Category Archives: Topside Paint

Tips for Using Brushable Gelcoat

Brushable Gelcoat is a specially formulated product that is made to be applied like paint and eliminate the need for spray equipment. It has excellent leveling, Water/Osmosis resistance, UV light Stability, great Gloss Retention and a fantastic long-term durability and is available in a variety of colors. Here are some tips for successful brushable gelcoat application.

Applying Gelcoat by Brush or Roller – (Use a Brushable Gelcoat) When applying gelcoat by brush or roller, we recommend the Ultra Plus Brushable Gelcoat. (other Gelcoats are best applied by Spray) The Ultra Plus Brushable Gelcoat is designed to self-leveling and is much easier application. It allows for a much smoother finish and less time finishing the gelcoat. It is easy to use for the “do it your selfers’! Choose a good pure (natural) resin resistant bristle brush with tapered ends. Avoid brushes that are either too stiff or too soft. For most work, a 3″ or 4″ wide brush will suffice. If there is a trim color, you should have a narrow trim brush on hand. Our Brushable Gelcoat comes with MEKP hardener with every purchase, but you may need more which you can purchase as an option depending on the application, temperature and other environmental factors. Gelcoat needs to be applied evenly. We suggest a thickness of 18-20 mils to properly cure. The thickness of the matchbook cover is approximately 18 mils. If you’re not sure how thick it is, pick up a mil gauge. This is a simple, easy way to see the thickness of your gelcoat.

  1. Don’t add Patch Booster or Sanding Aid (wax). You don’t need to add sanding aid (wax) to Brushable gelcoat to have it dry tack free. The self-leveling technology added doesn’t require any additional products or additives.
  2. Proper gelcoat application requires you apply your coats about 15-20 mils thick. We offer mil gauge for purchase.
  3. Allow the gelcoat to cure overnight and then lightly sand it and buff it for an outstanding shine!
  4. Use Acetone for your cleanup. Just like other Polyester-based products, Acetone is the best cleanup material!
  5. The most important step: Adding the proper amount of Catalyst. We recommend 1.5%-2% Catalyst ratio. After adding the catalyst, you will want to mix for two minutes, preferably with a mechanical agitator (drill mixer). For your reference, here is the catalyst chart so you know exactly how much catalyst you need.

Tips
1 mL = 1 ccIf using wood mixing stick, place stick in resin before adding catalyst so wood doesn’t absorb catalystOnly catalyze slightly more than needed. Resin that cures still in the mixing pot is unusable.

Be sure to have a good strategy when applying your gelcoat. Once you mix and catalyze, you have about 15 minutes to apply the gelcoat before it starts getting hard or starts to “gel.” The actual working time depends on the amount of catalyst and how hot the working conditions are. Anything below 60 degrees, and your gelcoat will not cure, but as you get warmer and warmer, your working time will decrease rapidly. At 70 degrees, you get 15 minutes, but at 90 degrees, you only get 5 minutes. If you need more time to work, be sure to sit the can in some cold ice water to cool it down to 60 degrees to allow you a little more working time.

Here are some helpful tips on how to work with brushable gelcoat, especially during the warmer months.

  1. Cooling the gelcoat, by refrigerating the product to around 70 degrees, will give you up to 15 minutes of working time.
  2. Humidity can be another factor, so, make sure the mold and surrounding area is dry before applying your brushable gelcoat.
  3. Make small batches of gelcoat at a time and catalyze at 1 ½ % to avoid the material from getting hotter. When spraying the gelcoat, make sure you catalyze at 2 %. If you choose to use Duratec, please note, the product must be cool as well.
  4. If you seek to roll on the gelcoat, the product should be applied evenly at 14 mil thick.
  5. Do not apply gelcoat in direct sunlight.

What to Use on the Deck of My Boat?

Over time the life of any boat there will come a time when the deck needs to be renewed. You have a choice of non-skid additives, or paints that already contain nonskid compound.  A non skid boat deck helps protect the surface as well as the occupants.

Looking for a non skid surface you have many options. If your boat floor is currently gelcoat you can regelcoat the surface with or without a non skid additive. More information about gelcoat application can be found here. Gelcoat is more durable than paint and once a gelcoat surface is painted gelcoat will not adhere.

If paint is desired non skid can be added to our marine paints by Duralux and Awlgrip. Often an exact match can be found to your hull paint color. Find more topside paint options available and detailed instructions on adding non skid found in our how to section.

Customers painting the floor of a jon boat, frequently use the Aluma Hawk aluminum paint with a non skid additive. This paint serves as a paint and primer in one for your aluminum surface.

Depending on your paint choices, follow the manufacturers application instructions whether applying to aluminum, fiberglass, or wood to insure best adhesion and slip resistance.

Can I change the color or tint my paint?

For most paints, in order to guarantee efficacy, the only way we recommend changing the color of  paints is to mix like paints, ie. Mixing Aluma Hawk with Aluma Hawk. We do not recommend addition of “universal” tints or pigments into our products. Many customers desire an antifouling paint in a deep, dark blue and this can be achieved by mixing blue and black.

Gel coats and resins can have a tint added, no more than 1 oz per quart, which can limit the effect. Another option is to mix two gelcoat colors, such as white and red for pink.

 

 

Application of Topside Mega Gloss by Blue Water

Learn how to apply Mega Gloss Gold and Mega Gloss by Blue Water Marine Paints

mega glossPrepping & priming for topside work
Mega Gloss by Blue Water Paint provides a beautiful aesthetic finish, and also provides protection against – sea, rain, wind and sun.
Blistering UV rays will degrade the surface of fiberglass and prematurely age your vessel. Moisture can also cause as many problems for wooden vessels and metal boats.

  • Clean and prepare the hull by first washing with soap and water and finish with fresh water. Then wipe the surface with a rag that has been dampened with Naptha.
  • After preparing the surface, sand with 220-320 grit wet-or-dry sandpaper. Remove sanding residue by wiping with a rag that has been dampened with Naptha.
  • Apply 1-2 coats of Mega Gloss Primer, and 2-3 coats of Finish Paint. Sand between coats with 320-400 grit. If the paint is peeling, cracking or generally showing signs of separations over the whole area, you need to remove the coating.

Applying topside paint
• Stir the paint thoroughly using a stir stick. Stir the can occasionally during work.
• Application methods for all paints include brush,roller or spray.
• It is best to paint on warm dry mornings – cold weather retards the drying of paint and dampness will spoil the gloss.
Brush – Long flexible bristles are best for gloss paints. Apply by brush, spreading with horizontal strokes before finishing with light vertical strokes. To minimize brush marks, hold the brush at a 45° angle.
Roller – A good gloss can be obtained using a high density / small cell foam roller. This will minimize the formation of bubbles in the surface. It is best to roll in one direction and tip off in another direction.
Thinners can be added as you work to maintain working viscosity.
• Pour the amount you expect to use in 30 minutes into a separate container.
• Once topcoat painting is complete, it should be kept dry for at least 24 hours, and 7–10 days should be allowed for full curing to take place.
• Do NOT use or incorporate any flow control agents like Penetrol®.

Topside paint hints / tricks
mega glossMega Gloss™ can be made to be a non-skid texture for decks by the addition of Non Skid, by adding to the paint and applying 2 coats.

Application of a topside primer will provide additional depth of color, adhesion and durability.

  • The best method is to apply with a roller, and then tip off with a large brush with long flexible bristles.
  • Use a diagonal brushing method at 45 degrees, followed by horizontal and then vertical strokes.
  • The best roller is a solvent resistant foam roller, which will reduce bubbles.
  • Use a top quality fine line masking tape for good crisp lines and no residual glue left on the hull.

Why do the majority of boaters paint with 1-part paint?
Alkyd enamels, and modifications of alkyd enamel technology, have been the work horse products in the marine industry for approximately fifty years. Generally, they dry reasonably fast, are easy to apply and have very good weathering characteristics. More alkyd enamels are still used than any other enamel type.

Can topside paints be applied to below water surfaces?
Most topside coating systems if constantly immersed or kept wet will tend to blister. Provided the boat is only put into the water for a few days then a topside coating can be used below the waterline.

What’s the best way to get a good finish with topsides paints?
You must lightly sand the surface and then use a good roller or brush. Thin when needed for proper flow and performance

What Equipment is Needed to do a Proper Application of Antifouling Bottom Paint?

