Why paint instead of gelcoat?
The common advice seems to be that when it comes time to redo original topside gelcoat, it should be sanded and painted. But what I don't understand about this is that even the best two-part polyurethanes last for less than ten years. (I think Don Casey says 5-7 years.) For the massive pain and expense of painting the topsides, and the additional maintenance complications it will cause, only lasting ten years seems like a really crappy deal!
On the other hand, gelcoat seems to last so long that I don't really see anyone measuring its lifetime in years. You see boats from early seventies with original gelcoat that's been well-maintained that could pass for new.
So why isn't redoing gelcoat with gelcoat a thing? Why are people so willing to tear off and rebed all of their deck hardware for something that they'll just have to redo as soon as half a decade later?