Why You Need To Compound Before Applying Ceramic Coating On A Boat
Over the past couple of years, ceramic coatings have evolved for the marine industry. To help make the technology go mainstream, we really want to try to educate the consumer on the process and why certain steps need to be taken before applying marine grade ceramic coating.
The most important step in the process is making sure the surface has been prepared correctly. What does that mean? Well, we believe that without some type of buffing or polishing to exfoliate the pores and clean them, you can jeopardize the integrity of the coating and not give it a chance to last.
Applying ceramic coating to a gel coat
Gel coat is very porous and has millions of tiny holes called pores when viewed under a microscope. These pores fill with microscopic grime and salts which promote oxidation. Think of oxidation like "plastic rust”. The contamination in the pores is eating away the gel coat from the inside, filling the pores with dull chalk. As the chalk fills more and more pores, the surface will take on a dull, whitish finish.
By compounding the gel coat, you are cleaning and exfoliating the pores, which allows for the ceramic coating a.k.a. "nanotechnology" to get into the pores of the gel coat and "latch" on, to form a sub-atomic mechanical bond.
If this step is not taken, the coating will bond to the dirt and grime and will eventually fall off, drastically shortening the life of the coating.
Does the compounding step need to be taken for new boats?
Believe it or not, many boats that come off the factory line are in bad shape. Some dealers won't even clean them up when you take delivery. If your boat is showing signs of swirl marks, tooling marks from the molds and gel coat that hasn't been buffed out, then yes. But if your boat is in showroom shine condition, we recommend a wash and polish with our Surface Wipe and Fusion SiO2 Primer Polish prior to applying the coating. The boat will need to be washed prior to remove the wax from the mold.
We love hearing from our customers and assisting them in finding a better solution to traditional waxes.
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