How do you swab your fiberglass deck? - SailNet Community

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  #1  
Old 03-17-2012
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How do you swab your fiberglass deck?

All the "green" products I've used so far, haven't done much to clean stains and brighten the deck. I know of plenty of stuff that will do a great job, but the fish don't appreciate it much. The best I've come up with is a combination of Simple Green/Water in a bucket and baking soda as an abrasive. I use my deck brush, dip it in the bucket and wet down the area to be cleaned. Then give the area a good covering with baking soda. I then srub-a-dub-dub. It's not perfect but not bad either. What do you use?
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Old 03-17-2012
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Re: How do you swab your fiberglass deck?

I found the best way to make swabbing the decks easier, much easier, is to DITCH THE BUCKET. I hate moving and kicking a bucket around a sailboat's deck.

Instead of using a bucket (in which, presumably you've mixed water with your favorite cleaner), use a spray bottle that you tie to your belt with a length of cord. Once tied, the bottle should hang free from your belt by about six inches. The bottle should be filled with your favorite cleaner, full strength.

Make sure you have your water hose equipped with a plastic squeeze sprayer so if you drop it you won't take chips out of your gelcoat. The big trigger on the hose sprayer will allow you to hook in on your lifelines when you're not using it.

Thus equipped, rinse the portion of the boat you're ready to clean (like the forepeak). Then use your waist/cleaner spray bottle to mist your boat brush. Scrub. Rinse. Move on.

Alternatively, if your spray bottle allows for a "stream", you can spray your deck directly with it and avoid having to lift your boat brush up to the spray bottle.

Either way, you don't spray very much, as you're using it full strength.

My current favorite for deck washing is Starbrite Non-Skid cleaner.
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Old 03-17-2012
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Re: How do you swab your fiberglass deck?

Pro-tip ... Don't use a HolyStone
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Re: How do you swab your fiberglass deck?

I use softscrub with bleach, scrub about a 6 foot section then spray off with a hose
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Old 03-17-2012
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Re: How do you swab your fiberglass deck?

For the charter fleet, we purchased a pressure washer. When you have 17 boats to clean, it is worth it.
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Old 03-17-2012
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Re: How do you swab your fiberglass deck?

Go sailing to windward in rough weather - make sure you get some green water over the bow.

When you go down to your boat the next day you will be amazed at how bright & clean the deck is.

Hose it off with fresh water.

Note: this is only partly said in jest - it really DOES work, I found out the hard way.
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Old 03-18-2012
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Re: How do you swab your fiberglass deck?

I like your idea of using baking soda - thanks, I'll give that a try. We're starting to think that a good waxing is what we need, in order to minimize the dirt that sticks in the first place. What do you think?
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Old 03-18-2012
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Re: How do you swab your fiberglass deck?

My marina does not permit cleaning the deck or topsides with anything other that a water spray, also no bottom cleaning in the marina.

So once a year when hauled out I use a garden sprayer with dollar store oxicleaner, let it sit a few hours then pressure wash, and repeat in the spring.
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