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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Norhtern Wisconsin

    Paint help needed!

    I am in need of help understanding all the different types of paint. My boat will be on a trailer, not in the water all the time. What type of paint should I use on the hull? I have a book of Interlux paints, and understand less after I have read the thing then I did before I do not want to re-paint each year, but am not sure what to use. My daughter wants a darker blue on the hull.
    Any help or suggestions?
    Thanks, Stephen

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    northwestern Wisconsin

    Unhappy Hull Paint

    Hey Blacksmith,

    greetings from Rice Lake. I too have been pulling out my hair trying to wade through the miriad info out there on hull paints. I am in the process of building a 16' daysailer which is intended for use in our local lakes with occasional trips to Lk. Superior for coastal day trips. As far as I can tell there are topside paints not meant to be immersed in water and there are "hull" paints that are intended for the outer hull, but also can not be immersed for long periods of time - I think that I am referring here to having your boat sitting in water for the entire season but would be fine for trailer boating or even periods of 2 weeks to maybe a month.

    The other bottom or hull paints (the most expensive ones) are intended to last for several seasons of having direct water contact i.e., leaving your boat moored in the water or parked in a marina somewhere. These usually have other additives like percentages of copper or other anti-fouling agents or have some kind of ablitives(?) which actually cause the paint surface to "slough off" continually to a fresh layer. I believe these are primarily intended for saltwater moored and cruising boats.

    If you intend to sail in only freshwater I wouldn't bother with the expensive paints and I don't believe you can buy a crummy brand of boat paint. These types of paints are so specialized that a manufacturer would not be in business long producing low quality paints. Boat (especially sailboat) owners seem to be rather fanatical and vocal about likes and dislikes with paints being no exception.

    I have used Valspar paints and varnishes for years and find them to be one of the least expensive brands. They are available at or through most local hardware stores. I picked up my hull primer (on a 16' x 5' hull I found that it takes about a quart of primer per coat - I applied 2 coats. Oh yeah, I tried brushing this on with the first coat. Brushing was not the way to go. The second coat was put on with a medium nap roller and came out beautifully. I can't wait to put the finish on!) from our local Ace hardware and they also carry the hull paints in limited colors. I am not sure about a topside paint. I would hazard a guess that I can also get the deck paint from Ace.

    Worst case senario is I run up to Superior/Duluth, Bayfield, or Ashland and pick up paint there. They are only 1 hour+ away from here and its a good excuse to take my wife for run up to one of our favorite places.

    While I still get confused reading the literature and ad slicks for various companies, I think I am finally getting to the point where I am understanding this stuff at least a little (hmmm, could be dangerous).

    Good luck,


  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Norhtern Wisconsin

    Where do you go to get the paint?

    Andy, thanks for the info. Where do you go in Duluth Superior to get Valspar? I stopped at Superior Paint, not going to give them any of my money anytime soon. To quote the person there, "No one around here sells that stuff". So, I am thinking I will try the Solon Springs store. Any other suggestions? What about Marine General?
    Again thanks. We just got done epoxying the plywood together, plan on cutting the hull parts tomorrow, and start the assembly on Saturday. Stop by some time when you are in the area.


  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2001
    It is OK to use topside (high gloss) paints and varnishes below the waterline as long you don?t plan on keeping the boat in the water for more than a couple of weeks at a time. If you are in fresh water you can get away for longer periods by applying several coats of paint, but it will blister if left in indefinitely.

    If you are painting over epoxy we recommend using 2 part polyurethane(Epifanes). Some of our customers have run into adhesion and drying problems with one part paints. The 2 part?s seem to avoid this problem, are tougher and last longer

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    There also is a paint now put out by Benjamin Moore called M22. It has the same ingredients as the one part poly paints such as Interlux's Brightsides for alot less money and is supposedly as glossy.Infinite color selection since you can get it mixed at the store. You can read the spec sheets on the 2 brands and see the same ingredients and amounts. I know of builders that use Ben Moore exterior alkyd house paint for years on their hulls and it seems to last about as long as any one part paint.I expect the M22 would be as satisfactory.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2008

    Paint help needed!

    That said, i have never tested Tamyia sprays over model master paints, not the regular paints sold in the uk you see but, i did notice on the cans i have it mentions something to the effect that they should not be used over airbrushed paintwork.
    I did a test and found out why. The airbrushed enamels blistered and creased up like nobodys business so i reckon from your angle some testing on scrap plastic may well be in order. How they are with airbrushed or sprayed acrylics i really don't know.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Pincourt, qc
    I used the M22 on my 15' stitch and glue, the dark colors went on nicely the white not so nice. The white on the bottom of the hull actually peeled off in places after the second season of use. You get what you pay for I guess.


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