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Old 24-03-2016, 07:33   #16
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Re: Awlgrip Vs Gelcoat

If you can get some matching gel coat to use on future dings I would say on the gel coat. My gel coat is 27 years old and aril it great shape, except for some dings that are hard to match without original. Plus it was a heavy layer of gel coat to begin with. Then if you keep the boat long enough, paint it with a matching awlgrip.
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Old 24-03-2016, 07:56   #17
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Re: Awlgrip Vs Gelcoat

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If you can get some matching gel coat to use on future dings I would say on the gel coat. My gel coat is 27 years old and aril it great shape, except for some dings that are hard to match without original. Plus it was a heavy layer of gel coat to begin with. Then if you keep the boat long enough, paint it with a matching awlgrip.
After a couple years, you matching gel coat will no longer match as the sun slowly changes the color of your boat. That's assuming years old gel doesn't go bad before you get around to using it.
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Old 24-03-2016, 10:55   #18
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Re: Awlgrip Vs Gelcoat

"Why would that be, HS?"
Different chemistry, different product. Forget about coats and application methods. Think about two ablative bottom paints. "Identical" products and application, but one may last two years and the other six months.
IIRC both the makers of Awlgrip and Imron have said the same thing, ten years then recoat. ("Coat" not "paint", they're very insistent that they don't make "paint".)


Ever seen a bar top finished with ten coats of varnish? How about one finished with just one coat of acrylic potting resin? Which one lasts decades longer and is ten times thicker?(G)
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Old 24-03-2016, 11:18   #19
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Re: Awlgrip Vs Gelcoat

My preference is Gelcoat, only new quality boat I know of that was painted was Hatteras, and I don't know why they were, but I believe they were the first large fiberglass boat?
Anyway I'd like to hear what Minaret and maybe one or two others that do this for a living say.
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Old 24-03-2016, 11:32   #20
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Re: Awlgrip Vs Gelcoat

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Originally Posted by hellosailor View Post
"Why would that be, HS?"
Different chemistry, different product. Forget about coats and application methods. Think about two ablative bottom paints. "Identical" products and application, but one may last two years and the other six months.
IIRC both the makers of Awlgrip and Imron have said the same thing, ten years then recoat. ("Coat" not "paint", they're very insistent that they don't make "paint".)


Ever seen a bar top finished with ten coats of varnish? How about one finished with just one coat of acrylic potting resin? Which one lasts decades longer and is ten times thicker?(G)
Of course if you forget about construction methods it is hard to say which will be cheaper...female mold...gel is part of the process.

Male mold and whatever the builder quotes.

Forgetting the construction method is not understanding the process.

Comparing it to bottom paint makes no sense.
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Old 24-03-2016, 16:09   #21
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Re: Awlgrip Vs Gelcoat

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Originally Posted by hellosailor View Post
"Why would that be, HS?"
Different chemistry, different product. Forget about coats and application methods. Think about two ablative bottom paints. "Identical" products and application, but one may last two years and the other six months.
IIRC both the makers of Awlgrip and Imron have said the same thing, ten years then recoat. ("Coat" not "paint", they're very insistent that they don't make "paint".)


Ever seen a bar top finished with ten coats of varnish? How about one finished with just one coat of acrylic potting resin? Which one lasts decades longer and is ten times thicker?(G)
I don't understand this response, HS. I was commenting upon your statement that Awlgrip would be less expensive than gel, not about their properties.

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Old 24-03-2016, 16:46   #22
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Re: Awlgrip Vs Gelcoat

Jim-
Oh.
In which case, why would they offer Awlgrip instead of a gelcoat, unless it was more profitable for them?
On way or another. After all, you can always set up a production line to do gelcoat on everything, and tint it is the buyer wants a custom hull. Or, charge extra for the fancy "ecru, not beige" or whatever the buyer wants to change it to.


Or maybe...an avid racer would want Awlgrip because it is lighter than gelcoat?(G)

I suppose you'd have to ask whoever is offering the choices of builds, why they offer it. And then of course, verify it.(G)
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Old 24-03-2016, 16:55   #23
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Re: Awlgrip Vs Gelcoat

Like all options...one may or may not be more expensive....just an option.

