Re: Topside Color
You can paint her any color you like, I've seen 19 ft cat boats that are all prettied up. I'm sure she would look gorgeous.
It will take much more than just painting. To go from white to dark blue will require that you insure there are absolutely zero defects in the smoothness of the topside. Dark colors show every imperfection. Of course, cause your own dock rash after you have her painted and it will be magnified compared to the ones you have now. Consider that when you decide on what product to use. Some are more repairable than others. The trade off is, the more repairable, the less durable and vice versa.
We too love a dark hull, but you have to go in with your eye's open to the above.
For product, we most recently used AlexSeal and are very happy with it. It's the newest product from the original inventor of AwlGrip. Its as durable as the most durable stuff out there, but they claim it lends itself to repair more than its competition. Not a do-it-yourself product, however, if that's your plan.
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In the harsh marine environment, something is always in need of repair. Margaritas fix everything.