Z Spar Captains Varnish
Pettit Z-Spar Pettit Z-Spar
  • Z Spar Captains Varnish

Z Spar Captain's Varnish

Z Spar 1015 Captains Varnish is a high-solids marine varnish that is a copolymerization of several different resins and drying oils - it has found remarkable acceptance by users throughout the world. Captain's Varnish is recommended for the highest quality work. It has outstanding gloss retention and all-around durability. It is considered by its many users to be the most durable varnish ever offered to the boating trade. Contains Ultra Violet absorbers and filters.
$25.08 / pt
 The item was added to your wishlist.
 The item was added to your shop cart.
Tech Spec Product Info User Generated Content

    Technical Specifications

  • Resin: Alkyd/ Phenolic
  • Oil: Linseed/Tung
  • Oil Length: 20 gals.
  • UV Absorbers: Present
  • Solids (theoretical): Weight- 55 +- 1%, Volume- 48 +- 1%
  • Coverage: 585 sq. ft/gal.
  • VOC: 410 g/l (3.4 lbs/gal) as supplied
  • Flash Point:105Deg F
  • Application Method: Brush or Spray
  • Number of Coats: Bare Wood- 4 minimum, Existing Varnish- 2 minimum
  • Dry Film Thickness per coat: 1.5 mils (3.1 wet mils)
  • Application Temp: 40Deg F. Min., 90Deg F. Max.

    Do not shake varnish. Stir gently before application, being careful not to introduce air bubbles into the varnish. Z*Spar 1015 Captain's Varnish may be applied by brush, conventional or airless spray. Thinning is not normally required although on warm days use Pettit 120/T10 Brushing Thinner at 5- 10% by volume to ease brushing and maintain good flow and levelling. When spraying, use Pettit 121/T8 Spraying Thinner up to 20% by volume. Spray one even, wet coat to minimize orange peel. Do not apply in heavy films or build coats too quickly as solvent entrapment, blistering or wrinkling may occur. Do not apply Captain's Varnish on extremely humid days or when rain is threatening. Do not apply in the late afternoon when working outdoors as the wet film may be adversely affected by dew. DO NOT apply this varnish to a wood hull which has been dried more than one week under conditions such as artificial heat. Do not use Captain's Varnish below the waterline on boats that remain in the water. The moisture content of the wood should be a minimum of 15% when varnished. This will eliminate expansion cracking, micro-checking and gloss loss when the varnish is in service.

    Wood must be clean, dry and properly prepared prior to varnishing. When sanding wood, always sand with the grain. Use a vacuum, air hose, or tack rag to remove all traces of sanding residue. Follow all surface preparation steps carefully, avoiding shortcuts. Inadequate surface preparation will virtually assure inadequate varnish performance.
Dry Time Hours  Set-to-touch  Tack Free  Dry Hard 
90Deg F.  1-3 hrs  3-5 hrs  8-12 hrs 
70Deg F.  2-4 hrs  5-7 hrs  12-20 hrs 
50Deg. F  4-8 hrs  12-16 hrs  24-48 hrs 


  • Ultra Violet absorbers and filters for long-term gloss retention.
  • Recommended for the highest quality work
  • Outstanding gloss retention and all around durability.
  • This is the prefered varnish when painting in a variable environment.


WARNING: Cancer and Reproductive Harm - www.P65Warnings.ca.gov

BRAND: Pettit Z-Spar
Number Of Parts: One Part
Type: Varnishes
4.6 38

The best varnish


I use this varnish on the brightwork on my 1985 Grand Banks Classic. It's easy to use and wears very well. Our boat always gets rave reviews!

real ann k

Davis, CA


The perfect spar varnish


I use this product on brightwork and spars. Also on stained, pine Adirondack chairs with 5-6 coats. Absolutely gorgeous deepening the color of the stain with an amber glow.


Kennebunkport, ME


High quality finish


I like the finished result on my solo canoe.

amateur boat maker





Have always used Captains Varnish never been let down.




Tried and True


I use this for the mahogany decking in my sailing dinghy, which takes a lot of abuse. Excellent UV protection and durability and it is easy to apply. A local boatbuilder recommended the product and also recommended significantly thinning for an initial sealcoat followed almost immediately with a less-thinned coat. Dry overnight between coats. Minimum 4 coats. Again, awesome stuff but put the time into application to get your money's worth. Check out Louis Sauzedde's Tips from a Shipwright episode on varnishing for rolling and tipping technique.




Perfect every time


What can I say, in 20+ years I've never had a problem with this varnish. Old reliable. As long as you do the correct prep work , this comes out nice every time.

David Satter, Satter's Restoration

Branchville NJ


Recommended by Classic Mega Yacht Mate


I have used all varnish's but this over the years. With my latest boat the brightwork needed some love. The mate on a classic Palmer Johnson did some work for me but I still had the teak door to rebuild. Fast forward, his work was flawless so I decided to mimic on the door. It was perfect only 3 coats deep and people are raving at the work. Foam brush and nothing special on my end.


East Hampton, NY


Beautiful results from a first timer


This was my first attempt at using varnish and the results are better than expected, i rolled the varnish on with 4" high density foam hot dog rollers and tipped with a foam brush. This photo shows the results of three coats of varnish on top of two epoxy coats, sanding with 220 between the first two coats and 400 before the final, this was done in my garage, cobwebs and all, NOT a dust free environment by any means.




drys fast and holds up well


We use this product on wood doors


Tampa, FL

best protection


i grew up with my Dad always using Z-Spar Captains varnish to protect exterior wood from the harsh California sun. Now it's my turn in Texas!


North Dallas, Texas


Z Spar Captain's Varnish



Related Items:
TotalBoat Blogs Live Tech Support