Here are the items that you will need in addition to the bottom paint for the proper bottom paint application.

60–100 grit – Suitable for the removal of paint or to sand gel coat prior to the application of antifouling paint.
• After sanding remove sanding residue by wiping with a cloth that has been dampened with the proper solvent.
Masking Tape – When it is necessary to mask off areas use a high quality clean edge masking tape, especially when the masking tape will be left on the surface for a long time.
Brushes – For antifouling paints use a natural bristle brush but not necessarily one of as good quality as you would use to apply topside finishes.
Rollers Most solvent resistant rollers will have a phenolic core and will say that they are for use with oil based paints or epoxies. For antifouling paint and epoxy primers, use a 3/8”-1/2” nap roller

For convenience, you can find most needed supplies in our Paint Application Kit.

Ideal Temperatures for Applying Paints and Gelcoats

When applying coatings in cooler temperatures it is important that you meet the minimum temperature requirements. This information can typically be found in the products technical data sheet, or on the can label.

As a general rule, coatings should be applied in good weather when air and surface temperatures are above 50°F (10°C) for most paints and 60°F (16°C) for epoxy, resin, and gelcoats . Surface temperature must be a least 50°F (10°C) above dew point. For optimum application properties, bring material to 70-80°F (21-27°C) temperature range prior to mixing and application.

Tips:

  • Make sure to store the coatings inside to keep the temperature in the optimal range prior to application.
  • Do not let coatings freeze, as this may alter the chemical integrity of the products.
  • In warm (hot) conditions be sure to keep the coatings out of direct sunlight exposure.

Coatings such as resins and gelcoats that require MEKp to be added for curing will require more MEKp in cooler conditions, and less MEKp in warmer conditions. See the guide below, but refer to the specific coating’s technical data sheet for detailed information:

MEPk Levels

MEkp Concentration Levels

 

Which Non-Antifouling Paint is Recommended for Wood?

sailboat-1149519_640Painting a wooden boat on your own can be a daunting task. The amount of information about the correct way to paint a boat is staggering! First time boat owners may be at a loss when trying to make a plan for their first project. The Bottom Paint Store’s aim is to make this process as stress-free as possible so you can enjoy working on your boat and ultimately, enjoy the fruits of your labor!

If your boat stays in the water and growth is a concern you’ll want to use an antifouling paint for below the waterline and follow the manufacturers specs for application to a wood hull. See application instructions of ablative antifouling:

Step 1 – CLEAN SURFACE
Surface must be clean, dry and free of contaminants.
Step 2 – SAND & CLEAN
Sand to a uniformly frosty, dull looking surface with 80-100 grit (no finer)
sandpaper; remove any residue.
Step 3 – APPLY ANTIFOULANT
Apply two coats of Sea Hawk antifouling by brush, roller or spray.
Apply first coat thinned 20% and let dry overnight. Apply two more
coats of bottom paint allowing 3 to 6 hours between coats and a
minimum overnight dry.*

Other Paint Products for Single Day Use

Here are some other products that are not recommended for long-term submersion but can be applied to wood-hulled boats.

Duralux Yacht Primerinterlux-brightside-polyurethane-28238-500x539duralux-topside-marine-enamel-high-gloss-gallon-10799-500x539 and Duralux Topside Marine Enamel

Blue Water Mega Gloss

Pettit EZ Prime and Pettit Easypoxy

Interlux Pre-Kote and Interlux Brightside Polyurethane

For other Helpful “How To” Articles about Topside Boat Paint, Click one of the links below.

How to Paint a Boot Stripe

What is a Boot Stripe?

The Boot Stripe is a narrow stripe that runs the length of the boat and is usually positioned a few inches above the waterline. The stripe provides an aesthetic touch and creates an optical illusion that makes the boat appear to be longer. It also gives the boat a nice “finished” appearance that many boaters take pride in. Boot stripes also define the separation between anti-fouling paint (below) and the topside paint (above). Vinyl boot stripe tape is available in different widths, colors, and designs, but unless the boat has a flat, slab side this will make the boat appear to sag or squat in the water. Painting the boot stripe on the hull allows the width to change with the geometry of the boat and give the finished stripe a uniform look. Repainting an existing Boot Stripe will be easier than starting from scratch since you won’t have to mark and score the stripe.

Find and mark the Boot Stripe. The boot stripes of many fiberglass hulls are cast into the hull from the mold by the manufacturer. They can only be removed if you sand down to the fiberglass.

If there is no stripe on your hull you will need to mark the waterline on your boat and transcribe it up to the desired height of your stripe. This can be done by applying successive layers of masking tape along the waterline curve. There are other numerous methods worth investigating online. Also, consult a professional and ask them questions about your specific boat.

Mask off the stripe with tape and get within 1/32nd in. to the edges of the old stripe. This will allow you to sand to the very edge of the old stripe, and avoid damaging the surrounding gel coat.

bootstripeinstallDe-wax the stripe area using a de-waxing solution and a rag.

Sand only the stripe area with 220 grit sandpaper. Once sanding is complete, remove the masking tape and wipe the area with acetone. This will remove any remaining adhesive and sanding remnants. Sacrificing the first mask will contribute to a sharper finish. It is possible that the first application of tape can transfer sanding residue to the paint and result in a poor finish. Mask twice and you will only have to paint once! Be sure to take your time with the second masking. Remember: If the stripe doesn’t look good in tape, it will look even worse once painted. Now you’re ready to paint!

What type of paint should I use?

There are many different varieties of topside paint suitable for painting a boot stripe, but we have narrowed it down to just a few options for you.

Good: Duralux Marine Enamel – Easy to use, economically viable, with a nice color selection. When applying this marine enamel to fiberglass, no primer is needed. Simply wipe the surface with acetone before and after sanding, then apply your paint. For aluminum, prime with one coat of Duralux Zinc Chromate and apply 2 coats of paint. This high gloss enamel will create a bright and colorful boot stripe on any vessel.

interlux-brightside-polyurethane-28238-500x539Better: Interlux Brightside – One part Polyurethane with a crisp, high gloss appearance. It is more durable than regular enamels, but just as easy to apply! If you are applying Brightside to fiberglass, make sure the surface is clean and in good condition. Remove wax and other contaminants using Fiberglass Solvent Wash 202 and then sand with 220-320 grit paper. Apply Pre-Kote. Brightside offers excellent flow and gloss retention especially for painting a boot stripe.

pettit-easypoxy-off-white-3108-quart-31128-500x539OR Pettit Easypoxy – Another single-stage Polyurethane that provides a nice sheen of gloss and durability for painting a boot stripe. However, the color selection is more limited than Interlux Brightside. Easypoxy is only available in black, white, and off-white. Both products produce a high quality finish and are easy to use.

 

Problems with Paint Application Q & A

Insufficient Adhesion

Symptoms: The coating adheres insufficiently to the substrate or previous coats.

Cause: Unsuitable primer applied Wrong product Damp substrate during painting Contaminated substrate (not cleaned or degreased) Weathered timber not removed before coating Previous Coating Unstable Solution

Coating layers that are not sound should be removed. Substrate problem should be addressed (cleaning, degreasing, sanding etc.). Apply a new, suitable coating system.

Insufficient Flexibility

Symptoms: A crackle effect or cracking appears.

Cause: Different paint systems intermixed Too brittle paint system caused by ageing Applied product cannot follow the movements of the substrate and/or underlying paint layers Solution

Remove all coating and apply a new, suitable coating system.

Peeling of Coating

Symptoms: Total/local loss of adhesion of paint system.

Cause: Internal tension in paint films Deformation of substrate Humidity or gas formation Wrong paint sytem Several layers are applied which are not compatible with each other Insufficient flexibility of applied paint Cracking originating from substrate Paint system applied to damp substrate or one with a high moisture content. Solution

Paint layers that are not sound should be removed. After the appropriate pretreatment, a new system should be applied. Touch up bare spots with primer/undercoat and finish with topcoat.

Saponification

Symptoms: The coating is not resistant to alkali. Blisters appear, paint softens and flakes off.

Cause: Incorrect use of product Application of alkyd based topcoat to alkaline material (e.g. concrete or cement) Humidity problems Caustic stripped surface not neutralised Solution

Remove all paint layers and apply a new alkali resistent system. Prevent water penetration. Apply an alkali resistent system.

Soft Paint Film

Symptoms: The dry film has a soft and weak character.

