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Old 28 November 2006, 09:24   #1
nik
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Gelcoat repair advice

Hello, I need some advice about gelcoat repairs.

I have a horizontal gash, about 18 inches long on the lower part of the hull. This has gone down to the GRP.

I don’t think I can do this repair in one hit because the gelcoat would probably sag and drip before I could get any tape on it.

So, I was thinking I could put on a thinner layer of gelcoat, wait till this has set but is still tacky, then apply another layer of gelcoat on top.
Is there any problem with this idea?

I have read about something called a “styrene attack”, but I don’t really understand it or if it is applicable in this case.

I will be doing this outside, so the air temperature is not likely to be above 12 deg C.
Thanks, Nick.
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Old 28 November 2006, 11:42   #2
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Gelcoat

I have used Plastimo gelcoat filler successfully, ene colour as long as its white.
If cold warm with a heat gun,will go in one coat
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Old 28 November 2006, 13:26   #3
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Unfortanately I am using black. I also have no power available.
I have thought about strapping a hot water bottle to the side though.
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Old 28 November 2006, 17:41   #4
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You really do need power! I used a hot air gun to get the gash really warm and dry first.

Best method is to overfill the damaged area and sand it back once it's cured. Use a cork block, or improvise if it's a concave area (I used a coke bottle!) You will need a selection of grades of paper, the finest will polish the area up a treat. Make the effort to get some matching gel coat as even first time repairs can be almost invisible.
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Old 30 November 2006, 11:58   #5
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Gel coat repair

Hello Nik,

You will need to dry out fully any moisture so that it does not trap within repair.
I suggest that you use Hair drier and small genny. Hot air gun very good too such as Black and decker as long as you do not over heat.
I am not a Gel coat specialist but I would dry out entire area as moisture can travel by what I believe is called capillary action.
If it was me, I would dry out and apply a light coat of resin or paint to cover the gash and a bit around. This will keep it safe for the moment and further ingress.
You gotta get the moistue out before you seal..
Aidan
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Old 30 November 2006, 15:04   #6
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Hmmm, how do you know when it is all out. It has only been in the water for about an hour after the damage, and has been out of the water for a couple of weeks now.
Nick.
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Old 30 November 2006, 15:46   #7
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Its probably dry.
With regards your heat problem what about a gas heater of some sort. Obviously you've got to be careful but I should careful use of a gas blowlamp will dry out any moisture. Use a battery drill to grind out any dirty fibreglass, clean it with acetone then effect your repair.
If you do the job mid day you should get the best of the weather as well.
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Old 30 November 2006, 16:00   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Biggles View Post
careful use of a gas blowlamp

Quote:
Originally Posted by Biggles View Post
Use a battery drill to grind out any dity fibreglass
Be careful, don't drill too far into the charred remains of the hulk you just set fire to with the gas blow lamp! I used a Dremmel with a tiny milling bit for this, and that was plenty big enough.

Biggles, you sound like the Frank Spencer of gelcoat repairs!
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Old 30 November 2006, 16:11   #9
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Oh well,

Everything in moderation. I'm sure he didn't think to stick the blowlamp up against the gelcoat. Nice of you to point out the obvious Richard.

And I'm sure I mentioned to be careful. More obviousness as well.
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Old 30 November 2006, 16:13   #10
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I normally use a Dremmel and actually never thought of that until you mentioned it, because I don't have a battery powered one but I'm sure you can get them. Nice of you to remind us of that one as well Richard.
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