Refinish hull of old fiberglass boat?

Hey all. The middle of the hull of my 25-year-old fiberglass Eddyline Raven is pretty scratched up along about 5-6’ of the length of the boat (see image for enhanced detail area). It’s about what you would expect of a boat of this vintage that has not been particularly babied (I acquired it last year). Any significant gouges have been repaired.

Would you advise that I do anything to treat this area…either a sealant, several coats of wax, or a thin layer of gelcoat “painted” on, etc.? It is freshly waxed now and is still rough to the touch.


Since fixing the fiberglass would be a fair amount of work, and since the scratching is probably just in the gel coat, I would probably just do a couple coats of wax if anything.

If you like the boat and plan on keeping it, do a proper gel coat repair. The gel coat protects the fiberglass from water intrusion.

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The problem with gelcoat, is there will be a hard edge where you stop or “stand proud” as they say. I’d look at something like a marine epoxy polyurethane.

I would roll on some marine epoxy. Scrub off the amine blush and paint it.

I’m far from an expert on boat repairs, but I like to learn new things.

I find it hard to get the big picture when just one close up photo is shown and not the big picture of the overall boat.

I would think the level of repair or none at all would be based on is the person hoping he has something worth restoring or just making it look better or just trying to make it last longer.

If I saw the big picture I think I would then know what I would do, but that still may be different than what the owner expects to end up with.

Looks normal to me…just paddle it. {or is this a picture of a china cabinet?}

Looks like my old boats - I would just paddle it. Especially since you’d have to strip off your new wax job to do anything else :slightly_smiling_face:.

This is a maintenance question, not aesthetics. I’m not super worried how it looks. Just want to make sure the hull stays in good condition for years to come. Picture shows hull and area of most scratching, including old epoxy repairs. Original picture is about 1’ square of that.

The varied recommendations here match what I have seen elsewhere, which is that there a lot of approaches, including doing nothing at all.

It looks like a nice boat worthy of some attention. I like the idea of smoothing off any high cuts and then the marine epoxy paint couple coats maybe just on the bottom. Keep an eye on it and when it looks rough again some years down the road repeat the process.

I would just mask an area and roll on some paint.

It’s a great boat and a labor of love and restoration since someone gifted it to me off his kayak heap last year. (And yes, a custom seat is on the way soon, hopefully.)


i have just took mine in to get the stars/spider webs and chips sorted, it is a 30 yr old kayak but for the age and the fact it was ex club boat she is in quite good condition.
i was told it would cost a fare bit to sort the hull with full gel coat and the repairs done to deck, so came to agreement they will repair the forementioned and see where it leaves us… agreed a rough budget and they will not do work above the price bracket…
went in yesterday and they have stripped the hull and giving me new gel coat and repairing the decks star/spider webs as the hull was not as bad as thought so happy days… hope to get some pics of the work in a couple weeks…