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Go Back   SailNet Community > On Board > Gear & Maintenance > Fender covers - any use?
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Thread: Fender covers - any use? Reply to Thread
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Topic Review (Newest First)
05-08-2009 08:31 PM
downeast450 As the former Awgrip trainer for the Maine State Marine Trades Center I am very tuned in to finish surfaces. My next finish demonstration idea is to put some sort of textured surface above the WL that has an artistic bent. Some kind of fresco with a marine theme that is non descript enough that it might be enhanced by minor damage. It is such a source of anxiety for boat owners to worry about surface imperfections in their finishes. There is no question that an Endeavor Blue Awlgrip finish is spectacular. To have a finish that requires you to worry about the abrasive qualities of the fenders you use to prevent abrasion is a bit much. I used to watch owners peer into the finish of their yacht and admire their reflections. I also used to teach Marine painting and Varnishing for WoodenBoat Magazine, and loved those owners who are so particular about their painted and varnished surfaces. I concluded that many boat owners are maintenance junkeys who have decided that boats will be their outlet. I am a fairly good painter. I actually like to varnish. I have a Marshall Sandpiper and its coaming and rails are Bristol. That is enough. My other sail boat has teak trim that is beautifully weathered to a silver that matches my hair. The hull is weathering white gel coat (the only color for boats) and the occasional impact that leaves a mark is no more than a marker from another adventure. I do use fenders to protect the boat and soften impact but worrying about covering them to avoid a sign of wear is not on my list of priorities.

Perhaps I am an Ausi, too?

Tundra Down
05-08-2009 10:52 AM
Faster
Quote:
Originally Posted by tdw View Post
Why you going to those things ? (spherical fenders) Isn't the problem of stowing the buggers more trouble than they are worth ?
Stowing these is a problem compared to the usual cylindrical ones, but the round ones are much easier on the boat. A cylindrical fender "rubs" against the dock and boat when a boat rolls in its slip, and if there's a side force from a crosswind or tide that rubbing can be quite hard. In the same situation the round fenders roll vertically back and forth, tending to "rub" less.

One of our local boat painters highly recommends going to spherical fenders (called "scotchmans" hereabouts - often used to buoy crab/prawn pots) to their clients with freshly painted boats.
05-08-2009 09:03 AM
AllThumbs I did as SD suggested and bought some sweatpants from the thrift store. Cut the legs off above the knee, sewed in a hem top and bottom, added shoelaces as draw strings and slipped them over the fenders. My fenders were scratching the paint. Now they are not. I will wash them once in a while. $6.00 invested.

Eric
05-08-2009 01:04 AM
Sailormann I bought 6 fender covers two years ago. Can't remember the brand but they were made of a thin blue knit synthetic. Pulled them onto the fenders, tied the boat alongside the slip, made everything tiddly and left.

The boat was slipped at a fixed dock in a Great Lakes marina, very sheltered. No tides and no turbulence.

Came back three days later. The covers on the three fenders between the boat and the slip were all bunched up at the top of the fender. Pulled them back down and looked at the covers on the other side. They were all in place covering the fenders. Not surprising as nothing was touching the boat on that side.

Two days later was back at the boat. One fender cover missing. Two others had ridden up the fenders again. They were starting to get quite dirty from the gunk that coated the side of the slip. It had deposited itself on the fender cover and the air had dried it out. Crusty is prbably the best term for it.

The covers on the other side were fine. Just where they had been put and no Lake sludge.

Took the dirty ones off the fenders, threw them into the wash at home and bought a new one to roekace the missing one.

They rode up and got dirty again. They got very, very crusty this time .

I took them off the fenders and threw them away. Won't buy them again.
05-07-2009 11:09 PM
Pub911 My experience is counter to the advice given above regarding Awlgrip.

I've used fleece covers on my Awlgrip II paint for 7 years. They have not caused any harm and IMO have protected the paint better than uncovered fenders which I have seen leave rubbery streaks after heavy use/weather.

The rubber streaks are easily removeable, but why bother?

I found them online be googling "fuzzy fenders" and adding "-zz top" so that I didn't get a bunch of unrelated, but very funny coincidental guitar pictures.
05-07-2009 09:41 PM
tdw
Quote:
Originally Posted by Valiente View Post
That is an excellent idea. If I cared about fender covers, I'd use it!

Wouldn't work for the orange spherical ones I'm going to, however.

Why you going to those things ? Isn't the problem of stowing the buggers more trouble than they are worth ?

Generally speaking I wouldn't be bothered with the covers , seem like just another way to piss away your hard earned dosh on completely useless stuff.

Then again some people do polish their hulls, have dinky little throw cushions with anchor motifs, wear colour coded docksiders and call their wife the admiral.

Our attitude is that should a pirate spot us they will take one look and decide the other blokes boat has got to be a better prize than our scruffy old pos. Also we are Australians. Nuff said.

Then again....how about fender covers made from dead possums ?
05-07-2009 09:18 PM
Maine Sail
Ask guys who paint boats

Ask guys who paint boats and the tech support at Awlgrip. They will usually tell you they do more harm than good. I had a long conversation with the Dupont Imron reps at the Maine Boat Builders Show and they were complaining that fleece covers are a huge Peeve of theirs. People thin kt they are doing good but dry crusty salt, dirt weeds dock grime and such sticks to fleece and it does not stick to a clean fender nearly as well..

People think they are doing a good thing but fleece likes to attract dirt, dock grime, dried seaweed and any other thing floating by. This stuff then gets trapped in the fibers and abrades the hull worse than a smooth clean fender will.

Clean your fenders often and I would advise agaisn the use of them. I chose to ignore my painter and bought some. I used them for one day and saw exactly what he said I would trapped grime and dirt in the fibers. They are basically brand new, sitting in my barn, collecting dust..
05-07-2009 09:11 PM
Faster Hockey socks work too, if you want covers.

However, if there's a chance of airborne dirt particles (moored near a gravel lot and windy, for instance) the covers can trap and hold dust/dirt and then become hull abraders themselves.
05-07-2009 09:02 PM
ardoin SD, great idea. I'll have to buy the FAT Man sweats from Wall Mart to fit the finders. Should have a good color selection.
My big worry is damage to the gel coat over time.
Thanks
05-06-2009 10:30 PM
T37Chef If you don't want to hear the hull squeaking all night they are a must and making the covers yourself is a great beginner project for sewing.
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