Cause: Paint applied too thickly Painted during impossible working conditions With two-component products the wrong mixing ratio is used Solution

Paint layers that are not sound should be completely removed. Apply a suitable protection system and allow a longer drying time to improve the conditions under which it is painted.

Floating / Flooding

Symptoms: Multi colored effect.

Cause: One of the pigments used floats to the surface causing a multi colored effect (happens mostly with blue, green and violet pigments) Solution

Sand after drying. Apply a further top coat which doesn’t ‘float’.

Salt Efflorescence

Symptoms: A white salt deposit appears, usually on plywood or brickwork.

Cause: Occurs with some plywoods Excess salts migrate to surface through coating Solution

Clean down. May re-occur. Apply freshen up coats if necessary.

Haziness (Blooming)

Symptoms: At the surface a greyish haze appears which gives the paint a dull glow.

Cause: Fog and/or humidity during drying Insufficient ventilation Coating over-thinned Solution

Sand and apply a new top coat.

Yellowing

Symptoms: The applied pale color turns yellow.

Cause: With an alkyd based topcoat this is intrinsic to the binder.

Solution: Sand and clean. Often solved by altering the chosen color to a grayish option, which makes the problem less visible. Apply waterbased paints, which are less prone to yellowing.

Lifting

Symptoms: A wrinkling effect immediately after painting.

Cause: The applied coat contains aggressive components which will dissolve the undercoat Softening, swelling or separation from the substrate of a dry coat as the result of the application of a subsequent coat Solution

Apply another type of paint as topcoat or remove old paint layers and apply a new paint system. Use compatible paint products.

Algae Growth

Symptoms: The coating surface shows a green growth, usually on north facing timbers.

Cause: Plants, bushes and trees in close proximity to coating system. High humidity of surroundings and/or moisture content of substrate Solution

Remove / kill algae/mold and clean substrate. Treat with a fungicidal (or diluted bleach) solution. Scrub dead spores loose, rinse clean and allow to dry fully. Where necessary, redecorate with suitable coating.

Sagging

Symptoms: Localized “drips” and “tears” appear.

Cause: Paint not applied evenly over the surface Coats applied too heavily Paint doesn’t have the right consistency (incorrect thinning) Solution

Remove by sanding after thorough drying is completed. Apply the coatings thoroughly and and evenly. Apply at the proper viscosity and the recommended wet film thickness.

Blistering

Symptoms: Large or small blisters, possibly only in topcoats of the system.

Generally only local loss of adhesion of paint system.

Cause: Application over localized contamination (e.g. grease, oil, resin) Humidity or gas vapour formation from the substrate Solvent could be trapped between coats of the paint system if the primer or mid coat has not been allowed to dry fully. Incorrect coating system, e.g. quick drying top coat, at which the contained organic solvent causes blisters. Solution

Coating layers that are not sound should be removed. After the right pre-treatment against moisture penetration, a new system should be applied. Touch up bare spots with primer and finish with finish topcoat.

Bleeding

Symptoms: The bleeding through of contents of the substrate through existing paint layers or systems.

Cause: Certain timbers such as Western Red Cedar, Oak, Meranti or Idigbo are prone to bleeding Chemicals within timbers prone to bleeding (i.e. timbers with a high natural extractive content) are mobilized by water Colors from previous coatings such as bitumen or creosote can bleed through Problem more prevalent with water-borne coatings. Solution

Clean the coating surface to make sure that the bleeding components have been removed and apply a fresh coating system. Apply sufficient layer thickness to prevent water from dissolving the bleeding wood content. Apply a full primer. Finish with one or two coats of finish.

Chalking

Symptoms: The paint system shows a powdery surface.

Cause: Normal ageing effect Insufficient outdoor durability of product Product property (high extender content/pigment content/based on epoxy resin) Solution

Remove powder at the surface. Clean and sand substrate. Touch up bare spots. Finish with one or two coats.

Craters

Symptoms: Contamination of the substrate (e.g. silicone, grease, wax) causes surface defects . This results in areas where the coating does not form a complete film over the substrate.

Cause: Often a silicone or wax contamination Surface not cleaned sufficiently before application When spray-applied: poor film formation Open pored timber Solution

Clean surface with a suitable emulsion cleaner or silicone remover where appropriate. It may be necessary to remove affected coatings. Primer or base stain should be worked/brushed well into open pored timbers.

Fish Eyes

Symptoms: Contamination of the substrate (e.g. silicone, grease, wax) causes surface defects This results in areas where the coating does not form a complete film over the substrate.

Cause: Usually a (silicone) contamination Insufficiently cleaned substrate When spray-applied: poor film formation solution.

Sand thoroughly. Clean surface thoroughly with a suitable emulsion cleaner or silicone remover. Finish with one or more topcoats.

Brushmarks

Brush marks, orange peel poor leveling etc.

Cause: The open time of the product is too short Incorrect dilution Unsuitable brush or roller Application conditions too hot or too cold Solution

Sand thoroughly and apply a further coat to a better standard. Use a good quality brush (synthetic for water-borne coatings

Blushing

Symptoms: When humidity is trapped in wood stains or varnishes, white spots/patches may appear.

Cause: Damp substrate or humid atmosphere when coating was applied or during drying Porous varnish/stain type Water getting in (moisture ingress) Insufficient coats applied, or coats applied too thinly Solution

Remove old varnish/stain layers; if necessary treat with wood bleach, which will restore the original wood color. Consequently treat with a new system.

Cracking

Symptoms: The coating system shows localized cracking, which results in loss of adhesion and flaking.

Cause: Internal stresses of coating system Deformation or breakdown of the substrate e.g. joints opening, splits in the timber Unsuitable coating system Several layers are applied which are not compatible Insufficient flexibility of applied paint Cracking originating from substrate Moisture on substrate at application Solution

Coating layers that are not sound should be removed. After the right pretreatment, a new system should be applied. Touch up bare spots with primer and finish.

Crackle Formation

Symptoms: A crackle effect appears, random cracks all over the surface

Cause: Coating system too brittle for the substrate Layers applied too thickly Coatings applied at too low temperature and/or too high relative humidity Applied product cannot follow the movements of the substrate Contamination between layers Solution

Coating layers that are not sound should be removed. After the right pre-treatment, a new system should be applied.

Flaking

Symptoms: Loss of adhesion of coating system on substrate or loss of intercoat adhesion.

Cause: Insufficient cleaning / degreasing Unsuitable system Insufficiently sanded Damp substrate or high moisture content Condensation on substrate at application Solution Coating layers that are not sound shall be removed. After the correct pretreatment, a new system should be applied. Apply suitable primer/base stain and top coat(s).

Paint Problem Solver

 

PAINT BLISTERING:
blisteringBubbles may be seen resulting from localized loss of adhesion, and lifting of the paint film from the underlying surface.
POSSIBLE CAUSES: Applying solvent-based paint over a damp or wet surface. Moisture seeping into the substrate from the outside (less likely with water-based paint). Exposure to high to high humidity or moisture during application or shortly after paint has dried, especially if there was inadequate surface preparation. Entrapment of air in the pores of the substrate being painted. Entrapment of solvents which is commonly caused when paint is over coated before the solvents have sufficiently released.
SOLUTION: If blisters do not go all the way down to the substrate: Remove blisters by scraping, and sanding, and repaint. Be sure to apply when humidity is below 75% and with good ventilation. If blisters go down to the substrate: Remove the source of moisture. Repair loose coatings; install vents or exhaust fans where possible. Remove blisters as above, remembering to prime before applying the top coat. Seal porous substrates  before priming or painting. This will prevent air from being trapped under the paint causing blisters or moisture intrusion.
NOTE: Always test for moisture and humidity to confirm the substrate is ready to prime or paint. Never overcoat paint that is still releasing solvents.

BLOCKING:
blockingUndesirable sticking together of two painted surfaces when pressed together (e.g., a door sticking to the jamb).
POSSIBLE CAUSES: Not allowing sufficient dry time for the coating before closing doors or windows. Use of low quality satin or gloss paints.
SOLUTION: Use top quality satin or gloss acrylic water-based paint. Low quality water-based paints can have poor block resistance, especially in warm, damp conditions. Follow paint label instructions regarding dry times. Acrylic water-based paints generally have better early block resistance than vinyl acetate co-polymer based paints or solvent-based paints; however, solvent-based paints develop superior block resistance over time. Application of talcum powder can relieve persistent blocking.

