From past experience, I can only suggest the following:
Find/build/buy/scrounge a length of raingutter longer than the bamboo shafts.
[Not sure what band/s you are looking at, but 16' for each might be
Polyurethane will work, but you can purchase marine spar varnish in
5-gallon [or larger] quantities for less.
Use the raingutter as a trough to soak the bamboo for an extended
period of time.
You will want to cover the trough while soaking so it doesn't
evaporate or get 'thick'.
You will need a 'drying stand' after removing them from the trough. I
suggest using two very thin edges of metal for them to rest upon.
Keeping the shafts from the weather is another problem!
Quoting WA3GIN <email@example.com>:
> Hi Folks,
> Santa brought me a dozen 40ft bamboo stalks freshly cut and ready
> for drying and UV sealing treatment.
> I'm looking for suggestions regarding the sealing paint/varnish
> material used.
> In the past 920 years ago) I used marine spar varnish which was
> mixed for 100% outdoors use...much has changed in the paint/varnish
> industry since then. I have no idea what works today.
> I tried polyurethane on one element and it flaked away in a few
> years of exposure to the sun.
> I'm also open to speader color ideas. I know from experience that
> people who paint their front doors black experience severe wood
> spliting, apparently from the excessive heat build-up when the doors
> are exposed to sunshine, so I think black is not a good color but
> what about silver, white, sky blue?
> Thoughts are welcome,
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