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Beersmith 02-03-2011 05:31 PM

"2-part polyurethane paints are difficult to apply" Please explain this
I am trying to choose what I will be painting my deck with and am stuck between shelling out the cash for Interlux Perfection or going with Brightsides. I will be applying with the roll and tip method.

Anytime someone compares the two they say that Perfection is difficult to apply, but I cannot find anyone expanding on what they mean by that. What makes it so difficult aside from having to mix the two parts? I understand that you need to key in the correct ratio for your given environment, and I am aware of Don Casey's paint on glass technique to test the paint flow.

Is there something in the actual application of the paint that makes it difficult to achieve a good finish?

Faster 02-03-2011 07:03 PM

While sometimes I think it's mostly a way to support the pros, these warnings do have some merit... The mixing and timing of use is important, and there are specific temp and humidity requirements that, if ignored, can produce a less-than-perfect result.

However we've painted a couple of boats with Awlgrip, nobody would mistake it for a professional job, but while far from perfect it looked pretty good from afar!

I'd go for it.. if your prep is good, do the best you can wrt conditions. I think the durability of a 2 part for decks might be worth it.

SJ34 02-03-2011 07:18 PM

I've never used Perfection but I can say you won't be happy with the durability of Brightsides as a deck paint. I'd do the extra work and apply the two part.

RichH 02-03-2011 11:04 PM

Ditto with SJ34 on the short life of 'Brightsides'

2 part catalyzed paints have a high learning curve if you want a 'good' job. You have to be careful and observant to changes of ambient temperature, usually have to finish well before the end of the day - to avoid the cooling temps and rising dewpoints that cause water droplets to condense on the work .... and cause 'the dulls', etc. etc. etc.

Perfection is a very good 2 part paint; but, like I state again it does take some expertise (and Don Casey's glass plate method is 'spot on').
Shading the area to be worked, having the boat aligned with the sun - so that one side is not 'hotter' than the other side, etc. etc. etc. etc.

If this is your 'first' 2-part job, I suggest you first practice on a small dinghy hull, and 'experiment' with the goal of a "perfection" job. Hint: 90% of the work is in the "prep".

On the other hand, gelcoat restoration is a much better course and will help hold (or increase) the value of a boat with respect to one that's been 'painted'. Lots of good gel restoration discussions on the net. If interested do websearch: "gelcoat + restoration" boats, etc.

Capnblu 02-04-2011 12:12 AM

The big part of the learning is to apply the paint evenly to the required thickness. To test this you need a WET MIL gauge. it looks like a credit card with little notches of varying depths that correspond to the the thickness of the wet paint you just rolled on. Simply dip the edge of the mil gauge into the wet paint, and check the corresponding paint thickness. Every paint will tell you how many mils wet, or dry the paint should be applied. If the paint is to be applied at 3 mils dry, and has 50 % solids, you need to apply it 6 mils wet. The next thing in improving your paint, will be to get a #2 Zahn cup, and a stopwatch. Dip the Zahn cup into the paint, and as it drains out the hole in the bottom, look for the first break in the stream and that is the time you record. Simply thin your paint to achieve the correct time. As it gets warmer in the day you will need to thin less. If you were to paint alot, it would be nice to record the temperature of the paint as well. Most paint stores will give you a mil gauge for free, but a Zahn cup will set ya back a hundred bucks or so. But once you use it , you will never go back. Keep everything CLEAN!

tommays 02-04-2011 04:51 AM


People actuality pay me money to paint once in while with two part auto paint like Imron

Nothing could have prepared me for the science project nature of Perfection or AwlGrip

I sprayed my mast in a 24/7 temperature controlled work area the primers behaved as expected the paint did not dry in the rated time or behave in general ;)

In the end it looked great but the stuff is fussy about ever aspect of its application

sailingdog 02-04-2011 05:36 AM


You should probably explain that the reason you have so many different cans of Perfection was due to a paint recall where the paint wasn't formulated properly, rather than it being so difficult to use that you required all that paint to just paint the mast. :D It is tougher to use, but it ain't that tough. ;)

Beersmith 02-04-2011 07:44 AM

Thanks for the discussion everyone.

If I were to go the 2-part route, is there a large difference between the finish, ease of use, and quality of Awlgrip vs. Perfection?

tommays 02-04-2011 09:03 AM

The paint is functionally the same with both brands being owned by the same parent company and it becomes a Ford VS Chevy debate

In the USA Perfection is marketed to the roll and tip DIY end user and Awlgrip is marketed to the Pro and has a wider range of solvents to accommodate different spraying temperatures

In Europe Perfection is sold with the full range of solvents

The biggest single issue is the paint must be applied in time for the surface to cure before any nighttime cooling causeing condensation on the surface which kills the paints gloss

paulk 02-05-2011 10:32 AM

We went by the manufacturer's suggestion that Awlgrip be used by professionals, while Perfection provides an 800 number for user-painter handholding. The prep is the essentially the same for both Brightsides and Perfection, but our 2-part paint has held up for about 9 years now. When we tested a patch of Brightsides it held up less than a week.

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