I too have applied my fair share of Awlgrip & various other two part paints and spent years when I was younger as a detailer/1 st mate/general mechanic
and grunge on big yachts and have never seen the damage you talk about with acid based cleaners with one caveat "when used appropriately".
When used incorrectly I have seen the results of acid etching.
Far worse though are the finishes that never get washed and do not have a protection layer in the form of a paint sealant
applied. More often than not the finishes that have been well cared for, look far better, even when acids have been used than does an Awlgrip finish with only the occasional rinse.
Most often acids are unnecessary and can be avoided if the paint has been properly protected. Plus Awlcare will remove the majority of rust and tannin staining so any acid use will be very minimal.
This boat had acids used along the waterline for many years and not very "carefully". I reconditioned this Imron finish when the paint job was over 18 years old. She showed no signs of acid etching. How long is "cut the lifetime of the paint"? If this one is now going on 20 seasons next spring and still looking damn good. How long do you expect it to last if 20 years, with this type of shine, is not enough?
Originally Posted by Chuck Baier
Yes if you want to use acidic products on the boat it will clean it but rinse as quickly as you like but you have still cut the lifetime of the paint.
This was my hull
1 day after she was hauled, & just as she came out of the water
, a few weeks ago after 5 1/2 months. She had two coats of Awlcare on her when she went in the water
and one coat applied in water mid season. She had no rust or any stains along the waterline.
This was my un-sealed or waxed dinghy
after only four weeks in the same water not 5 1/2 months. I had already cleaned a small section to show before and after.
Proper care of painted finishes will go a long way to a long life..
As for the OP being in Mexico
I still believe he can mail order Awlcare and Black Streak Remover even with a high shipping price
tag it will be far less than damaging a new finish. When I worked on big yachts we ordered stuff in some very out of the way islands & many third world countries and still had the product within a few days to a week max.
Again, there are atrocities committed on Awlgrip finishes each and every day that are far worse than the occasional and careful use of acids namely lack of care, use of abrasives, fender
rash, the wrong cleaning
products used in the wrong manner etc. etc....