The fenders on my Ranger Trail trailer were showing signs of oxidation from sun and weather exposure. Boat oxidation removal start to finish is something I’ve unsuccessfully attempted several times. I’ve tried many products to restore the finish; all were short-lived or unsuccessful. While at the Bassmaster Classic Expo, I visited the Pro-Tec booth. Pro-Tec has a full line of products for maintaining fiberglass boat gel coats from basic cleaning to oxidation removal to regular maintenance. While each product can be purchased separately for individual needs, Pro-Tec also has a complete boat care kit. After an excellent demonstration and an UltimateBass.com member discount provided by Pro-Tec, I decided to purchase Pro-Tec’s kit.
Here is everything I picked up including a durable carrying bag which it all fits into.
After everything had settled down here at home, I found some time to get started. Even though each product bottle has instructions on the back, I wasn’t 100% sure of each step. Having many failed attempts with other products, I wanted to make sure of the processes. After a simple phone call to Joe, the owner of Pro-Tec products, was kind enough to email me step by step instructions for an oxidized surface.
I was extremely pleased with the ease of application and results of Pro-Tec’s products and wanted to share my experience. I hope this will help someone who wants to give their boat a brand new look. I’m providing Joe’s step by step directions and my thoughts and photos of the process I used to remove the oxidation from my boat’s trailer fenders.
Step 1 – Joe’s process, “Wash boat thoroughly with an ammonia base soap. I recommend adding two capfuls of ammonia to the soap found in the kit called Pro-Tec Wash and Gloss or add two capfuls to any car wash soap.”
I used the Pro-Tec Wash-N-Gloss from the kit adding two capfuls of ammonia.
Step 2 – Joe’s process, “Wet sand the boat. The severity of oxidation will determine what sandpaper to use. Start with the finest grit paper which will remove the oxidation. 1000 grit will get most oxidation. I recommend starting with 1000, move to 1500 grit, and finish with 2000 grit.”
I had 1500, 2000 and 3000 already available. So this is what I used. My experience has taught me to use soapy water when wet sanding. I used the soapy water in step 1 to keep the sandpaper wet.
Step 3 – Joe’s process, “Buff in Pro-Tec Nu Paint Moisturizer. I prefer to apply the first coat by hand to ensure proper coverage. Let the first coat dry for 45 to 60 minutes. It will dry to a haze. Using a buffer with a wool pad (I use a 3M 05719) apply Nu Paint to the wool pad and buff the boat until it shines. Set the buffer to 1800-2200 rpm. It’s not necessary to remove the first coat of Nu Paint before buffing. It will come off when buffing on the second coat. Keep the buffer moving.”
Using the wool pad Joe suggested, I used a Dewalt DW849 Buffer set at 1900 rpm and applied the Nu Paint Moisturizer directly to the pad surface.
Step 4 – Joe’s process, “Wash the boat again with NON-ammonia base soap, car wash soap or baby shampoo. The soap in the kit also works great. Let completely dry.”
I let it dry for 30 minutes.
Step 5 – Joe’s process, “Apply two coats of Pro-Tec Sealant Polish. A buffer can be used; however, the Pro-Tec Sealant Polish goes on and comes off easily by hand. If using a buffer, I recommend the 3M gray waffle pad or Maguire’s yellow.”
I used the gray waffle pad and was amazed at how well it turned out. Words and photos just don’t do it justice; I was extremely impressed.
I had almost given up hope of getting my fenders looking great again, and was about to order new ones! Thank you Joe and Pro-Tec for such a great product and all the help with my questions!
Continue regular upkeep with the Pro-Tec showroom conditioner. Apply Pro-Tec Sealant Polish twice a year to keep the finish looking like new.
I also tried these procedures and products on my boat’s trailer. Here’s the before and after photos, again very impressed.
Joe’s instructions are for boat oxidation. My Ranger Trail fenders use the same gel coat as my boat. The fenders were a test for me. Without a doubt, I will be applying these procedures and products to my entire boat. After it’s complete, the golf cart and vehicles are next.
In closing, this was incredibly easy, and the ultimate shine is phenomenal. I highly recommend the Pro-Tec products and customer service. Don’t put off shining up a bass boat, for fear of how to do it. Joe’s step by step procedures I’ve outlined here is all it takes. It’s simple, and the results are incredible.
Banjo Pickin Bass Hunter!
Check out Rick’s other How-To articles to keep your boat and trailer in tip top shape.