Sanblasting for prep? Newbie here - Fiberglass RV


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Old 05-03-2017, 07:45 PM   #1
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Sanblasting for prep? Newbie here

Hi everyone,

I am a newbie with fiberglass trailer. I am very handy around the house so I decided to buy a trailer and try to fix it.

I bought a Trillium 1300 that has been repainted with marine paint by the previous owner. Obviously, I would like to make it look better so I thought I would repaint it. The paint is in pretty bad shape and I assume I would have to fix some fiberglass here and there.

I would like to know your pieces of advice for preparing the surface.

What's the better tool to use, grit, advice? Did anyone tried sandblasting?
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Old 05-04-2017, 02:09 AM   #2
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You might want to do a site search on paint prepping as there are many posts. Most folks seem to sand but it all depends on the current condition. Sandblasting would be on the same list as silicone as "nevers". There are blasting medias out there that are for delicate work but....500 lbs of it maybe?
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Old 05-04-2017, 09:50 AM   #3
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I've dealt with fiberglass boats for 15 yrs and I don't t remember seeing sand blasting used on a fiberglass boat. Sanding down to solid paint or gel coat, priming with correct primer for the paint being used and painting with Interlux brightside with 4in foam rollers is the way to go, in my opinion. I've painted fiberglass boats this way with very good results. I also painted the fiberglass top on a 85 VW pop top camper. If you decide to paint, contact me and I'll give you the technique. I got my paint and reducer at a boat supply store and rollers and pans at Lowes.
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Old 05-04-2017, 09:55 AM   #4
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"Marine Paint" on Fiberglass will most likely need chemical stripper (Aircraft Stripper Is One Brand) to remove the paint without damaging the fiberglass if total paint removal is what you want to do. Follow the instructions and you should have no problems other than one Hell of a Mess!

There are "High Pressure Media Blasting" options out there that people have tried/used for paint removal on Fiberglass HOWEVER "My" experiences with those options for removing paint from fiberglass (Corvettes) has not been good especially when you know there is an epoxy based paint such as the "Marine Paint" you specifically mentioned to be removed. The success of "High Pressure Media Blasting" options on Fiberglass is totally dependent upon the skill of the operator knowing what to do and how to do it.

Unfortunately ALL the folks providing the "High Pressure Media Blasting" services are the BEST there is (If You Don't Believe Them Just Ask Em) UNTIL you find out after the fact when they are done messing up your trailer that that this so called "Professional" you hired really did NOT know what they were doing as it relates to the removal of epoxy based paint from Fiberglass. This is when you really have a MESS on your hands!

Mechanical sanding will work however I would hate to see what the trailer looks like after an Amateur gets done with that process of mechanically removing the paint given the fact that there is not one flat spot on the whole trailer. You better like that "WAVY" look when you are done!
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Old 05-04-2017, 10:02 AM   #5
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Have you considered a paint stripper?

A good hard glossy possibility is POR 15's 2k Urethanes. They make a white (and a bunch of other colors), and are very hard and resilient, plus offer great UV protection. I used it on the chassis of the hot rod I am building, and am now using it on chassis parts. You'd have to read up to see if it could be used on 'glass. I think as long as you have some kind of primer, you're fine.

POR-15® 2K Urethane

Good luck!

Frank
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Old 05-04-2017, 05:10 PM   #6
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The Painted Peanut

My husband worked for 27 years at Machinists, Inc. and part of his job was sandblasting and glass beading. His (retired) professional advice is this:


DO NOT SANDBLAST YOUR FIBERGLASS TRAILER!


Sandblasting can eat away fiberglass faster than you can believe.


Use 600 or 1000 grit AFTER you have a sound surface. Then use an appropriate primer (some marine primer, for sure) and marine paint. We used Rustoleum Marine paint and primer, and it came out very nice. Briteside is probably better, is more costly, and for us, not available where we are likely to shop. We're not sorry we used Rustoleum Marine paint (primer and paint were white) though those who use the better marine paints are pretty happy with them.


We ordered the stripes and decals on eBay. There are many vendors and the prices are reasonable.





