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Boat Maintenance and Storage

From our observations, an increasing number of boats are being stored outside of boat houses either permanently or for extended periods. With ever increasing pressure on racking space, this of course is understandable to a point, but clubs should be aware of the deterioration that will occur in a relatively short period of time when exposed to the harsh Australian climate and, in particular, the effect of ultra violet light on hull and fitting coatings.

Once a hull coating such as Gelcoat or paint deteriorates to a dull finish, or in extreme cases, a chalky type appearance, the only way to restore the hull to its original condition is with a process of “cutting” and polishing the entire hull. This can be a time consuming process and often outside the expertise of club members.

Clear coatings such as varnishes will also deteriorate and generally require a recoating, again not a simple process.

The following information is taken from the Sykes Care and Maintenance instruction booklet:

Daily - Rinse boat with fresh water (particularly in salt water conditions) and remove all excess water inside and outside with chamois leather or similar.  This ensures the boat dries out and will maintain the shine on the boat.

Weekly - Wash out the entire boat inside and out with soapy water and rinse, then repeat above.  Do not flood out the inside of the boat. It is not necessary and puts a high load on the hull.

Monthly - After washing and drying, all gelcoat/painted surfaces should be polished with a fibreglass polish or good quality car polish.  This will remove grime and marks and restore the gloss to the hull.

We do not recommend the use of silicone based polishes.

All nuts and bolts should be regularly spotted with a light oil to ensure the threads do not bind.

Heat – As the hulls are made from plastics care should be taken to ensure the hulls are not exposed to extreme heat situations. I.e., close to a tin roof or wall in older type sheds or in front of a glass window.  All Sykes hulls are heat cured and post cured at elevated temperatures but examples as above can exceed these temperatures and can lead to surface finish problems.

If you store your boat in a cover or plastic bag, view this alert.


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