat that I can easily put in to haul stuff and take out when cruising. Or, now that it's functional, I'll just use my trailer on some of the bigger and heavier stuff I want to carry
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Old 09-15-2021, 09:31 AM   #3
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Re: The never ending bed sealing question...

I have not decided what I am going to do on top yet, but on the bottom, ends, and sides, I am going to use POR-15. This should seal the wood on all sides per the Mar-K tests. Then if and when water sits or seeps down, it should be protected under and on the sides.

I just can't decide what to do on top...so I debate all the time...but probably will end up using some sort of Spar urethane on top once I decide on a color. My boards are heart pine. I use my truck as a truck also and know it will get some dings here and there, so it also needs to be something I can repair and fix if needed.
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Old 09-15-2021, 02:37 PM   #4
Paul Y
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Re: The never ending bed sealing question...

Christian,

That looks really good, love the 'warm' feel that you have achieved and, in my head, is what I want my bed to look like.

Was lucky enough to be given a rubber bed liner by Rian which I will use when I know I am going to be hauling wood but equally happy to do a touch up as and when required.

Woody will be garaged so expect what ever I decide to have a longer shelf life than a truck that is expose to all elements.

Plus, we only get a hand full of really hot, sunny days here. Rain, gloom and idiots gluing themselves to the busiest motorway in the UK to protest against climate change are another thing....

P.
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Old 09-15-2021, 04:23 PM   #5
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Re: The never ending bed sealing question...

Quote:
Originally Posted by roll_the_dice View Post
I have not decided what I am going to do on top yet, but on the bottom, ends, and sides, I am going to use POR-15. This should seal the wood on all sides per the Mar-K tests. Then if and when water sits or seeps down, it should be protected under and on the sides.

I just can't decide what to do on top...so I debate all the time...but probably will end up using some sort of Spar urethane on top once I decide on a color. My boards are heart pine. I use my truck as a truck also and know it will get some dings here and there, so it also needs to be something I can repair and fix if needed.
That's what I did, POR-15 on all sides, then two coats of a black Top Coat over it. Sure, the wood looks like PVC now, but has not blistered or cracked.
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Old 09-15-2021, 04:59 PM   #6
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Re: The never ending bed sealing question...

Quote:
Originally Posted by 61hawk View Post
That's what I did, POR-15 on all sides, then two coats of a black Top Coat over it. Sure, the wood looks like PVC now, but has not blistered or cracked.
If you're going to do that... just do TREX instead. No sealing, no coating, will look like the day you installed for 1 or ten years.
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Old 09-15-2021, 06:41 PM   #7
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Re: The never ending bed sealing question...

If you plan to use the truck as a truck I'd sell the wood to someone who isn't going to and put in a steel floor (maybe 67-72 replacement). I know a ton of guys love the wood floor but I would never use one unless it was a show truck or weekend cruiser type.
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Old 09-15-2021, 07:44 PM   #8
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Re: The never ending bed sealing question...

Quote:
Originally Posted by jayoldschool View Post
If you're going to do that... just do TREX instead. No sealing, no coating, will look like the day you installed for 1 or ten years.
Got a link to a vendor who does the bed boards in Trex? I've got a Trex deck, it's not all it's cracked up to be. Chalking is one flaw to it along with a recommended spacing of 12" between supports.
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Old 09-15-2021, 09:29 PM   #9
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Re: The never ending bed sealing question...

Thanks, Paul. That warm look came from the Spar Urethane on top of 3 years of sun and weather damage. It's a gloss clear and makes the wood really pop in the sunlight. In the pic with the bedside off, you can see how dirty I let it get from sitting for a good bit during school and using it to bring parts home. The picture with the back windows is after I had washed the truck. The spar cleans up nicely and still looks as good as the day I installed it.

I'll have to give an update picture every year or so to see the progress on how long it takes to break down
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Old 09-15-2021, 09:52 PM   #10
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Re: The never ending bed sealing question...

Quote:
Originally Posted by 61hawk View Post
Got a link to a vendor who does the bed boards in Trex? I've got a Trex deck, it's not all it's cracked up to be. Chalking is one flaw to it along with a recommended spacing of 12" between supports.
Nope, it's strictly DIY. There's a thread on here about it. I put it in my truck over five years ago, it sits outside 24/7 all year in Canadian weather. Looks like the day I installed it, and has carried everything from full dress V8s to full cords of wood. Used the GMC Pauls dimensions. For a long bed, you need to buy 10' lengths and cut down.





I did mine in grey, wanted it to look like weathered wood to match the truck.



This one served as inspiration, they did it in black:

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Old 09-16-2021, 05:22 AM   #11
Paul Y
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Re: The never ending bed sealing question...

