Bilge coat paint

Art Mullinax

Member III
I reviewed Seans head replacement project and have a question concerning the bilge coat paint. How clean is clean enough?
My 71 E29 has areas that were not painted originally and I have areas that were painted, but no matter how much I scrub, it stills has mold/mildew stains. Will the paint adhere to these areas or flake off? Will the paint penetrate these stains and look as good as Seans project? Inquiring minds want to know?
Art M
71 E29
 

Loren Beach

O34 - Portland, OR
Senior Moderator
Blogs Author
Clean Bilges...

I am not Sean...
But when I had the cabin sole pieces out for repair and refinish ("R & R") I cleaned up the bilge with water and soap, chipped out the proud lumps of resin goop from construction, sanded it with 60 and 80 grit (according to the need and my mood) and then... coated it with white gel coat. Be sure to stir in some surfacing wax so that it will cure. The finish is not quite "glassy" but quite good and almost shiny. :)
Much easier (!) to keep clean nowadays.

Different answers, all correct....

Loren in PDX
 

stbdtack

Member III
Gel coat....

I agree with Loren, I used gelcoat to cover everything i could reach. Easy to mix, fast to dry. Did wonders to cover the diesel smell where the tank had been leaking, although some would argue that styrene smells worse. The styrene goes away after a bit. (ah, that new boat smell).
Good point to wax the gelcoat, although much of the off the shelf "finish" gelcoat already is waxed. Unwaxed gelcoat will harden but leaves the top somewhat tacky and dirt will stick.

I found the gelcoat isn't as sensitive to surface prep as paints. I guess all the solvents penetrate whats there.
 

cawinter

Member III
I followed the Pre-Cote/Bilgecoat route on a few of my projects. After preping the surface (clean with water/soap, de-wax, surface putty for the worst spots) I wiped down with 333 and then applied one coat of Pre-Cote followed by two coats of Bilgecoat. Adhesion has not been a problem in the areas I covered, and the glossy surface looks very nice. I did all the cubbies underneath the setees as well as the large bilge compartment fwd of the galley area.

I was thinking about re-doing the aft lazarette the same way. The original gelcoat did not adhere in many places and is chipping off, there are moldy spots all over the porous, cracked surface. I was worried about UV stability for the Bilgecoat but I guess that won't be much light there.

Just my 10c
 

jmoses

Member III
Cleaning for painting

In the yard, we would use a three step process for cleaning fiberglass for painting:

First: Scrub well with grease cutting soapy water - rinse well.

Second: Again scrub with a bleach and water solution (to kill bacteria and mold otherwise it will pop back through the paint). Rinse well and let dry

Lastly: Use a good paint prep solvent to get any wax, amine blush and prep the fiberglass for paint -use respirator while using solvent.

Tips: use a stiff scrub brush, plenty of soap and shop-vac up the loose crud before starting to wash the bilges.

We had good luck with the old "Bilge coat" from Intenational, but the formula has changed and seems to require two coats and chips easily now. For best reults, use a two part paint (Hempels bilge paint, etc.) which will last a long time and resist chipping/scratching if the surface is prepped well.

John M.
 

Maine Sail

Member III
I'll

I'll second using gelcoat. If you call Interlux they will tell you that BilgeKote is not water proof but that it is formulated for bilges, what ever that actually means? Bilges are wet, it's not waterproof..

A coating that is not waterproof will eventually allow moisture to penetrate it and get under it. Once it gets under the paint it will begin to lift. I have used BilgeKote and had it begin to peel in under two seasons in teh wet areas. I preped the heck out of it too de-waxing, Acetone, Scotch-Brite, primer etc. and it still began to peel. I think it is a fine product if you keep a dry bilge but most do not.

One other option is to clean and then really dry your bilge out over the winter then use Interlux 2000E barier coat. This is what Interlux suggested to me when I was asking about the permeabilty of BilgeKote. They now make it in both gray and white..
 

Sean Engle

Your Friendly Administrator
Administrator
Founder
Yeah, for utility spaces, I would use bilge coat - but for the bilge itself, I would use gelcoat... I primarily used the bilge coat in the utility spaces as a way to lock down the remaining mold after cleaning (I'm sure some remained)...

Of course, that's just me - and what I knew at the time. Mold is pretty tough to deal with - a battle that (at least here in the PNW) is on-going....

//sse
 

dhill

Member II
Hi @Sean Engle,

What gelcoat did you use to "paint" your bilge? Any trouble getting it smooth (glossy?) or having the bilge hatches still fit at the right level?

Thanks!
 

Christian Williams

E381 - Los Angeles
Senior Moderator
Blogs Author
I've used Interlux Brightside white on two bilges, after simple cleaning and acetone wipe of TAFG gelcoat.

It's glossy, sets hard, is easy to clean, and doesn't chip off. All the boat under-surfaces--lazarette covers, painted plywood of bunks and so on, are Brightside Hatteras Off White, which I find to be color compatible with Ericson finishes.
 

dhill

Member II
I've used Interlux Brightside white on two bilges, after simple cleaning and acetone wipe of TAFG gelcoat.

It's glossy, sets hard, is easy to clean, and doesn't chip off. All the boat under-surfaces--lazarette covers, painted plywood of bunks and so on, are Brightside Hatteras Off White, which I find to be color compatible with Ericson finishes.
Thanks @Christian Williams!

Do you also recommend the Hatteras Off White for the inner-hull finish at the back of cabinets?

Thanks!
Dave
 

Frank Langer

1984 Ericson 30+, Nanaimo, BC
Dave,
There are a few reports on this site of owners using Brightside Hatteras Off White paint on the veneer around the windows/portholes to brighten the interior and cover up poor wood in this area. The pics were impressive and blended well with the headliner. So I suspect that it would work equally well at the back of cabinets. I used it once to paint the outside deck and topsides/hull of a friend's boat. Two coats provided good coverage and looked great, and lasted until he sold the boat many years later.
Frank
 
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