How to Paint Sailboat Decks
New Life for Old Decks: A fresh coat of deck paint on your vintage classic-plastic cruiser will make the old gal sparkle and shine.
Donning breathing masks and kneepads, the couple spent days grinding the old surfaces with 80-grit discs. Using thick foam pads on machines running at high rpm prevented any gouging in the laminate. Smaller sanders (both round and square) helped them to negotiate tight turns; at times, they resorted to manual sanding blocks. Working with thickened polyester and epoxy resins, Steve filled several hairline cracks and dings. They then sanded this filler with 80-grit, then 100-grit, and finally 120-grit sandpaper to achieve a smoother surface before vacuuming up all the accumulated dust.
Next, to keep paint drips off teak handrails, the windlass, and the portholes, they masked these with heavy paper and tape. Right after the final wipe with a cleaning solvent, they took two days to roll and brush on two coats of epoxy primer, the base for the final topcoat. Over the next few days, the primed surfaces were sanded with 120-grit paper, followed again by vacuuming and hosing the resulting dust. Afterward, Janet cleaned all the surfaces with non-sticky tack cloths designed for multipart polyurethanes.