Gel Coat is a tricky surface to work on. It is usually .5 mm thick. For comparison purposes, that is the same as the thickness of two eyelashes but less than and eyebrow hair. My point is, it is thin and needs to be treated with caution to avoid diminishing the protective nature of the gel coat by thinning it out or by affecting the color as it may be contained within the gel coat. But, to reduce oxidation and increase gloss, the gel coat must be wet sanded, compounded, polished (or some combination of these steps) and that will cut away some of the thickness of the gel coat. When it is dialed in, it looks great but if it is neglected or improperly maintained, it can be a huge pain in the rear end! Based on a boat's usage, storage and maintenance, some boats require a "maintenance approach" while other boats require a "reconditioning approach." Still other boat owners want to go "all in" on a thorough cleaning, machine polishing and application of a ceramic coating to protect their investment.
Different people have different terminology for parts of the boat . When talking with customers, I try to ascertain if they want to have the hull (from waterline to the rub rail or first horizontal surface) be the focus, or do they want the "topside" to be the focus (toe rail in and down to bilge), or do they want the entire boat to be addressed. Please know that if the boat is stained, oxidized, cloudy, milky, chalky, moldy the underlying factors must be addressed before the application of protective products. I take pride in my work and I ask customers to inspect the work upon completion so that I know that they are satisfied. At times, I over-communicate as I want to ensure I fully understand customer concerns and desired outcomes. To sum it up, I give a rip about your boat and your satisfaction!
Marine detailing in our geographic region ranges from $15 per foot (LOA) for a maintenance wash to $150 per foot (LOA) depending on the scope of the work, the condition of the gelcoat and the size of the vessel. I offer 1-maintenance wash, 2-wash/wax and 3- wash/machine compound/ceramic coating. I am mobile and while I bring 75ft of hose and 75ft of extension cord and a 3ft work platform, I need to be able to plug into an electrical outlet and connect to a water spigot. I would be glad to give you a detailed quote for your marine detailing project. In order to do this, I will need to meet you at your boat and discuss the condition of the boat, your expectations, your use and storage of the boat and your anticipated length of ownership. Having the opportunity to see it in person and put my hands on it to feel the condition is essential to see if what I have to offer is a good fit for what you are looking for and to agree on expectations so that the outcome is as expected. I will also perform a 2X2 test spot to show you the results that you can expect. Please do be specific with me (from our first conversation) about your boat in reference to the many small things like outboard engine housings, compartments, swim platforms, presence of isinglass, re-occurring maintenance concerns, bimini condition, etc. so that I can better understand your expectations and come up with a game plan dialed in to your desired outcome.
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