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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi,

After one season on a mooring ball our boat Awlgrip is damaged from the mooring ball slapping against the topside. Looks like a rash of white chips along the racing green sides :-(

The boat lived on a mooring previous to our purchase and had no visible marks.

I'm trying to find a solution prior to splashing this season, even thought about using that 3M clear tape along the side but that seems a little drastic.

What do you guys do to protect Awlgripped topsides when living on a mooring ball?

Thanks!
 

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snake charmer, cat herder
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you painted over the gelcoat??? aside from lowering boats resale value, it WILL come off when mooring ball repeatedly contacts hull, and when water slams the boat. i have seen beautiful boats after a few passages with paint, yes, epoxy paint, coming off due to water damages as boat sails .... that is why value drops on a boat with paint over gelcoat.
i am sorry for your problem, however, mebbe ye might want to gelcoat the boat the color you want so it stays on.
paint WILL come off. too bad it is so pricey to apply.

there are ways to keep ball from contacting hull... do the physics on your situation and add a whisker pole or something to keep ball from contacting boat. i used to use a bridle and a sprit-end bungee cord snubber to keep the mooring tackle off my bows and bobstay.
 

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I'm not sure how your mooring is set up, so this advice might not work with your mooring system. Mine has a thick rope which I tie the boat to. Attached to the thick rope is a lighter line to the mooring ball. On my mooring ball I have a longer line tied to the ring on top. When I moor, I tie the boat up to the thick line, then I simply lift the ball out of the water with the line and tie it to the bowsprit. It keeps the ball suspended out of the water and doesn't bang into the hull. If you don't have a sprit or anchor platform, you can bring it on deck.
 

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whats wrong with painting over gelcoat?
 

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snake charmer, cat herder
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paint over gelcoat comes off easily when cruising with water slam onto hull. is not a good fix. re-gelcoating is very very pricey so folks wanting to change color of hull do in fact reduce the value of the boat by painting over gelcoat. is a survey trivia i learned while apprenticing to a surveyor who knows his stuff.
as for alleged high end yachts-- recoloring hull..... paint over gelcoat lowers value. if allegeed high end yachts are painted, then they are bonding the coating with the underlying materials. not same as when aftermarket paint is applied.
dont get the two confused. paint over gelcoat is not a goood move unless is bonded with the gel or fiberglass, which most folks do not bother to do in a repaint situation.
boat building is a lot different than your aftermarket modifications.
gelcoat is very expensive to apply and have nice. like over 30k for an entire 30 ft boat..
gelcoat remains on boat, whereas paint does NOT remain in hull. even epoxy paint self removes in seas.
 

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Common problem to see mooring ball paint on the hull from period's of time when it is calm and the boats do strange drifting things

Just like some weeks my mooring lins are perfect and some weeks it looks the boat spun in 957 circles :)

I had my ball changed to a soft ball which helped a LOT but I stlll have to clean a bit of blue paint off the desert sand topside color






Nothing has gouged my Awlgrip that would have not have gouged Gelcoat and I painted the Cal 29 to match my 1981 J24 and can assure you matching the desert tan J24 gelcoat after 5 years was a super expert only job
 

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really? I just gelcoated my decks...not 30k in all honestly paint would of been equal...

of course it varies on how you apply it, how much old gelcoat you take off etc...

most guys with old plastic classics do this all the time...they sand down the old gelocat and apply their favourite 2 part poly...

of course any paint will rubb off with a mooring ball...even the best...its not hard to scuff up the sides of a hull...

gelcoat rubs off too...its just stronger...it will also chaulk as we all know

no covering is perfect
 

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snake charmer, cat herder
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if you race you have a whisker pole. make that into a temp sprit. then add bridle and a heavy bungee cord snubber to the end of that and you will find freedom from smashing from ball on hull. it is done wherever boats encounter this problem there were others in my mooring field with this set up. isnt hard.
beats the hell out of yearly repaints..lol.... my gelcoated boats are fine with ballsmack , and have been for years.
some folks place a huge t shirt on the ball for protection from rub.....
 

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This gelcoat was NOT coming back as apparently the starboard side of the boat hit every dock in NYC the paint is now on its 4th season a doing fine BUT I try and hit as few things as possible :)
 

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Zeehag,
I do agree that painting over gel coat isn't a desirable thing to do, but there comes a point in the life of older fiberglass boats that you are left with little choice: gel coat becomes porous and attracts dirt and mildew. My boat is approaching 40 years old and the white deck gel coat is getting to the point where painting is needed. Thankfully, my beige non-skid gel coat still looks good. My hull can still buff out and wax up decently.
Don't mean to high jack the thread, but I thought I would throw in my experience on the issue..........If you choose to paint the hull, be prepared to re-paint after 8-10 years.
 

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I have been bashed by every mooring ball Ive ever been on. But as they are always transient I havent been able to solve the problem.

