View Full Version : My gelcoat Restoration Project (w/ pics)

06-02-2005, 10:55 AM
Well 2 weeks ago I received my gelcoat restoration kit from properautocare.com (after reading about it on teamtalk). I went up to the lake and hauled the boat out of the barn and went to work.

I started by stripping off all the pin striping and the decals at the rear of the boat on both side where the oxidation was the heaviest. I used a heat gun and held it about 8-10 inches away. The striping and decals came off very easily. I left the large MasterCraft decals on the sides and the transom but they might get replaced anyway. I also removed the teak swim platform (which I restored last year) and some misc. trim pieces like the vents on the bow, etc.

I used the rubbing compund in the kit and a milwaukee circular buffer at 1,750 RPM. I took my time and did some areas that had heavy oxidation twice. From the time I started removing decals to the time I snapped the 'after' pics was about 8 hours.

I was very impressed with the results and the kit itself. It has everything. While there is nothing 'magical' about most of the products included, it was nice to have everything and I mean everything to do the job. The location I was working in isn't exactly convenient (1/2 hour drive to a good auto parts store for instance). The kit had plenty of buffing pads, applicator sponges, and even a brush to clean the excess rubbing compund out of the pads.

Here is a collection of pics I took. I'm going to leave em large so people can see any details the want. The finish isn't perfect, but for a 1987 I'm not complaining.

Before Pics.




After Pics


06-02-2005, 11:00 AM
All that in 8 hours? Wow....Good work.
This task is coming up for me this winter.

06-02-2005, 11:03 AM
All that in 8 hours? Wow....Good work.
This task is coming up for me this winter.


My arms were ready to fall off, that damn buffer gets heavy after awhile :) I polished it the next day, but that was very easy. Less than an hours work.

06-02-2005, 11:07 AM
I don't think that there is any way that my arms could take that kind of abuse if there wasn't a 12 oz can at the end of them. :toast:

06-02-2005, 11:08 AM
Nice Job! Looks great.
I put a before and after picture together for you.

06-02-2005, 11:11 AM
Looks great!

06-02-2005, 11:15 AM
very nice....all the hard work paid off

06-03-2005, 12:57 PM
Holy cow! Great results and the bragging rights to say you did it yourself.

06-03-2005, 01:12 PM
Thanks all! I'm pretty happy about the results. Hopefully it will hold up for awhile. The boat now stays on a lift what has a canopy and the boat is covered as well.

east tx skier
06-03-2005, 01:18 PM
Wow! Just Wow!

06-03-2005, 02:23 PM
BEAUTIFUL! Nice work.

This ought to make people think twice when shopping for a boat. You can get a sweet deal if you find and buy a boat with crappy oxidation. Dicker down the price, put in a little elbow grease and wind up with a beauty. Or when selling, a days work can get you hundreds of $$ extra.

06-03-2005, 02:43 PM
Boat looks great!

I bought a 1987 PS 190 back in 94, the gell coat looked pretty bad. After a few days of buffing and then waxing it looked great.
I used the boat for three years, put on a couple hundred hours then sold it for 1,000 more than I paid for it!

06-03-2005, 02:54 PM
Nice work! Most people would not attempt!

06-03-2005, 05:26 PM
Nice work. Looks great. Please keep us infomred as to how well the results hold up.

Did a SeaRay in 96 that had some heavy oxidation. It looked good for a while but very dificult to keep looking nice. I think technology has imporved the tools of the trade. So I am thinking your results should last a long time.

Here have a beer :toast: you deserve it!

06-03-2005, 05:50 PM
Looks good. I did this on my 87 this year as well and replaced all of the pinstripe it. It's not hard but time consuming. The results are worth the effort though.

06-03-2005, 10:03 PM
How much is that kit?? Every boat that I see after going through that treatment looks great!:headbang: !

06-03-2005, 10:46 PM

This is the kit Diesel recommended to me and I used. It works very well and includes EVERYTHING you need: sealer, compound, 4 pads, rags, spray bottle. It was like $100. If you don't have one I highly recommend you get a high speed orbital buffer.


06-06-2005, 09:18 PM
Wow, looks great!

Now that you have the oxidation off, what do you do to keep it from comming back?

I had this done to my boat this winter by the dealership. When they were done they said that it would come back much quicker the second time and they told me to 'keep up on the wax' (however often that means - who knows?)

I completely wipe it down with a vinigar / water solution each time it comes out of the water and have waxed once this season so far. I can see it starting to return very slightly on the transom.

Any suggestions for fending off oxidation?

06-06-2005, 11:38 PM
Help... anyone?

06-07-2005, 12:06 AM
Wow - great work!

re: keeping oxidation away: Wax - whenever it looks like it needs it -- wax slows the oxidation process.

06-08-2005, 11:42 PM

06-09-2005, 12:12 AM
Got it - Thanks.

06-30-2005, 03:16 PM
great work!

I know where your coming from with your arms falling off :eek3: ...I just did this process about a week ago, not nearly as heavy oxidation as you, but enough to warrant breaking out the Big-Boy polisher (mines a Craftsman professional). I had about 6 hours work for everything, including final waxing...but wow did I sleep well that night!

06-30-2005, 03:40 PM
Hey Bump nice work....I have all the 87-88 original decals I just need to have them made in the right colors...will be a while ...but if you want some let me know...I even have the 190/boat in the back...I looked all over and I think I have the last copy in the world of the original :banana: :banana: ...at least I have that going for me!

06-30-2005, 04:13 PM
Hey Bump nice work....I have all the 87-88 original decals I just need to have them made in the right colors...will be a while ...but if you want some let me know...I even have the 190/boat in the back...I looked all over and I think I have the last copy in the world of the original :banana: :banana: ...at least I have that going for me!


Are you getting copies made from the originals, but in different colors? I need to replace my side decals. I'd be interested to know more about what you're going to do on yours.

07-05-2005, 10:12 PM