Breathing Life to Fibreglass Boats: Tips and Tricks on Painting

Boat

BoatApplying a fresh new layer of paint will not only help restore the prior elegance of a fibreglass boat but also afford it some degree of protection for many more years to come. Painting a fibreglass boat does not necessarily involve hiring a professional, unless you don’t have the time to do so. You only need to have the correct resources and a keen eye for detail as well as the ability to get your hands dirty.

Clear Renew offers a glimpse of the work below.

Prepare the Boat

Give your boat a thorough wash-over with copious amounts of water and a mild soap with non-abrasive components. Rinse thoroughly before applying a dewaxing compound on the fibreglass. This should help remove surface contaminants. Always use two rags when using the dewaxer: one to apply the compound and the other to wipe it off. It is often advisable to dewax at least two times before washing your boat again with a tri-sodium phosphate-containing detergent to remove surface grease.

Sanding and Priming

Smoothen the surface using appropriately graded sandpaper. But if there are many rough edges on the surface, you can use a sander instead. Repair any areas that may have been badly gouged using epoxy fillers. Sand these repaired areas until they are flush with the boat’s surface. Apply the first coat of the epoxy paint.

Once the paint primer has completely dried up, sand the boat’s surface again with a finer sandpaper or an orbital disk sander. Make sure to remove all the imperfections on the boat’s surface before applying the final coat of paint.

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Once the second sanding is finished, prepare your boat for the main paint application. Wash your boat with clean water and allow it to dry completely. Mask or cover everything and anything that does not need to be painted on. Before applying the final coat, make sure to wipe the surface one last time to free it of debris or dust particles.

Paint Coating

Mix the different components of the paint thoroughly to allow for good dispersion. Mix in the correct amount as well as type of paint reducer into the paint mix. Adjust the viscosity of the paint mixture by adding appropriate solvents.

Make sure to perform a paint test on a particular area of the boat that is not readily obvious. Check if you are satisfied with the paint mix. And if so, you can now work on your boat starting from the stern working your way up the bow. Apply an even film of fibreglass paint across the surface of the boat.

Painting a fibreglass boat takes patience and some hard work. Nonetheless, by making sure that you have done the correct steps, it is almost always a joy to see your fibreglass boat be given a new life.