Boat Paint - The HuntingPA.com Outdoor Community
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post #1 of 17 (permalink) Old 04-21-2011, 12:45 AM Thread Starter
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Boat Paint

What is the best type of paint to use on a fiberglass hull? Should the bottom/belly be painted with a different type of paint? What is the preperation, light sanding? I have fixed just about everything in my life, but never a fiberglass boat.

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post #2 of 17 (permalink) Old 04-21-2011, 02:32 PM
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Re: Boat Paint

Is the boat kept on a trailer or in the water?
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post #3 of 17 (permalink) Old 04-21-2011, 03:07 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Boat Paint

Mostly on the trailer, perhaps 3 months in a slip on the water every summer.

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post #4 of 17 (permalink) Old 04-21-2011, 03:29 PM
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post #5 of 17 (permalink) Old 04-21-2011, 03:47 PM
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Re: Boat Paint

Why do you want to paint your boat? Maybe a good cleaning, stripping, and wax would make it look better if that is your goal.
Is you hull painted or gel coated?

You will need to prep the hull first. There are two ways to go:
1...Use automotive finish, I don’t like this but it is the popular easy way, you must get a good bond and need a flexible paint or it can crack off on trailer rollers etc.
2...Use Marine quality paints, still need good clean hull prep.
……..You can use an epoxy finish like West system this is a two stage epoxy, it is expensive and work to do correctly. Directions are on the packaging and on the net.
IF you paint it: You can get regular “top side” paints made for marine use. Pettit is a good reasonably price brand, there are tons of very expensive brands of topside paint. Topside means just that not the bottom.
You could paint the bottom with regular topside paint, if you just want looks. Other possibilities are to get anti-fouling pain IF you keep the boat in the water all season long. It reduces slim and algae build up. Most bottom antifouling is black, and you put it on and put the boat into the water before it fully dries.
Other bottom paints re called racing bottom paints (come in many colors unlike anti-fouling paint). Theses make you boat bottom VERY slippery, and increase you top end speed. When you wet the bottom and run your hand over it, it feels like a soapy layer.
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post #6 of 17 (permalink) Old 04-21-2011, 05:07 PM
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Re: Boat Paint

Normally, you don't need to paint the boat if the gelcoat is decent. If the gelcoat is worn down to the fibers you should either apply new gelcoat or paint it. Painting is much easier than gelcoat if large areas are damaged.

If you are going to store the boat on the water for more than a day or two, you should use bottom paint below the waterline. Topside paints will blister if submerged for long periods.

Here is what I would do. Clean the boat well. Repair any damage to the fiberglass (I prefer epoxy instead of polyester resin). Prime the bottom (uses something like Interlux No Sand Primer. Then bottom paint it. Use antifouling bottom paint if storing it for a long time on the water, especially salt water.

Then, you will need to do the topside. For the sides of the boat (above the waterline) I have used Interlux Perfection 2-part paint. You have to prime it first with something like Interlux Barrier-Kote first. I used this on a boat I did last year and I was happy with the results. The two part paints are supposed to be much more durable.

There is another product by awlgrip that is comparable and gets great reviews. Interlux perfection can be applied with a roller (and tipped with a brush) or it can be sprayed. I think the Awlgrip has to be sprayed for good results.
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post #7 of 17 (permalink) Old 04-21-2011, 05:09 PM
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Re: Boat Paint

I should have asked, what kind of boat is it?

I am rehabing a 13 foot Whaler right now. I am not to the point where I am ready to paint it but I will be using the Interlux Perfection again. Interthane for the deck/interior.
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post #8 of 17 (permalink) Old 04-21-2011, 06:20 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Boat Paint

Maybe paint is not necessary. What would you use to clean a dark waterline from the belly? Will a 4000psi pressure washer hurt the gelcoat?

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post #9 of 17 (permalink) Old 04-21-2011, 06:42 PM
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Re: Boat Paint

I don't think it would hurt it. They sell sulfuric acid that you can put on it that gets all the crud off. It's called something like mary ann or mary jane, I think. I've never used it.
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post #10 of 17 (permalink) Old 04-21-2011, 06:47 PM
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Re: Boat Paint

I looked it up, it is oxalic acid. The brand I was thinking of is called Mary Kate bottom cleaner.

http://www.westmarine.com/1/1/25232-...er-gallon.html
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