Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: new jersey
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no wet sanding is kinda odd to me.
it is certainly a way to keep down dust, and if you are tarped under the boat it should not be an issue.
i wet sanded between all the coats when I painted the bottom of my boat. I used interlux brand paint, mostly because I found a marine supply that was going out of business and I was able to get the paint for 75% off.
of course that meant that my color choice was reduced to teal green or teal green, but whatever, its bottom paint after all.
i decided not to use a chemical agent when I stripped down the boat, mostly because I was able to do the whole project in a friends barn (my boat is only 21'). The only advice I can give you is to follow the instructions on any brand paint you use, and wait extra time between coats if you can. The better you prep the boat, the better the outcome of the paint. And don't worry, it will take two to three times longer to do than you anticipate.
And as for the sander... Unless you are planning to use it for alot of projects, check with a local tool rental place. You should be able to rent one for the weekend for a much better price than buying one. And you will get a professional grad sander this way. Sanding the boat is the least time consuming, considering the major sanding that is. Most of the time will be taken up by prepping the boat for sanding, and applying the coats of paint. The sanding between coats should be done manually, and not by machine, for it is only a scuff sanding to allow for better adhesion of the additional coats.
hope that helps.
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self taught, looking to learn more