Amount of paint req'd for Bulwarks

Just wondering if anyone knows, of course technique and paint are huge variables, but a rough estimate/amount would be good to have. Square footage is approx. 120 right?

merci mes amis

Hi Ben,
Hmmm …I don’t think anyone has really calculated the sq.ft., except you :slight_smile:

I always just bought a couple of quarts and went for it. I need to re-do mine also. What are you using?

Ok, just saw the other thread. So which is it Ben, Sterling or easypoxy?

It may also be Brightside, Awlgrip, Spar Urethane, Bristol Finish, Admiral’s Varnish, Honey Teak, Epifanes, Toothpaste, and combonations of any of the above. Ben is a man of many layers and coatings.


This I know is true so far: I don’t know what I’m using on my Bulwarks!

But I did order some CPES cold weather formula, and a gallon of System 3 Epoxy Primer, on top of which I can put anything… I’m still looking for the right topcoat. I have a few color cards coming, and I’m trying to get samples of the paint itself to do test patches.

Keep ya’ll posted.

Hi build Epoxy Primer:


Ahoy Ben, Gary is right about using a quart of top coat on port bulwarks and another quart on the Starboard.

Roger once mentioned that he wished to spray paint his bulwarks, and when I was in Oz , I spray painted mine, and got v satisfactory results.

I used a “Binks” finger trigger, gravity feed detail spray gun, but had to double swivel the air hose connection, so that the gun handle could be held right down to the deck.

There were other places that I had to use an air brush, too , like under the Taffrail and it’s inside corner end pieces.

I used International Brightsides, cream color, and thinned it alot.

This paint coating lasted about 4 years,twice as long as the varnished parts on the bulwarks.

Make no mistake, that painting and/or varnishing those bulwarks is a heap of work,

, be especially glad that you are doing them while on hardstand where you can stand on staging and finish them at chest level.

At one point I wanted to use a woodgrain formica to glue to the bulwarks, instead of painting them, but later chose to re-build the whole mess out of Teak, and leave them bare, thus getting the needed “reserve of neglect” , I require.

Mike Anderson painted my bulwarks the first time using only a brush, quoting L & L all the while," Cheap and Cheerful", were their buzz words, he remembered.

Mike thinned the Brightsides paint to a milk like consistancy, and he did a great job, while the boat was berthed in a slip.

Good Luck .

The interesting thing is with most paint manufacturers I’ve found the price for 2 qts is the same as the gallon. So if it’ll be 2+ qts might as well buy the gallon and be safe… however that will probably leave your bosun’s store chockablock with slowly curing paint. ho hum.


Purchase 4 1qt paint cans at a hardware store and divide the gallon.

We used Easypoxy paint (one-part polyurethane) on our bulwarks. The light color is Sandtone and the green is our custom mix we named Caribbean Green.

One-part plyurethane paint last about 4 years before it starts to become chalky. I suspect waxing the paint will prolong its life. Paints are all the same - Pettit, Interlux, etc. I suspect, one could use an exterior high-end polyurethane industrial or house paint and obtain the same service life. A quart of exterior polyurethane house/industrial paint costs between $10 and $15 a quart, whereas a quart of “marine” paint costs $35. There is nothing magic about paint - titanium oxide, cross-linking resin, dispersant, color, UV inhibitors, a solvent vehicle, and perhaps a drying agent. We also can through in pulverized Teflon to help shed water and dirt. The knowledge base for coatings is well established and broadly known in the paint industry. It’s an old technology.

Paint your boat with Ralph Lauren Paints and be stylish and awesomely cool.

Akzo Nobel paint/adhesive/caulking Brands: (do you recognize any of these brands)

Devoe Coatings (marine bottom paint and industrial coatings),

Devoe Paint,

Awlgrip (marine, aircraft, cars, trucks),

Flood (penetrol),


Interlux (maine),

International (marine),

Liquid Nails,

Ralph Lauren Paints,

Sikkens (marine).

