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Old 03-04-2012, 18:39   #1
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Survey surprise- need advice

We did the in-water survey today, tomorrow is the haul. I picked this boat over a similar model, in part, because I thought the hull was original gel coat. Today I learned the hull was painted with Imron 7 years ago, to repair cosmetic damage after hurricane. A hull paint job, particularly an old one, is a concern. I know nothing of boat paint, but my sense is that it limits me on how I will maintain the hull in the future and commits me to a costly repaint at some not-to-distant time.
Since the boat is in play, I'd rather not name it. But she is a well maintained, 38 ft heavy displacement boat, built in Europe in 1986.
If you have experience with painted boats, am I right to be concerned?
Thanks
Tom
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Old 03-04-2012, 18:43   #2
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Maybe a little concerned because of hurricane damage. Pm me and I'll tell you a story about mine.
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Old 03-04-2012, 18:45   #3
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Re: Survey surprise- need advice

Is the paint in good condition? If so, it wouldn't keep me from buying the boat.

Check with www.yachtpaint.com if you want to see what will go over it, without too much prep. Likely, it's not a big deal. In some respects, it's easier to paint a well painted boat than gelcoat.

The above is JMHO.
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Old 03-04-2012, 18:46   #4
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Re: Survey surprise- need advice

I wouldn't worry about the paint I would worry about why they painted
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Old 03-04-2012, 18:50   #5
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Re: Survey surprise- need advice

The OP did say the surveyor said "cosmetic".
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Old 03-04-2012, 18:58   #6
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Re: Survey surprise- need advice

The paint is smooth and very professionally applied. It didn't show a sheen today, but the owner has not washed the hull in quite a while. I will wash up a small section tomorrow to see if it still shines. I am not worried about the hidden damage. I am going to get a copy of the insurance claim. But the paint... I'm still unsure. More comments? Thanks,
Tom
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Old 03-04-2012, 19:04   #7
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Re: Survey surprise- need advice

Are there any photos of the boat from after the storm but before the repaint? A repaint can be for minor cosmetic reasons, or it could be the entire side was bashed in and had to be re-glassed.

The next issue is that when it's your turn to sell her, this same question will come up again, and due to the buyer's uncertainty over the extent and quality of the repairs, will low-ball his offer.

If that's going to happen, you need to low-ball as well so you're not the one taking a hit when it happens to you.

A pretty paint job can hide a multitude of sins.
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Old 04-04-2012, 02:52   #8
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Re: Survey surprise- need advice

The boat is around 25 years old, if she hadn't been repainted already then very likely that (for cosmetic reasons) she would be up for a repaint anyway. Having said that, mine is 42 years old and still original gelcoat - only looks 25 years old! - but I can live with that as truly am not bothered about shiney topsides.

Would be useful to find out exactly what she was painted with (for the future re-paint) - am not familiar with Imron, does that come in different applications? (one pot? / two pot etc?).

Whilst you are right that a painted boat will eventually need re-painting sooner than an original Gelcoat, unless it was a badly done job (doesn't sound like it if after 7 years you thought it was original gelcoat) - exactly when depends as much on the owner for both paint and original gelcoat (see comments above!).

As you have already identified, the reason for the re-paint is (IMO) the more important factor - personally I would view the re-paint as just one of those things on a 25 yo boat, perhaps not ideal - but far better than a hull that needs painting ($$ and aggro). Certainly as a Vendor I would take that position - plus "already reflected in the price"......although never any harm in trying it on!
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Old 04-04-2012, 04:57   #9
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Re: Survey surprise- need advice

If the paint on a 1986 boat is such a big deal in YOUR mind; walk away from it! But it would seem if you liked everything else about the boat enough to get this far that the paint job is a minor thing, unless to YOU it isn't.
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Old 04-04-2012, 05:46   #10
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Re: Survey surprise- need advice

My boat was built with a Black gel coat hull back in 1976 in 1979 the then first owners had her painted white, black was OK for Sanfran but not for mexico. In 1996 she had a fresh coat of white paint and I gave her a fresh paint in 2011. nothing wrong with good 2 pac paint.
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Old 04-04-2012, 06:09   #11
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Re: Survey surprise- need advice

If you are truly worried about the next layer of paint sticking to the current layer, then strip the current layer when you do your next repaint. Having rebuilt both of our yachts and taken the hulls down to fibreglass and started again, HWMO and myself are quite happy that each layer is now good!!!

But, if as you say, the job looks to be a professional one, then you probably have nothing to worry about. It is possible, of course that it's all lies, and the boat is gonna fall apart as a result of damage that is well hidden under that patch!! As they say, "If in doubt, bailout!!"

But... as an old salt once told me, sails are nothing BUT patches sewn together... and the same applies to old boats!!!
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Old 04-04-2012, 08:43   #12
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Re: Survey surprise- need advice

In my opinion, the decision to buy should be guided by the quality of the paint and the quality of the application. If it was a two part paint that was properly applied on a properly prepped surface, it should perform just as well as gelcoat. Imron is a polyurethane enamel. It is extremely durable and very viable for use as hull paint. It is one part, not two part -- so it is therefore incredibly important to see whether it was applied to a properly prepared surface.

I have used one part paint on my boat and have had incredible results. I would venture to say the preparation is the key part in whether it will last.

FYI, paint can be sanded and polished as can gelcoat. A 1500+ grit sandpaper and polishing compound will make the shine very difficult for the average person to distinguish from gelcoat.
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Old 04-04-2012, 08:54   #13
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Re: Survey surprise- need advice

I agree with the notion expressed above that "it is not about the paint", "it is about the damage that was painted over". I also don't like the idea that no one disclosed this to you before the survey. If it were me, unless the boat was an absolute steal and I felt completely confident there was no structural damage from the storm, I would walk away.
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Old 04-04-2012, 09:31   #14
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Re: Survey surprise- need advice

Yes, the boat will need to be repainted at some time in the future. This is the nature of paint.
Are we talking about white paint here, or some other hull color? If it's white it will probably last longer. If it's a dark color, it's probably already showing signs of oxidization.
Ask the surveyor to estimate when the hull will need repainting, and the cost of repainting the hull. You may be able to renegotiate the deal based on these estimates.
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Old 04-04-2012, 10:26   #15
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Re: Survey surprise- need advice

Our last boat had been painted with Imron. It is a good 2 part polyurethane paint (Dupont I think) that has been used for many years. I believe it is more commonly used on trucks and airplanes than boats today. The FO had selected it because it was easier for him to apply himself than Awlgrip would have been. It gave a nice result, was repairable when needed, and needed repainted at about the 10 year mark (was an off white color). I would rather an unpainted boat out of worry about what the paint was hiding, but if buying a painted boat would not have any concerns about Imron. Good Paint. Hope you love your new boat. We are just starting to look for another one ourselves.
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