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Old 09-14-2013
jvlassak's Avatar
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stripping/painting aluminum

It's not even the end of summer, but I am already thinking of winter projects. The paint on my boom is badly chipped and the underlying aluminum is starting to corrode, so I'd like to strip the paint and refinish the boom. Any advise on either?

The paint is damaged in many areas, but there are also areas where it is still intact. I assume it won't be easy to strip the pain in these areas.

Painting aluminum is difficult and I'm not sure why any boat manufacturer would paint rather than anodize, but I have little choice in the matter now. What's the best way to prepare the surface and what primers to use? Chromate conversion coatings seem to do the trick, but they're also hard to find and rather toxic.

Any advise would be much appreciated!

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Old 09-14-2013
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Re: stripping/painting aluminum

I took the mast and boom down to bare metal a few years ago and painted with Awlgrip products. You can get the details for painting aluminum on their site. Interlux would likely work just as well.

Used a random orbital to get most of the paint off and then hand sanding. Worked out well, used a badger hair brush, not quite as nice a spray but the Awlgrip top coat levels out really nicely. I painted out side so getting the right conditions was a bit of a pain.
It was spring near the shore of Lake Huron so needed sun and warmth but not too much. If the sun was hot it caused an on shore breeze that cooled the air down too much and blew dust around. I got a temperature gun so that I could get an accurate read of the temperature of the metal before priming or top coating. If you could do it inside it would work better.

Good luck
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jvlassak (09-15-2013)
Old 09-16-2013
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Re: stripping/painting aluminum

Paint - prime with an MCU aluminim paint - such as aluthane. google aluthane.

if you then don't like an aluminum look on an aluminum boom, you can topcoat the aluthane with enamel in any color.

Paul Oman - MS. MBA
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Internet Epoxy Confederation (IEC) Homepage
epoxies since 1994
Member: NACE (National Assoc. of Corrosion Engineers) -- SSPC (Soc. of Protective Coatings)
epoxy supplier
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