BURNISHING:
burnishIncrease in gloss or sheen of paint film when subjected to rubbing, scrubbing or having an object brush up against it.
POSSIBLE CAUSES: Use of matte paint in high traffic areas, where a higher sheen level would be desirable. Frequent washing and spot cleaning. Objects (furniture, for example) rubbing against the walls. Use of lower grades of paint with poor stain and scrub resistance (see Poor Stain Resistance and Poor Scrub Resistance).
SOLUTION: Paint heavy wear areas that require regular cleaning (e.g., doors, window sills and trim) with a top quality water-based paint, because this type of paint offers both durability and easier cleaning capability. In high traffic areas, choose a satin or gloss rather than a matt sheen level. Clean painted surfaces with a soft cloth or sponge and non-abrasive cleansers; rinse with clean water.

CHALKING:
chalkingFormation of fine powder on the surface of the paint film during weathering which can cause color fading. Although some degree of chalking is a normal, desirable way for a paint film to wear, excessive film erosion can result from heavy chalking.
POSSIBLE CAUSES: Use of a low-grade, highly pigmented paint. Use of an interior paint for an outdoor application.
SOLUTION: First, remove as much of the chalk residue as possible, scrubbing with a stiff bristle brush (or wire brush on masonry) and then rinse thoroughly; or use power washing equipment. Check for any remaining chalk by running a hand over the surface after it dries. If noticeable chalk is still present, apply a quality oil-based or acrylic latex primer (or comparable sealer for masonry), then repaint with a quality exterior coating; if little or no chalk remains and the old paint is sound, no priming is necessary.

CRACKING / FLAKING:
cracking_flakingThe splitting of a dry paint film through at least one coat as a result of aging, which ultimately will lead to complete failure of the paint. In its early stages, the problem appears as hairline cracks; in its later stages, flaking occurs.
POSSIBLE CAUSES: Use of lower quality paint that has inadequate adhesion and flexibility. Over thinning or overspreading the paint. Inadequate surface preparation, or applying the paint to bare wood without first applying a primer. Excessive hardening of solvent-based paint as the paint job ages.
SOLUTION: Remove loose and flaking paint with a scraper or wire brush, sanding the surface and feathering the edges. If the flaking occurs in multiple layers of paint, use of a face filler may be necessary. Prime bare wood areas before repainting. Use of a top quality primer and top coat should prevent a recurrence of the problem.

DIRT PICK UP:
dirtpickupAccumulation of dirt, dust particles and/or other debris on the paint film; may resemble mildew.
POSSIBLE CAUSES: Use of a low quality paint, especially lower grades of satin or semi-gloss. Soil splashing onto siding. Air pollution, car exhaust and flying dust collecting on house body and horizontal trim.
SOLUTION: Wash off all surface dirt before priming and painting, using a scrub brush and detergent solution, followed by a thorough rinsing with a garden hose. Heavier dirt accumulations may require the use of a power washer. While dirt pickup can’t be eliminated entirely, top quality exterior latex paints typically offer superior dirt pickup resistance and wash-ability. Also, higher gloss paints are more resistant to dirt pickup than flat paints, which are more porous and can more easily entrap dirt.

FOAMING / CRATERING:
foamingFormation of bubbles (foaming) and resulting small, round concave depressions (cratering) when bubbles break in a paint film, during paint application and drying.
POSSIBLE CAUSES: Shaking a partially filled can of paint. Use of low quality paint or very old water based paints. Applying (especially rolling) paint too rapidly. Use of a roller cover with wrong nap length. Excessive rolling or brushing of the paint. Applying a gloss or satin paint over a porous surface.
SOLUTION: All paints will foam to some degree during application; however, higher quality paints are formulated so the bubbles break while the paint is still wet, allowing for good flow and appearance. Avoid excessive rolling or brushing of the paint or using paint that is more than a year old. Apply gloss and satin paints with a short nap roller, and apply an appropriate sealer or primer before using such paint over a porous surface. Problem areas should be sanded before repainting.

FROSTING:
frostingA white, salt-like substance on the paint surface. Frosting can occur on any paint color, but it is less noticeable on white paint or lighter tints. On masonry, it can be mistaken for efflorescence (see Efflorescence and Mottling).
POSSIBLE CAUSES: Forms mostly in protected areas (such as under eaves and on porch ceilings) that do not receive the cleansing action of rain, dew and other moisture. Use of dark-colored paints that have been formulated with calcium carbonate extender.
Application of a dark-colored paint over a paint or primer containing calcium carbonate extender.
SOLUTION: Frosting can be a stubborn problem. It often cannot be washed off readily. Moreover, the condition can recur even as a bleed-through when a new top coat is applied. In extreme cases, it can interfere with adhesion. The best remedy is to remove the frosting by wire brushing masonry or sanding wood surfaces; rinse, then apply an alkyd-based primer before adding a coat of high quality exterior paint.

INCOMPATIBILITY:
incompatibilityLoss of adhesion where many old coats of alkyd or oil-based paint receive a latex top coat.
POSSIBLE CAUSES: Use of water-based latex paint over more than three or four coats of old alkyd or oil-based paint may cause the old paint to “lift off” the substrate.
SOLUTION: Repaint using another coat of alkyd or oil-based paint. Or completely remove the existing paint and prepare the surface – cleaning, sanding and spot-priming where necessary – before repainting with a top quality latex exterior paint.

LAPPING:
InteriorLapping_thumbAppearance of a denser color or increased gloss where wet and dry layers overlap during paint application.
POSSIBLE CAUSES: Failure to maintain a “wet edge” when painting. Use of a low solids “economy” paint.
SOLUTION: Maintain a wet edge when painting by applying paint toward the unpainted area and then back into the just painted surface. This technique (brushing or rolling from “wet to dry” rather than vice versa) will produce a smooth uniform appearance. It is also wise to work in manageable size areas; plan for interruptions at a natural break, such as a window, door or corner. Using a top quality acrylic water based paint makes it easier to avoid lapping problems because higher solids (pigments and binder) content makes lapped areas less noticeable. If substrate is very porous, it may need a primer/sealer to
prevent paint form drying too quickly and reducing wet edge time. Solvent-based paints generally have superior wet edge properties.

FUNGAL CONTAMINATION:
Black, grey or brown spots or areas on the surface of paint or sealant.
POSSIBLE CAUSES: Forms most often on areas that tend to be damp, or receive little or no direct sunlight (e.g., bathrooms, kitchens and utility rooms). Use of a solvent-based paint, or lower quality water-based paint. Failure to prime bare wood surface before applying the paint. Painting over a substrate or coating on which fungal contamination has not been removed.
SOLUTION: Test for fungus by applying a few drops of household bleach to the area; if it is bleached away, the dis-colorant is probably fungus. Remove all fungus from the surface by scrubbing with a diluted household bleach solution (one part bleach, three parts water) or a fungicidal wash, while wearing rubber gloves and eye protection. Rinse thoroughly. To protect against fungal contamination, use a top quality water-based paint, and clean when necessary with bleach/detergent solution. Consider installing an exhaust fan (which is connected to a light switch) in high moisture areas. Some products, with fungicidal claims are available, which you may consider.

MOLD/MILDEW:
mildewinBlack, gray or brown spots or areas on the surface of paint or caulk.
POSSIBLE CAUSES: Forms most often on areas that tend to be damp, or receive little or no direct sunlight (e.g., bathrooms, kitchens and laundry rooms). Use of an alkyd or oil-based paint, or lower quality latex paint. Failure to prime bare wood surface before applying the paint. Painting over a substrate or coating on which mildew has not been removed.
SOLUTION: Test for mildew by applying a few drops of household bleach to the area; if it is bleached away, the dis-colorant is probably mildew. Remove all mildew from the surface by scrubbing with a diluted household bleach solution (one part bleach, three parts water), while wearing rubber gloves and eye protection. Rinse thoroughly. To protect against mildew, use a top quality latex paint, and clean when necessary with bleach/detergent solution. Consider installing an exhaust fan in high moisture areas.

