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Old 10-04-2016, 23:05   #1
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Changing Boat Names

I see many boats for sail with large lettering on the side and back. How is this generally removed for either just white on the side or a new name? Does removing lettering damage the gel coat?

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Old 10-04-2016, 23:09   #2
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Re: Changing Boat Names

Depends on how it was applied - also (in Australia) different states have different rules for how the name should be displayed (height) and where .. Incl rego number.

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Old 11-04-2016, 00:17   #3
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Re: Changing Boat Names

Vinyl lettering can be removed with a heat gun or hair/blow drier.

With good technique it can come off clean with no residue. Heat and peel at just the right amount of heat and pulling force. Takes a minute to get the combo just right.

But here's an issue. When lettering has been on for some time on gel coat, quite often the gelcoat around the lettering has actually receded some from weathering and buffing.

When the lettering is removed the gelcoat underneath is not receded and still shows the letters. Looks like same name in matching color vinyl. And it takes some very careful sanding to even out the gelcoat.
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Old 11-04-2016, 00:46   #4
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Re: Changing Boat Names


It's a hard decision, because, when you sand gelcoat, which is full of tiny bubbles, you cut the tops off the bubbles, which makes dirt collecting pockets. So, Linda, the owner has to choose between a smooth, but porous, finish, or having a shadow of non-oxidized gelcoat left behaind.

Best of luck to you,

Ann & Jim, U.S. s/v Insatiable II, SE Qld, for a while
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Old 11-04-2016, 10:58   #5
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Re: Changing Boat Names

Vinyl lettering might also come off with a high powered pressure washer, like the one you use to wash growth from your hull. I did this on my boat with no problem.
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Old 11-04-2016, 11:21   #6

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Re: Changing Boat Names

If it is painted on letters, oven cleaner does the trick
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Old 11-04-2016, 20:03   #7
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Re: Changing Boat Names

Two choices, install the new decals right over the old ones you removed, you will hardly notice the ghost letters and over time they will slowly be UVd or use some good cut polish on the ghost letters and that will do the job.
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Old 11-04-2016, 21:01   #8
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Re: Changing Boat Names

What do you do with the AIS transponder when you change the name??

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