Like the epoxy, marine spar varnish provides protection from the elements and adds to the finish. Unlike epoxy it goes on thinner but provides a great amount of UV protection which will prevent the dye from fading and the epoxy from becoming cloudy, hiding the beautiful grain from the wood.
I used a high end Pettit Z-Spar 2015 Flagship marine spar varnish.
Before I was ready to varnish I had to sand down the epoxy, knocking down and bumps and providing a good surface for the varnish to adhere to.
After sanding I wiped the surface with a rag and some mineral spirits. Like epoxy dust is bad and will ruin your finish, I cannot stress this enough.
The process of application is similar to epoxy. With the varnish however I applied it and tipped it off with a natural bristle brush.
First coat done, two more to go. You need to let the varnish dry 24 hours between coats.
Another round of sanding. This one is done more lightly as the surface is becoming more smooth with each successive coat.
Two down, one to go.
The final product after 3 coats or epoxy and 3 coats of varnish. After a year or two I will need to sand and apply more coats to repair any micro scratches and to replenish the UV protection.