Pettit is owned by another large corporation that also owns other coatings companies.

Perhaps this is why marine paint costs so much. When Interlux bottom paint cost $150 a gallon, I could purchase Devoe ABC#3 bottom paint for $70 a gallon.

Time to step off my “soap box.”



I use Brightsides on the bulwark.
After replacing the original mahogany after 18 years(storm damage)with teak in Trinidad I sealed the wood with thinned WEST epoxy and applied two sealer coats and three top coats of white Brightsides.

It was still good six years later in the states when I touched up some dings and put on one coat. That was three years ago and it could use another coat now…which it will get soon.

I was so taken with the Brightsides that in '04 we painted the hull itself using roll and tip method and it came out like a fine spray job.

Nice Stan - what color did you choose?


The cost of a paint job in in the prep work not the paint. A good paint job is 90% prep and 10% painting.

One-part polyurethane paint will last between 3 and 5 years before the coating becomes chalky. Two-part part polyurethane paints, providing they are hand cleaned and waxed once a year will last at least 10 years or more. I know Awlgrip only recommends their cleaner and wax but before they had their own product line Awlgrip recommended 3M" Ultra Wax and Finesse-It cleaner. The idea one can not wax a two-part urethane paint is bunk. Today’s car is painted with a two-part polyurethane paint and we wax our cars.

Our aft-cabin Flicka’s hull was painted with black Awlgrip. We did not wax it for fives year following the notion never wax an Awlgrip painted surface. After 5 years is looked like … The Awlgrip rep told us to clean the surface with Finesse-it then wax it with Ultra Wax. Once we finished the job (hand application) the hull looked like a newly painted hull. Shortly there after, Awlgrip introduced their line of cleaner and wax and came out with the statement, only their products can be used to clean and wax Awlgrip. We said “horse feathers.”

IDUNA’s hull is painted with a two-part urethane and we wax it once a season, sometimes twice. The paint must be 15 years old.

Most paint companies make a two-part polyurethane paint. Awlgrip, Sterling, Interlux and Epifanes are not the only coating companies. Further, with the appropriate catalyst and reducer, two-part urethane paints can be rolled and tipped with a brush. The reason for tipping is to break any air bubbles left by the roller. I have seen brushed painted hulls that look like they were spray painted.


IDUNA’s bulwarks are painted with a one-part urethane paint.



What did you use to thin the West System epoxy?

Epoxy can be thinned with most polar solvents such as denatured alcohol, acetone, MEK (health concerns), methylene chloride (carcinogen), xylene (carcinogen) and 100% isopropyl alcohol (not rubbing alcohol). We use denatured alcohol to thin epoxy because it is the least toxic of the compounds named. CPES is a thinned epoxy. The solvent(s) in CPES may be an alcohol and/or xylene. Thinning epoxy may decrease the cure rate slightly. Before you paint over a surface that was treated with thinned epoxy, you need to allow several days for most of the solvent to evaporate from the cured epoxy.



Keep in mind that it takes a considerable amount of stirring to get the epoxy/thinner mixed well. I think acetone is the toughest of them with which to thin. I second the use of denatured alcohol.

Supposed CPES is a more “flexible” epoxy, so when it penetrates the wood it is less inclined to fracture and admit water. I’m not sure how they validate that, and I’ve had great luck thinning West System and MAS epoxies for coating clear and degraded woods.


How is the Brightside’s holding up? I have used that paint for a lot of stuff and really like it. I’ve not seen it used on topsides, though I know it would be a breeze to apply. And, considering I can get a gallon for $78, it’s a good buy. But if it only lasts five years…

We’re pulling our W32 and putting her beside the house next month, where she’ll stay for the summer. Repainting the deck and topsides are among the many projects, but I’m trying to decide between the two parts (Awl-Grip, Sterling) or Brightsides. I’ve painted several boats using Awlgrip, and I’m confident in our ability to roll and tip a nice finish using that. It’s a bear to repair though.

So many options; suggestions?

Thanks for your time!
Aaron N.