MUD CRACKING:
mud_crackDeep, irregular cracks resembling dried mud in dry paint film.
POSSIBLE CAUSES: Paint applied too thickly, usually over a porous surface. Paint applied too thickly, to improve inherent poor hiding (coverage) of a lower quality paint. Paint is allowed to build up in corners upon application.
SOLUTION: Remove coating by scraping and sanding. Prime and repaint, using a top quality water-based paint. Mud-cracked areas can also be repaired by sanding the surface smooth before repainting with a top quality water-based paint. This type of paint is likely to prevent recurrence of mud cracking, because it is relatively more flexible than solvent-based paint, and ordinary water-based paint. Quality paints have a higher solids content, which reduces the tendency to mud crack. They also have very good application and hiding properties, which minimize the tendency to apply too thick a coat of paint.

PEELING:
peelingLoss of paint due to poor adhesion. Where there is a primer and top coat, or multiple coats of paint, peeling may involve some or all coats.
POSSIBLE CAUSES: Seepage of moisture through un-caulked joints, worn caulk or leaks in roof or walls. Moisture in the form of water, rain, dew or high humidity allowed on surface before it has fully cured. Excess moisture escaping through exterior walls (more likely if paint is oil-based). Inadequate surface preparation. Applying paint over a wet or contaminated surface. Improper application techniques. Earlier blistering of paint (see Blistering).
SOLUTION: Always make moisture assessment and planning part of paint preparation and application. Carefully schedule interior and exterior paint work during an acceptable weather window. Identify and eliminate moisture sources in advance. Prepare surface by removing all loose paint, contaminates and moisture. Strictly adhere to manufacturers application guidelines. Use paint and primer according to application instructions and standard industry practices. Thoroughly remove corrupted peeling paint, repaint with a top quality paint products.

PICTURE FRAMING:
picture_framingAn effect of non uniform color that can appear when a wall is painted with a roller, but is brushed at the corners, architraves and cornices. The brushed areas generally appear darker, resembling the “frame” of a “picture”. Also, sprayed areas may be darker than neighboring sections that are brushed or rolled. Picture framing can also refer to sheen effects.
POSSIBLE CAUSES: Usually a hiding (coverage) effect. Brushing will generally result in lower spread rates than rolling, producing a thicker film and more hiding. Adding colorant to a non-tintable paint or using the wrong type or level of colorant, resulting in variation in color, depending on method of application.
SOLUTION: Make sure that spread rates with brushes and rollers are similar. Don’t cut in the entire room before roller coating. Work in smaller sections of the room to maintain a “wet edge.” With tinted paints, be sure the correct colorant-base combinations are used.

POOR FLOW / LEVELING:
poor flowFailure of paint to dry to a smooth film, resulting in unsightly brush and roller marks after the paint dries.
POSSIBLE CAUSES: Use of lower quality paint. Application of additional paint to “touch up” partially dried painted areas. Re-brushing or re-rolling partially dried painted areas. Use of the wrong type of roller cover or poor quality brush.
SOLUTION: Use top quality water-based paints, which are generally formulated with ingredients that enhance paint flow. Brush and roller marks thus tend to “flow out” and form a smooth film. When using a roller, be sure to use a cover with the recommended nap length for the type of paint being used. Use of a high quality brush is important; a poor brush can result in bad flow and leveling with any paint.

POOR HIDE:
poor_hidingFailure of dried paint to obscure or “hide” the surface to which it is applied.
POSSIBLE CAUSES: Use of low quality paint. Use of low quality tools/wrong roller cover. Use of an improper combination of tinting base and tinting color. Poor flow and leveling (see Poor Flow/Leveling). Use of a paint that is much lighter in color than the substrate, or that primarily contains low-hiding organic pigments such as yellows, reds and blues. Application of paint at a higher spread rate than recommended.                                                                                             SOLUTION: If the substrate is significantly darker or is a patterned wallpaper, it should be primed before applying a top coat. Use a top quality paint for better hiding and flow. Use quality tools; use the recommended roller nap, if rolling. Follow manufacturer’s recommendation on spread rate; if using tinted paint, use the correct tinting base. Where a low-hiding organic color must be used, apply a primer first.

POOR IMPRINT RESISTANCE:
poor_printThe tendency of paint film to take on the imprint of an object that is placed on it (e.g., a shelf, table, window sill or counter-top with books, dishes and other objects on them).
POSSIBLE CAUSES: Use of low quality satin or gloss paint. Putting a painted surface back into use before paint has fully dried.
SOLUTION: Use top quality acrylic satin or gloss water-based paint. Low quality water-based satin and gloss paints can have poor print resistance, especially in warm, damp conditions. Acrylic water-based paints generally have better print resistance than vinyl acetate co polymer type paints. Fully cured solvent-based paints also have excellent print resistance. Make sure the recommended “cure” time is allowed for the paint before it is put into service. Cool or humid conditions require more curing time.

POOR SCRUB RESISTANCE:
poor_scrubWearing away or removal of the paint film when scrubbed with a brush, sponge, or cloth.
POSSIBLE CAUSES: Choosing the wrong sheen for the area. Use of a lower quality paint. Use of an overly aggressive scrub medium (see Burnishing). Inadequate dry time allowed after application of the paint before washing it.
SOLUTION: Areas that need frequent cleaning require a high quality paint formulated to provide such performance. High traffic areas may require a satin or gloss paint rather than a matte paint to provide good scrub resistance. Allow adequate dry time, as scrub resistance will not fully develop until the paint is thoroughly cured. Typically, this will be one week. Try washing the painted surface with the least abrasive material and mildest detergent first.

POOR SHEEN UNIFORMITY:
poor_sheenShiny spots or dull spots on a painted surface; uneven gloss.
POSSIBLE CAUSES: Uneven spread rate. Failure to properly prime a porous surface, or surface with varying degrees of porosity. Poor application resulting in lapping (see Lapping).
SOLUTION: New substrates should be primed/sealed before applying the top coat to ensure a uniformly porous surface. Without the use of a primer or sealer, a second coat of paint will more likely be needed. Make sure to apply paint from “wet to dry” to prevent lapping. Often, applying an additional coat will even out sheen irregularities.

POOR STAIN RESISTANCE:
poor_stainFailure of the paint to resist absorption of dirt and stains.
POSSIBLE CAUSES: Use of lower quality paint that is porous in nature. Application of paint to unprimed substrate.
SOLUTION: Higher quality water-based paints contain more binder, which helps prevent stains from penetrating the painted surface, allowing for easy removal. Priming new surfaces provides maximum film thickness of a premium top coat, providing very good stain removability.

“STIPPLE” / ROLLER MARKS:
roller_marksUnintentional textured pattern left in the paint by the roller.
POSSIBLE CAUSES: Use of incorrect roller cover. Use of lower grades of paint. Use of low quality roller. Use of incorrect rolling technique.
SOLUTION: Use the proper roller cover; avoid too long a nap for the paint and the substrate. Use quality roller to ensure adequate film thickness and uniformity. High quality paints tend to roll on more evenly due to their higher solids content and leveling properties. Pre-dampen roller covers used with water-based paint; shake out excess water. Don’t let paint build up at roller ends. Begin rolling at a corner near the ceiling and work down the wall in sections. Spread the paint in a zigzag “M” or “W” pattern, beginning with an upward stroke to minimize spatter; then, without lifting the roller from the surface, fill in the zigzag pattern with even, parallel strokes. On doors, if rolled, lay off with a brush.

SPLATTER:
Interior_Roller_Spattering_thumbTendency of a roller to throw off small droplets of paint during application.
POSSIBLE CAUSES: Use of exterior paint on an interior surface. Use of lower grades of water-based paints.
SOLUTION: Higher quality paints are formulated to minimize splattering. Using high quality rollers which have proper resiliency further reduce splattering. In some cases, a quality wall paint may be preferred for ceiling work, for maximum splatter resistance. Overloading the roller with paint will result in excess splatter, as will overworking the paint once it is applied to a substrate. Working in sections, applying the paint in a zigzag “M” or “W” pattern and then filling in the pattern will also lessen the likelihood of splattering.

SAGGING / RUNNING:
saggingDownward “drooping” movement of the paint film immediately after application, resulting in an uneven coating.
POSSIBLE CAUSES: Application of a heavy coat of paint. Application in excessively humid and/or cool conditions. Application of over thinned paint. Airless spraying with the gun too close to the substrate being painted.
SOLUTION: If the paint is still wet, immediately brush out or re-roll to redistribute the excess evenly. If the paint has dried, sand, and reapply a new coat of top quality paint. Correct any unfavorable conditions: Do not thin the paint; avoid cool or humid conditions; sand glossy surfaces. Paint should be applied at its recommended spread rate; avoid “heaping on” the paint. Two coats of paint at the recommended spread rate are better than one heavy coat, which can also lead to sagging. Consider removing doors to paint them supported horizontally.

