Should I paint or re-gelcoat?

Discussion in 'Fiberglass and Composite Boat Building' started by brad123, Jun 4, 2004.

  1. JR-Shine
    Joined: May 2004
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    Location: Vero Beach, FL

    JR-Shine SHINE

    Gelcoats are polyester resin (I think that was already said) polyester resin over time will absorb water. I am sure modern gelcoats are better than what was used on your boat at production.

    As for what is "best", paint vs. gelcoat; If it were gelcoat, you would see the high end custom builders using it.

    I like paint. :)
     
  2. PAR
    Joined: Nov 2003
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    Location: Eustis, FL

    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    I'd see if running a buffer over the surface produces a look you can live with, before I'd start painting or gel coating.

    Gel coat will die in time, but I've saved a lot of finishes with the buffer. You still have to live with whatever surface imperfections may be there, and there's the labor of buffing you butt off, but a test run in the worst area on the boat will prove quickly if this is a way to go. If it doesn't work out you'll be back to the same point you were before you cranked up the buffer.
     
  3. CUDACRAZY
    Joined: Jul 2004
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    Location: Connecticut

    CUDACRAZY New Member

    Aren't these paint products listed as above the waterline systems? I am thinking of repainting my boat hull too but having it sit in the water for an extended period (even a week) not recommended? Not to mention the loading and unloading on a carpeted trailer could be abrasive.

    Is there a product out there with the same color selections as these topcoat systems that can be used on the bottom? My boat is mostly a trailer and occasional use vessel but someday that might change. I would hate to restrict my use of it not being able to keep it at a marina in the future. Thanks.
     
  4. gonzo
    Joined: Aug 2002
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    Location: Milwaukee, WI

    gonzo Senior Member

    There have been epoxy gelcoats in the market for a number of years. I haven't had experience with them, but they get good reviews.
     
  5. JR-Shine
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    JR-Shine SHINE

    luckI intend to use System three LPU on the topsides and bottom of my boat. It will be kept on a trailer almost all the time. If I do ever leave it in the water for week or so - I’m not worried.

    But, there are some real good, and more expensive paint alternatives (Awlgrip). They do have more color choice too.

    Good
     
  6. CUDACRAZY
    Joined: Jul 2004
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    Location: Connecticut

    CUDACRAZY New Member

    Thanks for the response Gonzo. I have restored (painted) quite a few autos in the past but re-finishing a boat is new to me. Awgrip was not recommending me to use their product for the reasons listed above. I am looking to re-finish my entire 24 foot Baja and actually change the color. Re-gelcoating the boat with a Polystyrene product is not thrilling me and would much rather paint the beast. I will look further into these epoxy paints/gelcoats as you suggest.
     
  7. CUDACRAZY
    Joined: Jul 2004
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    Location: Connecticut

    CUDACRAZY New Member

    Thanks JR-Shine. I don't mine the expense of Awlgrip because I want to do this right and only once. Can you send me and address for this System Three LPU you mentioned above? When I see pictures of these custom offshore racing boats they have to be using some kind of paint system?

    I would appreciate anyone's input that has used Awlgrip below the waterline and what kind of results they have experienced.
     
  8. BOBP

    BOBP Guest

    New Paints

    I'M NOT A BOAT BUILDER BUT I HAVE SOME INTREST IN FIBERGLASS WORK AS I',M WORKING ON A CUSTOM CAR BUT AS TO THE PAINT QUESTIONS YOU MIGHT WANT TO TAKE A LOOK AT A PRODUCT CALLED WEARLON IT IS SLIPPERY THAN TEFLON AND TWICE AS DURABLE WE ARE CURRENTLY PAINTING THE INSIDE OF COAL HOPPERS WITH IT.IT WAS DEVELOPED TO STOP ZEBRA MUSSEL FROM ADHEREING . THERE WEB SITE IS http://www.wearlon.com/EHome.hTML.THOUGHT I'D THROUGH MY TWO CENTS IN IT SEEMS TO BE AN OUTSTANDING PRODUCT
     
  9. JR-Shine
    Joined: May 2004
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    Location: Vero Beach, FL

    JR-Shine SHINE

    Cudacrazy,

    We have the System3 LPU paint at boatbuildercentral.com

    Joel
     
  10. B. Hamm
    Joined: Nov 2004
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    Location: Rockford, IL

    B. Hamm Junior Member

    Since no one's mentioned it, spraying two part LPU's requires air supplied respirators, a dust mask as well as a conventional respirator is basically worthless with these paints, they are extremely toxic. Have lost one friend who didn't bother to follow the safety precautions. If you don't have the necessory equipment, better to use one of the far less toxic one part paints.

    Bill H.
     
  11. DGreenwood
    Joined: Aug 2004
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    Location: New York

    DGreenwood Senior Member

    B. Hamm- Please elaborate on the loss of your freind. I am not being morbid... I manage a shop and these sorts of stories motivate otherwise boneheaded employees to learn to use the gear to protect themselves. You can buy the gear but making them use it is often difficult. Like they say... You can lead a horse to water but you can't hold his head under...or something like that?
     
  12. RThompson
    Joined: Nov 2004
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    Location: New Zealand

    RThompson Senior Member

    A reason why some production boat builders spray paint their parts/boats is the fact that white gelcoats yellow over time.
    (This is one of the reasons why "off white" gelcoats have become common - make it off-white to start with and then fading won't be noticed)

    You might notice that production manufacturers who spray paint all boats rely on joined molded parts with a repair over the join.

    Taking the surface off gelcoat speeds the yellowing process (gelcoat repairs involve taking the surface off the gelcoat).

    So, (assuming a gelcoat finished boat) if you have two joined parts with a gelcoat repair over the join, it will not be long before the repair shows up as a yellow patch. answer: spray paint the whole boat to start with.

    It is no co-incidence that gelcoat suppliers will not guarantee the "white-ness" of gelcoat -especially repairs. They cannot (economically) control the yellowing.

    And so for production building either you post-process paint the boat, accept eventual yellow patches, or design it in such a way that there are no gelcoat repairs (thus the whole boat yellows evenly).
    It is interesting to note that the yellowing is more of a problem with modern gelcoats than older gelcoats (ie: yellowing was not such a problem many years ago)

    Of course another reason to spray paint boats is multiple colour/finish choices not easily done with gelcoat.

    Rob
     
  13. B. Hamm
    Joined: Nov 2004
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    Location: Rockford, IL

    B. Hamm Junior Member

    Painted his airplane using imron (I think, it's been years) without using a respirator of any kind, think he did wear a dust mask. Paint coated his lungs and he eventially passed away with lung failure.

    Bill H.
     
  14. gonzo
    Joined: Aug 2002
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    Location: Milwaukee, WI

    gonzo Senior Member

    Imron like other linear polyurethanes use isocianates as a hardener. One of the effects is premature senility. It deteriorates brain cells.
     

  15. SpankyDxm
    Joined: Jul 2005
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    Location: Louisiana

    SpankyDxm New Member

    I have a simple question about painting the hull .. you are using acylic enamel paint to paint your boat? if yes what is the durablility of it in the water . how often do you repaint it every 4 years ? I saw that auto air colors which is a Bc/cc application uses their products on boats also . please feel free to tell me how long the clear lasts on a boat because I never applied gel-coat before but I do respray cars on the side .
     
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