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Old 05-07-2011, 22:10   #1
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Bottom Stripping

Yes, the subject has been discussed to death, but that wasn't when *my* boat was on the hard and getting dry... Besides, you all know you have strong opinions one way or another, and you're just itching for a chance to tell me what is the one true way to the clean, bare, naked boat bottom after years of accretions.

Trinidad SR has been my AF of choice for the past two rounds of bottom painting, and the boat has been very clean. But it's time to strip (the boat is 27 years young) (and by the way, stripping is the primary argument for ablative paints, imltho, but that's a different argument for a different thread.)

My partner and I have discussed the process, and we can't come to any agreement other than "I don't wanna sand that gunk off." Which doesn't mean we don't want someone else to sand that gunk off. We're kind of enamored of the idea of dry ice blasting, but we don't know how environmentally friendly that really is, more honestly we're afraid to ask how much it would cost to have it done.

So, what do the CFers suggest? It's important to us to be environmentally smart, but we're financially limited and pragmatic. We're willing to dig in and do the work, but lack skills/tools and are pretty nervous about the toxicity of some of what is down there. We've never heard of anyone who had the perfect chemical/orange oil/solvent stripper.

On the internet, nobody knows you're a dog anchored in a coral atoll.
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Old 05-07-2011, 22:13   #2
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Re: Bottom stripping

If you are just doing a bottom paint removal and not taking off the gelcoat due to blisters, sanding is the way to go. Should be one day job to tent it off, sand it out with a softpad, and cleanup. Setup and cleanup takes too long with sandblasting, unless you are comparing it to a peeler.
Pay a pro to do it, unless you want to buy a fullface and 7" softpad setup so you can do it yourself next time. There's a big learning curve on proper softpad sanding too. Basically it's all in how you feather the trigger...
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