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EPO rudder refinishing

By Dave Raughley

I just refinished my EPO's last summer and they came out beautiful. I used West System epoxy with their graphite filler and coloidal silica filler both. the coloidal gives the epoxy a thicker consistancy, so you get some build up and it makes the epoxy harder. The graphite filler does a couple of things, (1) it gives the epoxy a very very dark grey color, it's almost black, (2) It gives the epoxy a great U.V. resistance, (3) since graphite is a lubricant it reduces friction on the surface. I sanded my rudders lightly with 320 grit sand paper then applied the epoxy mixture with a small disposable foam type paint roller. I applied three light coats, sanding between each coat, three coats was enough to cover the other repairs I had made to the rudders. After the third coat I wet sanded, with an orital finishing sander, starting with 320 paper and working up to 2000Grit wet paper. At this point they shined, so I polished them with a teflon polish, just to finish them out. They have held up very nicely.
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