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While I wait for the Mana "cat kit" to arrive I have been spending considerable time on the Forum, picking up ideas and techniques that will be useful once construction begins. What a great encyclopedia of knowledge and experience on this Forum! Wow!

I have not been able to find a thread dealing specifically with two component paints - likes, dislikes, pros, cons, brands, etc. When I built my Tiki 21 I used the best exterior acrylic house paint that I sold in own hardware store for above waterline and it lasted quite well. This time around, even though the cost will be considerably higher, I want to reduce maintenance and thus I am leaning towards a two component paint. What advice do other builder's have? What brands are preferred? Are some easier/safer to work with than others? Has anyone had experience with System3? What about bottom coatings? I will be sailing in fresh water, moored for most of the summer but trailering at times.

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Don't waste too much money just to achieve low maintenance. There are plenty of non-marine hard paints that will get the job done at considerably less cost. I have been painting since I was 15, including automotive competitions. Industrial paints are made to last, and I have gotten great service from them. My steel hull Colvin Gazelle was painted with industrial bridge paint with great results.

Top Secret Coatings

I used epoxy Primekote (two part primer and $100 a gallon) and then epifanes monourethane for topcoat. It is the hardest monourethane out there, and my topsides still look new after almost two years. 

I prefer 2 part poly Jotun for longevity and ease of application. I used small foam rollers to apply nothing else worked as well as these. The toxicity of the thinner and paint are a concern as in boat building you end up painting in enclosed space really good ventilation system is a must. 

I also used Jotun 2 part paints. I used Penguard HB epoxy primer which is excellent. 3 coats would be ideal. Sand pack final coat with fine paper on orbital sander and you have a finish like a perfect egg shell which sets you up for the top coat. Below the water, I used Vinyguard to tie into antifoul. About the water I used Hardtop Flex which is a 2 part polyurethane (2 coats). 

My experience was very good. I did set up a plastic tent and heater to get a good temperature. The finish is very good. It's been on for 3 years and shows no signs of age. The hardtop is amazingly tough. 

All these Jotun paints are prices around the same price as good quality house paint. (£55 / 5 litres


Good luck


What ever you do -- Do not use Systems Three water base urethanes -- Totally useless!

Thank you for the responses. They lead to more questions:

Budget Boater - I like your approach - no doubt we pay a lot for the word "marine". I will check into what is available for "industrial" paints locally. Of course, I can't help but wonder if "industrial" is not just another word. :) 

Brad - What was your reasoning for using two component primer and then switching to monourethane for the top coat?

Patrick & Ian - I am checking to see if Jotun paints are available in Canada. I am not familiar with the name. The price sounds good, and the results Ian got on his boat are great

Thom - could you give some more details of your experience? 

I did the monourethane because it is supposedly easier to touch up when you get the inevitable deck scrapes. It's super hard paint though, and my topsides still look brand new

Jotun agent recommended the polyurethane 2-part flex because he said it is more suited to a wooden deck/hull which flexes, and PU has better UV resilience. 

Jotun Penguard HB ( high build) Primer is excellent for filling imperfections and sands super easy. Remember if you want a great finish its all in the prep. Prep is 95% of the work and the top coat finish will reflect  that.( sorry for the pun)

I used PPG deltron as my top coat. its a 2 part polyurethane car paint made by one of the biggest paint manufacturers and is available everywhere. For a cheaper version try 2k. Look at my older posts for detailed instructions on how i applied it. I'm very very happy with the results. 

Hello, here is also some options.

So far I have used: Tikkurila Temadur 20, which is 2 part polyurethane paint - pretty cheap and outcome is almost hard as gelcoat. Potent stuff. Basically you can apply all 3-4 layers with one evening, but the odour is massive, so Its better to paint outside even when you have a decent respirator (in industry they use oxygen fed masks for this kind of job). Also its good to have a friend to help you out, because Temadur hardens really quick, also after opening up the paint can, it will try up within week or two, whatever hard you try it seal the lid, so this is something to take in consideration.

Because applying Temadur solo in un-ventilated garage is too nasty process, I moved to Tikkurila Temacoat RM 40 which is 2 part epoxy paint. Its really easy to apply, not too much bad fumes and gives pretty decent finish (not so hard as Temadur, but still pretty OK). It has much more working time when mixed together. Also opened canisters of paint will stay "live" for months, the hardener will be functional for a few months.

n my experience its smart to wait before adding successive layer a day or two (two is better).

Ah yes, one thing to take into account: Temacoat seems to stick onto epoxy much easier than Temadur, also later one is more prone for running. Although its not good to apply a too thick layer of Temacoat even thou it is possible to do it.

PS! If you have mixed Temacoat, then its advisable to let it set for a while in the mixing cup, say 10-15 minutes before starting application process - this is usually the common procedure to follow regarding 2 part epoxy paints as I understand....

I am currently painting my Hinemoa. It is getting six coats above the waterline: 2 of West epoxy + 2 of Jotun Premguard HB + 2 of Jotun Hardtop HB (semi gloss). Both paints are 2 part. Below the waterline is epoxy only with 500gsm biaxial glass, with extra layers under the keel then 4 coats of Copercoat epoxy antifoul. The Premguard HB is epoxy based and not very nice to brush paint, even with a bit of thinners added. It dries too quickly as you paint so tipping or over brushing is not easy and the resulting brush marks have to be flattened later. It also has a strong smell. Seems like a good primer though and worth the effort. The Hardtop (polyurethane) is nice to paint with and seems to give a good hard finish. Both are reasonably priced (in the UK) and the Hardtop comes in a huge number of colours. I have nothing to compare them with so don't know how good they are compared to others, but would use them again. The West epoxy is a pain because of the amine blush, but that is another story.

I  brush-painted my boat with International 2- pack. I hate the stuff but it can't be denied that it outperforms any other paint I have known.

As I have bored people with this elsewhere, I'll not go on about my ideas about this. I found that thinners were helpful beyond the ratio advised by the makers.

West amine blush is really dangerous: ditto boring comments by me on here.

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