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Painting Wisdom


Don Silsbe
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I learned the hard way and on your boat Randy. One part paints, no matter what their quality or price do not hold up to two part poly. Do they look as good after applying, Yes they do, Do they look as good a year latter, NO. Only if the boat has set, seldom used under cover.

 

Will bird do, wash off after it has set on one part finish for a while? nope. Will rust from a forgotten one pound propane tank scrub off, nope. Will gas and oil mix stains wash off, Nope.

 

One Part Paint has its place, but it is not on the weathered side of a hull that is attacked by the elements and neglect !!!!!

I know this opinion will not be popular or totally agreed with, so go with your feelings and come to your own way of thinking.

 

I was told in the beginning of my boat building experience to use two part paint by a good source and I decided to save a few bucks and use one part, only to come up very short in the end.

 

I have learned there is only one way get a really durable stain resistant hull. That is two part solvent based poly.

:)

Have fun!

 

Scott

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There's no doubt about the merits of solvent based LPU's, but one thing that does help tremendously on the "other" paints is to keep it waxed up. Most people keep their cars cleaned and waxed, but noooo, not the boat they spent a year building. It just lives forlornly, under a cheap, probably tattered tarp, hoping you have interest in her again some day. Keep it clean and waxed and bird (or visiting exwife) crap does wash off and stains are thwarted. For the average skipper this means twice a year, you hit the boat with a harsh detergent, scrub her down good then let her dry. Next you wax her up, maybe buff up a dull fitting or two. At the beginning and end of the sailing season is a good idea. A boat will love you next spring, if you put her away with a nice wash and wax in the fall.

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I have learned there is only one way get a really durable stain resistant hull. That is two part solvent based poly.

:)

 

The only I problem I have with this statement is that is just isn't true. 

 

Water reduced 2 part LPU by System 3, if not other brands (I simply don't know about other brands) is also extremely stain resistant.  Are solvent based paints more resistant?  Maybe so, but how much more?  I have seen no evidence that any difference, even if it exists is significant.  And if you care about health and environmental issues the answers will not come from solvent based paints.   System 3 is making constant improvements in both areas as well as the characteristics of the completed finish and I am glad my purchases are helping finance them as well as giving me a beautiful (in my eyes anyway), and quite durable, stain resistant finish now.  Repairing portions of the finish is very simple and quick and I don't mind the efforts I might expend each year.  It is part of owning a boat.  And the coolest thing about our boats is that if we can build 'em, we can surely fix 'em.  This is especially true if we choose materials that repair easily and well, like alkyd resin varnishes and WR-LPU by System 3 and maybe even protect them as Paul has suggested above.

 

At present the only concession I would make to solvent based LPUs is that they are shinier.  If your finish has to shine back into your eyes in a blinding flash, then you must use one.

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Well, guys, I'm on my way!  The velour roller is great.  The Wooster woven 3/16" nap roller was good, too.  But the velour mini (the one you showed us, Chick) has a fuzzy end.  This was great for painting around corners (i.e., the keel).  I'm giving it a second coat this afternoon.  Then, I'll get out my Quick Fair and some sandpaper.  Gonna try some 220 in my d/a before I go to hand sanding with 400.  Let's see what kind of trouble I get into.  I just ordered a second quart of primer, just so I don't get chintzy with the number of coats.  (I'm thinking 2 coats, fair & rough sand; 2 coats, fine sand.)

post-3770-0-69351000-1443718028_thumb.jpeg

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Be careful about too fine a grit as top coats need "tooth" to stick. Unless it's a show boat, 220 is fine for anyone hand applying paint. 280 is for the anal amoung us and anything over this starts pushing the ability for any subsequent coats to stick, for lack of sufficient "mechanical keying". Primer in particular doesn't need much in terms of inter coat grit. I use 120 - 150 between the first coats of primers, moving up to 220 on the last sand, before a top coat. Simply put, if you're roll and tipping, 220 sanding marks are easily covered with 2 coats. Lastly use enough paint. If you want the hull to look "level" and "straight", you need to block it down with the heavy primer layers. This is usually more than 2 coats. The same is true of top coats. if you'll be "sticking" it with a very fine grit to really smooth the hull, you'll need more than 2 coats.

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I knew when I gave my experiences with Paint that there would be a lot of different opinions. People are passionate about paint as power tool brands. Just stated my experiences with paint. Two part Epifanes Sprays very easy and flows out nicely. It also can be rolled and tipped very nicely, very forgiving and flows out if its not hot or windy for those who don't want the hazards of spraying.

 

It's just one of many things I don't understand why people spend good money on quality plywood, epoxy, stainless hardware and fasteners then save very little money at the end of a project by not using high quality two part poly. These boats are so small most can be painted with two or three quarts. So what's the big deal about another $60 to $90 at the end of such a project?

I did it once, never again.

 

As for environmentally better, Maybe, Maybe not.

I worked in a aluminum can sheet factory for 33 years, they have the public BS ed into thinking recycling cans is great for the environment. They tell you that it takes 90% less electricity to recycle than make new aluminum which is true. What they don't tell the public is all the nasty pollution they make when burning all the coatings off used cans or how much gas it takes to remelt the cans. They don't tell you about all the fuel that's used to bale and transport the cans. It saves the aluminum industry a lot of money, but being environmentally the best thing to do is very controversial at best.

