View Full Version : Spring Project ! ( painting my boat)

Matt Glenn
04-17-2011, 09:46 PM
I just got done my 4 vent install , and now my buddy that works with repairing and painting airplanes (fiberglass) has talked me into custom painting my boat. It is all yellow now with white haul. We are keeping the yellow on the back and makening the front 3/4 of boat either black or the charcoal that matches seat color (06-07 color) accent. We are also bringing that swish of the seat pattern, for spliting the two colors . What do you guys think?
I don't think I will put a logo back on side, just keep it clean.

04-17-2011, 10:31 PM
Just my opinion but painting an airplane and painting a boat are two totally different animals. The color on a boat is in the gelcoat and impervious to the ravages of water, dirt and sand. Paint over the gel and it's now exposed to these elements. I dunno maybe they have paint now that can withstand and hold up but I wouldn't personally do it. The other thing that comes to mind is water spots and such. With gel you can buff them out if neccessary, paint i'd be leary of doing that to.

04-18-2011, 12:58 PM
I wouldn't paint it either for the same reasons Razz listed.

04-18-2011, 01:02 PM
Maybe consider a wrap rather than paint.

Matt Glenn
04-18-2011, 01:38 PM
From the reserch I have done there is no problem painting the boat with the new paint out there. You don't lose any gel coat, if anything you could always strip the paint and go back to the gel coat. The think is gel coat shows sun wear were the paint will not. I'm notpainting any of the haul just the sides , I just don't see any problems? any more freedback. P.S the wraps look bad I think you can see the lines up close?

04-18-2011, 02:06 PM
Granted it was over 3 decades ago, but my Dad has his boat painted and it looked like hell, was a pain to try and keep clean or get scuffs out of the paint without polishing through the paint, oxidized like no tomorrow... I'd never have my boat painted.

04-18-2011, 03:49 PM
hate to say it, but I'm with the others on this one. never done it and never will. boats are just not like cars/airplanes/motorcycles, whatever. gelcoat is a different animal than fiberglas, metal, aluminum, carbon, etc...

guy here had a screaming deal on an older supreme that had some fiberglas damage on the covered bow. he fixed it and painted the top, leaving the rest gel. that boat sat for almost 6 months before he finally sold it for $2500. it was painfully obvious what had been done...

redo the gel, buff it out, or wrap it. a good quality wrap will set you back a few $$, but it'll look the best if you have gel issues.

04-18-2011, 03:53 PM
have to agree with the others ......... and it's likely that nobody on this board is going to say otherwise!

The only downside to a wrap is it can get scratched and nicked (so can gel but it's not as fragile) but if taken care of will look like a new boat. Personally I'd be shopping for a 1/2, 3/4, or full wrap depending on what you need and $$.

Sounds like you would only need a partial wrap if your only looking to paint the sides.

04-18-2011, 05:33 PM
Wrap it as other's have said.

But, Get ahold of 11 outback V, he may have some info on painting boat's--think his Ellmos' revenge was painted?

11 Outback V
04-18-2011, 09:29 PM
Guys I hate to disagree with you but in this case I have too. Look at any of the high performance boats out there that are not white or have more than one color on them. 99% are paint and there are even shops that do nothing bit paint boats. If it is done right it will last. There are boats running in the high 170 mph range that are paint. The miss geico boat runs around 220 mph and has no problem and I think salt is about as harsh as an environment as you will ever get in and no problems. Yes my Elmo boat was all paint and never had a problem. I wouldn't think twice about paint if it is done right
I will post some links to paint when I get to my computer im on my phone now.

11 Outback V
04-18-2011, 09:40 PM
Now Im not saying this is cost effective but just shows what can be done with paint. Some of these paint jobs cost more than the boats we own but they are pretty cool in my book. I know what I paid to paint Elmo and it is by no means cheap for the design work and then paint. There are a lot more pics on these guys sites but please move away from the keyboard so you dont drool on the keys. Some of these paint jobs run well over $100,000.00!!!!!!






One of the current toys I have access too



Did the design work on Elmo:


04-18-2011, 09:41 PM
When I purchased my last boat at a MC dealer. I arrived to look at a boat that I was on the internet. It was the same boat, but in red instead of black. The red boat had been damaged in an accident and they had just repainted the damaged side. I was initially afraid that was the boat I was going to be looking at, but it wasn't. The dealer said that they paint boats that have damage often.
As long as the boat is prepped and you use the correct type of paint (I don't know what that is), it is probably an option. Doubt that I will ever try it.

Matt Glenn
04-18-2011, 10:09 PM
thanks bro, that is what I was thinking

04-18-2011, 10:33 PM
I'm not saying "it can't be done" - I'm just suggesting that it might be more cost effective to look at a wrap. To get it done right might be as much as the boat itself?? I could be wrong?

04-19-2011, 12:43 PM
My 1st boat I purchased was super cheap from a boat repair shop that had repaired the boat for an insurance company, then the customer did not want the boat any longer. It was damaged by a tree falling on it and crushed the side and a limb went thru the hull. Now this is all this company did was fiberglass repair on boats. They painted the complete boat and cleared it you couldn't tell it had ever been damaged. I never had any problems with the color fading, scratching, keeping clean or hazing. I kept the boat almost 10 yrs. before I sold it and the paint looked as good as the day I bought it. If done correctly I don't believe it would be an issue down the road.

04-19-2011, 01:06 PM
I think it would look great painted, or wrapped. I personally don't care for wraps because once you damage it you cant fix it.

As for painting it i have no input on longevity but i assume as long as you care for it then it will stay new looking.

