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Thread: Trailer Paint Job

  1. #1
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    Default Trailer Paint Job

    Well, when it hasn't raining or snowing (which has been rare), I have been scraping, sanding and wire brushing my old steel Lightning trailer, getting ready for paint.

    A number of the seams and welds had old dry caulk in them that came out when I scraped, and I need to re-do the caulk.

    I have bought Rustoleum Primer for Rusty Metal as well as Rustoleum paint for the job.

    All I need to figure out is what caulk to use . . . one that will be both good for the job and compatible with my Rustoleum products. Just called Rustoleum "customer support." They couldn't answer the question . . . they don't make a caulk and don't test caulks for compatibility.

    I have a couple of tubes of BoatLife Life-Calk, but I gather from online discussions that it is incompatible with some paints, so I am hesitant to use it.

    Another question: I assume the caulk should go on 1st, but I have already primed some of the boat. Could I just caulk over the primer?

    I am not stuck on using Rustoleum. If there is a tried and true paint and caulk combo that would be good for the trailer, I am happy to change gears . . . .

    Thanks in advance . . .

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Trailer Paint Job

    Are you asking about putting clagum in to a steel trailer? Why would you?
    Clagum in the welds? How?
    It really is quite difficult to build an ugly wooden boat.

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  3. #3
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    Default Re: Trailer Paint Job

    Hi Mike -

    I used the heavy rust primer & rustoleum on one of my trailers & have been impressed with how well it did. 10 years ago I painted a dump truck bed (old town truck from Lyndonville that was really rusty) with it & where gravel hadn't scraped it off, it was still good 5 years later when I sold it.

    I think you'll be OK with boatlife, if you give it time to dry & then wash. http://forum.woodenboat.com/showthre...ife-Life-Caulk

    I think on top of the primer should be OK too - but that's just a guess on my part.
    "If it ain't broke, you're not trying." - Red Green

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Trailer Paint Job

    Peerie Maa - I don't know what clagum is.

    All I know is that there was something fairly soft that came off when I scraped and wire brushed some of the welds. I thought it was caulk and figured I should put some back on . . .

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Trailer Paint Job

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Seibert View Post
    Peerie Maa - I don't know what clagum is.

    All I know is that there was something fairly soft that came off when I scraped and wire brushed some of the welds. I thought it was caulk and figured I should put some back on . . .
    Some trailer mfr's put caulk on to pretty up welds. As long as there aren;t holes - I wouldn't worry about it.

    I'm guessing it's an English (Scot?) term for gooey stuff. "A coarse sweetmeat, consisting of treacle hardened by boiling, and flavoured"
    "If it ain't broke, you're not trying." - Red Green

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Trailer Paint Job

    I'd steer clear of Rustoleum. Well clear. It's not what it used to be. The steel lumber rack on my truck is a laboratory of rust. After only a year or two. Twenty years ago the rusty metal primer they made really worked. Now it simply doesn't. I did find a product that does work now called Rust Destroyer. Sort of a Golden Gate Bridge orange. Put a oil based topcoat over it.

    Many years ago I got tired of dealing with trailer rust and took the whole darn thing apart, as much as I could and schlepped all the pieces to Pacific Galvanized in Oakland, CA. They gave me all my parts back hot dipped galvanized. Put it all back together and never thought about rust again. Wasn't all that expensive either. I know it's more today, but still think it might be worth it. I just know the Rustoleum rusty metal primer simply doesn't work.

    They Rust Destroyer is expensive, about $40/quart, but it seems to be doing well after a year or two on the steel deck railings on my house. My $.02.

    Joe Carpenter

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Trailer Paint Job

    I have painted two boat trailers with Rustoleum and they have held up fine. I did not use primer. I just sanded the rust off and painted the bare metal along with the painted parts. I used a brush for the difficult to reach spots and foamy rollers for the flatter areas and the finish is pretty good. The smaller trailer is all Red and the larger tandem trailer is dark Gray with White fenders.

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Trailer Paint Job

    OK - the trailer seams are now sealed - with, as it turns out, 3M Seam Sealer, which is some of the stickiest stuff I've run across.

    But, anyway, now I am confused by the instruction for the Rustoleum Rusty Metal Primer. In the drying and re-coating section, it says: "Top coat or recoat within 1 hour or after 48 hours."

    I primed part of the trailer a couple of days ago but did the last section today at Noon. It seems that the instructions are saying that, if I don't put the paint on the primer within 1 hour, I have to wait 48 hours.

    Could someone explain why the instructions read the way they do?

    I am sorely tempted to paint the whole thing this evening just to see what happens on the section that is in the "no go zone."





  9. #9
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    Default Re: Trailer Paint Job

    The topcoat either needs to interact with the primer before it's dry or else go on top of fully dried.

    I'd wait.
    "If it ain't broke, you're not trying." - Red Green

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Trailer Paint Job

    And the hits just keep on coming . . .

    Just reviewed the instructions for the Rustoleum paint I have . . .

    They recommend 2 coats of paint . . . and say the 1st coat can be re-coated when dry (about 30 min in 70 degree temps) and within 4 hours, or after 7 days!!!

    I am kind of new at this stuff, but these application requirements seem pretty crazy to me . . .

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Trailer Paint Job

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Seibert View Post
    And the hits just keep on coming . . .

    Just reviewed the instructions for the Rustoleum paint I have . . .

    They recommend 2 coats of paint . . . and say the 1st coat can be re-coated when dry (about 30 min in 70 degree temps) and within 4 hours, or after 7 days!!!

    I am kind of new at this stuff, but these application requirements seem pretty crazy to me . . .

    I'd guess that there are solvents that need to flash off. If you re-coat right away this wouldn't be an issue. Just a guess though.

  12. #12
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    Default Re: Trailer Paint Job

    Quote Originally Posted by Dusty Yevsky View Post
    I'd guess that there are solvents that need to flash off. If you re-coat right away this wouldn't be an issue. Just a guess though.
    Just so. Wet on wet (but set up) allows a chemical bond to form, just like coating with epoxy. Otherwise the paint has to be completely cured to allow for an effective mechanical bond.
    It really is quite difficult to build an ugly wooden boat.

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  13. #13
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    Default Re: Trailer Paint Job

    if you have you're hart set on paint, I'd dress up the welds with Bondo auto body filler. clean up the welds and remove any/all signs of corrosion, and rinse off any dust with denatured alcohol. before troweling in.

  14. #14
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    Default Re: Trailer Paint Job

    Quote Originally Posted by the_gr8t_waldo View Post
    if you have you're hart set on paint, I'd dress up the welds with Bondo auto body filler. clean up the welds and remove any/all signs of corrosion, and rinse off any dust with denatured alcohol. before troweling in.
    Why? Spending money and effort to make a silk purse out of a perfectly serviceable sows ear, as well as hiding any developing cracks until they become fatal. What is the benefit?

    Because Peerie Maa's trailer is hot dip galvanised I have not had to paint it, but I certainly want to see what the welds are doing, gobby looking or not.
    safety chain.jpg
    Last edited by Peerie Maa; 05-17-2019 at 01:07 PM.
    It really is quite difficult to build an ugly wooden boat.

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  15. #15
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    Default Re: Trailer Paint Job

    sand blast trailer.

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