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Maintaining gel coat
murf
Posted: Monday, June 6, 2011 6:47 AM
Joined: 05/09/2008
Posts: 32


I have been in the industry for 5 years, but always worked on painted (AWLGRIP) yachts. Now I started a new job on a yacht with gel coat. Anybody got some tips on how to maintain this?

The yacht is 5 years old and there are a lot of yellow patches in the gel coat. Also quite a few repairs that are bright white compared to the old gel coat. What is the best way to get rid of these discolorations? I have used FSR (fibreglass stain remover) on a tender once, is this a good product?

I saw one of the yard workers polish a patch with 3M Perfect-it. Isn't that a bit abrasive? Wouldn't Finesse-it do?
Once you polish AWLGRIP you have to keep up the polishing every once in a while. Is that the same with gel coat?

Anybody got a link to a good guide on how to do gel coat repairs?

Thanks!

Anonymous
Posted: Tuesday, June 7, 2011 6:50 PM
Gelcoat you have to polish once a year. 3M has a range of products for Gelcoat. I use autosol stainless polish with an adjustable speed polisher and woolen polishing pads to polish the boat and then i use Star bright Teflon polish or collinite wax- http://www.collinite.com/ Just Google - polishing gelcoat or repairing gel coat, you will find a lot of info. For my stainless steel i use StarClean and for boat soap i use Orpine wash and wax and Orpine Wash. I alternate with the wash and wax with the wash as you dont want to have a build up of to much wax on your boat.
Anonymous
Posted: Tuesday, June 7, 2011 7:25 PM
If you want to remove stains and marks from gelcoat polishing will not help. it will remove the topcoat from the gel and allow more stains to get in, I have worked on several yachts where bosuns have got people to polish the gel and its ended up a respray job. The best product that i found for removing stains was a clearer called FSR, its a blue gloopy stuff and worked really well. just put on witha sponge or a brush and leave for a spell and hose off. Hope it works out for you.
Graeme
Posted: Tuesday, June 7, 2011 9:38 PM
Joined: 11/10/2010
Posts: 4


There is a lot of calcium carbonate in sea water. Oyster shells etc. A fine layer of CaCo2 imbeds itself into the gelcoat. Dilute sulphuric acid works wonders without the elbow grease of buffing. You wil see the white apear before your eys on the yellow areas, especially around the bow where polution also adheres to the micro calcium carbonatr layer. Afret thar polish with the above mentioned products.
Sea-Shield
Posted: Wednesday, June 8, 2011 2:41 PM
Joined: 11/09/2009
Posts: 2


Gel coat is a surface that can be resurface time after time.   So if you are planing to remove stains and bright back the luster back to Gel Coat you should try SEA-SHIELD Gel Coat Restoration System .  This is a simple 3 step process the removes scratches, chalk, dullness and bright back the shine.  After the surface is perfect restore we recommend to use two step protection system SEA-SHIELD Nano Coating and SEA-SHIELD Exhaust Guard. This protection system will last up to a year looking great.   For more info or farther explanation on our system call us direct. 619-550-2295    Picture of a Gel coat hull with SEA-SHIELD System

Ayo
Posted: Wednesday, June 8, 2011 2:43 PM
Joined: 08/06/2010
Posts: 10


There are different levels of staining and how far has it penetrated the gell coat. This will allow you to decide how far back you will have to "cut" polish and what grade of paste you are looking at. You are actually removing a micron or more of gell coat and with it the hull protection. You may be able to get away with stain removers like Y10 prior to a full polish. As stated in one of the posts,there are a vast number of products in the market and some you may have to try inorder to assess and decide what is suitable.
 
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