Art work in gel coat

Discussion in 'Fiberglass and Composite Boat Building' started by gages, Aug 4, 2014.

  1. gages
    Joined: Jun 2008
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    Location: australia

    gages Junior Member

    Hi all
    Any one got techniques in adding in intricate artwork into gel coat in the moulding stage ?
    I've played around somewhat with stencil art but I never can get those nice sharp lines due to tacky get coat...any hints people?

    Cheers
     
  2. gonzo
    Joined: Aug 2002
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    Location: Milwaukee, WI

    gonzo Senior Member

    Yes, you can airbrush or hand paint in reverse. It is a technique that requires you think in reverse. That is, you paint the details first and then the background. A friend of mine does artwork on glass windows and it is fascinating to see the images appear.
     
  3. Ctowles
    Joined: Oct 2013
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    Location: Jackson hole, wy

    Ctowles Junior Member

    Check out this sweet metalflake art. Paul at ps composites has been making sweet gelcoat art for over 30 years. Masking, templates, and lots of time and patience. Ive had a few of these boats over the years, love the custom art.
     

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  4. latman
    Joined: Mar 2010
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    latman Junior Member

    you can spray /apply your gelcoat art without any catalyst and then cover it with a spray of well catalyzled gelcoat which will cure the artwork . I personally would look at painting it afterwards and applying a clear coat for protection (or just get a vinyl wrap made and apply that )
     
  5. Ctowles
    Joined: Oct 2013
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    Location: Jackson hole, wy

    Ctowles Junior Member

    The way the above boat was done is always a layer of clear gel coat first, then subsequent layers with outermost colors first and innermost colors last. Basically going back
    Kwards from the clear. Lots of masking and stencil work. Paul has been making boats with artwork like this for 30+ years. I've wached it done and can say its a very time consuming and detailed process. When the boats pop from the mold they look amazing with artwork under the gel coat. If you paint/clear coat you won't get that as the artwork will sit above the surface not below
     
  6. wet feet
    Joined: Nov 2004
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    Location: East Anglia,England

    wet feet Senior Member

    Don't lose sight of the reality that any damage will leave you with a very difficult repair on your hands.It may be more practical to apply the artwork to the surface and clearcoat it.
     

  7. gages
    Joined: Jun 2008
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    Location: australia

    gages Junior Member

    Thanks for those replies
    I usually keep the artwork fairly simple and I feel " less is more" with gel coat artwork , especially as mentioned an fully covered boat can be a hassle to repair the fully coveted artwork boat.
    I like the Un catalysed idea but that would only work for 1 covering/ colour so slightly limiting.
    I've done plenty but I never quite get those sharp lines/ edges of the artwork I'm after

    Thanks again and if anyone has more ideas on doing intricate stencil artwork ( easily) keep them coming
     
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