Gelcoat Repair

by Glass Clown Boats


Here is a nice boat with a common problem; a nice big chip in the gelcoat. Our job is to make an invisible repair.

1. This is Courtney. She'll be performing the repair.

2. This is the damage. A chip in the gelcoat about the size of a half-dollar.

3. First, clean and de-wax the area with denatured alcohol.

4. Using a grinding bit, she smoothes out any rough edges.

5. Inspecting the damage to make sure there are no more rough edges.

6. Tape protects the surrounding areas from excess gelcoat and sanding scratches

7. The materials she'll be using. Gelcoat, catalyst, a plastic spreader, 220, 600, and 1000 grit sand paper, PVA, polishing compound, and wax.

8. Mixing the gelcoat and catalyst at 2% by volume. In this case, two or three drops of catalyst.

9. Applying the gelcoat. She makes sure there are no low spots that will require a second coat.

10. The gelcoat applied to the repair area.

11. Removing excess gelcoat to minimize sanding.

12. In cold weather, a heat gun speeds up the curing process.

13. Once the gelcoat has cured, she uses a sanding block with 220 grit to fair the surface. Take care not to sand the surrounding gelcoat.

14. Inspecting the repair for irregularities.

15. Wet sanding with 600 grit to remove the 220 grit sanding scratches. The sanding should now blend into the surrounding gelcoat a few inches.

16. Looking for remaining coarse sanding scratches.

17. The last round of wet sanding. 1000 grit blended even further into the surrounding gelcoat.

18. ...and more inspection.

19. Polishing the repair with rubbing compound.

20. The finished repair, polished and waxed, is now invisible.

Courtesy of Glass Clown Boats

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