Yes, with the right timing, proper surface prep, and personal safety equipment, you can use TotalBoat TotalFair epoxy fairing compound to fair a lead keel. When working with a lead substrate, safety comes first. Always wear proper personal protective equipment, and use the recommended tools and dust extraction equipment.
Epoxy won't stick to oxidized lead, but it will form a strong mechanical bond to clean, shiny lead. There are a couple of ways you can go with the surface prep. Keep in mind that lead begins oxidizing very quickly once it's been cleaned.
Lead Surface Prep Option 1
This method prevents oxidation, and allows the TotalFair fairing compound to form an adequately strong bond with the TotalProtect primer.
- Mix some TotalBoat TotalProtect Epoxy Barrier Coat Primer so it's ready to apply immediately after grinding the lead surface to bare, shiny metal.
- Grind down the area you want to fair. Grind back a few inches at a time, as needed, then wipe the surface with acetone. As soon as the acetone has evaporated completely, apply TotalProtect to the shiny, bare lead.
- Apply another 1-2 coats of TotalProtect, as directed. The primer encapsulates the lead, preventing it from oxidizing. Let the TotalProtect cure completely, then wash the surface with warm water and a mild soap.
- Sand with 80-grit sandpaper, without sanding through the TotalProtect, and remove sanding residue.
- Mix and apply TotalFair and let it cure.
- Sand the surface until it's smooth.
Lead Surface Prep Option 2
- Mix up enough TotalBoat TotalFair to use within a 10-15 minute time period.
- Grind back the area to be faired.
- As soon as the lead surface is completely bare and shiny, wipe clean with acetone, and allow the acetone to evaporate completely.
- Apply TotalFair - make sure it covers the entire exposed lead surface so there is no bare lead that can oxidize.
- Allow the fairing compound to cure completely.
- Wash the cured TotalFair with a mild soap and warm water, and allow to dry completely.
- Mix up some TotalBoat TotalProtect primer and have it ready to apply.
- Sand the TotalFair until smooth. Note that you may now see some bare lead showing.
- Immediately wipe the surface clean with acetone.
- As soon as the acetone has evaporated, apply TotalProtect, as directed.
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