Dark Hull in Southern Climes - SailNet Community
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post #1 of 21 Old 04-12-2007 Thread Starter
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Dark Hull in Southern Climes

This question is for anyone for experience on a boat with a dark hull, white deck and sails regularly in tropical latitudes. Do you feel there is a significant difference in the amount of cabin heat generated by your dark hull with all ventilation open over a boat with a white hull? I am specifically referring to an at anchor situation and the fact that you have visited other light colored boats in the same area to be able to discern the difference. Thanks all...

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post #2 of 21 Old 04-12-2007
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Don-

Even up as far north as I am, there's a noticeable difference in the summer time. I'd hate to see what it was like down there in the summertime.

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post #3 of 21 Old 04-12-2007
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There is very few dark hulled boats in Aus for this very reason and if my memory serves me well if the gel coat gets to a temp of 90 deg C it will become tacky to the poiint you can leave perminant finger prints in it.

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post #4 of 21 Old 04-12-2007
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Foam cored dark decks are even worse... you can leave permanent foot prints in them. BTW, epoxy weakens quite a bit with heat...so much so that most manufacturers of epoxy resin tell you not to paint the parts dark colors if they're going to be used in sunlight. Dark colors can also cause the resin to post-cure and leave the fiberglass cloth printing through.

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You know what the first rule of sailing is? ...Love. You can learn all the math in the 'verse, but you take
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—Cpt. Mal Reynolds, Serenity (edited)

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post #5 of 21 Old 04-12-2007
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I feel qualified to comment on this one. In southern latitudes dark hulls get so hot in the summer sun that you cannot hold your hand on them. Nevertheless, we were quite comfortable at anchor as long as there was a breeze blowing. No boat was comfortable without a breeze...Thank god for generators and air conditioning!
Up north as the weather gets colder and you seal the hatches...the dark hull helps keep things cozy in the day time.
Another downside to a dark hull is that everything shows...nicks, scuffs, dirt etc. much more than a white hull.
On the other hand...they are just so damn pretty compared to white IMHO...so on blalance you have to decide what is most important to you.
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post #6 of 21 Old 04-13-2007
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Umm, maybe something in between, say royal blue or peuse.

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post #7 of 21 Old 04-13-2007
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Donrr1—

One other thing to consider is how visible your boat is, especially at night. If your nav lights fail for some reason—not an uncommon scenario by any means— how easily visible is your boat going to be at night or in the fog? A dark hulled boat can often blend into the night without running lights. Also, if you ever need rescue, a dark blue hulled boat is probably as difficult to spot as anything else is.

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You know what the first rule of sailing is? ...Love. You can learn all the math in the 'verse, but you take
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—Cpt. Mal Reynolds, Serenity (edited)

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post #8 of 21 Old 04-13-2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SimonV
Umm, maybe something in between, say royal blue or peuse.
Our transom is "Stars and Stripes" Blue.. a light blue. The temperature is noticably higher than on the white. The sun angle also makes a difference as you'll get reflected light against the hull from the water.

Remember the first step to making a solar oven is to start with a dark surface!!


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post #9 of 21 Old 04-13-2007
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Our 380 had a blue hull (Emrond). Heat is not a issue - in my opinon. Another positive of a Emrond hull is that it is easy to clean and needs no waxing. Things wash right off (except around the T-Hulls like the bilge & A/c which acquires a haze). I do not care much for blue gell coat - it oxidizes and requires maintenance.

Paint it if you can afford it. However, Cam is right about it showing all of your "less-than-perfect" docking manuevers. That is a benefit of having a spouse on board. When someone comments, you can always say, "Yep. That was the time I let her drive..." (comments best made when she is not around)!! HAHA!

IF you have not priced it, the cost runs somewhere between $175-$225/ft for Emrond. Not a cheap option... but MAN IT LOOKS GOOD and will set you off from all the other boats. I remember coming into an anchorage one time and one of the floating-mobile-home residents screamed out, "You get a pair of roller-blades with that!??" (like I was a yuppi... well, which may not be too far from the truth). I flipped him off and laughed. It was not as if his boat had a motor anyways.

THere is a positive and negative of having a beautiful, gorgeous boat with a painted hull. The positive is that you will stick out in EVERY anchorage and you look awesome. The negative is the same: You will stick out in EVERY anchorage, for those who admire your boat for reasons other that pure admiration. That is the only thing that is preventing me from painting our 400 (which I probably will anyways). I am concerned about sticking out in the south islands as the Rich Gringo!!! Keep that in the back of your mind...

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post #10 of 21 Old 04-13-2007
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