View Full Version : Surface Scratches in Gel Coat

08-24-2010, 12:02 PM
Anyone know of any products to buff out surface scratches in a boats gel coat. I had my boat shrink wrapped last winter and the plastic cover rubbed and put noticeable surface scratches all around my boat :(. I am looking for a good product to buff it out. Any suggestions, or is this something that should be done by a professional? Thanks for the help, the scratches are driving me crazy, I need to get them fixed!

08-24-2010, 12:24 PM
Megures makes a marine type compound. Its like wax but when you feel it in your fingers its gritty. Use it to rub the scratches out then you have to rewax it really well to bring the shine back in the gell. I use it all the time for board scratches or anything else that happens.

#49 Marine and Oxidation remover is its name


08-24-2010, 12:37 PM
That stuff looks amazing. Ive got scratches all over my gel coat. Im gonna buy some of that and Ill try to take before and after pictures.

08-24-2010, 05:44 PM
I can relay a supporting, qualified, opinion on that. Dealer (of a competing brand) who I know, says that is the best product he has found for scratch treatment. This thread prompted me to go buy a bottle. The Meguire's distributor is 5 minutes away from me; just had a long chat with the expert there. I left with the kit (because as mmandley said, you need to do something afterward to bring back the shine):

1. No. 49 Oxidation Remover - "will remove oxidation, stains, and scratches".
2. No. 45 Polish - "will restore brilliant gloss to the finish".
3. No. 56 Pure Wax - "will provide long-lasting, durable protection to the restored surface".

...per the Meguire's site. They market it as a kit:

I'm out fifty bucks, so that sucker better shine! But I've got black & grey gelcoat, so need to be careful and use purpose-specific product.

08-24-2010, 06:27 PM
Moombabound, let me know how that kit works I have been sitting at work all day thinking about buying it. Trying to locate a dealer close to me so I buy some myself. Did the Meguiars folks have any comments against Babes Boat, I have using their wax and am very happy with the results.

08-25-2010, 12:52 AM
OK. Patience req'd though. Won't be to the lake until Sept. long weekend (weather permitting). The World of Outlaws makes a rare Canadian stop here this weekend, so gotta take that in.

I'd really prefer not to take anything aggressive to the gelcoat at all, but I have incurred a couple of scuffs, not unexpectedly given we've visited a few other lakes on vacations. Plus the transom has taken it's share of wakeboard thumpings from the kids & their friends. The transom is where I expect to put this stuff to the most use.

No, the distributor didn't comment on any other brand. I'm sure there are lots of good waxes out there. Scratch removal is the kicker though. I tried Fine Scratch Remover. Then stepped up to Polishing Compound. Still see the scratches, plus a dull area from the compound. Rubbing Compound would be way too aggressive I believe. We'll see.

Meguiar's has a web store; you can buy it direct.

08-25-2010, 09:45 PM
Do you guys remember someone posting on here about maybe someone from Meguiars doing a short "proper way to wax" seminar of sorts at one of the Skiers Choice get togethers?

I have done a solid bit of searching, but seem to find so many conflicting ways to restore a gel coat.

My local guy wants a pretty hefty price for something that it looks like I can do for less than half of what he would charge me.

Hard to pay someone that kind of a markup when I am sure the info is somewhere on Google on how to do it correctly. But then again, if I do it wrong, my boat's gelcoat is not something I want to practice on.

08-26-2010, 12:00 AM
We pulled our boat out of the water just before going on vacation. It been at a dock for over three months and lot of use. We had some dock scratches from the fenders etc. I used a Meguiars cut and polish with a foam pad and low RPM, and it turned out like new. Quick coat of wax after the polish and it was good to go. Just a thought.

08-26-2010, 01:27 AM
...Hard to pay someone that kind of a markup when I am sure the info is somewhere on Google on how to do it correctly. But then again, if I do it wrong, my boat's gelcoat is not something I want to practice on.

