For years I had been using Smith & Co.'s Clear Penetrating Epoxy Sealer for working on my sailboats. Then I got into wooden boats. Ten years later I moved from the San Francisco Bay area to Mystic Connecticut to work full time restoring historic wooden yachts. When I ran out of the CPES I brought with me, I looked around to purchase more. To my astonishment nobody had even heard of the product.
I contacted the manufacturer to inquire where I can purchase this product locally. I was told there was no sources outside the San Francisco Bay area. In January of 2001 I started Star Distributing for the purpose of introducing this incredible product to the folks in the North East. Since then I have added other product lines to compliment our product selection. I believe in these products and use them on a regular basis.
Since then I have discovered many folks have a lot of different uses for these products. People are telling other people, who are telling other people about these products. The word is spreading because these products really work as advertised.
Here is a collection of feedback in the words of the customers themselves.
The deep penetration / fungus killing & wood stabilization properties of CPES are absolutely perfect for restoration projects. It provides the critical foundation for filling and splicing with new wood. The Laminating & Layup Epoxy mixed with sawdust make a perfect filler. It can easily be shaped and carved after a days cure. These products give me the confidence of knowing that I can offer a perfect solution to people with restoration needs. The repairs can be made more durable than new. Make sure to protect yourself when using these products by using a respirator, glasses and gloves.
Check out my work in the projects section of this web site.
I recently did another repair job using Layup & Laminating Resin and sawdust. I ran out of the Smith Co epoxy... and finished the job with some West System Epoxy Resins that I had on hand.
The West System Epoxy sets up way too fast.. and in the process, it acts like yeast has been added. My careful application was wasted when the stuff expanded as it generated heat (thick applications are the worst). It even melted some of the plastic holding it in place. The end result was a success, but a lot of finishing was required to get the shape reestablished. This stuff ends up quite brittle... where the Smith Co. product retains a consistency similar to wood. I much prefer the Smith Company Products.
Three years ago I decided to repaint my whole house. My house was built in 1865 and the siding would not hold paint. I removed all of the old paint and applied CPES to the bare wood. Then I painted as usual. I since have not had any problems with paint peeling or discoloration. Friends who stop over for social events ask me if I had just repainted since the paint looks like the day it was applied.
Eight years ago I used CPES to seal the wood under the varnish on my boat. Once a year I put on a new coat of varnish. The varnish has not lifted, turned yellow, or stained.
Various anonymous people at boat shows.
"About 85% of our work is historic preservation... the 2-part epoxy comes in handy when saving original parts. Try it. The price is right."
Platteville, WI *
(What I like about Smith & Co. is) "...dealing with people who actually know their product...they are as advertised-which is exceptional these days."
D. M *
"I have used it (CPES) on (boat) bottoms as well as almost everything else. It does two things very well. Firstly it soaks into the wood gluing the grain together and taking-up space that water can not. Secondly, because it is 'part of the wood' now it is the perfect 'primer' or paint base."
R. W *
"For one season I used CPES simply as a primer on some areas of my boat's hull where paint wouldn't stick, (mostly due to oil soaked wood). The stuff worked great. I'm restoring the boat now with a new bottom, and let me tell you, it was tough getting the paint off where I had primed with CPES."
R. V. *
(What we like about Smith & Co. products is that) "They work--no glue failures: Better guitar finish adhesion; secure fingerboard glue joint."
M. T. D. *
"I don't have to worry about Cocobolo [a kind of wood] guitars coming apart."
(Another guitar-maker) *
"Try Smith's CPES: Clear Penetrating Epoxy Sealer. It is great stuff and the ultimate product for sealing wood. Apply 3 coats of CPES. You just keep brushing the stuff on until the wood won't take any more. Before the third coat is completely cured (1/2 cure time roughly) put on your first coat of varnish. That way the varnish is glued down and will not lift."
"I have used the (CPES) on my boat, the "Vixen," built in 1904, houseboat, and house the dry rot bugs hate me for it. My next project is my decaying molar, but Mr. Smith has reservations."
