Hull Makeover

If you have the time you can paint your boat yourself by Gary Caputi, Motorboating magazine.

Step 1: Pre-Prep;

With the boat on blocks I removed the rubrail and everything attached to the hull below it and above the waterline. Thru hulls in the bottom were left in place because they get painted. The local Soda-Blast Systems guys (www.sodablast systems.com) removed the old bottom paint (see the August issue of “Motor Boating”). Then I wet-sanded the hull sides and transom using an orbital sander with 120-grit disks to remove the gloss. I wiped them down with 202 solvent and examined the surface for dings, pits and cracks, which I circled with a pencil.

Step 2: Repairs and First Prime

The damaged areas were filled using Evercoat Formula 27. After hardening, each area was sanded and second and third applications were made as needed. Pinholes and blisters below the waterline were similarly repaired. A wipe down with 2333N solvent preceded the first coat of Epoxy Primekote, applied using a solvent resistant 8" roller and brushed in tight spots. After drying, the primer was sanded with the orbital using 120-grit, taking it down to the gel coat in places, which revealed more subtle flaws.

Step 3: Small Repairs and Second Prime

Using Evercoat PolyFlex glazing putty, available at auto body supply stores, I filled fine imperfections quickly, some taking two applications. Each repair was sanded by hand with 220. A quick wipe down and another application of Primekote followed. This coat was carefully sanded to a thinlayer using the orbital and 220-grit. The primer creates a smooth, imperfection-free surface. (Top-coat paint will highlight, not hide imperfections.) With the aid of friends, an honest 40 man-hours of prep went into the hull before mixing the first quart of color.