What about some sort of soft sock? Like a fender cover, or giant fluffy condom?

Can you make a fender, itself, thats round?

What about a long flexible fibreglass stick that holds the boat away from the ball? Or does that get caught one side of the boat and the ball the other?

Can you invent something and make a millions dollars? :)
 
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Hi,

After one season on a mooring ball our boat Awlgrip is damaged from the mooring ball slapping against the topside. Looks like a rash of white chips along the racing green sides :-(

The boat lived on a mooring previous to our purchase and had no visible marks.

I'm trying to find a solution prior to splashing this season, even thought about using that 3M clear tape along the side but that seems a little drastic.

What do you guys do to protect Awlgripped topsides when living on a mooring ball?

Thanks!
SOFT mooring ball and ALL connections BELOW IT....

Clean the ball every now and then with inflatable boat cleaner....


Every year hard mooring balls or balls with top connections cause hundreds of thousands of dollars in paint damage....:mad::mad:


Soft ball, 8 years, ZERO hull damage.....;)
 

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paint over gelcoat comes off easily when cruising with water slam onto hull. is not a good fix. re-gelcoating is very very pricey so folks wanting to change color of hull do in fact reduce the value of the boat by painting over gelcoat. is a survey trivia i learned while apprenticing to a surveyor who knows his stuff.
as for alleged high end yachts-- recoloring hull..... paint over gelcoat lowers value. if allegeed high end yachts are painted, then they are bonding the coating with the underlying materials. not same as when aftermarket paint is applied.
dont get the two confused. paint over gelcoat is not a goood move unless is bonded with the gel or fiberglass, which most folks do not bother to do in a repaint situation.
boat building is a lot different than your aftermarket modifications.
gelcoat is very expensive to apply and have nice. like over 30k for an entire 30 ft boat..
gelcoat remains on boat, whereas paint does NOT remain in hull. even epoxy paint self removes in seas.
This is PURE RUBBISH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! LPU paints & primers like 545 are specifically designed and formulated to go over properly prepped gelcoat. If you saw paint peeling it was the fault of the APPLICATOR not the paint. Even factory painted boats are very often painted over gelcoat.


Zee please STOP spreading mistruths. I have piles of customers who've been around the planet with AwlGrip or Imron painted over gelcoat and ZERO issues you describe.

I was just working on one of the early Saga 43's yesterday, she has well over 50k ocean miles on her, including 4 Atlantic crossings.. The Awlgrip is still in quite good condition for her age. The customers other boat is also Awlgrip and recently completed a multi-year Great Loop trip. Alwgrip looks fabulous... My own boat is painted over gelcoat and at 8 years it looks as good as the day it rolled out of the paint shed. It is all how it was prepped and done...

If a mooring ball is damaging Awlgrip it WILL also damage gelcoat..
 

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My thoughts (in no particular order):

My new-to-me boat will need to be painted if it is ever to look nice again. The original gelcoat was patched and the patches have yellowed while the original did not. If I spent maybe US$3k to paint it and it looked great for 5 years and pretty good for 5 more, I'd call that acceptable.

Much of the damage forward seems to be from sailing up on the mooring ball. I leave that mooring in less than 2 weeks for my real one at my home port. The boat seems to have been on one of these moorings for the last several years.

Don't search "ball slap" on Google. :eek:

Ken
 
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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Sorry I didn't mean to start the awlgrip versus gelcoat thing. Truth be told we are newbies when we purchased the boat I wouldn't have done so if I had known now what I know about Awlgrip. For example learning to dock with a nice shiny Awlgrip boat has left lots of white rashes on the topsides from the white plastic lining the wooden docks, not sure if it's surface or not. Can't buff Awlgrip, well I'm no pro.

Thanks for the advice here for a soft mooring ball and trying to use the whisker pole or put some fender arrangement out.

True when I purchased the boat she came with a black piece of line that I would loop through the mooring lines and attach only the black line to my cleats.

The black line went missing during her haulout.

I may have a word with the mooring field operator to see what I can do.

If I was doing this again though I would prefer gelcoat, for example we renamed the boat and cannot buff the old name out of the transom, things like that.

Also the haul out left sling marks scratched into both side...

I didn't have much luck with my first haul out of my new boat did I.

Thanks
 

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Maine's advice is right on the money as usual.

One other thought, when cruising you sometimes end up on a nasty barnacle encrusted mooring with the pennant attached through a shackle on the top. Get an old rug, cut a small hole in it for the pennant, and thread the pennant through letting the rug drape around the ball.

We've found this particularly useful in Vineyard Haven in the outer harbor where they have cone shaped moorings (which are even worse than balls) with shackles on top. At night when the SW dies, and the ferry's are still running, you inevitably bounce against these things and gouge up your topsides, painted or not.

Only you can prevent mooring rash:)
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
That sounds like a great idea also, thanks. Our mooring ball has a metal shackle at the top.
 
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