Sure...but without knowing the building process...even guessing which is more expensive is only a guess.
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Old 24-03-2016, 17:59   #24
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Re: Awlgrip Vs Gelcoat

If you want your boat to be brilliantly shiny and it will never touch anything then go with Awlgrip. Keep in mind that if your dink is bouncing up against your boat it will make a dull spot in the coating after a year or two.

If you do not need unbelievably shiny and don't mind a little hard work every spring then gelcoat is probably for you.

PS: Light colors will last considerably longer on each. If you are going dark go Awlgrip (gelcoat will chalk fast)
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Old 24-03-2016, 18:32   #25
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Re: Awlgrip Vs Gelcoat

Gel coat Gel Coat Gel coat. Ours is 37 yrs old and all we do is wax in the spring. I have compounded the top sides, because the p/o never did squat, to the boat. I have to do it again, after 6 yrs. Gel coat lasts and lasts. Paint, or what ever will need work after 7-10 yrs., and then repainting. If you don't plan on keeping the boat for more than 5 yrs., then paint it, but if your in it for the long haul, gel coat it.
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Old 24-03-2016, 19:30   #26
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Re: Awlgrip Vs Gelcoat

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Gelcoat scratches and gouges are easier and cheaper to repair than Awlgrip, if you go with gelcoat, have the builder supply several quarts of matching gel. I can repair a good scratch in an hour, especially having pre-matched gel.

Awlgrip repairs, require application of primer (545) then 2-3 topcoats a day apart. If sprayed could go faster. It should not be compounded in, although I have seen this done, it creates another problem. To "hide" the repair...it is common to paint a panel, sheer to boot. A small spot will nearly always show. You will see the repair.

If you leave a wet cushion, towel, rag, leaves...leave a fender hanging against the hull, trapping water...whatever, on Awlgrip...it will blister and bubble wrecking finish.

Awlcraft 2000 can be repaired, buffed in and hide as it it acrylic...but it is spray only.

Once painted with Awlgip and you are certain it is Awlgrip (same applies to other Lpu brands over themselves) it can be sanded with 400 grit, any small repairs done with 545 (with topcoat build coat) and directly painted without a full prep and full coat with 545 primer. With one topcoat...much cheaper than full conversion.

If it were me I would have gelcoat...hands down, and I paint.

AwlCare is the protectant, great product...use it on my car.

Curious what mineret will say...

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Agreed. Except that factory gel isn't much help, as gel has a very short shelf life. Only good for the first year or two. Helps if extremely well sealed and kept refrigerated. Nobody does this.
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Old 24-03-2016, 19:57   #27
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Re: Awlgrip Vs Gelcoat

I have seen quite a few dark blue Benni's in the 8-10 year old range and the gel coat is chalked right out, owners tell me it's just the way it is, what's causing this other than the fact that dark colors don't age so well in gel coat??
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Old 24-03-2016, 21:46   #28
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Re: Awlgrip Vs Gelcoat

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I have seen quite a few dark blue Benni's in the 8-10 year old range and the gel coat is chalked right out, owners tell me it's just the way it is, what's causing this other than the fact that dark colors don't age so well in gel coat??


Dark colors don't age well, period. Simple science, white reflects the full spectrum to make the color white. The closer to black, the more UV is absorbed. This is why items which are both white and shiny last the longest before succumbing to UV degradation.
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Old 24-03-2016, 22:24   #29
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Re: awlgrip vs gelcoat

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If the boat was white I'd probably go gelcoat but if it was a darker color and I lived in a sunny climate I would use awlgrip.
Robert has the right answer. White gelcoat will last 20 or 30 years if it's maintained. That means compound and wax twice a year. gelcoat that's dark will not last more than 10 years before it gets chalky, even less in a tropical climate. Once it chalks, you can compound it to bring back the shine, but that shine will not last more than three or four months, even after being waxed with the finest carnauba wax (Trewax)

So bottom line: Gelcoat if it's white, paint if it's a dark color. Either way, you'll have to paint after 10 years or so, unless it's white.
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Old 25-03-2016, 06:12   #30
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Re: Awlgrip Vs Gelcoat

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Agreed. Except that factory gel isn't much help, as gel has a very short shelf life. Only good for the first year or two. Helps if extremely well sealed and kept refrigerated. Nobody does this.

Of course this is true...I was thinking of having a quart of each color handy for a new boat when the first scratches and chips are so devastating...


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