Paint Removal from fiberglass

Submitted by HOSS on 02/11/2003. ( )

About 3 years ago a very close friend gave me a 7 foot Hammerhead shark to try and repaint. It is all fiberglass with the exception of the jaws/teeth that are real. After giving it to me he was stricken with a rare form of cancer at the age of 26. He passed away 2 years ago and the shark is still sitting in the shop. Until now I had no real desire to work on it as it was always a reminder. I now want to repaint it and give it to his parents. I have bought the paint and the schedule and it looks like a fairly easy job as there are not allot of colors involved. I have never tried removing paint from a repro before, especially one this size. If any of you fish guys can give me some direction I would be thankfull.

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Hoss, your large auto paint supplier is where you

This response submitted by John C on 02/11/2003. ( )

to go.

There is a paint stripper made just for fiberglass.

Other strippers may soften the fiberglass.

Lacquer thinner or MEK

This response submitted by George on 02/11/2003. ( )

Make SURE YOU GO OUTSIDE TO DO THIS. Lay a towel over the repro and pour the thinner over the rag. Let it set for a few seconds and wipe it off. Repeat, move, reapply as necessary. On a larger repro, it might take several gallons to work effectively. Lacquer thinner is the "safer" of the two, but both work extremely well on all types of paint.

Thanx JohnC and George

This response submitted by HOSS on 02/11/2003. ( )

It sounds like I need to wait for a nice day outdoors. I appreciate the advice you guys are always willing to give. See ya on kiwichat.


This response submitted by Raven on 02/11/2003. ( )

Acetone isn't the healthiest stuff to use but will strip everything off and not harm the fibreglass if it was cast properly (ie - fully cured resin and gelcoat etc).

accetone/laquer thinner

This response submitted by Blaine G on 02/11/2003. ( )

i have ran into this before, accetone and laquer thinner are in my opinion best to use but they evaporate very fast. i soaked a small towel layed it on the repro and wraped it with plastic to give it time to soften the finish. work at it till fairly clean then wet sand using 400 grit paper & soapy water, try to stay away from the real parts with the water. then i would use a white fiberglass primer from WASCO before painting. good luck

why remove the paint

This response submitted by newbirdman on 02/11/2003. ( )

Hoss , why are you going to remove the paint ? If you do this you might end up with more work on your hands as you will be scraping the body putty off the seams . Just sand the spots that need it and repaint . You wont need that much paint to respray it . Start with gray primer , then paint the belly white and darken the top side with black until you get the correct shade . Then finish with clear . Rick


This response submitted by HOSS on 02/11/2003. ( )

The paint is actually flaking off in several places so a complete repaint is needed.

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