Hope the "yard" is kind to you. These boats get soo big sometimes. Really small at sea, and really big when working on them from underneath.
Great haul out
method! Hope your's goes smoothly as well. THAT IS QUITE A TIDE YOU HAVE THERE!
We can and have discussed the many advantages of using LP paints VS one part paint already, including costs. Those who have actully "been there done that" all agree...
The comparative cost of the 2 systems evens out for the most part, IF it is comparing doing ALL of the work yourself, and buying
materials at a cost of 50% off, through one's business. ANYONE doing this sort of work should start a "business", it's EASY! I get all of my boat supplies & gear
at a discount, and always have.
ALSO: Anyone with a custom made wood/epoxy cruising trimaran, better have ALL of these maintenance skills including painting, or really deep pockets. Those that have neither, seldom leave their home waters, for good reason!
"TRUE" PAINT COMPARISONS:
To be honest... you have compare the expenses after cruising the same two boats tens of thousands of hard sea miles, through 20+ tropical countries, over almost 20 years. One could add up what they saved in the haulouts that they DIDN'T have to have, and the MUCH higher resale value of their LP painted boat. The comparison then is either "about the same costs", OR LPs come out even cheaper to own than one part painted boats. This is only in that "big picture" context, mind you, not if you only compare the cost of a can of paint.
LP painting IS very expensive IF it is hired done, but even the "limited skill or scared to use it crowd" can do the prep, taping, sanding
, papering, etc, themselves. This is about 95% of the work, saving you most of the expense! Then you can get a pro in the yard to JUST spray the hull in a day or two, OR... learn how to do it yourself with roller/tip.
Anyone who has not sailed mostly in the tropics on their boat as an ONLY home, mostly under way, for years, or used both paint systems extensively and then compared the hassle of both in the above context, does not have a valid opinion. They're just making it up as they go along...
I had spent over 20 years as a boatbuilder
using 1 part paints, including anchored out on Searunners, before I even began my decades of use with LP paints.
LP PAINTS ARE NOT FOR EVERYONE! I readily admit that. If you do an LP job yourself, even if you use roller/tip, you need to go at it like a pro, even if you are not one. GET GOOD FIRST! The information is all there, but if things like wearing respirators, careful measuring, taking notes, and doing it exactly according to the instructions, freak you out... then it is not for you. In a custom made wood/composite multihull
, however, I would simply use LPs or sell the boat cheap
ASAP, and get a FRP production monohull
instead, because it has gelcoat
These trimarans have so damned much surface area, and unlike production boats, it all MUST be kept out of the sun or it will disintegrate. Paint on a Searunner's hull is not like on production boats, which use it for cosmetics. On our boats it is NOT for cosmetics, sound paint is a structural imperative! Our boats are both protected and held together by the resin & glass on the hull, which is in turn protected by the paint.
Painting of the structure is therefore the VAST majority of the hours of maintenance that will ever be done on the boat. If you can spend far more "up front" on LPs, and save more money
and effort over decades, it balances out to being a no-brainer, imo. The difference is, that with LP paint, you are talking about just 2 intense paint sessions over decades, and then you are done! These LP sessions can be done in very carefully chosen circumstances back home, rather than MULTIPLE 1 part paint sessions, done in a huge variety of 3rd world countries. You are then buying
whatever 1 part paint you can find, and eventually adding as much as 1,000 pounds in layers of paint to the boat, (over 20 years)!
Leaving 1 part paint peeling in places, until it is convenient to repaint it, is inviting "sun rot". DON'T DO IT...
With 1 part paints, if it is applied on a full time liveaboard/cruiser, getting banged into NUMEROUS times a day by the dinghy
, and the boat is often underway in the tropics, you will not get more than one or two years out of the paint job. I KNOW THIS! I have "repainted" a recently painted SR 37 that had been constantly at sea, but for just 9 months, and it was already peeling. I really don't know how long 1 part paint last for those NOT in the tropics, who DON'T liveaboard
, who are NOT really cruising, and JUST daysail or overnight on weekends... Even so, UNDER THOSE CIRCUMSTANCES, LPs will last 8 to 10 times longer than 1 parts
do, just like in the harsh constantly cruising world.
I have already said that if it were not for 2 part LP paints, I would now not own a trimaran at all. This is because I have done SO much boat work now, that I am sick of it. When I was younger, however, I enjoyed it! The point then was more about hanging out and working on my boat. "Actually going cruising" was a distant goal, and making the "Sunset celebration" in Key West
was quite an adventure unto itself. For the young and energetic, having much more constant work on your boat than real cruising may actually have it's appeal. I was fine with 1 part paint in my 20s... For custom made trimarans that ACTUALLY travel the world these days, over 95% of them are painted with LP paints, as it is the only rational choice for THIS group. Like I said, it's a no-brainer...
I have used hundreds of gallons this kind of paint... If measured by volume, total area covered, & the number of years used, I have used it more than ANY other type of paint in my life. This was always on a house, of coarse, as it was intended. LATEX was formulated for easy/safe use even by children
, easy cleanup, and minimal coats required for coverage.
The fact that it has very little abrasion resistance, very poor adhesion, (often < even masking tape), and "0" solvent resistance, is not an issue on the vertical walls of a firmly aground HOUSE! Years ago, I used the best latex I could get on my last house. It was Sears "best" WeatherBeater had the best CR rating, and cost about $125 per gallon! It was great to work with, but still had the above characteristics. I had to lift
any masking tape EVER so carefully. Still, on a house, it was great stuff and lasts for many years. Bond strength and abrasion resistance means little on a house.
Using Latex paint on a boat, however, is a whole different thing from using it a house! On a totally beat up old monohull
, or production work skiff, maybe. At least then when it fails, the gelcoat
protects the hull from UVs. To use this stuff on the vulnerable horizontal decks of our custom made trimarans, and then go to sea with it and walk on it all day, is utter nonsense. Someone who lives up north and seldom really uses his boat like a full time tropical cruiser might "get away with it", but it is still utter nonsense, imo. The whole "latex paint your boat" thing is an irrational conversation that need go no further. "Paint your boat with house paint, it's the exact same application as if used on a house, and will work BETTER than boat formulated paint". REALLY??? So you know more than 99.99% of the pros on the subject, over the entire world?
And remember, if you use latex paint on your boat, you are committed to it forever. You can't go over it with LP paints OR even 1 part marine
enamel, as both of these systems will melt latex!
I still think that a sap and Camel dung boat paint has promise! It works fine as the dye on my wife's African tapestries, why wouldn't it work as paint, on a boat?
IF you must or choose to opt for 1 part paint, to save some labor on a boat that is 95% "prep time" anyway, I suggest using the best rated 1 part marine
enamel, as tested and reviewed by "Practical Sailor" or the like. It will have the downsides mentioned, but it sticks better than masking tape, (unlike latex), is pretty abrasion resistant, (unlike latex), and (unlike latex), you can use mild solvents on it as well, like mineral spirits to clean up tape residue.
Because of the huge surface area involved on our trimarans, and the harsh tropical cruising environment
, (where most cruisers head for), the issue of which paint to use will go further than perhaps any other, in making it a good trip, vs a bad trip.
Regards to all,
I have, BTW... used FAR more 1 part marine paint on my boats, than 2 part LPs, just not lately.