Can You Paint an Aluminum Canoe?


Can You Paint an Aluminum Canoe?

If you love fishing, cutting through the shallows or the deep waters in your canoe is not foreign to you. These lightweight canoes are made out of aluminum to lend them that durability and longevity since they have to be used in waters for long durations.

The aluminum body of the canoe is resistant to corrosion which implies the boat does not get corroded too easily. And that is exactly why these aluminum-made boats are so popular for recreational activities such as fishing and boating.

But often the upkeep and the maintenance of these boats can get too overwhelming. You are not sure what to do for maintaining these canoes. One thing to ensure the longevity of an aluminum canoe is to paint it.

But the question is can you paint an aluminum canoe? What are the requisites for painting a canoe?

In this piece, we will try and find answers to all those questions and more. Let’s read through.

Can You Paint an Aluminum Canoe?

The question is not whether you can paint it or not but the more important question should be whether you can do it yourself.

Yes, you can certainly paint an aluminum canoe but the question is whether you would like to do it yourself or through an expert. Doing it yourself may get really tricky at times but it isn’t so difficult after all. Whether you are doing it yourself or getting it done through an expert the processes would be more or less the same.

How To DIY Paint An Aluminum Canoe

While painting an aluminum canoe may involve a lot of minute steps, here we will walk you through some of the basic steps involved in the painting of the boat.

1. Prepare the Area

The first step is to prepare a working area for the painting work to be carried out. This would involve getting the boat placed at an elevation so that working on the body of the boat gets easier than if it were on the ground. You can use sawhorses to support the boat, beginning with the inside of the boat facing upwards and then you can turn the boat to expose the bottom of the boat upwards.

To prepare the area you would need sanders, washing materials such as soaps, brushes, buckets, power spray nozzles, covering materials such as plastic or paper, electric fans, paint thinners, and primers, paint sprayers, brushes and rollers, paints and clear coats.

2. Prepare the Boat

This is an important step towards preparing to paint the boat. This step involves sanding the canoe properly to scrap out all the paint and other coatings from the boat body. If the boat had a carpet, ensure that all the glue is taken off properly lest these glue remains will reduce the strength of the paint on the body. Ensure that the insides and the outsides are properly scuffed up with 40 or 80 grit sandpapers.

Once the sanding of your boat is properly done, you can clean the boat properly. You can wash the boat with soapy water and scrub the entire boat properly. This is to ensure that all the debris is removed from the boat properly. Make use of the power spray nozzles to remove all the remaining materials on the body.

3. Apply the Primer

The next thing to do is to apply a primer on the body of the canoe. For primers, you can use an oil-based primer and thinners. The primer is that you need to apply is obtained by mixing a thinner pint into a primer gallon. This will ensure that the primer also covers the small cracks on the body of the canoe.

You can either use a paint sprayer, roller or brush. You can spray and spread the primer on one side and then once it dries up you can do it for the other side. Let it dry for a few hours before you start painting.

4. Paint the Aluminum Canoe

To paint the boat, use a water-resistant paint variant and a color that you like. Begin with applying one coating. Do it for both sides of the boat and let it dry completely. Then you may apply the second coating to get the best color effect and this would ensure you get the best color.

You can apply the coats based on the color shade and the result you desire. If you are making use of clear coats you can simply spray the same way you had painted it. This ensures some extra protection from all types of environmental impacts and scratches.

Now that we have covered the process of painting an aluminum boat, let’s answer a couple of questions on the same.

What Type and Brand of Paint(s) Should You Use to Paint an Aluminum Canoe?

There are quite a few brands that are in the market. Some of these include the following:

  • TotalBoat Boat Paint
  • TotalBoat and Pontoon Boat Paints
  • Sea Hawk or Aluma Hawk
  • TUFF Coat Non-Skid Coating
  • Durabak 18 and Deck Paints

Apart from these brands, there can be other brands that may suit your needs, which you can find out by doing a simple google search.

What Methods Can You Use to Paint an Aluminum Boat? (ex: spray, brush, roll, etc.)

We already saw how you can use paints. The methods of application of these paints will vary. You can either use the spray painting method or use a brush to spread it evenly or even rolls to make sure the coatings are done even throughout the boat surface.

But no matter what technique you use, make sure that the paint evenly spreads throughout the aluminum canoe body. If required, make sure you add some coats but ensure your body gets a perfect finish.

The Conclusion

So, in the end, we can conclude that it is possible to paint an aluminum canoe. Make use of the steps and the techniques prescribed in this piece if you are doing it yourself and if you are getting it done through painters, keep this as a checklist.

No matter what brand of paint or technique you use, ensure that the idea is to ensure your aluminum canoe is revived and revamped and ready for your next fishing or boating adventure.

Kern C.

Kern is a life long boater who finds great happiness sitting at the helm of a boat running on the open water. When he's not running the boat, he's likely anchored up along the beach with his wife, kids and good friends enjoying a great day at the coast.

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