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Thread: Opinions on Hunter Specialties (HS) Camo Paint

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    Default Opinions on Hunter Specialties (HS) Camo Paint

    Hey you guys, so some of you know, or may recall, that I've been kicking around the idea of painting my Grumman Sport Boat from the blue it is now to a camp for waterfowl hunting/float hunting etc. (Mostly ducks.) I've started various threads over the past year on this. With my mom's illness and her passing, I put it on the back burner, but, with the snow gone, it's go time.

    I've decided to leave the primer and blue paint on the boat. My original plan was to strip it all to bare metal and start over from scratch, but the current paint sticks so well, and is in such great condition, I'm going to save myself that work and cost (mostly the cost) and sand the entire boat with 320 grit and just paint over it.

    I'm looking at using the Hunter Specialties brand camo paint. http://www.hunterspec.com/content/permanent-camo-paint in Marsh Grass Tan. Has anyone used this here in Alaska and can give a comment on how well it has worked out? Does this stuff shoot easily in an automotive type paint sprayer (siphon cup)? How well did it stick to your boat? How long did the paint hold up before needing repainting or touch up? Does the Marsh Grass Tan color work well up here? Any ideas on how much are a rattle can covers compared to the qt & gal cans?

    PS: this stuff is WAAYY cheaper than the NAPA automotive line paint ($438 for 1/2 gal compared to $65/gal for the HS paint at Cabela's)

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    Member akblackdawg's Avatar
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    I advise not to make this into a big project, or expensive, its just not worth it. the boat will be drug around, banged off trees and tailgates, and covered with mud, branches etc. you have a good base paint, a light sanding will help, then wipe it down with viniger, a mild acid, which will put more of a profile on the existing surface. keep your eyes open at lowes, HD, and other paint stores for their mis matched paints.a flat exterior latex in a color that you like, and get a assortment of camo colors. the latex will adhear very well, and is cheap, sometimes as much as a couple bucks a can. paint away, i like to spray since i have the set up, but brush or roller will be fine. save the paint where it won't freeze in winter, and next year you can modify your camo pattern depending on where the scrapes and stratches are. this stuff works great for ducks boats, really. Bud
    Wasilla

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    I would suggest Parker duck boat paint. I have used it and HS paint, and IMO it is far superior. It should be about the same price as the HS and I would check with Cabelas as I have bought it there in the lower 48. Bud's advice is also a good alternative.

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    Thanks for yall's replies. I'm hoping to buy paint already local, so as to avoid the hazmat shipping to AK.

    I have yet another snag. I had planed on buying the 3M vinyl and covering from gunwales to waterline. I intended on buying from a source that AKBlackdawg suggested last year. Last year, the cost was $210. Today, it's $320 plus shipping. So, it's starting to look like I will have to paint the entire camo pattern myself. =(

    So NOW I need some input on how to plan that pattern for Alaska's environment. At present, I know I'm going to paint the entire boat, inside and out, in a solid, flat tan. Where to go from there, I don't know.

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    A buddy of mine is painting a sea duck boat in the lower 48. He had to order paint directly from Parkers, and the paint is made so it isn't Hazmat. He was surprised. He saved money buying directly from parker, even with shipping.

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    Member kwackkillncrew's Avatar
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    Just paint it all beige then take rattle cans to it.


    Sent while partying

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    but its because I refuse to pimp products for free.

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    Quote Originally Posted by kwackkillncrew View Post
    Just paint it all beige then take rattle cans to it.


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    I do plan to paint the whole thing "beige" (tan, marsh grass, dead grass, whatever.) I'm just unsure of how to go about "taking a rattle can to the rest of it" and still getting a decent result.

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    Member akblackdawg's Avatar
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    IT'S JUST A DUCK BOAT, DOESN'T HAVE TO BE BEAUTIFUL. Bud
    Wasilla

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    Quote Originally Posted by FL2AK-Old Town View Post
    I do plan to paint the whole thing "beige" (tan, marsh grass, dead grass, whatever.) I'm just unsure of how to go about "taking a rattle can to the rest of it" and still getting a decent result.
    My buddy in Delaware used rattle cans to paint is 1452 John boat. Still going strong after 3 seasons now. The only reason he went with the parker paint on his sea duck boat was due to the salt water. Like Bud says, it aint got to be beautiful.

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    Member kwackkillncrew's Avatar
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    about the best picture of my duck boat. make a reed stencil out of card board and just place it different directions and make lines its easy. trust me dont spend time on it guarentee its going to be beat up and dinged after one hunt. plus your going to have weeds and grass you throw all over it any ways. this is comming from 20 years of experience with duck boats.
    I will never be a "Prostaffer" its not that I am not good enough
    but its because I refuse to pimp products for free.

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    Black, tan and brown. Just paint it up like a lighter version of a BDU pattern, aka brown camo (or as drake calls it, the old school pattern).
    Some people call it sky busting... I call it optimism
    "Swans are a gift" -DucksandDogs
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    Quote Originally Posted by duckslayer56 View Post
    Black, tan and brown. Just paint it up like a lighter version of a BDU pattern, aka brown camo (or as drake calls it, the old school pattern).
    What Drake calls "Old School" camo is not "BDU" camo. BDU camo is what was on the 1990's era GI uiforms. I can paint BDU camo 1/2 way decent; I used to do it to deuce and a halfs. Drake's "Old School" camo is what the Marines wore on their helmets in the Pacific during WWII. So, of those two, to which are you referring?

