FOOBS aka Fear of Oxidized Black Stripes!
I had a great conversation with Dolphinite today. Essentially oxidation is primarily attributable to the pigment and composition of the base used for application of any color coat. I got the impression that the color pigment is the more of a contributing factor to oxidation than the clear gelcoat. I need to do some additional research to determine the best course of action. Should you only apply a color coat or simply improve the gelcoat? Need some input and opinions of the chemists here. I reviewed the MacGregor factory video. The color coat is applied straight away. There is no clear gelcoat over the black color coat. So I curious if you could solve the oxidation issue overall or at least for an extended time period. The automotive industry has been applying clear coat over color coat for some time and with great success.
You have two solutions from Dolphinite- spray their black color coat which was their primary recommendation or strip the existing black stripes of all wax etc., sand with 220-400 grit, wipe down with acetone and apply their clear gelcoat.
They have lowered the price from $100/can down to $30/can. A can covers 2-5 sqft depending on the number of applications. Pot life between 60-74 degrees is approx 30min. Repeat applications may be applied directly after 5min depending on ambient temperature. The viscosity of the aerosol can gel or color coat is very low due to the nature and low pressure of the can and nozzle type. Multiple coats are a necessity to build up the film thickness and improve UV resistance.
Like all spray applied coatings you will encounter some orange peel surface texture. Spectrum color gelcoat confirms the same orange peel effect when sprayed as well. This seems endemic regardless of the equipment used. Only gel / color coats applied to a polished mold will negate an orange peel surface. In any case the orange peel surface Rz (variance) factor is minimal and can be rendered to a high gloss with progressive polishing starting with 220 if needed otherwise 320-400-600-800 wet sanding and finish polishing with a progression of buffing compounds.
They did not offer any tangible expectation with the exception of an estimate of possible 3-5yrs. They were clear that oxidation is systemic on all gelcoated/color coated/ RV and marine fiberglass surfaces. What we experience with the Mac is similar to all mfgs. I think we give some ground to the premium mfgs in that they are using better quality gelcoat materials with greater film thickness.
So for maybe $40-$120 you could avoid the hours of semi annual clean-polish-wax we experience currently. Essentially all the clean-polish prep you do for wax/NG2 is the same for Dolphinite. Sans using any polishing compounds impregnated with wax.
FYI Spectrum color coatings makes a similar product at $68.91/can vs Dolphinite $39.95/can.
Spectrum provides a number of technical specification articles which are a good read.
I still may give this a shot. I'll keep you posted on my research and progress.