Gell coat is simple because its so thick you can damage it and have it fixed. Its no cheaper then paint though i can tell you that from Gell coat repairs costs i have seen.

One of the nice things about Gell coat is it is repairable pretty easy but almost anyone with a little experience but at the same time i have seen plenty of high end boats and low end boats with crappy faded cloudy gell coats. This is just a lack of taking care of it. Same as paint.

I say if you want it painted and the guy is using the correct types of paint then go for it. Get a lot of clear coat sprayed as this is what really protects the colors.

04-19-2011, 02:25 PM
Hi everybody, I'm the buddy Matt referred to that will be painting his boat. I registered on this site so I could get some good information out there concerning painting your Moombas, as there has been some incorrect responses to his concerns.

First off, I wanted everyone to know that my opinion is unbiased, as Matt is a good friend, and I'm painting it for basically my cost for the job. (I figure this is worth at least a few free pulls behind his boat haha) I have almost 15 years of fiberglass and paint experience, both in the marine and aerospace industry, so I'd like to think I know a little about what I'm talking about here.

There is a difference between painting a boat, and painting an airplane. The paint on an airplane must withstand much more abuse than the boat for the most part. It experiences extreme temperature changes, as well as strikes from ice and debris at over 200mph. The paint that is used for planes usually are of two varieties, Polyester Urethane and Acrylic Urethane. I will be painting Matt's boat with Acrylic Urethane, PPG Concept to be precise.

For Matt's boat, I will be painting the sides of the hull, which is ideal for paint as it isn't on the bottom where wear is a concern from the hoist or trailering it. Here a gelcoat would be preferable, although not necessary. Also, there is no foot traffic here, like your deck or the walkway between the cockpit and the bow seats. Again, gelcoat in these areas will hold up better than paint, but paint would still do fine in these locations. Paint is easier to repair than gelcoat as well, making it cheaper in the long run to maintain.

For those worried about polishing paint, you shouldn't be. Using the right polish, like 3M's Polish or even Micro-polish, you can remove waterspots and even light scratches without a problem. The biggest issue for paint, and even gelcoat, is the owners maintenance. Most boat owners i know don't know how to properly care for there gelcoat/paint. I would recommend polishing the boat, preferably when you take it out at the end of the season. If this hasn't been done in awhile you can step up the polish to 3M's rubbing compound, then use their polish compound, then you wipe off any leftover compound residue, then apply ONLY pure carnuba wax. This gives the paint/gelcoat the oils it needs to protect it from oxidizing or absorbing any unwanted material (gas or oil etc.) Use a variable speed polisher, Makita makes an excellent one, but if you are on a budget, Harbour Freight's got one that will work. For Rubbing Compound, use the wool pad, for Polish Compound, use the foam pad. Always hand wax with Carnuba, never with a machine. And do as many coats as it takes until you wax an area, and it takes several minutes before that area starts to soak in and dry. That tells you that your gelcoat/paint has soaked in its fill of oils. Don't mess with the polish/rubbing compounds they sell at auto stores. Go to a Paint Supply store and go with 3M, it is the industry standard for a reason. If you have questions, the guys there can help you out.

As for the guys that have seen boats painted with bad results, it's probably because they used the wrong paint or wrong materials underneath the paint. Also, the paint job will only be as good as the prep work, so for the guy who painted the top of his boat with poor results, I would imagine that had something to do with it. The guy whose dad painted a boat 30 years ago probably used an enamel, which is hard to spray with good results, and also hard to wetsand and polish. DuPont has a product called Imron, which is a good enamel, but they have reformulated the product awhile back, as it was chock full of toxic chemicals. The reformulated version isn't nearly the same as the old one and I wouldn't advise using it. The two paint systems that will work, as I mentioned before, are Polyester Urethane, or Acrylic Urethane. The Industry standard for boats is AwlGrip, a polyester urethane. There are others, like Sherwin-Williams Jet-Glo, which is marketed for Airplanes, but they will work just fine too. These are slightly tougher paints, but they are also very expensive and harder to work with. I suggest a good Acrylic Urethane, like PPG's Concept or DuPont's ChromaOne. When used with their High-Solids Hardener, you get a beautiful and durable finish. The cost is pretty reasonable and they are a dream to spray. Stay away from the off-brand products, like everything in life, you get what you pay for.

I hope this answers any questions anyone had or quenches any fears people might have had about painting their Moomba. I will be documenting this job on another thread so everyone can see what exactly goes into a job like this and can see the results for themselves.


04-19-2011, 02:39 PM
I will be documenting this job on another thread so everyone can see what exactly goes into a job like this and can see the results for themselves.


I would be very interested in following the progress!! Please post pics while you are going through this mod. I have considered paint as well since I do not really care for the wraps.

04-19-2011, 02:45 PM
They've been painting offshore boats (like the links above show) for years, so no doubt it can be done with great results. But you can remove some pretty significant scratches in gelcoat that wouldn't possible on paint. Plus there are many, many boat buyers that will never even look at a painted boat, so don't forget to factor in resale.

It sounds like you've got your mind made up though, so don't let us naysayers keep you down. Good luck and post pics of the results!

Matt Glenn
04-21-2011, 03:36 PM
We started prep boat for painting. When we took off large logo on side there was a huge spider crack under it. Looking at it , it looks like this was done at factory beacuse the try to hide it by moveing sticker forward compared to other side. Not Kool ! Any way it will be fixed the right way now. My body and I have been takening photos and will post everything when we are done which should be end of weekend.