I did look at the plastic wood but, as I have the wood wood here, I am going to use what I have.

Wont get anytime over the next few weeks to do anything major on Woody so might start experimenting with what I have in the shed.

Thanks for the feedback Gentlemen.

P.
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Old 09-16-2021, 09:15 AM   #12
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Re: The never ending bed sealing question...

I liked the Foose acetone and black paint method on YouTube. Looked easy to apply and refresh with oil.
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Old 09-16-2021, 09:57 AM   #13
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Re: The never ending bed sealing question...

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Originally Posted by Pitpig View Post
I liked the Foose acetone and black paint method on YouTube. Looked easy to apply and refresh with oil.
I like it! Here is the video if anyone is interested.

Foose Design 1967 Chevy C/28 Project Truck Bed Customization - YouTube

I can't ever remember how to embed the video...UGH!

Last edited by roll_the_dice; 09-16-2021 at 10:05 AM.
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Old 09-17-2021, 12:23 PM   #14
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Re: The never ending bed sealing question...

I was looking for a durable finish for the farm truck that would show off the beauty of the real wood and hold up to the abuse.. I did some extensive research and along with my wood finishing experience and some field experts advice arrived at TotalBoat marine products from Jamestown Distributors.. they advised a high performance epoxy to seal the wood and multiple coats of spar varnish for uv protection and it has worked far beyond my expectations..

I've posted at length the products and process I used so I'll just leave some links here

product links
http://67-72chevytrucks.com/vboard/s...24&postcount=6

detailed process notes from my project
http://67-72chevytrucks.com/vboard/s...1&postcount=10

these are the basic ingredients;
prep, prep, prep
high performance professional products
patience
attention to detail

it wasn't cheap
it wasn't fast
it wasn't easy

but I couldn't be more pleased with the results so much that I have purchased the exact same products for my second longhorn..

only been two years but after numerous loads of brush, wood, and other various farm chores it still looks as brilliant as the day I put it together..

good luck!


2019








2020








2021



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Old 09-17-2021, 12:48 PM   #15
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Re: The never ending bed sealing question...

I used Epefanes a Dutch Company that specializes in marine varnish. https://www.epifanes.com/page/clear-finishes
I used it exactly how they said and even used their thinner. Only time will tell how it will hold up. However other than the sun my truck is not a good example as it isn't a work truck.
I considered Killer Bee's idea/product but cost won the day. We shall see if my usual less expensive do it twice history plays out.
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Old 09-17-2021, 05:57 PM   #16
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Re: The never ending bed sealing question...

For pure simplicity, low cost and ease of touch up, Boiled Linseed Oil (your plan A) is a great product. It's been around forever and still works. Leaves the wood looking natural too, even brings out the grain somewhat. I use it fer damn near everything wood. There's not much rain/weather 'round here, so can't help ya there. And it do tend to bleach-out under heavy sun over time. Sure- it don't offer the "protection" of urethanes, but oak has a very high durability rating already. Now if ya get it on the metal, and it dries, it will leave an unsightly brownish goo. Yep- just like boogers, 'cept ya cain't flick 'em onto somebody else's windshield, so ya might wanna wipe that off with mineral spirits before it cures.
Obviously based on actual photographic data of a properly used work truck over time, I'd say Killer Bee has it fig'rd out for that shiny look. TotalBoat does make some very high quality products, but as he states: expensive and time consuming prep. I sure do like the way he uses that truck! ...hmmm, which reminds me, there is one heck of a bee-hive inside one of the old race car tires I need to go deal with.
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Old 09-18-2021, 12:20 PM   #17
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Re: The never ending bed sealing question...

I did boiled linseed oil, too, and have some comments ...

1. Apply to all sides of the boards before installing
2. Do several light coats instead of 1 heavy one
3. Can take a few days to fully dry
3. There's still beds with original wood out there, says a lot about its effectiveness and durability
4. Add drainage holes in the bed strip grooves of the boards towards the front, middle, and back, even if you don't go with linseed oil

I stained and dyed my wood black, then sealed with boiled linseed oil and several years later still can't get over how great it looks. Would do it again without hesitation because the wood grain just pops. Not a great photo, but gives an idea of what it looks like.
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Old 09-18-2021, 01:52 PM   #18
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Re: The never ending bed sealing question...

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Old 09-18-2021, 02:04 PM   #19
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Re: The never ending bed sealing question...

Valspar Wet Look High Gloss Sealer waterproofs and enhances the color and design of aggregate, masonry, brick, slate and pavers with a glossy, wet-look sheen. As durable as it is beautiful, it protects against the sun's powerful rays, damaging weather, water, gasoline and de-icing salts.
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