When you look at a brand new finished boat, the lines are sleek and smooth, the hull is flat and streamline and the entire craft just has a very majestic look about it. And that’s how the final result should look. After construction, spray painting and fitting out, the boat should look perfect to the naked eye.
Throughout the construction process though, this isn’t always the case. If the craft is constructed of metal or aluminium, there is welding involved, and the welding process tends to warp the surface of both aluminium and other metals. As this isn’t acceptable for the final finish, before the vessel goes through the spray painting phase, it must go through a procedure to get the lines flat and smooth and even, otherwise when looking along its surface it will appear rather lumpy. Definitely not a good look and certainly not conducive to a smooth ride through the water.
The Budget Option
This option is definitely not the option you should consider. However, we will mention it here just so you are aware of it.
Some boat manufacturers, repairers and spray painters will offer to use an automotive filler to smooth out the lines of the boat’s hull before spray painting takes place. This filler is polyester-based and is porous. It’s not waterproof and will absorb water like a sponge. Maybe this won’t present a problem while the vessel is sealed on the surface with a coat of paint, but what happens when the hull gets bumped and scratched?
The polyester fill will be exposed to sea water. It will soak up this water and cause damage to the boat; damage that could end up becoming quite severe and costly in the long-term.
The Best Option
The only true option to smooth out the lines of an aluminium or metal boat is to use a fairing compound. These fillers are specifically designed for the marine industry. They are epoxy-based and waterproof. This ensures your craft will be protected from water damage even if it gets knocked and bumped and some paint is removed. An epoxy fairing compound is a little more expensive, but it’s the only option worth using on a boat. It needs to be waterproof. The last thing you want is for your boat to become a floating sponge.
At Flight Marine on the Gold Coast we only use high quality, epoxy-based fairing compounds on our boats before spray painting takes place. This guarantees the protection of the craft and its longevity out on the water. Why take a chance on using a product designed for cars on a boat? That makes no sense at all.