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Old 05-08-2013, 11:50   #1
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How do I Remove Boat Name "Shadows" from the Transom?

I'm renaming my boat, which of course involves removing the current name before putting on the new one. First, I know there are folks out there who say renaming a boat is a bad thing to do. I've never been superstitious so let's get that out of the way. My challenge is that when the old name is removed from the transom I'm expecting there to be a "shadow" from the letters. What's the best way to get rid of the shadows without having to sand or blast down to bare fiberglass or do gelcoat repairs? Are there chemicals out there for this?
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Old 05-08-2013, 11:52   #2
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Re: How do I remove boat name "shadows" from the transom?

was the old name painted on or did you peel off vinyl letters?
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Old 05-08-2013, 12:25   #3
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Re: How do I remove boat name "shadows" from the transom?

If the old name is the peel off type, I used a heat gun and carefully pealed them off. My transom is white so shadowing was not a big problem.
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Old 05-08-2013, 12:34   #4
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Re: How do I remove boat name "shadows" from the transom?

Jewelers rouge and a buffer worked for me.
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Old 05-08-2013, 12:36   #5
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Re: How do I remove boat name "shadows" from the transom?

Vinyl letters come off with a heat gun, 3 M removal solution, or in at least one case I used
Easy Off Oven cleaner. To remove the shadow I used polishing compound and an electric sander/buffer with the buffer cover naturally. If it is really stubborn you might try really fine wet sandpaper, say 1000 grit from an auto parts store. Personally I would use something a bit coarser and then buff. You'd be surprised how tough gel coat is.

Now if the letters are applied to a painted surface instead of gel coat, that's another story.

Rich
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Old 05-08-2013, 12:49   #6
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Re: How do I remove boat name "shadows" from the transom?

Quote:
Originally Posted by cabo_sailor View Post
Vinyl letters come off with a heat gun, 3 M removal solution, or in at least one case I used
Easy Off Oven cleaner. To remove the shadow I used polishing compound and an electric sander/buffer with the buffer cover naturally. If it is really stubborn you might try really fine wet sandpaper, say 1000 grit from an auto parts store. Personally I would use something a bit coarser and then buff. You'd be surprised how tough gel coat is.

Now if the letters are applied to a painted surface instead of gel coat, that's another story.

Rich
Plus, giving it a little time, even with proper upkeep ( waxing) the shadow will gradually fade completely to match.
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Old 05-08-2013, 13:28   #7
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Re: How do I remove boat name "shadows" from the transom?

FWIW,

I've had 3 different men tell me over the years that when you use rubbing (cutting to the AUssies) compound on gelcoat, you open up its structure which is actually extremely small bubbles... Which eventually collect dirt between rubbings and waxings. We had such porous gelcoat on our previous boat. The product we used to deal with it is a polymer, called PolyGlo (in Australia) and TSRW* in the US. It comes as a package containing an applicator, and two bottles of liquid, one a cleaner; the other, the polymer.

First you clean, then spread the polymer evenly over the hull. It is amazing how well it works, takes about 6 coats on a really porous hull, and the smooth shine lasts from haul-out to haul-out.

*supposedly means This Stuff Really Works

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Old 05-08-2013, 14:07   #8
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Re: How do I remove boat name "shadows" from the transom?

Don't polish and don't use chemicals. Leave the shadow and in a couple of months the sun will vanish it.
I'm not supersticious but just in case, i left the old name engraved in the brass bell.
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Old 05-08-2013, 15:19   #9
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The old letters are vinyl, not painted.
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Old 05-08-2013, 16:11   #10
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Re: How do I Remove Boat Name "Shadows" from the Transom?

a 4 inch grinder will get the letters off in no time at all!
failing that just use acetone on vinyl lettering,dissolves the glue after lifting with a scraper
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