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3M Gold 9x11 Sandpaper Sheets : I'm trying to use this paper (320) on gel coat to sand out scratches and smooth the hull. I'm using a 1/4 sheet sander. It cuts well for about 1 1/2 square feet, then it stops being effective. Tries it by hand on a

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I have used the 3M Gold sandpaper for preparing bare mahogany and teak, as well as between varnish coats with excellent results. I have noticed some loading on varnish but it can be brushed or lightly scraped off. I have not tried it on gelcoat so cannot comment; however, the gelcoat may be loading the paper more than the varnish. Based on my experiences with automotive epoxy primers, a good grade of wet-or-dry paper used wet has been the most effective. That may be a better material for gelcoat as well than the dry product.Jeff H

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Definitely wet sand and you can also add a squirt of dish washing liquid to your water to help stop the gelcoat from clogging on the paper. I think you'll find this works much better. Dry sanding gelcoat loads up the paper almost immediately.

Sincerely,

Novice Refitter

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Since the gelcoat has probably been waxed a number of times, you should de-wax prior to sanding even with wet sand paper.  A spray bottle and a little soap will speed up the process and conserve the sandpaper.

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