View Full Version : Questions on cleaning polishing fiberglass boat

12-08-2012, 12:17 PM
I have a 22 foot Key West that is in pretty good shape but want to keep it that way. I have been reading several posts and recommendations and I'm thinking I'm going to go with Buff Magic and Pro Polish to protect the hull and interior save the non skid deck. I am ordering a Flex 3401 for x-mas to help with upkeep of my cars and believe it will be a benefit for the boat work as well. What type of pads would be best for using with the Buff Magic and what type would be best for the Pro Polish? Appreciate any advise. Thanks.

12-26-2012, 04:18 PM
Would the LC Hydro Tech Blue Pad be too aggressive? Or would a wool pad? In the video, Mike demonstrates the Flex using the Tangerine Pad with an All-in-One product. Any ideas, advise, etc.

primo spaghetti
12-26-2012, 09:15 PM
hey Bill;

im not too familiar with the shurhold line, but they have a great following. some pics of the hull and non skid would be helpful to see exactly what youre dealing with there...and that may help pinpoint product recommendations.

i am going to recommend strongly that you consider a rotary and a selection of wool pads for the boat. the gel coat will oxidize quickly, and a rotary will be your best friend, and you will definitely need wool to cut any oxidation IMHO. i have a flex and rotary for my vehicels, but ive only ever used rotaries on boats, and im talking yachts (used to do the clean-ups at Neptunus).

also if i may suggest, especially if the hull is white, to ensure your the compounds and polishes you buy are white. the porosity in the gelcoat may hold some spent product and dye/stain the white gel if not properly removed because of the pigment from the coloured compounds/polishes. we used to use aquabuff 1000 and 2000 exclusively and these boats were over 1 million bucks a pop...so if they trusted it, i feel confident i can recommend it...plus they did work great.

on other hulls that werent white, we would also use Meguiars products (mirror glaze #2 compund/orange and gritty to the feel, and medium cut cleaner i think? creamy beige and smooth), and they too were excellent products.

Also Duragloss has a great line of marine/gelcoat products and they are very affordable and high quality.

12-26-2012, 09:44 PM
If you are using Shurhold products try Zero Swirl ( product between Buff Magic and Polish) first if your oxidation is not bad. Lest aggressive step to get the results you want. A rotary with a light foam cutting pad may work, if you use a wool pad make sure to cut back on the rpms if you have not used one before. Shurhold products use diminishing compounds which cut aggressively at first and breakdown to polish (one step). So work the product long enough to have the finished results you are looking for. Work your product wet, more product then you think you need gelcoat sucks up moisture. Also clean / spur your pad after each section 2' x 2'. Take your time and this will make buffing a car look like a walk in the park.

glen e
12-26-2012, 10:34 PM
agreed, gelcoat will not respond to anything but a rotary and a wool pad...I've been detailing boats for 15 years...I use duragloss fiberglass restorer with the wool pad then move to a new pad with 501 polish..CLEAN PAD OFTEN - every 4 sq feet - it's not like paint, the gelcoat fills up the pad.

Then 3M compounds work well too...