bottom paint removal: sanding vs. stripping - SailNet Community

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Old 10-15-2011
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bottom paint removal: sanding vs. stripping

We're in a tropical environment on a 42 footer, changing from soft to hard bottom paint; from Sea Hawk to Pettit Trinidad SR. We are aware of the dangers and necessary precautions.To change paint types it is necessary to take it down to the existing epoxy. We have only ever sanded old paint. The yard wants to use paint stripper in the interest of a 5 day tide widow; it's faster. Any input on stripping will be more than we have and appreciated.
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Old 10-15-2011
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I've heard covering the wet stripper with saran wrap and letting it sit overnight....next day it just falls and peals off with the wrap in easy sheets...there's a thread here somewhere...
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Old 10-15-2011
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I used a 'green' paint stripper (on hull stripes) some time ago, it was effective despite cooler than optimum temps at the time... but while it was clearly advertised 'safe for gelcoat' it did contain a warning to limit the application time for epoxies.. This was called 'Aqua Strip' but it would be worthwhile to check for sure that the stripper they are intending to use is epoxy-safe.
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Old 10-16-2011
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I've never had great luck with paint strippers on bottom paint and the green alternative did affect the gelcoat where it came in direct contact.

If the yard is doing the labor I'd let them use what their comfortable with, with the proviso of course that it won't cost significantly more and the end result is the same.
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Old 10-16-2011
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I used a paint stripper where they claimed that the paint would stick to wrap after letting it set for a certain period of time. Some of the paint did indeed come off, but for the most part it just softened it up and I had to scrape the rest of it off. From what I can gather there is no way of going about removing paint.
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Old 10-17-2011
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I've used this with satisfactory results - the old paint doesn't all come off with the backing - but it works pretty well, and sure beats sanding / toxic dust!

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