Gel coat basics

Do they have experience with kayaks?
One thing I’ve learned is that boatyards that work on power/sail boats often have no clue how to work on the thin, lightweight hulls of kayaks. The tools, materials and methods they use are often completely inappropriate for our boats. I’ve seen some truly horrible repairs done by boatyard “professionals”.

OTOH, someone experienced in working on fiberglass car bodies may do an outstanding job, as they’re more similar to kayak hulls.

All I’m saying is that you should find out what their experience is with kayaks and check out some of their work, if possible, before giving them the job.

Good point
I plan to do this touch-up work myself, but somewhere down the line I might need a bigger repair. We have no kayak-specific repair places around here, and I am leery of the big-boat shops, what few there are. But automotive glasswork shops…I bet there are some good ones around.

Don’t bother with ‘surfboard guy’ either

Nice detail
Pat, that is a nice set of instructions. Thank you for making it available for us amateurs! Especially those of us who do not have local pros to do this kind of work.

BTW, I decided to touch up a dry spot (not enough varnish) on my wood boat. Even though I had read that one should not spot-touch varnish, I didn’t want to leave the epoxy vulnerable to UV damage, yet I also wasn’t going to waste time/resources redoing the whole exterior. Sooooo, I masked off a little rectangle and varnished that little block. It now looks like I put a piece of 3M ClearGuard on it, LOL. But at least it’s protected.