I agree with you. Especially on the darker, high visibility colors.
1. I called Meguiar's this morning and explained the situation. That my boat is not noticeably oxidized, so I don't want to treat the entire hull/deck, rather specific areas and wondered about blending. He assured me the product is not that aggressive; spot treatment is a good approach and with the polish, it should blend well.
2. Meguair's does have another, new, product called Power Cut Compound. Intent is for professional grade detailers. I spoke to the distributor about it. I'll leave that product to the Pro's.
3. Spoke to a friend tonight who repaired physical damage to a Response LXi. He said to use a variable speed polisher and avoid high RPMs as that can burn the gelcoat. Whereas, my neighbour went out and bought a high speed polisher specifically to buff out the scratches on his Malibu. Go figure...who's right?

Tricky business.

08-26-2010, 02:39 PM
They are always going to warn amateurs away from a high speed polisher. You can do damage in a couple seconds if you tilt it and don't keep the pad moving. If you keep it mostly square and never stop moving it is almost impossible to cause any damage. Beware of ridges though as the gel (or paint on an auto) is thinner there anyway and you can rub right through it. I like to rub stuff out with my high speed polisher and then finish the old fashioned way-- by hand. (Edit: Can't believe i just said that-- leave it alone-- you know who you are!)

08-26-2010, 02:45 PM
You can buy the Meguiar's 3 bottle kit with the oxidation remover/polish/wax at Amazon for $27.19 w/ free shipping. I just ordered mine. Got some light scratches from the dock that I'm looking forward to getting rid of.


08-26-2010, 02:53 PM
+1 to you man! I almost just pulled the trigger on the $47 price tag or whatever it was...:cool:

08-27-2010, 01:46 AM
That ($27) is one heck of a good deal.
I got a good discount from the distributor and paid nearly $50 (w/tax).
I just pumped off an email to Amazon asking why it's not carried in the .ca catalogue.

08-27-2010, 05:04 PM
I also have some minor stress fracture issues. 2005 Moomba XLV, I must say for the first 5 years this boat has been amazing. Nothing but small standard maintenance issues that were always taken care of.

For 1 month now I have been struggling to get answers on what will be done about this. In the mean time I'm making the final few payments and stuck on land. I'm still a skiers choice fan and am hoping they do the right thing to keep me a happy customer.

10-07-2010, 02:38 PM
Thread is a bit stale now, but I was asked to report back on the Meguiars kit. (Hey, I cautioned that it would be a while).
Very impressed by the Oxidation Remover / Heavy Duty Cleaner. Applied with an 8" 3800 RPM buffer.
My transom was a mess. Countless scratches over 4 seasons (darn wakeboarders! ;-) ). Enclosed is an after shot. (Before shot didn't turn out).
A before/after shot of the edge of the swim platform, also enclosed.
It also brought the rub rail back to life.
Is it perfect? No. It might be, if I had a week to stand on the buffer, but for sure it is 90% better. I should consider stepping up to the Power Cut Compound for the stubborn ones.
Over two days I put in about 15 solid hours top to bottom (interior/exterior/trailer).
In the end, it will impress...well, nobody but the owner, but that's boating life. I was very annoyed at all the nicks, and am very satisfied with the result.
(Note: Unless you can find a way for these products to miraculously polish up the house interior at the same time, you are not going to get any domestic credit for your 15 hours)!

The polish purports to: "restore valuable oils to feed and nourish the surface" as well as "restore optimal gloss". It takes effort, because it needs to be wiped before it dries, unlike wax, and that is a huge distinction. Small areas at a time.

I did apply the wax afterward, because I had it (with the kit) and it's by far the easiest step, but I think it was a waste of time and effort. It's supposed to deepen the gloss produced by the polish and provide lasting protection, but the difference in gloss was impercepable, and it'll be gone the first cleaning after the first use in the Spring, courtesy of the vinegar/water de-scaling.

10-08-2010, 02:16 AM
Here is a list of compounds/polishes/waxes that I use and the gel looks like a mirror....

I get most of these items on autogeek.net

Klasse All in one Polish & acrylic sealant
Wizard's Shine Master Polish & sealant
Wizard's Turbo Cut compound (for oxidation and surface scratches)
Poorboy's World Super Swirl remover sample kit
Collinite liquid insulator wax, paste fleetwax, & fiberglass boat wax
Babe's boat bright (Used during wipe down and in between waxes) Also works great on windshield.

I am a bit anal when it comes to keeping the gel clean, waxed and free of scum, but in the end it pays off and for being an 11 year old boat the gel looks better than some boats that are a few years old !!!!!!
(I guess I will have to take a pic.)