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Discussion Starter #1
I mistakenly used 2" vinyl lettering on my hull for the boat registration numbers. I was informed by the coast guard that the numbers need to be 3" letters. I just painted the hull and I need a clean non abrasive way to remove the vinyl lettering.
Any suggestions?
 

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Solvents would be likely to damage the paint. A razor blade, carefully slid under the letters so as not to scratch the paint, may be the best way to go at them. Liquid soap, like DAWN, may be helpful. The regulations also call for a fine of $500 PER DAY for not following the requirements, so you may want to act quickly. (Though I doubt that the undermanned Coast Guard is sending people around measuring boat names and hailing port letters this week.)
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Oven cleaner can be used to remove vinyl lettering on gel coat. If you have a painted surface run a test in an inconspicuous spot.
 

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I have removed vinyl stripes from gel coat surface with a heat gun. The heat softens the vinyl so it is easy to get under the edge and lift off the surface.

I would believe that most paint would tolerate the heat level needed to soften the vinyl. A good hair dryer rather than a regular heat gun would probably be safer on the painted surface.
 

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Go down to your local Pep Boys (or local auto parts shop) and ask for the gum eraser on a drill bit that bodyshops use to remove vinyl strips from cars. Costs about $10, fits in your drill and quickly removes vinyl letters. It will not hurt paint.
 

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Have had good success with a hair dryer where lettering wasn''t too old and a hot air gun where it was on for 12 years on virgin (unpainted) gel coat. Thought idea of gum eraser was a good one too that I''ll remember myself. For residual glue left after removal try "Goo-Gone" non-solvent, smells good, works great!
 

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3-M makes a thing that looks like a 4" grinding wheel made from a light colored gum rubber that fits into an electric drill. This is the most incredible tool for removing vinyl stipes or graphics. I just removed a 2" wide stripe 36'' long on both sides of my boat in 1 hour flat,including resting from working overhead. It simply erases the vinyl from the gel coat without any damage whatsoever,leaving no residue to clean up. I love it. Cost about $25 at body shop supply store. Called Strip-it
Marc
 

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That Strip-It deal sounds incredible. I'm going to get one so it is handy nest time I need it! The razor idea is also good and works, the key being to use the soap or similar. Without the lube you will scratch for sure. It is also a great way to get varnish runs off paint or gel coat without damage. Be VERY careful with a heat gun, hot to brown happens in a blink!
 
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