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    Member akblackdawg's Avatar
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    Here is a pic of my old airboat that I painted with several colors of mis-matched colors from Lowes, the next season it showed a lot of scratches, just did a little spot painting, and good as new. Bud


    seat area.jpg
    Wasilla

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    I don't even cut stencils. A old piece of fast grass about 8" wide and 16" tall, tape a paint stick to the bottom for a handle and have at it. Over the years I've used cattails, pine bows, corn stalks, willow branches, birch branches...or a combination of them.....whatever you use, just make it easy on yourself.....if its a duck boat, you'll be repainting it soon anyway

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    Quote Originally Posted by Lane View Post
    I don't even cut stencils. A old piece of fast grass about 8" wide and 16" tall, tape a paint stick to the bottom for a handle and have at it. Over the years I've used cattails, pine bows, corn stalks, willow branches, birch branches...or a combination of them.....whatever you use, just make it easy on yourself.....if its a duck boat, you'll be repainting it soon anyway
    Thanks, Lane. I was going to ask what would be the best plants and leaves to use as stencils. I may go round to Micheal's Arts & Crafts and buy a bunch of different fake/silk plant parts, and use those as stencils. (So, I'd hold a fake cat tail to the side of the boat and blast it with paint.)

    In doing it that way, would I still use Marsh Grass/tan as my base coat color (Paint the entire boat tan first, then use other colors for the plant stencils)?

    I made significant progress on the paint stripping process yesterday, and should be ready to start buying paint this time next week.

    By the way, I noticed that there is a Rustoleum "camo" paint product in the rattle cans at Home Depot for1/3 less the cost of the HS Specialties brand at Cabela's; anyone ever use that stuff or can make a comparison as far as quality and durability of the finished product?

  16. #16

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    I've had decent luck with the camo spray paints (of various brands). I just buy some when it's cheap and stockpile it until I need to touch the boat up. As others have said, after a season of use, any type of paint is going to need touching up, so why waste money on expensive stuff? I've had good luck with a pale olive green base and a ton of brush. No stencils required.

    One thing I've noticed in Alaska is that because the season changes so quickly, no single color is going to be much use for the whole season. It's better to brush the blind/boat with veg that matches the conditions at that time. It's pretty easy to spot a boat blind across a marsh that isn't the same color as the rest of the vegetation, and if I can do it, so can the birds. Another way to think of it is that birds which approach low over the water (such as divers) are less likely to notice an out-of-place blind, but birds that approach from higher up (such as mallards) can pick it out in a heartbeat. In either case, the better you brush the blind and match the local environment, the less obvious it'll be to birds.

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    I ordered from Parker as well. Great paint has held up really well over two years now. But like everyone said , its a duck boat, so the paint will see hard use and will need touch ups to keep it looking sharp. For base color, I use the Parkers hunter green which matches the mud in our marshy area as well as the rocky shoreline and the kelp/sea weed so this color alone hides well for the bay and shore line. If the marsh was my main plan I would shoot the grass pattern over the dark base color which gives depth and hides well, add grass to the rails and its invisible.

    Stencils can be made real easily. I ordered a set of realfoot stencils and have made about a dozen off the one I bought. the krylon or rustolium rattle cans work fine for your break up colors on the salt/shore/rocky areas but the parker colors match the grass much better.

    As Miller said , natural veg is the ticket. OD green works perfectly if you have grass rails or a boat blind you can veg up.
    This is the Parker hunter green, some walmart flat black and some krylon, whatever is handy. Some camo burlap and sea ducks almost fly into it. stuff the grass rails and shes perfect in the marsh so this is versitile, marsh one day sea ducks the next.

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    Here is a shot of the Home Depot rattle can paint with fast grass used as stencil.
    Paint lightest color first. Light to dark, and just "fog" the darker colors as its really easy to get too dark.


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    I just went through a can of HS olive drab, painting a 50 lb johnson 7.5 horse twin. Since I paint occasional vehicles, I had some left over automotive degreaser, and surface prep. Since it's just matt finish, and used for hunting, I found no reason to fire up my HVLP gun, and just rattled canned it. Dryed quick, and is a perfect color match to the 17 ft x 51 in. Esquif Rangely canoe.

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    Wellllllll...given that prices seemed to have went up on camo vinyl ,and the least I would have to pay for vinyl is about $380, I've decided to just rattle can the whole thing, as you guys suggest. So that's my plan now. Figure to just use the HS camp paint at Cabela's rather than have ti shipped in.

    I'm still planning to use the Marsh Grass Tan as the main color, that is, paint the entire boat, inside and out tan. I'm wondering if I should use the mud brown over the stencil. (I'll use the realfoot or something similar.) I'm thinking, for up here, tan and brown are about the only useful colors. Does anyone disagree?

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