SEALANT FAILURES:
caulk_failLoss of sealant’s initial adhesion and flexibility, causing it to crack and/or pull away from the surfaces to which it has been applied.
POSSIBLE CAUSES: Use of lower quality sealant. Use of wrong type of sealant for a particular application. Substrate not dry.
SOLUTION: Use a top quality water-based pure acrylic or silicon acrylic sealant if prolonged contact with water is not anticipated. These sealants are flexible enough to adapt to minor fluctuations in the substrate, stretching in gaps that widen slightly over time. They also adhere to a wide range of interior and exterior building materials, including wood, ceramic tile, concrete, plaster, bare aluminum, brick and
plastic. With glass as the substrate silicon sealants are most suitable.
NOTE: Silicone sealant should not be painted.

SURFACTANT LEACHING:
surfactantConcentration of water-soluble ingredients on the surface of a water-based paint, typically on a ceiling surface in rooms that have high humidity (e.g., shower, bathroom, kitchen); may be evident as tan or  brown spots or areas, and can sometimes be glossy, soapy or sticky.
POSSIBLE CAUSES: All water-based paint formulas will exhibit this tendency to some extent if applied in areas that become humid (bathrooms, for example), especially in ceiling areas.
SOLUTION: Wash the affected area with soap and water, and rinse. Problem may occur once or twice again before leaching material is completely removed. When paint is applied in a bathroom, it is helpful to have it dry thoroughly before using the shower. Remove all staining before repainting.

TANNIN STAINING:
tannin stainingBrownish or tan discoloration on the paint surface due to migration of tannins from the substrate through the paint film. Typically occurs on “staining woods,” such as redwood, cedar and mahogany, or over painted knots in certain other wood species.
POSSIBLE CAUSES: Failure to adequately prime and seal the surface before applying the paint. Use of a primer that is not sufficiently stain-resistant. Excess moisture escaping through the exterior walls, which can carry the stain to the paint surface.
SOLUTION: Correct any possible sources of excess moisture (see Efflorescence and Mottling). After thoroughly cleaning the surface, apply a high quality stain- resistant oil-based or acrylic latex primer. Oil based stain-resistant primers are the best type to use on severely staining boards. In extreme cases, a second coat of primer can be applied after the first has dried thoroughly. Finish with a top quality latex paint.

WRINKLING:
wrinklingA rough, crinkled paint surface, which occurs when uncured paint forms a “skin”.
POSSIBLE CAUSES: Paint applied too thickly (more likely when using solvent-based paints). Painting during extremely hot weather or cool damp weather, which causes the paint film to dry faster on top than on the bottom. Exposing uncured paint to high humidity levels. Painting over a contaminated surface (e.g., dirt or wax).
SOLUTION: Scrape or sand substrate to remove wrinkled coating. If using a primer, allow it to dry completely before applying top coat. Repaint (avoiding temperature/humidity extremes), applying an even coat of top quality interior paint.

YELLOWING:
yellowingDevelopment of a yellow cast in aging paint; most noticeable in the dried films of white paints or clear varnishes.
POSSIBLE CAUSES: Oxidation of solvent-based paint or varnish. Heat from ovens, radiators and heating ducts. Lack of light (e.g., behind pictures or appliances, inside cupboards, etc.).
SOLUTION: Top quality water-based paints do not tend to yellow, nor does non-yellowing varnish. Solvent-based paints, because of their curing mechanism, do tend to yellow, particularly in areas that are protected from sunlight.

Apply Paint Over Polyethylene, Polypropylene, ABS, and PET/PBT Blends

You can apply paint over Polyethylene, Polypropylene, ABS, and PET/PBT Blends with proper surface preparation and primer.

1. First wipes down the surface with a 50/50 Isopropyl Alcohol such as Denatured Alcohol to remove any contaminants prior to sanding.

2. Sand the surface with 60-80 grit sandpaper.

3. Wipe down the surface again with 50/50 Isopropyl Alcohol ( Denatured Alcohol ) to remove all sanding residue.

4. Apply 3M Tape Primer over a small section.M23929

5. Apply a small test section of the desired Topcoat paint. Since there are so many type of paints, it is recommended to perform an adhesion test on the small area painted. Once the paint has dried perform a hatch test. Use a razor blade to cut into the paint and the primer and draw a 2-3 inch line. You should follow this at least 3 more parallel lines about 1cm apart. Then cut 4 more perpendicular line again about 1cm apart. It should like a large tic-tac-toe game. Finally, apply duct tape firmly and then pull the tape off quickly. If you have any paint or primer on the tape the adhesion is poor. If there is no paint or primer on the tape then it is safe to apply the primer and paint over the entire surface.

This application and test can be used for topside paints and bottom paints.

How to Apply Awlgrip Topcoat to an Aluminum Hull

Awlgip Marine PaintsFirst Identify the paint that is there. Is it compatible?

If yes – Sand, Primer, Paint

If no – the previous coating needs to be taken down. Sand with 80 grit paper until the coating is gone. Sand blasting is not recommended because it takes away the aluminum itself.

How do you know if previous paint is compatible with Awlgrip? Perform this test:

  1. Need a rag and some Lacquer thinner
  2. Sand the surface with 80 grit sand paper
  3. Apply lacquer thinner to the rag and hold it on the sanded area.
  4. Put a piece of plastic on to to hold the rag so the Lacquer thinner doesn’t evaporate.
  5. Hold rag for 35-45 min.
  6. Remove rag slowly. Is surface bubbling or lifting? If no, scrape surface with the blade of a knife. If the paint comes off with the blade or the paint feels rubbery you have identified an acrylic based paint. Awlgrip may be applied on top of it. If the surface was bubbling or lifting, the paint is not compatible and must be removed.

D6600 CF WashII. Apply Awl-Wash Primer CF (Mix Part A and Part B) within 4 hours of cleaning the surface. This provides excellent adhesion to the aluminum surface. Awl-Wash CF can be overcoated with primers after 1 hour of application. Maximum recoat time without sanding is 6 months.

III. Apply a Primer to the Awl-Wash Primer CF. There are 2 main choices.

  1. 545 Epoxy Primer – Thin, building primer. Usually applied when there is no need to fill scrapes or gouges.
  2. Awlquick – a medium build, primer/surfacer. Applied to a surface that needs to be filled where there are scrapes or gouges. Awlquick Base + Converter.

IV.  Apply a topcoat.

  1. Awlgrip – may be brush rolled or sprayed – usually lasts 7-10 years.
  2. Awlcraft – must be sprayed only – usually lasts 4-6 years.

For more information on Awlgrip vs. Awlcraft, click this link.

Awlgrip Color Chart

Painting an Aluminum Hull with Non Antifouling Paint

When painting a boat used for hunting/fishing, such as a Jon Boat, typically a flat finish is desired so you’ll want to use one of our camouflage paints. A primer coat is used to help the paint adhere to the aluminum surface and provides an extra layer of protection from corrosion. You may also use  Aluma Hawk, which is a paint and primer in one.

The Aluminum Boat Paint Green or Aluma Hawk (available in Black, Jon Boat Green, Blue, Sand, White or Aluminum Grey), will serve as paint and primer in one so no need to purchase a primer! For more application details see our ‘how to paint an aluminum Jon Boat’ article. When using the Duralux Camouflage Paint on bare aluminum apply two coats of Duralux Zinc Chromate. These should be used when you desire a dull flat finish.

If you desire a gloss finish, look to the Mega Gloss by Blue Water, available in quarts and gallons, is affordable, easy to apply, and only recommended for above the waterline or moderate use on the bottom (1-3 days in the water, not extended periods). This topside paint works best in very thin coats and can be used on fiberglass, wood, aluminum, and steel; see the prep recommendations found on the product page on the “how to use” tab. The Mega Gloss Primer is recommended when applied to bare metal, if you have concerns about sealing your aluminum, see the Bottom Protect by Blue Water for a barrier coat. See here for more application tips.

You have many options when painting aluminum. Your use of the boat, the allotted budget, and the amount of time you want to spend on the project may help determine the right paint for you. For more information see our ‘topside boat paint options’.

