Using On-Off to clean my gelcoat? - SailNet Community
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post #1 of 11 Old 05-07-2012 Thread Starter
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Using On-Off to clean my gelcoat?

Other than the personal health hazards of washing something with acid, I would think gelcoat would suffer from annual applications of something like "On-Off". Does anyone know? What would the chemical reaction be, if any?

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post #2 of 11 Old 05-07-2012
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Re: Using On-Off to clean my gelcoat?

I have never seen it dammage gelcoat ?

The stuff worked great for me with the downside being it will destroy bottom paint or pretty much anything it drips on other than gelcoat

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post #3 of 11 Old 05-07-2012
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Re: Using On-Off to clean my gelcoat?

What is On-Off?
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post #4 of 11 Old 05-07-2012
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Re: Using On-Off to clean my gelcoat?

What also works well and is a lot less acidic is BarKeeper's Friend which is mostly oxalic acid. It may require a tiny bit of elbow grease but it won't destroy everything else it gets on.
Mary Kate "On Off":
Amazon.com: MaryKate On and Off - Hull and Bottom Cleaner: Sports & Outdoors Amazon.com: MaryKate On and Off - Hull and Bottom Cleaner: Sports & Outdoors


Active ingredient is hydrochloric acid = very strong acid that will burn your skin off.

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post #5 of 11 Old 05-07-2012 Thread Starter
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Re: Using On-Off to clean my gelcoat?

It certainly lets you know of any cuts you may have. I keep buckets of rinse water handy, wear a wool sweater and try to avoid doing it on a day when the dew point and the temperature are close. It fogs heavily. The fog is HCL vapor. Work up wind. Very bad stuff. Rinse immediately. It sure cleans things up. I think the biggest visual effect is caused by its ability to reach and "scour?" the soil that settles into the micro cracks in gelcoat. I am going to try an exposure test on old gelcoat and take a look at the surfaces before and after. I think the stuff is destructive to old gelcoat. Perhaps not?

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Re: Using On-Off to clean my gelcoat?

Wouldn't oxalic acid accomplish the same thing less dangerously?
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Re: Using On-Off to clean my gelcoat?



It never caused any issues with my 1981 gelcoat and if the gelcoat has been kept in reasonable condition with no chalky sections i do not see how it could

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post #8 of 11 Old 05-07-2012
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Re: Using On-Off to clean my gelcoat?

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Originally Posted by ccriders View Post
Wouldn't oxalic acid accomplish the same thing less dangerously?
John
I've used oxalic acid for cleaning the water line after hauling in the fall. Works quite well, though not as quickly as On-and-Off.
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post #9 of 11 Old 05-07-2012
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Re: Using On-Off to clean my gelcoat?

muratic acid will make your chrome plated deck fittings into brass,,,,,bad experience.. when I was young and had no sence
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post #10 of 11 Old 05-07-2012
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Re: Using On-Off to clean my gelcoat?

Read the directions carefully with On & Off. DO NOT allow it to come in contact with any metal--it will quickly destroy it. If you do inadvertently splash some on a trailer or prop shaft, douse it with a solution of baking soda and water (2-tblsp baking soda, 1-quart water), which will neutralize the acid. Then rinse thoroughly with fresh water.

There are two types available, the most safe and effective being the On & Off Gel, which tends to not drip, takes longer to dry and easier to apply with nothing more than a 4-inch paint brush. Be sure to use a cheap, disposable brush, though. Do not apply the gel in direct sunlight and you can easily coat a 30 foot boat in less than 20 minutes. Then go back to the starting point and using a long-handled, scrub brush with soft, nylon bristles (the blue brush worked well) and some cold, soapy water, scrub the stains lightly, then rinse thoroughly with cold, fresh water. The finish will look like brand new.

I've been using this product for nearly 10 years, never had a problem with gelcoat damage and never had a problem with it affecting bottom paint.

Good Luck,

Gary
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