 

Didn't mean to bore everyone with that bit of information, just wanted to make a point that everything is not as it is presented as GREEN.   

 

Scott

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Plus, Coke out of a bottle tastes best!  

 

David Jost-- the application guide for WR-LPU states "The paint by itself cures to a very high-quality coating, without the crosslinker.  However, the addition of the crosslinking material produces a tougher and more durable film...  Some sanding can be avoided, at the sacrifice of some durability, by mixing crosslinker into only the last coat."  I was thinking about omitting it for my first coat or two of color, just to make sanding easier.  But I think I'm backing away from that.

 

I do love using the waterborne paints.  I had a pail of soapy water next to my paint table.  When I was done mixing primer, I dropped the measuring cup into the pail.  I had a discussion with an engineer at Fabulon (many) years ago, regarding refinishing my floors.  He strongly recommended using their waterborne product.  He insisted that it was every bit as tough as their notoriously-noxious solvent-based products.  It is interesting to watch these products perform.  They dried to the touch within 15 minutes (70 degrees, 83% RH).  But they were sort of tender to the touch into the evening.  This morning they were as firm as I could ask for, and ready for sanding.  Will it be as tough as the stinky stuff?  Time will tell.

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I finally got my surface to the point I thought acceptable for topcoat.  Joaquin, and the rainy Carolina aftermath, have departed.  I applied two coats of Sinclair Yellow to the bottom, and three to the sides.  (That's all I could get out of one quart.)   I hate it.  If you dilute it, it runs.  If you don't, you get brush marks, and a wet edge is only a distant dream.  PLUS, after three coats, the yellow is still blotchy.  Worst of all, the paint brush is only good for removing paint from the surface, not applying it.  (I've tried several brush options.)  In short, this $52/quart paint behaves like Dollar Store paint.  The bottom of my boat looks like a relief map of the Rockies.  I'm gonna sand 'er smooth, and switch to Epiphanes 2-part poly.

 

Hirilonde said that he loves funding System Three's product development.  I think they shouldn't release a product that is so sensitive to conditions & technique-- they need to finish developing it, and not use us as guinea pigs.  I wish I'd read PAR's comments on his website, before I bought 3 quarts of product.  

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Sorry about that. I hate when the best intentions don't work out.

 

That said, I will just add that maybe you should take a minute to decide what you want in the finish of a home built boat. On my Spindrift 11N, I used Rustoleum Marine paint over their primer. It went on really great, but in the end I felt like you. I wanted it to look better. I couldn't coat it and keep a good wet edge and it was a bit frustrating. But I also wanted to get sailing and so I decided after all was said and done to carry on and just keep going. I did get a really nice finish on all the woodwork, so when I finished the boat the overall finished product looked great. It turns out when I attached all the hardware, my bad paint job became and OK paint job. And in comparing it to a lot of other home built boats I'd say it turns out to be a good paint job.

 

Of course over the last couple of years I had the kids beach it and I've hit docks and it's paint is mow getting a bit beat up and if and when I re-coat it I won't be so hard on myself.

 

Take Care,

Steve

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   The CS17 I built has a fantastic paint job.  Course, that's only because the new owner scraped off my ugly handiwork and did it again.  My paint job still looked pretty good from 30 yards, though, and the boat was just as much of a blast to sail with the old yellow paint.

   I'm getting ready to go through paint anguish again on my new project so I feel your pain (or I will soon).

   At the very least I applaud your diligence, hard work and your taste in painting the boat yellow, which is really the only proper color for a yacht.  My Wife may force me to paint the new boat orange, but orange is really just dark yellow as far as I'm concerned.

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Ken-- Orange.  Wow.   :)  Actually, it is a traditional color, I'm told.

 

Steve-- My finish still won't be as perfect as the fantasies I had last winter & spring.  But I'm hoping for a finish that shows MY mistakes and not the inadequacies of the paint system.  

 

The good news from S3 is that as long as the paint has been crosslinked, it is compatible with other finishes.  So it looks like I have a very expensive pigmented two-part polyurethane primer!

 

I think the real icing on the cake was noticing the warning on the can not to use non-clogging sandpaper, as the non-clogging chemical will adversely react with the paint system.  Seriously?  Do they expect me to use garnet paper?  

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This is true and the unwanted (read do it over) results will be the outcome, if you use the "FreCut" style of sandpapers.  These papers often use animal fat based coatings on their particulates and this is what causes the contamination. I had to repaint a whole boat once, finding this out the hard way. The paint came off in big, unstuck sheets, like dead skin after a bad sunburn.

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  • 4 weeks later...

Funny thing, Jay.  I got home and ordered the paint.  Then I checked the thinner, and found out I needed some more of that, too!  Now, I'm waiting for a break in the weather.  Looks like Thursday & Friday are my days.

 

And I have it on my list to call the Epifanes tech rep, too.  Those guys sure are tight-lipped, when it comes to sharing info on-line.

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