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Old 02-02-2021, 07:38 PM   #1
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Painting bilge on a fiberglass hull

I have some traditional oil based Rustolum paint in the garage. Thoughts on using this to freshen up the old paint in the bilge.
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Old 02-02-2021, 07:45 PM   #2
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Nope.
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Old 02-02-2021, 07:54 PM   #3
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Nope.
why?
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Old 02-02-2021, 08:14 PM   #4
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Your current bilge covering is likely not oil based but rather a two-part paint. Whatever it is, it has likely resisted hydrocarbons dripping on it or just misting the air from blow-by. Why not repeat the same coating which will likely adhere better than an oil-based? How do you plan to prepare the surface for best adhesion?
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Old 02-02-2021, 08:29 PM   #5
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Its a 1966 boat I seriously doubt they used 2 pac paint or anything fancy but straight oil based in 1966. Its been painted plenty of times since by previous owners. Its peeling in a few places. I've removed the loose paint. Whats left is tight.
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Old 02-02-2021, 09:19 PM   #6
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Guessing that the existing finishing is gelcoat. Easiest thing to do would be use Interlux Bilgecoat. It's a single part paint, easy to apply and surprisingly durable. It's great paint. You could use that stuff that you have but it's likely crap and you'll then have to figure out what to do when it goes wrong. I'd scrub the areas you want to paint with scotchbrite and a degreaser.
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Old 02-02-2021, 09:36 PM   #7
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+1 on Bilge Kote. I have used it in 4 or 5 boats with good success.
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Old 02-02-2021, 11:51 PM   #8
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Guessing that the existing finishing is gelcoat. Easiest thing to do would be use Interlux Bilgecoat. It's a single part paint, easy to apply and surprisingly durable. It's great paint. You could use that stuff that you have but it's likely crap and you'll then have to figure out what to do when it goes wrong. I'd scrub the areas you want to paint with scotchbrite and a degreaser.
As stated Before it is paint. Years of it since 1966. Enamel more than likely.
Just wondering what people have used in their bilge.
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Old 02-02-2021, 11:59 PM   #9
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I would still go with Bilge Kote.
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Old 02-03-2021, 03:41 AM   #10
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A glossy, gelcoated bilge is a beautiful thing, but if you don't have one, then you don't have one. I am another who likes Bilgekote in such cases. IIRC it's technically an oil-based paint ("alkyd") but probably with some modern twist to the ingredients. In any case, it's meant for bilges, so it's oil resistant, and it goes on durable and glossy (so it's easy to clean). It also seems quite "sticky" in terms of adhesion. It's a single-part paint.

I haven't bought any for awhile, but in days of yore there were two colors, a rather dark grey, and a bright white. I bought some of each and mixed them to a light grey. It's still fairly light and bright, but somewhat "forgiving." Bright white could be nice too; but IMO the straight grey is kind of dark.

Since most paint work is in the prep, I'd spring for Bilgekote vs. using some "random" Rustoleum.
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Old 02-03-2021, 07:04 AM   #11
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+1 on bilgecoat
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Old 02-03-2021, 07:17 AM   #12
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Many folks refuse to paint the bilge as after the boat is run aground or hauled by a dumbo yard it is not possible to inspect the bilge for damage.
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Old 02-03-2021, 08:27 AM   #13
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I've used TotalBilge in a couple of areas where I needed to refresh the original gelcoat on the inside of my bilge. Went on nicely, stinks like hell while it dries (makes the entire boat uninhabitable) and seems to hold up well. I've heard lots of good about Bilgekote as well.
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Old 02-03-2021, 10:13 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jclays View Post
Its a 1966 boat I seriously doubt they used 2 pac paint or anything fancy but straight oil based in 1966. Its been painted plenty of times since by previous owners. Its peeling in a few places. I've removed the loose paint. Whats left is tight.
You asked about using the paint you have, not what you should use or what others have used. At least that is how I interpreted your request on this imperfect medium. Thus, my short NOPE. Hopefully, you are getting a cross-section of opinion which does not include what you have because I am certain you would regret it. I would slather on a coat of Gluvit and be done with it. It is what somebody used on my boat. Bulletproof. Hope this helps and you use breathing protection and/or lots of ventilation when you go down in there with just about any paint.
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Old 02-03-2021, 12:39 PM   #15
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OP asked what others have used. I've used gelcoat, Awlgrip, oil based enamel, latex and Interlux Bilgekote. Now I just use Bilgekote. A good point was made about color, the Bilgekote grey is pretty dark, they make a white, it's a weird blue tinted white. I mix 2 parts white to 1 part grey. The Total Boat Totalbilge sounds interesting, you can get it from Amazon and the price isn't terrible, might be fun to try.
I hadn't heard about Gluvit in 40+years, surprised it's still there. It's basically a slightly thin epoxy. If you wanted to do that just pick West Systems or your favorite flavor of epoxy, you could tint it for color but likely not enough that it's opaque. It's also not UV stable though for a bilge you might not care. It's not something that I'd use, I don't see the point.
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Old 02-03-2021, 12:41 PM   #16
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Color wise, the TotalBilge grey is fairly light. Much lighter than the original grey gelcoat in my bilge.
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Old 02-03-2021, 01:35 PM   #17
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Several companies make proper bilge paint. Use it!
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Old 02-03-2021, 01:53 PM   #18
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Many folks refuse to paint the bilge as after the boat is run aground or hauled by a dumbo yard it is not possible to inspect the bilge for damage.
Somehow this is going right over my head. How would a fresh coat of paint do this? Wouldn't it be easier to see damage in a clean, one-consistent-color bilge vs. one with say four patchy, mis-matching previous coats? To me the latter would be visually cluttered and more likely dirty (harder to clean); so I'd be less likely to catch a problem.
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Old 02-03-2021, 07:54 PM   #19
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Make sure you have plenty of ventilation when using Bilge Kote.
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+1 on Bilge Kote. I have used it in 4 or 5 boats with good success.
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Old 02-03-2021, 08:10 PM   #20
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Somehow this is going right over my head. How would a fresh coat of paint do this? Wouldn't it be easier to see damage in a clean, one-consistent-color bilge vs. one with say four patchy, mis-matching previous coats? To me the latter would be visually cluttered and more likely dirty (harder to clean); so I'd be less likely to catch a problem.
No......being able to see into the laminate is the trick to see stress fractures.....assuming the bilge has never been painted....or recent repair areas painted.
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