Clear Coat My Bass Boat

Typically the clear coat on a bass boat is meant to protect the metalflake. You can choose a clear paint or clear gelcoat.

Clear gelcoat is typically what bass boats use at the factory for UV protection over metalflake but gelcoat isn’t as easy to use as paint. Gelcoat typically covers 48 sq feet applied at 18 mils thick per gallon.

How to Apply Gelcoat 

Topside Boat Paint Options: What are your choices?

 

 

Awlgrip vs. Awlcraft 2000 – What are the differences?

Awlgrip and Awlcraft 2000 – Which is better?

Awlgrip and Awlcraft 2000 are two different types of urethane topcoats manufactured by Awlgrip. Each one has its own advantages and disadvantages and when trying to decide which to apply, it is important to know the differences between them.

Awlgip Marine PaintsAwlgrip is based on a polyester urethane resin and Awlcraft 2000 is based on an Acrylic Urethane resin. At the surface they seem very similar, but at the molecular level they are vastly different. Polyester molecules are much smaller than acrylic molecules. This means that at any given volume, there can be more polyester molecules than acrylic and this allows polyester films to be more dense and tough. Awlgrip has more abrasion and chemical resistance than Awlcraft and is usually more rigid.

Awlcraft, on the other hand is not without its own advantages.  It is generally easier to apply. The larger molecules and less dense film of the acrylic allows for faster drying and therefore less dust entrapment in the finish.  Both urethane topcoats will resist staining and provide a long lasting gloss. It is best to consider cure times, reparability, application methods, chemical resistance, as well as abrasion resistance when deciding which topcoat to choose.

Which is more suited for buffing?

Both Awlgrip and Awlcraft 2000 urethane topcoats have a protective resin layer. This layer is the first line of defense against UV light and abrasive damage. Underneath this resin is a layer of rich pigment particles that give the paint its bright shine and color. Awlgrip has a thicker protective resin layer and when the polyester is scratched, it is necessary to cut deeply into the resin to repair it. Buffing the surface leaves the pigment exposed and compromises the performance of the paint in the long run.

Awlcraft has a softer finish, due to the less dense molecular structure, and thus has a lower melting point. When this acrylic urethane is buffed, the resin is able to flow together and does not require cutting the surface as deeply. So, Awlcraft 2000 is more suited for buffing and Awlgrip will require a Fairing Compound.

Awlgrip vs Awlcraft 2000 – Fast Facts

Awlgrip Polyester Urethane Topcoat

  • Can be applied by spray or brush/roll.
  • Excellent color retention and chemical resistance.
  • More dense molecular structure.

Awlcraft 2000 – Acrylic Urethane Topcoat

  • For spray application only.
  • Superior flow-out and high gloss.
  • Fast drying to reduce dust entrapment.
  • More user friendly in application. Easy to repair.

Awlgrip Color Chart

 

Restoring and Maintaining Awlgrip and Awlcraft 2000 Paint

Over time contaminants can build up and cause the finish of your Awlgrip/Awlcraft 2000 paint to appear dull.  You can restore the gloss of a freshly painted boat and prevent the premature aging caused by contaminates by following these steps:

  • Wash your Awlgrip or Awlcraft surface with Awlwash mixed with water (1-2 capfuls in a bucket of water for washing) using soft, non-abrasive cloths and rinse well. Doing so on a regular basis (once per month) will help control dulling buildup.
  • Solvent cleaning of Awlgrip only: Awlprep and Awlprep Plus can be used to aid in removal of stains or markers and to soften or remove heavy build ups of grease and grime, or spray paint on the topcoat and toluene, lacquer thinner, M.E.K., acetone can be used as well.
  • Solvent cleaning of Awlcraft 2000 and Awlgrip HDT only: Awlprep or mild solvents (mineral spirits, xylene, kerosene and diesel fuel) should be used.

Awlgrip AWLwashIn both cases apply solvents with soft cloths and do not allow the chemicals to dry on surface, puddle or soak. Wash with Awlwash to prevent remaining solvent to attack paint. As always when working with solvents, test in an inconspicuous area first.

 Distilled white vinegar and hot water will aid in removing salt stains, always follow with Awlwash.

Protecting the Surface

awlgrip awlcareAwlcare can be applied to the surface like a wax to remove pollutants (such as diesel soot), protects the finish and leaves a glossy shine. Awlcare should be applied regularly to protect against pollutants. It can be removed with Awl-Prep Plus (Awlgrip only) when it’s time to repaint. What to avoid with Awlgrip and Awlcraft 2000:

  • Abrasives
  • Polishing compounds
  • Traditional waxes as they tend to break down rapidly, yellow and attract dirt
  • Acid based products such as teak or metal cleaners and strong solvents on Awlcraft 2000, Awlbrite Clear or Awlspar Varnish.
  • Trapped moisture from supplies as paint can blister or delaminate

AVOID:

  • Avoid Traditional Waxes
  • Awlgrip topcoat only: Regular applications of Awlcare will help temporarily seal and restore shine to painted surfaces that have become porous due to age or mistreatment, helping to maintain a satisfactory appearance until there is time to repaint.
  • Awlcraft 2000 and Awlgrip HDT: Awlcare Protective Polymer Sealer will help maintain the gloss on these finishes with regular applications, especially those which have been buffed or polished. Remember, Awlcare is only applied and buffed by hand. Never apply or buff Awlcare with a machine.
  • Avoid abrasive and polishing compounds
  • Avoid strong solvents (eg. lacquer thinner, M.E.K., acetone) to clean Awlcraft 2000, Awlgrip HDT, Awlbrite Clear or Awlspar varnish.

Choosing the Right Boat Paint

There are many different boat paints and qualities, generally the more you spend the better the results. There are a variety of types including topside and bottom paints. Topside paints are meant to be used above the waterline and will not hold up under water. Bottom Paints (also called antifoulants or antifouling coatings) are pesticides that are only used below the waterline when you are trying to stop growth from occurring while your boat stays in the water over long periods of time.  See Related Article>: Do I need Bottom Paint?

Boat Paints

Duralux High Gloss Marine Enamel is affordable and easy to apply and only recommended for above the waterline or moderate use on the bottom (a day or so in the water, not extended periods). This topside paint works best in very thin coats; see the prep recommendations found on product page on “how to use” tab. Duralux marine enamels do have a color offering in a flat finish, those are limited to their camouflage paint colors. Marine Alkyd Enamels like Duralux are effective and low cost.

A step up from the marine enamels are polyurethane enamels. These products such as Blue Water Marine Mega Gloss Polyurethane,  Interlux Brightside,  and Pettit Easypoxy have a better flow and gloss.

The best performing and hardest application is either Awlgrip or Awlcraft 2000. These require a more technical application and require the use of proper primers, catalyst and thinners with each application.

Typically when people discuss bottom paint on a boat they are referring to Antifouling paint. Bottom paint prevents growth of organisms that attach to the hull and can affect a vessels speed, performance, and durability when boat is kept in the water for extended periods of time.  If you don’t have that problem, you may not need bottom paint. Antifouling bottom paint typically has a flat, dull finish that is used below the waterline.

CUKOTE 2013There are generally two types of bottom paint both of which have several variations that create a multitude of products in the market place. The two different types or categories of bottom paint include hard bottom paint and ablative bottom paint. Related Article> What is the Difference Between Hard and Ablative Bottom Paint.

So your boat paint choice depends on your budget and which paint meets the needs of your boat and usage.

Topside Boat Paint Options: What are your choices?

There are many different topside boat paints and qualities, generally, the more you spend the better the results.

Blue Water Mega Gloss is affordable and easy to apply and only recommended for above the waterline or moderate use on the bottom (1-3 days in the water, not extended periods). This topside paint works best in very thin coats; see the prep recommendations found on the product page on the “how to use” tab and if the Blue Water Mega Gloss Primer is needed.

In flat paint/primer in one option, you’ll find the Aluma Hawk. This is extremely popular for hunting and fishing boats and ease of use in white, blue, sand, aluminum gray, Jon boat green, and black. Duralux offers some camo paints; for use on aluminum the Duralux Zinkromate Primer is recommended and for use on wood the Duralux Yacht Primer is recommended for best adhesion.

Popular color options can also be found with the Interlux Brightside, commonly used for topside gloss surfaces with moderate water exposure. Also, Interdeck white paint with added non-skid is perfect for a white slip-resistant deck.

