As part of a longer project to set up my RIB for fishing this summer, I wanted to patch a leak and try to do some cosmetic work on the tubes. I have a quote for $4k for new tubes, which is a good price for a re-tube, but with that safety net in place I decided to try to paint the tubes to get through this summer and maybe beyond.
I chose Liquid Rubber by West Marine in grey. Like most painting projects, most of the work was in the surface preparation, but this is a very thick product and it took a bit of trial and error to make it efficient. The best process was to thickly "paint" an area with a cheap chip brush, and then use an epoxy compatible paint roller to spread evenly for good coverage. I was able to paint half the tubes in just over an hour. It took about a calendar week for the full project (including patching), but only about 8-10 total man-hours, as the rest of the time was waiting for things to dry.
I don't know how well it will hold up, but it was surprisingly impressive in the garage and on the trailer!
I have a full write-up on my blog if you're interested (https://mvcesc.wordpress.com/…/who-s...nt-paint-an-…/
) , but here are some photos
Using the chip brush:
Using the Roller: