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Old 04-12-2009, 09:00   #1
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Hydrocoat Bottom Paint and How to Get Under the Pads?

I'm going to have to repaint my hull this spring and I think I'm going to use Pettit Hydrocoat. I'll be the first one to tell you all that I know very little about bottom paint but I really like the idea of a water based paint.

My Catalina 30 has a bit of a "keel Smile" so I'll be taking a closer look at the keel bolts but as memory serves they were in good shape. I'm hoping to only have to check the torque and epoxy glass the "smile".

With that said I have no idea what type of paint is already on the hull. It is brown in color and the strange thing is it seems to be textured. I have no idea why you would have a textured paint on the hull of a sailboat. The old paint is loose in spots and the hull underlining the paint looks to be in very good shape. The texture is in the paint not the hull.

So my thinking is sand down the entire hull below the waterline removing as much of the old paint as possible, epoxy glass the smile area, apply a couple of coats of Pettit Protect 4700/4701 High Build Epoxy Primer and then a couple coats of Hydrocoat. Does this sound like it is the proper way to repaint this hull?

My boat is a Great Lakes boat so it's only in the water 6 months out of the year and there in no chance it's going to see any saltwater.

Also how would you paint under the cradle pads? The only way I can think of doing this would be to prep as much of the hull as possible place a jackstand near the cradle pads, drop the cradle pads and then prep those areas. But man oh man this could take forever to get this job done. Apply a coat of primer, let dry, move the pads, prime under the pads, let dry, move back to the stands apply next coat and repeat if I have to keep moving from the cradle pads to the jackstands after every coat allowing the paint to dry first this could take a week just to apply the paint. I can't have the marina lift the boat off of the pads every time at $200 a lift it would break the bank on this project. Now concider that I live 3 hours away from the boat. Oh my head is starting to spin.

Any ideas?
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Old 04-12-2009, 09:52   #2
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Your paint is probably textured since it was applied with a roller (i'd bet). Are you on stands in a yard or on a trailer? if in a yard, most won't let you move the stands yourself.
I may be off base, but for a boat that spends several months a year drying out, why would you need the expense of an epoxy bottom coat?
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Old 04-12-2009, 10:22   #3
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The boat is sitting on it's cradle which has four pads supporting the boat. It's stored outside at the marina.

The only reason for the epoxy primer is that is what the Pettit website had listed if I ended up sanding the hull to bare fiberglass. I'm wide open as far as primer is concerned. I just want to make sure I do this right the first time and if anyone has a better idea I'm all ears especially if I can save a few hard earned dollars.
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Old 04-12-2009, 10:29   #4
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There are two ways of painting under the pads. Let a yard employee move the stands or paint where the pads were when the Travellift picks up your boat. Have them hang your boat on the Travelift during their lunch break so your paint has time to dry. One hour when it is warm is good enough before splashing your boat. Its potentially very dangerous to move the stands yourself and all yards that I have been to absolutely prohibit anyone except a yard employee from moving a stand.

The texturing you see is because the paint was rolled on, probably by someone who had a roller with too deep of a nap and/or there was too cold of an air temperature. Some racers have their bottom paint sprayed on, but this can be expensive and is probably not worth it for non-racing boats.

A few epoxy coats on a dried out hull with a low moisture content is a good idea. (You will need a moisture meter and someone who knows what they are reading). Its good insurance against future blistering. My preference is Interlux 2000 for the base coat over the bare gel coat and then Interlux 3000 for the build coats.
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Old 04-12-2009, 12:30   #5
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Steelshooter,
Most work I have done or seen done regarding the underwater portion of the hull involves only moving the stands once (again moved by the yard staff). You do all of the necessary work on the parts you can access, leaving the areas under the pads until after the stands are moved, then you repeat all of the work in the small (multiple) areas that have now been exposed. This does take time, but gives you a better, more complete result. The other option is as David has stated, giving a "less complete" result, but a quicker completion. Your choice.
Good luck,
Tom
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Old 04-12-2009, 15:27   #6
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I just used Hydrocoat on my bottom, splash expected next Tuesday. Very easy to use. I applied over the old bottom paint, unknown type but it looked like Trinidad. Pettit tech service told me I could apply it over anything and, if I don't like it later, that it can be covered by anything.

On the pad area issue, DO NOT apply just before launch. That's fine for solvent based paint but is disastrous for water based paint. I had a hull drain open and painted around it. A slow drip was coming out of it and overnight washed a stripe clean down the hull. Do the hull and have the yard move the pads, then finish the rest. They should be able to do that without lifting the boat.

