Cut, buff, wax.

Fishtales

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The gelcoat is pretty thin on these boats so you have to be real careful. That being said, each time you do it the risk increases and no matter what you do, the haze and discolor will come back - especially on aged gelcoat. Prob best to limit if not eliminate the cutting and stay with a cleaning product like Collinite 920 Cleaner followed by wax. You can use this stuff almost every year if careful.
 

ocdansar

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Man I owned a auto paint and body shop for 38 years. It’s hard for me to pay someone to do that but I just don’t have the shoulders for the buffer anymore.
It is amazing what sanding and buffing will do to a GW. The key is sealing it up with wax once your through. The gel coat is porous and will oxidize back if you dont.
 
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Legend

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Wow that's burn is a shame after such a great job on 99% of the boat. i assume the that will require re-gelcoating or just paint? A good fiberglass guy should be able to blend those repairs right in.
 

Ky Grady

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Wow that's burn is a shame after such a great job on 99% of the boat. i assume the that will require re-gelcoating or just paint? A good fiberglass guy should be able to blend those repairs right in.
Yep, exactly why it's at my fiberglass guy's shop. He'll spray some gelcoat and blend it back in. Boat looks great otherwise.
 
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Recoil Rob

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I'll be starting my 180 next week, I've buffed some fiberglass spas but nothing this big.

I watched a bunch of Drake's videos, they were very helpful about what equipment I'd need, didn't try to upsell me. Told me if I was not going to do this for a business a Harbor Freight 7" rotary would be fine for the cutting so got one for $40
Turns out some years ago I saw a Porter Cable DA on sale through Garage Journal and bought it. Forgot I had it, found it a few weeks ago NIB so that will work for the sanding and polishing.
The hull is chalking so it will be a 1000 wet sand, then cut and polish. I'll try to post pics.
 

HMBJack

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KY - Nice outcome but it is far better for your gelcoat to not have to do any wet sanding. Just my two cents.

Here is my 16 year old 330 Express - photo from yesterday. Twice a year she gets 3M Cleaner Wax for lightly oxidized surfaces then sealed with Collinite Fleet Wax. This boat will never see a wet sanding job so long as I own it (been over 10 years now).

IMG_0328.jpg
 
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Ky Grady

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KY - Nice outcome but it is far better for your gelcoat to not have to do any wet sanding. Just my two cents.

Here is my 16 year old 330 Express - photo from yesterday. Twice a year she gets 3M Cleaner Wax for lightly oxidized surfaces then sealed with Collinite Fleet Wax. This boat will never see a wet sanding job so long as I own it (been over 10 years now).

View attachment 19624
First and last time it will ever happen. Sanding was not what I was looking for. Wanted a good compounding, buff out and wax. He did the sanding on his own. Needless to say, I wasn't happy. He was so far into trying to bring the original color back, if he had quit, was afraid it would be splotchy. I might have caught him sooner if I lived down there. Being in Kentucky and the boat in South Carolina hindered me from checking in on the progress. What's done is done, I'll move forward and have the gel sprayed and blended as best he can and live with the outcome. Overall the boat does look the best it ever has since I've owned it. I'll keep it waxed with Collinite and hit it with the wax detail spray from my car show days, in between the major waxes a couple of times a year.
 

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Looking good, I just received an estimate to get my 1999 248 Voyager cleaned an all areas upper and lower back to a shine of $1600? Thought that was high but might not be. 25 hours @ $60 an hour?

Thoughts
 

SoLucky

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I'm having my 228 polished and waxed in 2 weeks. Quote is $1,150 including removal of registration #'s, all decals and hull stripe. I'll be installing the new graphics myself. Fingers crossed they don't burn through the gelcoat!
 

magicalbill

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KY;

Just joined up on this one..Add my support and good vibes along with everyone else's.

Please treat this as speculation as I have no real proof to back it up. I have heard and read that once a boat is sanded/compounded that micro layers of the gel are stripped away, leaving a thinner barrier between the hull and the outer gel coat.

The unfortunate result is that the hull is more susceptible to oxidization and fading since the gel has less layers between the outer coat and the hull, making it more vulnerable to effects from UV rays and the elements.

The solution, if this is indeed true, is more frequent waxing to make up for the gelcoat being less "durable," for want of a better word. Otherwise, I have heard that you wind up "chasing" after the fading & chalking since it shows up faster.

Pain in the ^%$%$#? Yes, but it'll keep the boat looking good, and you have your indoor storage certain months of the year which helps.

She will be Stylin' for your May run to the Keys!
 
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PNW_Drifter

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Guy, wax is really old school, doesn’t last very long in the sun. Deatailers use sealers no they will keep it cleaner and protected much longer like up to a year. According to drakes detailing this is one of the best.


The next step up is ceramic coating which is very expensive.
 

magicalbill

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Can't comment on sealers, but I have ceramic coating on my hull only. It's great for quick removal of scum lines, early stage marine growth, etc.

I use a crack detailer and he tells me that ceramic coating the whole boat is fine until you incur some damage. Then the gelcoat guy wants to kill you as the ceramic coat makes the repairs much more complicated and involved.

With regards to a sealer or a ceramic coating protecting the gel for up to a year, count me as skeptical. I'm not saying it isn't true, I'd just like to see one after it sits in the SW Fla for 12 months. Boats go down the tubes in a hurry under the tropical sun, whatever is applied on them.
 

ROBERTH

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I have been using the HF $27 polishers last few years...they do the job, but don't do well managing the slow speeds needed at times. I splurged and went with the Dewalt since it has speed management and also am using the dual sided wool pads. Man, she is smooth, powerful and the speed management gives me great control. I really prefer over the HF's.
I have seen Drakes as well and he has great information and advise.
In my case, I have been loving the Majestic Solutions products. They are not over priced and are very good quality. They are a professional detailing company. I use their Supercut 1000 for the really heavy oxidized areas, then I use their CP2 cut and polish which is a finishing grit and the gelcoat feels like patent leather when it is done with a gloss like a piece of new glass! They have a CP3 which includes the wax, but I choose not to use any carnuba. I then switch over to the Shurhold Polish which is quick and easy to apply and has amazing gloss and seems to last longer than the carnuba's. Then I apply the Shock IT cermanic spray detailer which adds the hydrophobic properties so stuff does not stick and also adds another layer of protection.
In last year, now all I have to each season is use the CP2, Shurhold, then Shock it and done. Much quicker. As long as I keep it up, during season, every month or two just do a quick wipe with ShockIT and it is back to perfect as I can get. Applying the ShockIT is simple wipe on with a micro fiber towel, then wipe off with a new/clean microfiber. Quick and easy.
 

PNW_Drifter

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Yeah amazing new products and learning out there. It was interesting to hear about how short the life of carnuba wax is. Obviously things last longer up north with less sun exposure than compared to Florida so a year up north is probably a month in Florida!
 
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