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I''m a novice (REAL novice!) sailor and boat owner. Bought my 15-foot day sailor at a yard sale a couple of years ago and have done only minor repair and maintenance. The bottom paint is scratched and scuffing off in some places. Should I repaint before this season? Generally, how often should antifouling paint be re-applied? Thanks for your help!
 

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The answer depends on many factors:
Do you keep the boat in the water or on a trailer? If its primarily on the trailer and only goes in the water to daysail, you really don''t need any bottom paint.
If the boat is kept in the water it probably needs bottom paint (and possibly a barrier coat to prevent blisters). How often to apply the bottom paint depends on the type--just read the label. Some paint (for example Micron CSC) needs to be applied usually everyother year. Other paints (I use Interlux VC17 for fresh water) needs to be painted ever year.
You probably don''t know whats on the bottom now, so if you need to put bottom paint on, the current paint may need to be completely removed for compatiblity reasons.
If you are not sure what kind of paint you should use, ask around to see what other sailors use in your area or post another question here. Also the magazine Practical Sailor recently had an issue talking about bottom paint that was good.
Good luck.
Rob ~~~~_/)~~~~
 

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Anadon,

I too have recently undertaken my first bottom paint job. A person at a local West Marine was very helpful. Some paints are "non ablative", and this makes a difference. Sone require re-painting once the boat has been out just long enough to dry. Others may last for several seasons. I applied three coats of epoxy sealer, then two coats of CSC Micron. I''m hoping for longer than two seasons. Good luck.
 

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The livespan of bottom paint greatly depends on where you sail, how thick an application you applied, the type of paint used, where it was thinned, whether your boat is in the water year round or hauled for the winter, and how often you have your bottom cleaned. In most locations you cannot expect to get more than two years out of bottom paint. Most harder bottom paints will only last a year. There are some ablatives, that if applied thick enough and kept ''fresh'' will last for more than two seasons but they become so ineffective by the thrid year that they are not really functioning as bottom paint. Some hard racing paints are the same way. I got three years out of Baltiplate but I had a diver every other week in summer.

Beyond that It is not a great idea to leave a boat in the water that long as it will uptake some water even with a barrier coat. I am always amazed at how high my boat floats after she has been out of the water even for 2 or 3 week.

Jeff
 

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Any idea what happens when the bottom is painted and you do NOT re-launch for 6 months? My newly bought used Rhodes 19 never had any bottom paint, so I applied 2 coats after haul out last fall, and left it on the trailer all winter. Now I wonder if I should apply another coat before launching for the summer. Will not "wetting" the bottom after painting diminish antifouling effectiveness? The boat sits on a mooring in Lewis Bay, MA all summer. Thanks for any info..P J Corbett
 
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