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Thread: static on fiberglass boat

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    thomasville, ga.
    Posts
    45

    Default static on fiberglass boat

    I am getting ready to shoot clear coat on a fiberglass boat. I was wiping it down with wax and grease remover and the hairs on my arm started standing up. This made me nervous and I'm sure it is static electricity. Please confirm this and advise on how to handle situation. I've never work on fiberglass and this is all new to me.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    Montreal, Canada
    Posts
    1,707

    Default Use a static controler...

    PPG's DX103 is a cleaner made for plastics and doubles as a static eliminator. It's alcohol based. You can put it in your gun and give the boat a once over, a light coat is all that's needed. It evaporates almost instantly...Try tacking before the DX103 application...then shoot your paint.

    Static will build again as you shoot paint on the fiberglass...
    My 2 cents worth...
    Serge

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    Montreal, Canada
    Posts
    1,707

    Default Be careful with basecoat...

    Do a test with the DX103 with your basecoat. I realized after I posted you said ready to clear...so I assume from your other posts that you have som art on there....
    My 2 cents worth...
    Serge

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Stuart,Florida
    Posts
    179

    Default

    maybe he's just clearing the gelcoat for easy maintainence
    but DX-103 is what you want to use I have done corvette's and boats and it work's great
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  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Posts
    27,499

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by tommyb
    I am getting ready to shoot clear coat on a fiberglass boat. I was wiping it down with wax and grease remover and the hairs on my arm started standing up. This made me nervous and I'm sure it is static electricity. Please confirm this and advise on how to handle situation. I've never work on fiberglass and this is all new to me.
    Most fiberglass and plastic gets a static charge as air passes over it. Even when it's removed by wiping with water or cleaner it comes back quickly. The only things I've seen that do a good job in this situation are static eliminators that ionize the air so that you can blow it across the surface to remove the charge.

    For a long time the static eliminators had a radio active chip in them but now they have evolved into a less dangerous and less expensive tool. The one I use is the Ionix Static Elminator pictured below and it works great. I have the Ionix in an air hose and use it to blow dust and static off plastic parts then use it in between coats to keep the static from returning as I apply multible coats of paint, I've even sprayed using it in the line to my smaller guns and find it works great in that manor also.

    Without removing static before you start it's difficult to remove all the dust from the surface and without removing the static from the plastic periodically during the spraying process the static will build causing the plastic to attract dust and distort the spray pattern of the paint hitting the surface. Metal can also collect static but not nearly as bad as plastic and fiberglass.


  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Louisville,KY.
    Posts
    885

    Default

    I solved that problem when I started using Endust.
    I've been using Endust lightly sprayed on a clean shop
    rag instead of a tack cloth for over 10 yrs now and I won't
    ever go back to messy tack cloths again.
    Endust works so much better for picking all the dust up and
    it eliminates static.
    And you don't have to worry about pressing to hard.
    Endust is contaminate free, leaves no residue.:cool:

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Posts
    27,499

    Default

    If you have messy tack rags you're using the wrong products. I agree that some tack rags are messy but if you use the correct ones then they will leave no residue and they can help eliminate static. We find that the inexpensive Detro Anti-Static Tack Rags work great and leave no residue.


  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Posts
    15

    Default I don't know if it works.... but I do it anyway....

    I read an article in 'Drag Racer' magazine... Steve Shuck, doing the lettering on a funny car body.... this caption, under a photo:

    'Because a fiberglass body can create static electricity (not a good thing when applying paint!), Steve added a coiled chain to the body, via a large metal clamp, with the bulk of the chain length submerged in water. This procedure demagnetizes the body, allowing the lettering to be applied without the paint literally "jumping off" the brush onto the surface.'

    I was painting a fiberglass VW trike body, and attached two chains to it, dropping into coffee cans filled with water, sitting on the damp concrete garage floor. I'm not sure about 'demagnetizing' anything, but it did make sense to me that this would be a good 'ground' for static electricity. Pretty sure this is a trick that painters have used for years when painting cars, in some way 'grounding' the car. I have heard it before, just not applied directly to painting fiberglass objects. Static electricity is not good when you are attempting to remain as dust-free as possible.

    Well, thought I would throw it out, see what anyone thought. Maybe it didn't do anything, but I like to think it helped. I'll keep doing it - it makes it look like I know what I'm doing, to the casual observers. Keeps the mystery in painting!

    -DaveC.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Hiram, Ohio
    Posts
    337

    Default yes, from an electronics standpoint

    Grounding the item being painted will help bleed off static. I test resistances in gohm range, and we always place the object on a grounded acrylic sheet. I have an alligator clip clamped onto the acrylic sheet attached to a wire that is attached on the other end to earth ground, usually via a properly wired ground lug of an electrical outlet. Without this, test results are all over the place. The question would become whether you could bleed off the static electricity as quickly as it was being generated... I would think trial and error and then therefore experience would dictate how many "ground straps" you would need relative to the size of the part being sprayed.. Mike

  10. #10

    Default


    I take it you are spraying the deck and or the hull sides, and she is sitting on a trailer ( rubber tires ). you got to ground the boat like the ways the guys above said,

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