12' fiberglass fishing boat-Ideas please

Discussion in 'Fiberglass and Composite Boat Building' started by bajapaul, Apr 27, 2009.

  1. bajapaul
    Joined: Apr 2009
    Posts: 3
    Likes: 0, Points: 0, Legacy Rep: 10
    Location: So Lake Tahoe

    bajapaul New Member

    Hi all;
    I am brand new here. I was searching for fiberglass refinishing when I found this forum, I hope someone out there can help me.
    I just bought this 12' fiberglass sears sportsman fishing boat. It has not been in the water for 15 years. It was stored upside down and the hull is severely weathered. Down to exposed fibers on one side, yet the other side still has whatever the coating is on it.
    I would like to refinish whole thing so it can be one, nicely finished bottom once again, but I have no idea how to proceed.
    Do I need to remove the cf#'s 1st (and replace them later). Then do I need to bring the better side down to match the worn side. If so how(by sanding). Then what do I refinish the prepared surface with. Can I use gel coat, do I need to re-resin, can I use paint, can I prepare a surface that can be painted.
    Any advice you can give me would be greatly appreciated. I hope to be fishing by june if possible.
    Cost is certainly an issue but I do not want to sacrifice quality as I wish to do this only once. Sans regular maintenance of course.
    Please help a grounded fisherman
     
  2. PAR
    Joined: Nov 2003
    Posts: 19,133
    Likes: 471, Points: 93, Legacy Rep: 3967
    Location: Eustis, FL

    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    Sand the whole boat with 100 grit in an orbital sander. Put a good scratch on every surface. You're not looking to remove material as much as clean it and provide a "tooth" for top coats.

    Once the hull is "toothed" up, apply at least 3 coats of neat epoxy over every inch of the boat (this "locks" down what you've got). You'll notice on one side it looks pretty good, but the exposed fabric side is rough. You'll have to fair this smooth, using fillers and more epoxy, lots of sanding and eventually some final sealing coats of neat epoxy (just like you did at first). Then you paint it.

    Some pictures would be nice as I'm assuming you haven't any delamination issues, which is a strong possibility after a hull has seen this much UV exposure. If you have delamination issues, you can fix this too, but often it's best just to find a better starting point.
     
  3. bajapaul
    Joined: Apr 2009
    Posts: 3
    Likes: 0, Points: 0, Legacy Rep: 10
    Location: So Lake Tahoe

    bajapaul New Member

    Thank you for the advice PAR.

    I cannot seem to upload my photos. It's telling me the the files are invalid. I don't know, I'm a computer idiot sometimes.
    There doesn't seem to be any delamination at all. There are a few hairline cracks. They don't generate all the way through to the inside and I could probably count them on both hands. I assume the neat epoxy will take care of these as well.

    Is there special sand paper for fiberglass or is your basic either wood or metal paper recommended?
    Is there a brand name of neat epoxy you would recommend. (or is neat the brand name)
    What kind of paint do I use? Where can I find it?

    Is this the "Only", or cheapest method for my situation. Are there other options I can consider? This is solid fiberglass through and through. Except for the transome there is no wood or other materials wrapped inside.

    Thanks again for the help, it is greatly appreciated. I can't wait to get started!!
     
  4. PAR
    Joined: Nov 2003
    Posts: 19,133
    Likes: 471, Points: 93, Legacy Rep: 3967
    Location: Eustis, FL

    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    No it's not the cheapest in regard to resins you can use, but for the novice, I'd only recommend epoxy.

    Imperfections in the surface, be they small cracks or other things will require filling.

    I use a high quality sand paper made from artificial diamond dust. It's not cheap, but it lasts longer and cuts better. You can get by with hardware store papers, but the moment you use the good stuff, you'll never want to go back.

    Log onto www.westsystem.com and www.systemthree.com and download their "user's guides". these will cover the basics of working with the materials, fillers, fabrics and epoxies. Also read up on the many previous threads about refinishing 'glass surfaces.
     

  5. bajapaul
    Joined: Apr 2009
    Posts: 3
    Likes: 0, Points: 0, Legacy Rep: 10
    Location: So Lake Tahoe

    bajapaul New Member

    This is awesome PAR thank you soo much for the help. I have been reading other threads but was unsure of the relationship to my project in most of them. This will help me clarify what info I can utilize.
    Thanks also for the website connections. Haven't looked at them yet but I'm sure they too will be very useful.

    I guess I should go to the local marina for leads on materials. I do not live near the ocean but we do have a marina here in Lake Tahoe with boat storage, sales, and repair shops. This was going to be my next step anyway. At least now I can show up with a little bit of knowledge.

    Without a doubt I'll be hanging around this site for some time. There is certainly a boat load (HA HA) of really great information and knowledgable people here.

    Thanks again!!!
     
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