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-   -   Automotive Paint Over/On Top Of Gel Coat (

College Kid 08-17-2012 11:18 AM

I am expienced at painting houses but I think I would farm out the paint job if I was to go that route.

My real issue with going back to paint is the longevity of th paint job. The current one has a ton of rock chips from trailering the boat. It really takes away from the great paint job on the rest of the boat.

I have the same issue with the wraps as I suspect that I would need to paint or sand out all the little nicks before they could apply it, and also not sure how long it would last due to any new rock chips it would get.

The bottom of the boat is still old gelcoat and the paint only looks a few years old, maybe 4. I found some fine furnitiure stripper that contains no Methelyne Cloride, that I think I am giong to give a try for some of the over spray spots, and see if I can clean up the current paint job a bit for the rest of this season.

I am also going to see if I can figure out how thick the paint is. It would be great if it was only a coat or two. I am pretty sure by the look of the rock pits it should sand off fairly easily.

petermegan 08-17-2012 08:07 PM

I wonder how a go with a really hot steam/pressure washer would go? I would be worried about the gel cracking with the heat but wonder whether anybody else has any experience in this area. I use one on my boat but only very delicately for that reason. Anybody ever hit their boat hard with one of these and caused gel damage?

College Kid 08-18-2012 12:42 AM

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Don't have time for much of a post right now but I wanted to put out a little teaser. Let you all know the story tomorrow when we get home from the lake.

College Kid 08-20-2012 06:33 PM

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Well if you hadn't guessed it from the picture above, I got a little excited about this project and with a little gentle prodding from my neighbor and his promise to lend a hand I decided to dig into this project early.

Thanks everyone for their advice and I still may look re painting or wrapping, but before I do I will work hard to restore it back to original. I don't plan put a ton of money into this but I also want something I can be proud of.

I started out using some acetone to clean up the over spray on the lower half of the gel coat. This was working so well it convinced me to try it on a small area (which got pretty big). The acetone was good but having refinished some furniture before I knew that stripper would make the process a lot better and mean not marking up the gel coat as badly. I did a search of the 4 big box stores nearby and found a product called "Soft Strip" by Circa 1850. It is a fine furniture stripper that is biodegradable. It also doesn't contain any methelyne chloride, N-methyl pyrrolidone or caustic which are all very harmful to fiberglass resin. The big reason for going with this product was that I could keep the hose close at hand to make sure I was rinsing thoroughly every couple minutes and not worry about killing off the lawn.

It worked like a charm!!!! First coat would take off the clear coat, a second to take the heavy pigment away, both of these working carefully with a putty knife. Then follow it up with a 3M scotch pad and lots of water. Then some compound, polish, and wax.

I honestly can't believe someone painted this boat???? Except for the one mark it is in perfect shape (for a 20 year old boat). You can even still see where the original MASTERCRAFT, and PROSTAR 190 decals used to be. Here are some before and after shots. They don't do it justice; hopefully I can get some with the sun out soon.

College Kid 08-20-2012 06:35 PM

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The first spot that grew

College Kid 08-20-2012 06:37 PM

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The one and only real scar, the rest is pretty much perfect.

College Kid 08-20-2012 06:43 PM

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And a couple of the gel coat all polished up.

petermegan 08-20-2012 07:05 PM

Top job, you are progressing well. Have fun

College Kid 12-30-2012 09:30 PM

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Well It's almost the first of the new year and i realized that there are only about 120 days till the ice melts on the lakes up here.

A quick update. I didn't get much more than what you see above done over the summer. I just ran the boat and finished diagnosing all the mechanical issues.

Winter came early this year with almost 8 inches by the first of November, this compacted my house renovations and caused the boat to be put on the back burner in the corner of the garage.

On to the update: Started by sanding the bow with some 220 grit webbing paper, this was going well although I realized pretty quickly that it was going to take alot of muscle to sand the whole top side. I had made the decision that I was going to try not to use any chemicals to do the top.

This is due to the fact that I can't wash down the boat and clean all the stripper away as it's close to -20 outside, and i don't have a drain in the garage.

So it was off to the store to pick up a orbital sander. A couple hours later this is where I am at. I am pretty happy with the result and that I only found one small nick.

snork 12-30-2012 10:37 PM

post some pics of the port side top deck around the end of the windshield when you have time, I'm a bit curious about the rough area shown in the first few pics

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