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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2007

    Paint vs Gell coat.

    So one question that has been on my mind that I haven't really asked anyone about.. was.. about a years ago the guys who owned the boat I bought gave it a paint job.. bright white "Interlux Bright side" with Interlux bright side "Flag Blue" for the hull and a stirpe in the middle of the hull.

    They did a fairly decent job.. I found one run about .5 of an inch long.. near the transom.. everything else looks very decent..

    My question is ... is boat paint as good as gel coat.. I plan on a good clean and was in the spring and will probably not do much else to it for the rest of the season except for the odd wash at the slip.

    is is as durable.. does it shine more either way...

    Anyone have much experience with paint vs gel coat..


  2. #2
    Charter Member # 55 Charter Member Griff's Avatar
    My Boats:
    ..........32........... Active Thunder
    Join Date
    Oct 2000
    The draw back of paint is that if the paint is below the water line and the boat sits in the water, the paint won't hold up. It will eventualy blister. It is also not as easy to make small repairs from dock accidents and such.

  3. #3
    VIP Member VIP Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Gelcoat is the best by far, as it is more durable for cleaning if the boat is left in the water. I had my boat painted about 10 years ago and trailer it. The paint is still good but If I left it in the water it wouldn't be for long. So do you want to trailer your boat or do you want to leave it in the water? That is the choice you have to make.

  4. #4
    Platinum Member Charter Member
    My Boats:
    Join Date
    Jan 2001
    so. WI
    It all depends on what you use for paint. I had an older Formula that had the Imron option, and it was tough as nails, never faded like gelcoat, and a touch-up (if needed) was a perfect match.
    Any of the two-part polyurethanes are going to be very tough to beat in the marine environment. They're all we use in painting jet aircraft, and they hold up well for years with enormous temperature extremes, 500+mph speeds in precip, and high UV exposure. Personally, I would take a boat painted with DuPont Imron, Pratt & Lambert JetGlo, or AcryGlo over any straight color-in-the-gel boat. It's very expensive to paint anything (legally) with these products due to the enormous expense of th EPA equipment required, but it's worth the expense.

  5. #5
    Registered MarkSmith's Avatar
    My Boats:
    Ocean Express Cat 39
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Chicago, Illinois
    Paint is far superior when done right. Emron is good but the better paint shops are using better paints now. Gel coat is permeable. Gel coat boats that stay in the water along time are bottom painted. Bilges should never be gel coated.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Newbury Park, CA
    Quote Originally Posted by MarkSmith View Post
    Bilges should never be gel coated.
    I seen a lot of new boats with some sort of coating in the bilge. I always thought this was gel coat.


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