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Old 21-03-2014, 00:46   #16
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Re: Paint

Thanks for that info, Minaret. Any good info on that topic on the internet? What products to take look at?

My boat is over 35 years old now and some say that its hull looks really tired. I personally don't give a damn until it holds water outside but it's always good to keep on open mind on all the possibilities.
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Old 21-03-2014, 00:54   #17
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Re: Paint

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Thanks for that info, Minaret. Any good info on that topic on the internet? What products to take look at?

My boat is over 35 years old now and some say that its hull looks really tired. I personally don't give a damn until it holds water outside but it's always good to keep on open mind on all the possibilities.
Sure, loads of info here. Search for Mainesail's thread on restoring tired gel.
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Old 21-03-2014, 04:47   #18
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Re: Paint

Gelcoat takes more ongoing maintenance to maintain and as time goes on, the amount of buffing steadily increases. Eventually the polishing will wear thru.

You can spray gelcoat but it takes more effort once sprayed to get a nice glossy result. We did a couple of hatch covers that had been damaged on our last boat and it was a huge pain that we wouldn't repeat.

We did from the rubrail up on our last boat with interlux Brightside (cheaper easier 1 part paint). 4 yrs on when we sold, it was still glossy with nothing more than a wash now and then. It wasn't as durable as the higher end 2 part paints if you dropped the anchor on it or were similarly abusive but it was really easy to touch up and unless you got inches away, you couldn't tell where the touch ups were.

No coating option is permanent nor maintenance free. I believe gelcoat is primarily a cost savings measure for manufacturers as the hull pops out of the mold with the final finish.
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Old 21-03-2014, 07:53   #19
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Re: Paint

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My friends boat has a 20 year old Awlgrip job that sill looks very good. Mine was done in 98' and apart from a few scratches it still turns heads. Both are Flag Blue.

If the Awlgrip is well maintained it will last a very long time. Plenty of references around to 20 year old jobs. There is no hard lifespan.
ok, 20 years sounds a lot better than 7-10.

I'm making an offer on a boat with an Awlgrip job that was done about 5 years ago. Maybe the paint on this boat compared to the boat with 30 year old original paint, now has the same lifespan?
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Old 21-03-2014, 10:36   #20
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Re: Paint

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---
I'm making an offer on a boat with an Awlgrip job that was done about 5 years ago. Maybe the paint on this boat compared to the boat with 30 year old original paint, now has the same lifespan?
GalaxyGirl, do you mean "original paint", or are you referring to the original gelcoat? They're not the same.
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Old 22-03-2014, 06:30   #21
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Re: Paint

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You can DIY with some practice. Yes, you sand and polish. Materials are getting better all the time, it's very easy these days.
Minaret, for a professional job, how would the cost of a new gelcoat job compare to an Awlgrip job? For example, if I asked you for 2 estimates, one for Awlgrip and one for new gelcoat, would the gelcoat be twice the price? 10x?
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Old 22-03-2014, 06:35   #22
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Re: Paint

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Originally Posted by pbfein View Post
My friends boat has a 20 year old Awlgrip job that sill looks very good. Mine was done in 98' and apart from a few scratches it still turns heads. Both are Flag Blue.

If the Awlgrip is well maintained it will last a very long time. Plenty of references around to 20 year old jobs. There is no hard lifespan.
In what climate? In the tropics it's hard to get more than the 7-10 mentioned and most large yachts figure on 5-7.
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Old 22-03-2014, 06:48   #23
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Re: Paint

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Maybe the paint on this boat compared to the boat with 30 year old original paint, now has the same lifespan?
Just to be clear, there is no such thing as "original paint" on a fiberglass boat. Gelcoat is not in any way related to paint or even comparable. Gelcoat is an integral layer of the original hull layup. It is actually the very first step in creating a fiberglass hull.
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Old 22-03-2014, 06:58   #24
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Re: Paint

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In what climate? In the tropics it's hard to get more than the 7-10 mentioned and most large yachts figure on 5-7.
And have you seen gelcoat boats in the tropics?

Tropics are hard for any surface.
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Old 22-03-2014, 07:24   #25
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Re: Paint

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Just to be clear, there is no such thing as "original paint" on a fiberglass boat. Gelcoat is not in any way related to paint or even comparable. Gelcoat is an integral layer of the original hull layup. It is actually the very first step in creating a fiberglass hull.
Not so true, there were and are some manufacturers that paint their vessels before leaving the factory. Longevity of gel or paint in sun also has to do with color selected, I.E. dark colors don't last as long as lighter or whites.
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Old 22-03-2014, 08:01   #26
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Re: Paint

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Minaret, for a professional job, how would the cost of a new gelcoat job compare to an Awlgrip job? For example, if I asked you for 2 estimates, one for Awlgrip and one for new gelcoat, would the gelcoat be twice the price? 10x?



About the same, for a hull, IF you can find someone who does it. For a deck, gel is slightly more work. Materials are much less though. The key, IMO, is that since you wet sand and buff gelcoat, excellent results are guaranteed for the amateur. The same cannot be said of painting.
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Old 22-03-2014, 08:57   #27
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Re: Paint

I'm no fan of paint on fiberglass, it just ain't right , but many single stage paints can be wet sanded and buffed, just haven't seen a coat of paint as thick as Gelcoat.
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Old 22-03-2014, 09:12   #28
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Re: Paint

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I'm no fan of paint on fiberglass, it just ain't right , but many single stage paints can be wet sanded and buffed, just haven't seen a coat of paint as thick as Gelcoat.
I guess all those plastic Corvettes out there since the 50's have been doing something wrong. Paint is not supposed to be as thick as gel and if applied to thick can shorten the life span of the coating. Gelcoat has an ideal applied thickness as well. Two part marine paints are pretty tough if the owner uses some care, although not as tough as the original gelcoat. The issue though is for the average guy a complete re-geling of the hull with the required sanding, fairing, longboarding in between the 4-5 coats of sprayed coats is just not that easy in terms of labor or results for an amateur, this is why the majority of refinish jobs are paint.
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Old 22-03-2014, 09:34   #29
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Re: Paint

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I guess all those plastic Corvettes out there since the 50's have been doing something wrong. Paint is not supposed to be as thick as gel and if applied to thick can shorten the life span of the coating. Gelcoat has an ideal applied thickness as well. Two part marine paints are pretty tough if the owner uses some care, although not as tough as the original gelcoat. The issue though is for the average guy a complete re-geling of the hull with the required sanding, fairing, longboarding in between the 4-5 coats of sprayed coats is just not that easy in terms of labor or results for an amateur, this is why the majority of refinish jobs are paint.

No fairing or long boarding required. On a hull 90% of the surface area can be machine sanded. Hand sanding the sheer and waterline take longer than machine sanding the rest of the hull. Use dry guide coat and the rest just follows. The 3M sponge system also is amazing, so is their new hook and loop flexible abrasive sheet. Materials are easier to acquire than ever, you can get almost anything on Amazon.
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Old 22-03-2014, 13:23   #30
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Re: Paint

Given GG's potential situation...

I think if I were buying a boat with possibly tired gel coat, I'd do nothing more than a good wash, polish, wax... and then evaluate after that. Maybe some wet-sanding before polishing, if an on-site known-to-be-expert fiberglass guy recommends that after evaluating the status of the gel coat. Work to be done by guys who have a clue.

If it were an already-painted boat, I'd probably do nothing more than a good wash and wax... and then evaluate after that.

I've found it useful to live with a boat for a bit before plunging in on non-critical projects...

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