H. 0. *
"I had-a couple of shaft logs (Wood around where tie propeller shafts go from inside to outside -the boat) with electrolysis damage, a 1964 36-foot cruiser with twin 283s (cubic inch engines). What this means is that the fibers were there but there was nothing holding them together. Well, not that bad, but not that good, either, so... I got to thinking and reading, and came up with a plan. If I could dry out those shaft logs, they would soak up CPES like a sponge. The flexible nature of CPES would be a close approximation of the Lignin (the natural glue in wood that holds the fibers together) that was damaged by the electrolysis. Great theory, but how to test...Well, I had an old hunk of rotting wood that was crumbling to bits before me. I soaked it, and looked at the result. It was much better than I expected, and the test material was much worse than the shaft logs...I decided to go forward...I soaked it but good...the next day...I saturated it a second time. Now, due to work, I was out of town for a week, so when I came back it was done. WOW! Solid wood, that was not "crispy" like W*** Systems stuff. I was able to run screws in it, and there was no cracking. The end result was, I spent two weeks and saved $10,000."
C. C. *
"(I've handled challenging situations with) ...rot on wooden boats.
(You should) try it."
Malcolm M Crosby, Crosby Yacht Yard *
"I've been in the 'Period House' restoration business for more than 25 years, and to save old windows and doors and other period house architectural items, I learned real early that just because there was some rot, I did not have to throw out a window sash or architectural trim, in use Smith's Clear Penetrating Epoxy Sealer (CPES) and Fill-It Epoxy Filler.
I was turned on to the product by friends in the boat work business. It is my policy to use CPES on all areas wherever I've removed rot and fill joints and end grain with Fill-It Epoxy Filler, especially exterior exposed wood areas.
The filler is easily shaped, sanded and painted. My customers are surprised how strong and secure their doors and windows are after I use Fill-It and they can't see the repair once painted.
I could not stay in business without Smith's epoxy systems."
"P. S. All parts are a 50/50 or 1 to 1 part mixing schedule, which makes it easy, and the long pot life is very user-friendly as well."
"We love all your products. The Clear Penetrating Epoxy sealer has helped
us to repair instead of replace our decking. I tell everyone I talk to about
"Thanks...especially to S. Smith and Co. for the fine products that I purchased from them that came thru just as he said they would, CPES, Fill-It."
T. P. *
"Effective, reasonably priced, good customer service, timely delivery. Clear Penetrating Epoxy Sealer (is) great for sealing old wood for museum displays. (The products) work. Have ordered on 2 different occasions. It goes a long way + lasts in storage. Have recommended it to associates, because of product quality + effectiveness."
T. A. (Museum staff) *
"Given the very detailed explanation of the products, its chemical properties, ingredients and the instructions for use, I'm left w/no doubt that I have purchased a quality product. Plus, you have demystified deteriorated wood and its repair for us with your very thorough description of how this system works.
(We've handled) window sills, decking, (and) porch dry rot. (It's) a very empowering product having taken us off our dependence on "handy-people" who have charged us too much for too little in such repairs, i.e., inferior results. Homeowners-You can do this."
L. M.G. *
"It does just what it promises! A great product. Highly recommended. Also the Fill-It is a fantastic filler. I saved all the windows in my home with it."
Mae, The Lumber Baron *
"(The Smith & Co. products) work! Restoring a 63 foot Alaskan Trawler, they saved me about two years and great expense. (I'd tell you to) use them-they are fantastic."
Dave McGreenery *
"Thanks for staying in touch via your recent email blast. I will be ordering more CPES this spring, as I have three porch floors to coat for my painting clients. Over the past two years, CPES has been a money maker for me in addition to being a product I could recommend and apply in a variety of situations where a normal alkyd primer just wouldn't have worked. I even used it on some rusty spots on my 13 year old car - and it has kept the car looking decent long after other cars begin to rust out!
-Dan, a very happy customer up in West Michigan"
2017 Steve Smith and Star Distributing LLC All rights reserved. Used by permission.