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Mast painting

Feb 28, 2006
Hunter 34 610 Narragansett Bay
Factory finish paint on Kenyon mast from my 1984 Hunter 34 is really showing its age. Mast is on sawhorses in my driveway and I'm looking into options before it goes back up in May. Options as I see it are;
- stripping paint and leaving bare
- sanding and touching up paint
- stripping and repainting

Any advice out there and or experience with any of the options I've posted?

Oct 22, 2014
CAL 35 Cruiser moored EVERETT WA
What is the look you need?

I your looking for all spiffy and yachting quality, then strip to the metal, prime and then repaint.

If it is hard sailed and still sturdy, then sand the rough bits, slap on some paint (same or similar color preferred but not necessary) amd go sailing.

The bare metal look only looks good if the mast has never been painted.
Jan 1, 2006
Slickcraft 26 Greenport, NY
Door number 2. But you may have bare spots before you get it smooth. I would think if the mast to primer bond has lasted many years you probably don't need to go down to pure metal. But if the paint is coming off in flakes I would be more aggressive. I used a one part polyurethane (Brightsides) paint from Interlux - grey in color- over a chromium primer on a bare mast. I think I used a white primer over the chromium. Very good results and the finish was durable. The problem is that it has to be over 50 degrees - not just the air - also the mast. There was a place in my backyard that was shielded from wind, and where the Sun reflected off a wall that worked. You could probably tent it and use a heater. I took almost all the hardware off. Maybe not the spreader mounts. If they are thru bolted with a compression sleeve I wouldn't mess with that.
Aug 2, 2009
Catalina 28MKII Muskegon
You can't sand it down and leave it bare. The masts that look bare, are anodized, which keeps them from oxidizing. Sand it to bare metal, and you'll have a real mess.

I did the mast on my 26 footer thirty years ago. Used two-part epoxy paint (Awlgrip). Removed all the mast hardware, sanded it down to bare metal, used the proper etcher and primers, and applied a few coats of paint.

Sold the boat a few years later, then saw it about 20 years later and the mast looked great.

Anything less than properly applied two-part epoxy is something less. No way I wanted to take a shortcut and then see paint failing/peeling from my mast.
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Jan 24, 2017
Hunter 34 Toms River Nj
Painted my h34 mast about 3 years ago. used a wire wheel on spots that were starting to flake and oxidized areas. Sanded entire mast to remove surface dirt and any heavy oxidized old paint. Note not much paint was left after 30 plus years. I never took paint to bare aluminum, only sanded to bare in really bad spots. Cleaned with solvent and primed. Used aluminum primer I beleave it was called chromium. Approximately 3-4 cans.
Rolled and brushed on an epoxy paint. Yard would not allow spray guns however if I were to do it over I recommend to use a sprayer. It would have save a lot of time with better results. Only mistake I did was after sanding, you need to clean and prim the same day or bare aluminum will start to oxidize. I did all the prep work one day then next weekend had to do it all again.

My project came out very well except on a few spots med section, but the areas with blemishes are to hight um to see them anyway.

Hope this helps ⛵⛵


Jun 1, 2004
Catalina 27 Mission Bay, San Diego
I'd repaint it with Interlux Perfection. There's a good YouTube vid on the project. Go direct or through Interlux website.
Mar 29, 2017
Hunter 30t 9805 littlecreek
I wouldn't remove any of the factory anodizing as that's a very complex expensive process to protect mast maybe a light sand and paint but leave anodizing mostly in tact. When mine was down I just waxed it kind spruced up a bit. Sent a picture to my wife with caption waxing mast and she was scared to look at photo
Mar 24, 2012
Hunter 34 531 East Patchogue NY
I did my H34 mast last winter. Sanded where necessary, primed with self etching primer (spray can - I believe it took 4 cans to do the mast and spreaders) and painted mostly with a roller and a brush where necessary. It took three coats of paint to totally cover the primer. It looks great and after one full season looks good as new. This is the paint I used. Very inexpensive compared to what some guys do but I’m good with the results and won’t mind touching up here and there if necessary.