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Matching Old Marine Vinyl With New

Depending on a number of variables, somewhere around seven years old many boats start to see wear and tear on the upholstery. The most common areas that we see is where people enter and exit the boat, seat cushions that get stepped on, and other high-traffic areas.

In some cases, we can make repairs but in others replacing the skin is necessary. The most common problem we run into when recovering one cushion or only part of the boat, is matching the vinyl. With so many patterns, textures, and colors you would think it would be easy, but as many customers find out, it isn’t.

The issue is caused in part by the boat manufacturer ordering a very specific color dye lot and pattern that isn’t offered for aftermarket sales. Sometimes we do get lucky and can match certain colors and textures with a different vinyl manufacturers color and texture.

We like to recommend with accent colors when there isn’t a good match to pick something that is intentionally off but still looks good and is something they could use down the road on other parts of the boat. I would typically recommend picking a new “modern” texture in the corresponding color.

When the main color is the issue, we have a bit more soul searching and will require you to pick a color you either feel will go well with the rest of the boat or one you would like to use in updating the whole boat in the future.

Matching color can be a real pain, so always take the time to pick your own vinyl. We will always take the time to help pick the right colors with you, we really don’t enjoy picking them without you because what I like, you may hate.

In the photos below, you see the AFT hatches on a v-drive Moomba. We ran into issues finding a perfect match for the gray and blue but did find a different texture where the color was almost perfect. This new texture really gives an updated, modern feel, and gave the customer something they can do throughout the boat in the coming years if needed.

Another cool thing about this project was, Oscar was given the chance to teach Amanda how to do some upholstery. These 3 hatches are only Amanda’s second upholstery project and she made it look like she has been doing it for years!

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