the Catalina factory did not varnish the bottoms of the teak/holly
sole panels on (some? all?) C34s, they are vulnerable to water
damage should the bilge overflow. If your sole panels are stained,
here's how to replace them.
picture doesn't begin to do justice to the beautiful results of this
project - the rich, deep, glossy teak makes the boat look brand-new.
You can get 4 x 8 panels of 3/8" teak with holly stripes
from a number of marine teak suppliers (such as Yukon Lumber in
Norfolk, VA). The C34's sole panels are designed to be cut out
of exactly two 4 x 8 sheets. Remove the old panels and use
them as templates for cutting.
Because the edges need to be cut with great precision and also
need rounding, you should not attempt this project unless you have
the necessary skills and equipment. I hired a master woodworker who
charged me $300 for the job.
NOTE: Be sure to finish the bottoms as well as
the tops. This will help prevent unsightly water damage.
To finish the sole panels, I did the following:
- Applied one coat of semi-gloss marine varnish mixed 50-50 with
mineral spirits to both sides.
- Applied three additional coats of semi-gloss marine varnish to
top, with each coat followed by wet sanding with 600 sandpaper.
- Final coat wet-sanded with 600 and 1200 sandpaper.
- 3 coats of polyurethane applied over varnish (both sides).
At the end of each sailing season, remove the sole panels and
store them away from the boat. This will prevent water damage from a
bilge that overflows while the boat is unattended.
Important: The opinions expressed here are
those of the individual contributors to this page, and not those of
the Catalina 34 National Association or Catalina Yachts, Inc.
Additionally, this material has not been reviewed by Catalina
Yachts, Inc. for technical accuracy. This page's maintainer cannot
guarantee the accuracy of this information or the desirability of
suggested modifications or upgrades. Please obtain assistance from a
competent marine mechanic or boatyard prior to making any
significant modifications to your vessel.