I've enjoyed reading the posts for years - learned a ton. I have a few questions on paint
/gelcoat, though, that I can't seem to find - look as I might. I'll try to be brief but informative in what I'm looking for.
I'm pretty handy with tools and materials. Most of my "body work" experience, however, is with cars. I'm familiar with Bondo, paint
prep, and paint
. What I'm not familiar with is boat body work.
Our boat is a T23 Columbia in relatively good shape inside - only a few dings/scratche on the outside. I've sanded/painted/rewired the trailer, rewired all of the running lights
/fuse panel etc, and just generally refurbished what needed it. My "final frontier", if you will, is the hull - the chips and repainting/re-gelling (is that actually a word?). Once the chips are repaired, I'd like to paint
the bottom and (re-gel?) the topside. The paint on the hull might very well be the original 37-year-old paint, and wipes off as a powder when touched. First dumb question
- what prep do I need to do to the bottom before painting?
Knowing that the boat will sit on a trailer for a good majority of the year, but may see a few weeks total in both fresh and salt water, what type/brand paint do any of you recommend
? I'm looking for economy/durability, but am more worried about beehives than barnacles, if you know what I mean.
Finally, what the heck do I do to the topside? Again, it's probably the original gelcoat. We live in the desert Southwest (yeah, I know.... I sailboat in the desert - believe me, I get the looks when towing it), so the sun is intense. Is there some miracle gel for refurbishing the top, or am I looking at a complete strip and re-gel? If a full strip, how far down do I go? I imagine not all the way to fiberglass, but I don't know.
Is this do-able, or am I better off trying to find the molds and laying up a new boat for all the work I'd put in to it?
I look forward to your replies/wisdom. Thanks in advance