Repairing A Blue Marlin

Submitted by Harold on 9/22/04 at 8:05 PM. ( )

I have a guy that has brought me a 6ft Blue Marlin fiberglass reproduction. The fish fell off his wall and broke the inside of his mouth out, part of the tail fin and has broken chips out of his bill. I have done very little work on fish and was wanting to know if I repaired these area's with bondo and resin if I would be able to finish it out like the rest of the fish? Or is there something else on the market that I could use to repair this. Any help would be appreciated. Thanks!

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Someting fishy

This response submitted by Guppy on 9/22/04 at 8:07 PM. ( )

Sumtine no sound wright n dees story.

Bondo is fine...

This response submitted by Raven on 9/22/04 at 8:22 PM. ( )

Just make sure to treat it just like a car prep job.. remove all the paint in the area, make sure it's clean and dry etc... then make sure you feather your bondo out perfectly. Fill in just the area that is damaged. Then sand it.. next layer do the same but extend your repair area.... Do this a third time and the bondo should be feathered out perfectly so you dont see the edge of it at all. This is all the easy part. The hard part is going to be to match the paint up EXACTLY, otherwise you'll see an area of paint thats a slightly different colour and will stand out.

Hope that helps =)

Raven's right about matching the paint...

This response submitted by marty on 9/22/04 at 9:05 PM. ( )

...but no worries. Don't bother trying to match the paint, it ain't gonna happen. Just repaint it. They're really simple to paint...

But I'd never use Bondo

This response submitted by George on 9/22/04 at 11:47 PM. ( )

Maybe as a finish coat, but certainly not as an adhesive or a stand alone part. I'd use wire as an armateur and epoxy. And Marty nailed it. You'll never match the paint. It's just as easy to paint the whole fish over again.

I've got a challenging repair job...

This response submitted by marty on 9/23/04 at 9:27 AM. ( )

...on a 7' shark right now that also fell off of my customer's wall.

It's cracked all the way across behind the pelvic fins. And 1/2 way across in front of them.

Originally my plans were to grind out the area, fill with epoxy, paint it and send it on it's way. BUT, upon further investigation I'm afraid that thru time (or the vibrations from the ride home) the crack may re-appear again. The fins are giving/moving a bit. I'm afraid that I'm going to have to reinforce it as structurally it's got problems.

My job sounds a lot worse than yours. After staring at the damage for about 20 minutes I think I've come up with a plan. First, I'm going to grind out all the crappy areas. Then, I think I'm going to cut a hole (aft of the damage) just big enough to get my hands inside. This will allow me to get all the broken pieces out from the inside. But more importantly, now I can lay down some fiberglass mat/resin and build layers across the damaged area to give it some structural integrity. Once this is done I can seal up my new hole and repair everything wih bondo and/or epoxies.

I was a structural designer for 15 years prior to taxidermy. And w/o any engineers around to run the loads/numbers, i tend to overbuild things. Do you folks think this is a bit overkill? Any other ideas?

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