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Got the Classic duck boat about ready to paint, and am wondering what the best choices are for the camo. I've done plenty of painting before, but never a boat.

Other than normal sanding/priming is there anything I need to be concerned with when painting over the gelcoat on the hull exterior?

Anyone have any good input on a good primer?

Parker coatings has some duck boat paint available: http://www.cabelas.com/cabelas/en/templates/links/link.jsp?id=0006070220075a&type=product&cmCat=SEARCH_all&returnPage=search-results1.jsp&QueryText=boat+paint&Ntk=Products&_D%3AhasJS=+&Go.y=0&http%3A%2F%2Fwww.cabelas.com%2Fcabelas%2Fcommerce%2FCabelasCatalogNumberFinder.giftCertificateURL=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.cabelas.com%2Fcabelas%2Fen%2Ftemplates%2Fgiftcertificate%2Fgiftcertificate.jsp%3Fid%3D0005586990011a%26podId%3D0005586%26catalogCode%3DIB%26navAction%3Djump%26indexId%3D&Nty=1&hasJS=true&_requestid=65117&_D%3A%2Fcabelas%2Fcommerce%2FCabelasCatalogNumberFinder.giftCertificateURL=+&N=0&_dyncharset=ISO-8859-1&Go.x=0&_DARGS=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.cabelas.com%2Fcabelas%2Fen%2Fcommon%2Fsearch%2Fsearch-box.jsp.form23 but they don't have a bright, spring green that I'm looking for to do some of the pattern work with.

Can I just have a color mixed up in flat if I found a vendor that could do it?

-T
 

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Paddling away...
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They sell camo boat paint at Basspro that is really really strong. The paint is about 14 bucks a quart. one quart should do the trick. I did my jon boat in and out with one quart. I had posted up a quick how to on the camo pattern technique.
 

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Brandon, FL
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I have done my fair share of painting duck boats. I now only use BLP Marine paint for the base coat. All I do is wash the boat good with soap and water and scrape/sand where necessary. This lasts for many years and never a problem grabbing fiberglass or aluminum. About every 5-6 years it will need to be done again because the other coats will fade out.

For the accents I use Rustoleum camo paint. They have two different greens that might be of interest.
 

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Oh you fancy huh!!!
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This is just my opinion on painting camo anything. go with a light base coat(rolled preferably). tan, loam or really light brown all over. Let it dry. Find whatever foliage that you are gonna be hunting in and have someone hold a bunch of it to the hullside of the boat. With a spraycan, spray with olive drab, dark brown or whatever dark color you choose. Move along until you are done with the hullsides. Grab more foliage and spread it throughout the deck/inside of the boat and spray the hell out of it. Make sure to remove the painted foliage before it dries to the hull and you have a custom camo paint job that can't be beat!!!! or duplicated.
 

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Definitely start lightest color to darkest. I suggest using a Marsh Grass color as the base, then come back with foilage of your choice, and olive drab spray paint. Do some of the sprays light like a mist. Then come back and do some darker more definite ones to give it depth and detail. Once that's done, come back with said foilage, but a can of flat black instead. And do the same. First some misty, then some more definite.


Here are some pics of mine I did with this method.







 

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Oh yeah, and the ducks seem to like it too.





;)
 

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I say sand the gelcoat with something coarse like 180 -220 grit. Nothing less. You want the paint to stick good. I sanded my jon boat with 180. The marsh grass paint has stuck really well. It's the spray paint that has scratched off on the upper rail, and a couple spots here and there. The same company that makes the paint that I sprayed the hull with makes spray cans as well. Maybe their cans would hold up.  I sprayed the marsh grass color with a HVLP spray gun. 3 coats on the outside, 2 coats on the inside. I painted the floor and bench tops with flat black.

Not to sound cocky, but I haven't seen any camo jobs better than that. I had seen a how-to on doing camo guns on "duckhuntingchat.com" and pretty much enlarged the scale. Most camo paint jobs look very cheap and fake. The depth on mine is insane. It took me a couple tries to get it down packed. The first time I tried on a small container. Then I did my friends boat. His boat didn't come out bad, it just didn't come out great. Then I did my boat and I did it really fast, and it turned out great. I couldn't be more happy with it.


I am a professional automotive custom painter though. I make a living off doing custom paint work and graphics on show cars. So it might come easier to me than others. It's fairly easy though. Try on a couple test panels, and you should be good to go.
 
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