When you have a 30-year-old boat there are maintenance items that cannot be ignored. Mason sailboats are very special boats and there is a dedicated owner’s group who do their best to refurbish, update, and otherwise do their best to keep these boats afloat.

Ten years ago when I first purchased the boat there were years of hard bottom paint on her.  I had the bottom blasted and made some minor blister repairs.  Ten years later the ablative bottom paint was building up and flaking off.  This winter we had the bottom soda blasted to start over once again.

Hull covered and ready for blasting
Bottom soda blasted back to gel-coat
Bottom soda blasted back to gel-coat

In the spring two coats of Interlux InterProtect 2000E were applied to the bottom.

Filled anything that needed filled and then got two coats of InterProtect on

Bottom paint applied over the Interlux – bottom job done.

Two coats of Pettit Odyssey Triton bottom paint
Two coats of Pettit Odyssey Triton bottom paint

Once the bottom was done one of the biggest jobs of owning a 30-year-old boat with teak decks finally came due.  A prior owner decided the best way to maintain the deck was to power wash it.  Not only power wash it, but power wash it with the grain, probably one of the worst things that can be done to a teak deck.  The grain was blown out in many places and paper thin.  It clearly was time to replace the deck.  I looked at the price of removing the deck and fiberglassing it over, and the price was not much different putting down new teak – both were expensive!

The most popular option for replacing a teak deck is Teak-decking Systems.  The system works by an accurate template being created of the deck to be replaced, or the area to be decked. The template is then sent to the factory where the teak decks are pre-assembled before being transported back to the vessel’s location to be permanently installed in large sections.

I talked to a number of boat yards who claimed to work with this system but did not have confidence in their abilities.  Someone would have to fly up from Florida and be put up for a few days while they took laser measurements of the deck and then returned to Florida.

I was able to find a company that could make a custom deck “board by board” (rare air nowadays) in Annapolis for the same price as Teak-decking Systems.  Being local I was able to visit their operation, meet the tradesmen, and tour a Swan that they had just completed.  The company was Osmotech. 

They take 2×6 teak boards and slice them to the desired thickness and custom fit them to the boat.

The boards will be 2 inches wide and any thinkness desired.

The first step is removing the original teak deck and all the hardware.

Removal was pretty much done with a hammer and a chisel.

You can see that the original deck was held down with screws and glue

Mason 44 – Don & Betsy