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Old 05-04-2017, 05:38 PM   #7
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You've gotten some good advice up above including checking out many of the previous posts about paint.


A 6" "hot dog" foam roller is what we used (the kind with the covered, rounded end) and Paul just rolled the heck out of it until all the bubbles were popped. He tried rolling and tipping (going over the rolled area with a paintbrush) but for him, that didn't work as well as just intense rolling alone.


It's so satisfying to reclaim the good looks of your to-you new trailer!


This is what Peanut looked like when we got it:


BEST,
Kai
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Old 05-04-2017, 05:39 PM   #8
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Think I'd look into stripper. You'll still have some sanding to do but you'll be there forever trying to do it with just sandpaper. Although I've never stripped fiberglass, Kleen makes one just for fiberglass. You'll go through a lot of sandpaper too.
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Old 05-05-2017, 10:41 AM   #9
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Name: nicolas
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Thank you guys for all those advices.

After reading your posts I am wondering if i am not better with some paint remover like aircraft remover. I am a bit concern about pricing here... Wouldn't it need a hell lot of it to do the whole camper.

I also read a lots of treads and looking at the pictures I realized most people use airpowered disc sanders. Is there any advantages using them over electrical grinders that can fit sanding disc?

cheers

Nicolas
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Old 05-05-2017, 11:43 AM   #10
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I recomend a random orbit sander to sand down to a solid surface and hand sanding of primer and between coats. Both will go much quicker than you will think. At least try it, the cost is low and if you don"t like it do something else. I doubt that it will be necessary to remove all the paint to get a good surface to paint. Find the phone nomber for Interlude Paints, talk to them about what you want to do. They will be glad to offer advice That will be good even if you don't use their paint. By the way, there is a reason Brightside is more expensive and the advice of Kai in Seattle is good.
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Old 05-05-2017, 11:48 AM   #11
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Spellchecker changed Ellington of Interlux.
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Old 05-05-2017, 03:31 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by J Ron View Post
I recomend a random orbit sander to sand down to a solid surface and hand sanding of primer and between coats.
Also called dual action or DA sanders
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Old 05-08-2017, 07:16 PM   #13
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Thanks everyone, I just bought a Dual Action sander and it works pretty well.
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Old 05-14-2017, 11:27 AM   #14
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Name: Timothy
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Hi there I am a noob at this as well, I wanted to ask a question in regards to prep work. So I have a 76 boler 1300 that badly needs to be repainted, there are some scratches and cracks to fill but my question is about the pop rivets that hold up the cabinets in the interior. Do i need to remove (i.e. drill) all of the pop rivets and then fill the holes where the rivets were /sand/prime/paint then after, re drill the repaired holes and install new rivets? I know this seems redondent to fill the rivet holes only to re-drill them ... but a lot of the pop rivets on my egg I noticed have worn the rivet hole away making the hole larger from road moment I assume. So my though was that if I remove the rivets then fill the holes and then replace them I would make the rivets fit properly. Any advice on this would be great
Thanks
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Old 05-14-2017, 06:18 PM   #15
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Timothy, can you use a larger rivet and drill the holes to fit. This would be easier and not require the cabinets be removed.
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Old 05-16-2017, 05:24 PM   #16
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Yes that is a good idea can I use any pop rivets or are they special ones?
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Old 05-16-2017, 06:57 PM   #17
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Don't know, most are aluminum. Try to get the plastic coverage for them. I Don't know if a special rivet is needed to be able to use the covers. Previous owner of my Casita replaced thel rivets with stainless bolts and nuts. Think I saw something that said not to use bolts but I Don't k ow why not.
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Old 05-16-2017, 06:58 PM   #18
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That was bolts nuts and washers.
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Old 05-17-2017, 11:50 AM   #19
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Name: Timothy
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Ok thanks for the tip what about sealing them? Do I need to put somthing on the rivets to make them water sealed ?
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Old 05-17-2017, 03:50 PM   #20
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I would use a sealer, I do not have a suggestion off the top of my head. I do not think silicone is the answer. I'm sure someone that has done it before will have an answer.
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