Bed liner on hull???

Discussion in 'Boat Yard Basics' started by lil_kahuna, Oct 8, 2012.

  1. lil_kahuna

    lil_kahuna I Love microskiff.com!

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    Ive got an early eighties classic and run some pretty rough areas. The hull seems really thin and Im looking for something that would maybe put a little more rigidity and give some "lite" oyster/rock protection without spending a fortune.
    Ive read a thousand and one opinions....but has anyone actually applied and used this stuff on their hull??? Thanks...:)
     
  2. firecat1981

    firecat1981 BBA Counselor

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    I tried it on my last boat in some areas, It chipped right off and did nothing to protect. It won't add any rigidity, nothing will really except adding some glass to the hull, or support to the inside.

    If you want real protection I have been using an Epoxy Graphite mix on my hull for about a year now and it is very rugged. It has stood up to hitting oyster bars pretty well. I will use the same on every boat I build from now on.
     

  3. Bigkahuna

    Bigkahuna Well-Known Member

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    I've been reading about that graphite/epoxy mixture but haven't seen the mix ratios. How did you mix yours?? and where'd you find it??
     
  4. firecat1981

    firecat1981 BBA Counselor

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    I bought the graphite powder from Bateau.com, also known as boat builder central. It's not expensive.

    Get a slower curing epoxy resin, not a fast one or you will waste a bunch and not get smooth results. Don't forget to scuff and clean your hull very well! Mix the epoxy and graphite by volume, I did about a 4/5 to 1 ratio. So 20-25% graphite powder. Some guys add a little aluminum powder too, but I was told it wasn't needed really.

    Get a flour sifter from the store and sift the powder to be used to get the clumps out. Then mix up your epoxy, add the graphite powder and put it through a paint strainer so it comes out really smooth. Roll it on with a smooth roller (make sure it's one made for adhesives or resins), then tip it with a brush to knock down any little bubbles or high spots. 2 or 3 coats should do you well.
     
  5. lil_kahuna

    lil_kahuna I Love microskiff.com!

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    I really appreciate all the info...I try to do my homework before a project...Thanks again.
     
  6. DuckNut

    DuckNut Brandon, FL

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  7. firecat1981

    firecat1981 BBA Counselor

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    DN I've seen the chart before, but for me the proof is in the pudding. 1 year of hard abuse including 2 very hard beachings on oyster bars and no penetration!

    I don't disagree with the chart at all, but I disagree with it's application in theory and so do many other builders. I was going to use the aluminum powder and Jacques talked me out of it. He told me that aluminum powder will add abrasion resistance, but it will also add friction.

    Basically with aluminum if something sharp were to impact it, the added friction will make it dig. However with the graphite the object would slide and deflect before penetrating.

    Think of it this way, it's like a waxed car. If you run your hand over it before you wax it will rub, but after waxing you will slide.

    Have you had success with the aluminum over graphite?
     
  8. DuckNut

    DuckNut Brandon, FL

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    Had graphite on boats in the past - all 7 boats now have aluminum and I will never put graphite on a hull again.

    Aluminum will not add friction unless you buy the big chunck stuff.  It will add tensile strength to the epoxy.  To use your car wax example: the wax is the graphite, paint is the hull and a clearcoat is the aluminum.  Wax is easily penetrated getting to the paint.  But add a layer of clearcoat over top and the clearcoat protects the paint. 

    Buy it in the micron size any it is a very fine powder and will blow around by breathing on it.  My guess why your friends in Vero talked you out of it is because they don't have a haz-mat license.  Could be wrong but they seem to never recommend anything that is not in their store.

    I could be wrong once again:
    Nothing against a man earning a living reselling other peoples products, and I have respect for what they do and are accomplishing, but when one of the worlds foremost authority in the epoxy world speak - I tend to pay attention.

    Your entire post is about reducing friction and nothing about abrasion.  I fully admit that graphite is a great additive for sliding over vegitation, sand and mud. 
     
  9. firecat1981

    firecat1981 BBA Counselor

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    Well I'm glad it worked out for you, but the guys in vero aren't the only source I spoke to either. I was told the same thing by FGCI (and no they don't sell either product, but will steer you in the right direction if need be) and a few other home builders from other sites I'm on that had success with it as well. If you have a different method that's cool, but there are many ways to skin a cat.

    Again I have the proof sitting in my garage. I don't own an airboat, I'm not sliding over vegetation and mud. I do see some sand when beaching, but I also beach on rocky shores and scrape oysters all the time, I was beached so bad once I had to use my stake-out rod to pry the hull off the oyster bed. Nothing has penetrated the graphite yet, just scratched the surface. Reducing friction reduces abrasion, plain and simple.

    How does adding Aluminum add tensile strength? I can see Impact strength, but it's not going to add any real interlocking structure to the epoxy as a fine powder with no absorbency? Maybe kevlar cloth would, or microfibers added to an aluminum or graphite mix?
     
  10. DuckNut

    DuckNut Brandon, FL

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    Well there you have it...expert advice from two sources with zero experience with it and a third with two years, not 20.

    Sorry for the derail kahuna - I was only trying to give advice on your original question - not get in a pissing match - best wishes.
     
  11. firecat1981

    firecat1981 BBA Counselor

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    I get that you disagree with it, and that is fine, everyone has their own ways. I don't trust companies just because they put out a chart, I trust real world experience and just because a company has been around does not make it the best, just the oldest. It's like saying kodak makes the best cameras because they are the oldest company, or no private company will ever survive long enough to launch a vessel into space, lol.

    Anyway BK do as you think best, but do some more research on it and don't fully trust 2 guys on a web board unless you can see there work. Both Graphite and aluminum have been used obviously and opinions are like..........everyones got one. You can also look into products like frogspit or steelflex, I've watched an airboat ran up and down the street after being coated with it and no damage from the asphalt. The reason I used graphite/epoxy over the frogspit is cost, I already had the epoxy. Goodluck.
     
  12. AfterHours2

    AfterHours2 Stripper in my own Mind!

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    ;D now that's funny.. Polymer would still get damaged doing that, coated or not. I've owned my fair share of airboats and your basic frog spit will even get damaged if you run your rig hard enough dry or not. I honestly could not see any reason why someone would run an airboat on asphalt.. Sorry FC but I'm calling bs on this one. You did make for a good laugh tonight...
     
  13. firecat1981

    firecat1981 BBA Counselor

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    Well it is true I may have overstated that a little. I should have said very little damage to the coating, and it was ran on the asphalt as a demo from the dealer here in Lakeland, and not just a few feet. I was impressed, there may have been some light surface scratches but nothing obvious to the eye. I've got a bunch of friends who run it on their airboats, I don't know anyone who runs poly anymore.

    Like I said do your research and make up your own mind. I'm just giving you more options.
     
  14. whatsgoodwitcha

    whatsgoodwitcha I Love microskiff.com!

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    get a keel guard. helped alot with my old bass boat
     
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