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Old 04-05-2013, 12:11   #1
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Removing old Boat Name

What is the best method for removing old vinyl lettering from fiberglass transom without
damaging the gelcoat?
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Old 04-05-2013, 12:12   #2
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Get a gum wheel for your drill. About $12 from Amazon. Takes letters off in seconds.
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Old 04-05-2013, 12:36   #3
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Re: Removing old Boat Name

Use a heat gun. Work's great.
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Old 04-05-2013, 13:50   #4
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Re: Removing old Boat Name

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Originally Posted by haw1961 View Post
Use a heat gun. Work's great.
+1

I have heard that EZ-Off oven cleaner works but I have not tried it.
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Old 04-05-2013, 17:19   #5
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Re: Removing old Boat Name

Thanks Guys

I will try a heat gun next week and let you know how it works out
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Old 04-05-2013, 17:27   #6
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Re: Removing old Boat Name

acetone worked well on mine.
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Old 04-05-2013, 17:45   #7
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Re: Removing old Boat Name

Wagner Model 1220 heat gun is what I would use, I think the 1220 stands for degrees Fahrenheit on the high setting. I would practice on something disposable first.
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Old 05-05-2013, 10:12   #8
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Re: Removing old Boat Name

The mistake most folks make with a heat gun is not getting the area hot enough and not spreading the heat. Don't just point the gun at the decal, sweep it around for even heat. Once you can lift a corner of the decal, you probably need another minute or two. It should lift easily and take most of the adhesive with it. Remember to keep sweeping, don't hold it in one spot.

Acetone on a rag will take care of any adhesive that remains on the gelcoat.
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Old 05-05-2013, 10:13   #9
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Re: Removing old Boat Name

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Get a gum wheel for your drill. About $12 from Amazon. Takes letters off in seconds.
That's supposed to work really well but I've never tried it.
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Old 05-05-2013, 13:01   #10
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Gum wheel. Avoid the easy off and solvents unless you really need.

Mine had giant letters on each side of the stern (canoe stern) and had been touched up with paint where the vinyl had deteriorated. Unfortunately, the gelcoat under the letters was protected from the sun so you can still see the old name if you look carefully. I don't really care, and I'm not gonna destroy the gelcoat to get it off. I guess the sun will have its way with it over the next couple decades.
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Old 05-05-2013, 14:12   #11
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Re: Removing old Boat Name

Thanks All!

I went to my old shop today and brought home the Heat Gun, Gum Wheel, Acetone, Plastic Scrapers and Adhesive Remover.
I am now ready to conquer the world.
I will let you know how easy (optimistic) it went.
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Old 05-05-2013, 15:49   #12
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Re: Removing old Boat Name

Cheoah,

There's a product, in Australia called "Polyglo", which will fix up the adjacent gelcoat so the old name won't show, easy to use, lasts about a year. I understand it may be called TSRW here in the US. We used the Polyglo on our first Insatiable, and were quite pleased with it.

Good luck.
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Old 05-05-2013, 16:03   #13
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Re: Removing old Boat Name

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Originally Posted by Ann T. Cate View Post
Cheoah,

There's a product, in Australia called "Polyglo", which will fix up the adjacent gelcoat so the old name won't show, easy to use, lasts about a year. I understand it may be called TSRW here in the US. We used the Polyglo on our first Insatiable, and were quite pleased with it.

Good luck.
Thanks for the tip, ATC. I have heard of that product, people use it to restore gelcoat and in place of wax if it is the stuff I'm thinking of - Poliglow?
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Old 05-05-2013, 18:10   #14
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Re: Removing old Boat Name

Sorry Cheoah, I don't know how to spell it, but "TSRW"" stands for "This Stuff Really Works". Poly Glow? Good luck with it.
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Old 05-05-2013, 19:00   #15
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Re: Removing old Boat Name

Poliglow is a band aide to cover up otherwise hopeless gelcoat. The sort of thing that will make the boat look good for a while but needs to be reapplied pretty frequently. If you decide to stop using it you have to use a special product to remove it.

When you remove a decal from gelcoat and see a "shadow", what you are really seeing is gelcoat that has been protected from the sun and weather by the decal while the surrounding gelcoat has deteriorated. There's no way to make the part that was protected by the decal match the rest of the surface, all you can do is to try to restore the entire area to as close to new as possible. Usually this would require wet sanding, followed by rubbing compound, then wax.

Or, you can just leave it alone and it will go away in a few years as the gelcoat ages from exposure.
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