needing advice on best way to finish the project

I am building a set of oak side-rails for the bed of my pickup truck. They will exposed to extreme weather most of the time, here in Colorado. (freezing temps as well as 100+ heat). I'm trying to decide what type of finish would be best to keep them looking good for years to come.
Any suggestions?
Robin
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On 12/21/12 11:48 AM, rlz wrote:

Chrome plated steel. :-)
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On 12/21/2012 11:48 AM, rlz wrote:

Hopefully _not_ red oak...
There's not much that will last long, certainly, other than perhaps one of the dipping clear epoxies or the like (and I'm not sure how well they would stand up to the UV).
Frankly, you would be better off w/ softwood and paint in all likelihood if it is going to be wood and not garaged.
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On Friday, December 21, 2012 9:48:05 AM UTC-8, rlz wrote:

If you want to go bullet proof fiberglass it. Use fiberglass cloth and no-blush epoxy to glass it out. The cloth goes 100% clear and the no-blush epoxy makes sure you don't get any haze in the epoxy. You have to varnish over this as well to protect from the sun. This is how wood boats, like ChrisCraft are done. I think it is called a "Bright Wood" finish. Only problem is if this is a working truck, the glass will get dinged up eventually and it is a bit of a bogger repair.
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SonomaProducts.com wrote:

In boating, "bright" just means clear coat, usually varnish. Glossy clear.
Don't know how well solid wood does with epoxy and glass, doesn't do well with polyester and glass, doubt epoxy would do much better.
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Thanks for the replies. It is red oak, and I am planing on staining it to give it a slightly darker color. I was thinking of using varnish, but I wasn't sure how well it would stand up.
Robin
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On 12/21/2012 4:58 PM, rlz wrote:

And like a boat you will have to refinish it periodically.
I don't know if it is available but have you consider teak or mahogany and use oil on it? It would be a little more expensive, but then each time you wax the truck, a little oil on the wood work would keep it looking nice for many years. Wiping the boards with teak oil occasionally would be a lot easier that sanding down or stripping the varnish and re varnishing.
I don't know if you could use teak oil on oak but it may be worth investigating.
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"rlz" wrote:

------------------------------------------------ Is this a "show" truck or a "work" truck?
If this is a "work" truck, forget it.
If this is a "show" truck, I'd use white oak and seal it with Epifanes marine poly on an annual basis.
Have fun.
Lew
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It's just to give the truck a different look. I'm going to make it so the rails are removable, in the cases where I need to get a load of rock or mulch. I usually just haul plywood and lumber for DIY projects around the house,
Robin
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I wrote:

------------------------------------------------
"rlz" wrote:
It's just to give the truck a different look. I'm going to make it so the rails are removable, in the cases where I need to get a load of rock or mulch. I usually just haul plywood and lumber for DIY projects around the house, ------------------------------------------------ You basically are treating rails as "show".
Epifanes should do a good job.
It a marine item.
Jamestown Distributors by mail, West Marine locally.
Lew
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Thanks Lew for the info. Living a mile up here in Denver in the Rocky Mountains., getting Marine items locally is a little difficult...LOL
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On 12/23/2012 6:50 AM, rlz wrote:

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White oak is for exterior use. Red oak for interior.
Any varnish or lacquer type finish will require redoing
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On Saturday, December 22, 2012 3:21:30 PM UTC-6, rlz wrote:

Most of the time? Why, if they are removable?

Store them, from the weather, when not being used.
My grandfather made tall side rails for his '54 chevy truck, for hauling livestock.... common, long ago. He'd remove them when not in use. No finish on them and they lasted for years. If I'm not mistaken, those side rails may still be in the barn, at the old homestead.
Using that truck side-rail idea, I made a cart, with removable side rails and a chain-latch tail gate (like the old pickups' tail gates), for Mom to conveniently tote/display some of her flowers/flower pots. Those side rails (unfinished) lasted for years, also. *The floor of the cart needed yearly repair, for being wet most of the time. http://www.flickr.com/photos/43836144@N04/8299844073/in/photostream
Sonny
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On 12/21/2012 11:48 AM, rlz wrote:

I vote for an oil finish. Think about an oil soaked wood deck on a trailer or some such where motor oil dripped and soaked in.
Kinda time for the mantra: Flood coat, wipe off excess after the initial coating and do this: once an hour for a day once a day for week once a week for month once a month for a year once a year forever
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