I'm a bit skeptical about water based paints based on previous experience in industry, but I'm willing to give it a shot. The worst thing that can happen is it washes off and I'll apply something else in a couple of years.

Dick Pluta
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Old 04-12-2009, 17:25   #7
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The biggest reason I wanted to go to a water based paint is I would like to do a spray application. I own a Graco airless sprayer and I will never use anything but water based paint in it, clean up is just to easy.

Dick thank you for your insight. I knew that I couldn't use Hydrocoat just before putting the boat in the water because it has to dry longer than other paints. My boat is sitting on a cradle right now which has 4 pads and the only adjustments are for height. What I was hoping to be able to do is have the marina place a jack stand close to a cradle pad to support the boat, lower the cradle pad and sand, prep and paint under the pad. After that area is nice and dry raise the pad back in place and repeat the process.

I did talk to the marina today and the one idea that they had was to schedule my boat as the last boat to be put in for the day. Have the rest of the hull finished and then they would keep the boat on the hoist over night and put it in first thing in the morning. This would allow me to finish up the areas where the pads were while it is on the hoist.

I might just find it easier to just go with solvent based paint instead and just roll it on.
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Old 04-12-2009, 19:06   #8
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is this your cradle? if so why not just buy a stand and move around at you leisure.
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Old 05-12-2009, 07:48   #9
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If you are in a boatyard - forget about spray painting. Virtually all yards prohibit it, not because they want the business themselves, but because the "blow-by" from your spray ends up painting all the boats around you which then costs the yard mega-thousands to fix or they have to repaint the other boats.
And on top of that in the USA, OHSA prohibits any form of spray painting outside of the totally enclosed paint building with full "capture" of fumes and blow-by.
So if you want to spray paint you need to have the boat hidden in your backyard or some forest/swamp where nobody and nothing is anywhere around you.
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Old 05-12-2009, 20:07   #10
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osirissail, I respectfully have to disagree. My marina does not restrict me from spraying paint if I abide by their rules. One of which is I must use an airless sprayer and take precautions that I don't over spray other boats, like hanging tarps. Second OHSA and MIOSHA do not have any jurisdiction as I am not a employer. I'm going to have to fall back on my 20 + years of law enforcement experience here. I do however have to abide by EPA and Michigan DNR regulations, but I can assure you that I would be dancing far closer to the line by simply sanding my hull even using a vacuum sander than I would be by applying a water based paint by airless sprayer. I'm sure a Google search will provide you with thousands of companies that apply paint outside using a spray application in this state. My contractor would be one of them.

Moving on, I think I may have come across an answer to my delema. Instead of applying a waterbased paint via spray application I think I'm going to go with vc17m antifouling paint. It seems to fill every need I have and is just about perfect for the Great lakes, I'm going to roll it on instead of spraying and do to it's very fast drying time it would allow me to finish the areas under the pads while the boat is in the hoist.

Thanks you all for your advise everyone of you have been a great help.
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Old 06-12-2009, 07:54   #11
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Steelshooter - actually you are correct in that OHSA only deals with employees. In Florida in the boatyards OHSA came in and shut us down because the workers were not properly protected from the paint and fumes. Then, the kicker was when the Florida EPA came in and shut down all outside paint spraying for environmental reasons. Building a containment building with the necessary filtration systems was estimated at 1.5 million back 15 years ago so we simply stopped doing any major spray painting.
- - This lead to individuals trying to covertly spray paint their own boats and the "blow-by" problems - since rigging tarps on adjacent boats to do banned spraying would be rather obvious. And blow-by can travel hundreds of yards from the paint location and settle on other boats causing unsightly dots and spots on somebody's beautiful boat. There is a constant hunt by boaters for "back in the woods" boatyards where the Fed's and State eco-police have not gotten to yet. These boatyards still exist but are a rapidly drying up.
- - The paint industry has compensated by expanding and improving their products for roller and brush painting techniques. And now you can get almost as "fancy" a paint job without spraying, it is just not as fast a procedure. Offshore boatyards are making millions (local currency) spraying boats the old fashioned way for those interested in that level of perfection.
- - Just a side comment, but spend some time asking around your cruising/sailing/boating area to find out what paint really works the best for your locality. Some "super" paints work great in one part of the world and horrible in others.
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Old 29-12-2009, 19:32   #12
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Pads and trailers

Many seasonal sailors have their boats on trailers during the off-season. I haven't painted beneath the pads on my trailered boat, but I have replaced them. It's a fairly simple matter to use a come-along, your mainsheet tackle or the sheet winches (or some combination of the above) to draw the boat hard against the pads on one side. Then you can remove the pads on the opposite side and do whatever needs to be done.
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