The best available boat paint for the topside with the best finish is Awlgrip, most expensive but best results and loved by customers. Awlgrip marine paint also requires a little more “do it yourself savvy” to apply these paints, and require the correct activators and reducers when applying. The manufacturer of Awlgrip recommends it for use only above the waterline.

Your topside boat paint choice depends on your budget, the durability needed and the amount of time you want to spend on your boat paint application.

What is the best paint for my boat?

A lot of factors contribute to what paint is best for your boat:

Are you painting the entire boat, or just the bottom? Is the boat in fresh water or salt water? Is your boat trailered?

What is on the bottom of the boat now: bottom paint, topside paint or gelcoat? Once an antifouling bottom paint has been applied only antifouling paint can go over it (unless you remove it). Gelcoat application is recommended over fiberglass, most resins and gelcoat. It can have difficulty adhering to other surfaces.

For topside only the Duralux Marine Enamel is an economical choice. It has several colors to choose from and features easy application.

Gelcoat is usually what is “original” to most boats; a bass boat will have metal flake mixed in. We sell metal flake that can be added to gelcoat or paint but we don’t sell any with it already mixed in.

Ablative bottom paint can help with the slime, will wear away slowly over time,  and it is trailerable. Bottom paint is applied below the waterline only.

How to Apply Non-Skid Paints

Non-skid paints can be used for various different applications and circumstances. The most common use of non-skid is on boats, or for marine use. Although that is the most common, it is used in many more conditions. Here are some other examples of how non skid paint can be used outside of the nautical setting.

  • Industrial Buildings
  • Amusement Parks
  • Utility Vehicles
  • Ramps
  • Mechanic Shop
  • Walk-in Freezers
  • Ski Areas
  • Handicap Utilities
  • Residential Decks
  • Stairs
  • Restaurant kitchens
  • Stadiums
  • Restrooms
  • Warehouse floors
  • Wooden Decks
  • Food prep areas
  • Hospitals
  • Schools

One option is to add non-skid to paint or gelcoat. This process is when you take paint/gelcoat and add a non-skid additive such as Duralux non-skid additive non-skid additive for gelcoat, and Griptex for Awlgrip.  Another options is adding non-skid pumice to Blue Water Mega Gloss or Sea Hawk Aluma Hawk Camo paints.

The additive for gelcoat is extremely easy and adds just one extra step to the gelcoat application process. You simply mix the additive in with the gel coat before application and then apply. Alternative preferred application methods include using a flour sifter, powdered sugar shaker, or the punctured container itself, sprinkle the non skid into the gelcoat or paint. To use the container just punch holes in it with a nail or ice pick, overlappping the broadcasting stroke to provide a uniform pattern.

The Interlux Interdeck is available with non skid already premixed for ease of use.

The amount you use is completely subjective and dependent on what your goal is; it is recommended to use no more than a quart of non-skid per gallon of paint.  The available sizes of additive are a quart and a gallon.

Awlgrip Paint, the Best Topside Boat Paint

Awlgip Marine PaintsAwlgrip Topcoat is a polyester based high gloss polyurethane topcoat giving long lasting gloss and color retention. It is considered the among the best Topside Paints in the marine industry. AwlGrip Topcoat  may be applied by brush/roller or spray. For application above the waterline only. See Awlgrip Application Guidelines

awlgrip 545 primerThe most common practice for the do it yourselfer is priming the boat with Awlgrip 545 epoxy primer. This is a 2 part primer, so you will need the base (either white or grey) and the converter. Awlgrip also recommends a reducer. The links to the converter and reducer can be found on the base primer product page.

Mixing and Reduction:
This is a two part system. You must order the base primer in either gray or white along with the D3001 Converter in the appropriate size. The mix ratio is 1:1 so if you purchase 1 quart of primer you also need 1 quart of converter for a total of 2 quarts. Additionally you need to purchase the appropriate reducer (spray or brush) for spraying reduce up to 25% with T0006 and for brushing reduce up to 10% with T0031.

Theoretical Coverage: 497 Sq feet/gallon at one mil dry (25 microns) 165-248 Sq. Feet at recommended dry film thickness. Calculated based on a theoretical transfer efficiency of 100%.

Then you will choose your base color of Awlgrip Topside paint, the converter and reducer. The reducer and converter change depending if you are spraying or brush/rolling.

Mixing and Reduction

Spray: Mix by volume one part AWLGRIP Topcoat Base Component (Color) with one part AWL-CAT #2 G3010 spray converter to a a smooth homogenous mixture. Reduce up to 25% with the spray reducer(s) appropriate for conditions. Overall mixture is 1:1:1/2 volume. Example: 8oz Base, 8oz G3010, 4oz Reducer. 25% reduction is a standard mix. Clear coats. metallic colors, and painting in high temperature conditions may require additional reduction. 40% reduction is the maximum recommendation.

Brush/Roller: Mix by volume two parts AWLGRIP Topcoat Base Component with one part AWL-CAT #3/H3002 Brushing Converter until one smooth, homogenous mixture is obtained. Reduce 25% to 33% with T0031. Overall mix is 2:1:3/4-1 by volume. Example: 8 oz. color base component, 4 oz. H3002, 3-4 oz. T0031.

Theoretical Coverage:
Brush/Roller Application: 700-725 Sq. Feet at 1 mil (25 Microns) dry: 285 Sq. Feet at recommended dry film thickness.
Recommended Wet Film Thickness: 4.5-6 mils (112.5-150 Microns), Total of 2 Coats.
Recommended Dry Film Thickness: 2-3 mils (50-75 Microns), Total of 2 Coats.

Spray Application: 530 Sq. Feet at 1 mil (25 microns) dry film thickness; 210 SQ. Feet at recommended dry film thickness.
Recommended Wet Film Thickness: 6-9 mils (150-225 Microns), Total of 2-3 Coats.
Recommended Dry Film Thickness: 2-3 mils (50-75 Microns), Total of 2-3 Coats.

You can view the links provided above to see more information about the products, mix ratios, surface prep and auxiliary products.

Awlgrip Color Chart

How to Paint an Aluminum Jon Boat

Paint a Jon Boat

Aluminum Jon Boat

Jon Boats are flat bottom boats manufactured for easy maneuverability in shallow water. The most used material for construction is aluminum, making them lightweight and durable for fishing and hunting. A camouflage paint job is a good idea for hunters using a Jon boat to help blend into the surrounding land and water; choose your favorite color of Blue Water Mega Gloss for a higher gloss than camouflage paint. The easiest and most popular paint for your boat is the aluminum boat paint green or Aluma Hawk  (white, blue, Jon boat green, black, aluminum grey, sand).  These are both a paint/primer in one that can be applied to most surfaces with little preparation needed.

Make sure you have a location for painting your Jon boat that is free from blowing dust and debris (a garage is ideal).

Surface Prep: The surface must be dry and free of grease, wax, dirt, or other foreign matter. Scrape off all loose paint and dull any gloss area with a light sanding or power brushing. Remove all dust with a cloth dampened with paint thinner and allow to dry, you can use wax and grease remover or acetone. Sand the existing Jon boat paint surface or bare aluminum with 80-100 grit sandpaper.

Use a paint scraper or sander to remove any peeling paint or areas that are likely to cause peeling on your new paint. Don’t worry about scratches because these will make it easier for the new paint to adhere by etching the surface. Use a soft-bristled brush to make sure you remove all debris left from sanding.

Painting a Jon Boat:

A primer coat is used to help the paint adhere to the Jon boat aluminum surface and provides an extra layer of protection from corrosion. When using the Duralux Camouflage Paint on bare aluminum apply two coats of Duralux Zinc Chromate after sanding. If using the Aluminum Boat Paint Green or Aluma Hawk, these can be your primer and paint.

Aluma Hawk PaintIf you choose to use a simple one-step system on your bare aluminum Jon boat, then the Duralux Aluminum Boat Paint Green or Aluma Hawk (available in Black, Jon Boat Green, Sand/Tan, Blue, White or Aluminum Grey) are excellent choices since both can be used as a primer/paint in one over bare aluminum. You should prep the surface as stated above, and then wipe down the bare aluminum Jon boat with white vinegar prior to coating. This acts as an acid and will “etch” the surface for better adhesion.  You will need to apply two coats of this flat finish paint.

To make the inside have a non-skid surface use the Non-Skid Additive with the Aluma Hawk. See the ‘how to apply non-skid paints’ for more details.