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View Poll Results: What type of underfouling paint do you use?
Hard 9 45.00%
Soft, ablative 10 50.00%
House paint 0 0%
Other 1 5.00%
Voters: 20. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 21-04-2006, 03:13   #1
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What is the Best Anti fouling Paint

I know I might have started a heated debate with that question but I really need to know. My boat is getting hauled out tomorrow and the boat yard manager (in Spain) recommends teflon paint (soft, ablative that spreads blue scum through the ocean and all over me whenever I touch it). As you can tell I don't like ablative paints. I have some remaining on the hull (last painted three years ago) and I want hard paint now. Any recommendations would be very welcome.
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Old 21-04-2006, 04:36   #2
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I’ve always used “hard” anti-foulings, such as Trinidad and Trindad-SR, in tropical waters. Ablative’s require (abrasive) movement, so don’t work well when docked, or at anchor

Deleted - Error, in fact: and they must remain wet (launch within a day, and stay in water).

There’s some good general information on the difference between hard & soft anti-foulings at:
http://www.ghmarina.50megs.com/custom.html
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Old 21-04-2006, 05:42   #3
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Barbara, unfortunately you are fighting a battle shaped by environmental perceptions...and all the paint manufacturers are the tail wagged by the EU dog. As you probably remember from the States, copper is king (although "weed killers" in ablative paints do have a following there, as well). Copper is heavy and so must be 'carried' and also 'supported' on the hull with a strong binder, usually a modified epoxy of some kind. We suffer paint build-up over time with these paints but they can be 'maintained' (scrubbed) routinely and thus made to last some years, even in a Caribbean environment. That's why Gord, me and others like Trinidad so much - it's effective AND it can be maintained. Alas, that's only in North America & the Caribbean...

In Europe, it's the reverse. Unlike the U.S EPA, which has restrictions on the severity and chemical composition of "weed killer" AF paints but embraces copper, the EU loves poisons but does not accept copper in appreciable amounts. And with poisons, a soft binder is the most effective choice - it helps the poison release to be regulated better. And so here we (you and I; I just faced this same issue in Portugal) sit, wanting something 'hard' but only being offered various degrees of 'soft'.

As if that isn't enough, the cost of paint here is so high that it not only lacks logic but forces manufacturers to sell small 2.5L cans over the counter. At least when using a yard, they can work from 5 gal buckets and there's a chance (mind you, it's only a chance...<smile>) that you'll pay for less waste.

In hopes this might be one data point and so a wee bit helpful, I was given a recommendation by our yard which is an International Paints dealer but also carries the Hempel line (and it is consistent with what I was told by International's EU Sales Manager). The yard manager said they'd been disappointed with I's Optima paint and thought the best 'value' (aka: performance for bucks spent) he could offer is Micron Extra over the Hempel products (for full-time cruising, which as you know does involve a fair amount of not going anywhere). As you also know, there are many manufacturers to choose from and I'm not convinced this is the one, single, best product choice...but I've had multiple indpendent reports from other boats that they get good service from it in N Europe and also the Med, so perhaps that's a product worth considering in your case.

Good luck to you. BTW would you recommend the yard you're dealing with right now? If yes, you might let us know...it's always helpful to collect another data point, as you just never know.

Jack
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Old 21-04-2006, 05:59   #4
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I also vote for Trinadad SR. Switched a few years ago from Micron extra and much happier even though requires more maintenance due to buildup.
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Old 21-04-2006, 07:57   #5
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I use Trinadad SR myself but a lot depends on your water temperature. The warmer the water the most active protection you need. The critters grow best in warm water. The new smooth surface solutions promise better than they actually deliver.

It would be great if you could make a smooth enough surface that growth could not attach to. Make for some nice sailing too.
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Old 21-04-2006, 08:09   #6
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Jack,

Micron is the most easily available, and until a year ago, was what I used on my boat, but it is expensive and I found that it had a tendency to leave craters in the paint as it disolved unless you were doing hard sailing (and even then there were some craters. These after abt 3 months from application started to affect the speed of the boat.

Last year I used TEAMAC erodible. It is considerably cheaper, goes on more evenly (albeit slightly thicker), dissolves much more evenly such that there was much less impact on boat speed, and is available in 5 ltr tins (and even 20 ltr for some)

I think it is a bit softer than micron, so erodes faster during use.

They also do a hard copper with biocides see http://www.teamac.co.uk/product-antifouling.asp##

BTW in Europe you can not depend on last years results, cause as soon as the manufacturer finds something that works, the authorities ban it!
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Old 21-04-2006, 10:03   #7
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Hempel

So far I would recommend the yard where I&#180;m going to be hauled out, but I should wait until I&#180;m done before I give it my full endorsement. It&#180;s in Sant Feliu de Guixols, in Costa Brava and the name of the owner is Pedro Carre Compano. It&#180;ll cost me E170 out/in, E45 to pressure wash and scrape if neccessary (yes) plus E230 for them to do the paint. I can live aboard with power and water, the first week is free on the hard and after the first week I think about E15/day which is less than at the marina (17/day). I can also do the antifouling myself and only pay E150 for paint (Vinilico) which he says will do two coats good for two years. Labour is at E20/hr. The owner is treating me with respect which is a surprise and a pleasure. Singlehanded women are still odd around here.

I priced out Marina Forum just east of Barcelona and it was much more but I don&#180;t have the figures with me now. I also priced out Palamos (next port north) and it was more as well.

Is Hempel available in Europe? Also, I&#180;m tempted to add a half a litre of cayenne pepper to the paint - has anyone tried that?
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Old 21-04-2006, 10:15   #8
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Barbara:

Your yard rates sound very reasonable to me (here in Portugal). Congratulations!

You titled your reply "Hempel" but discussed using "Vinilico" so I'm not sure what choice you have made. Given the cost (and hassle) of hauling out, the disruption, the cost, the inevitable clean-up after the fact, and the cost of the "consumables" when painting the bottom (brushes, pan, clothes etc.), my logic is that another coat (or two) of paint is pretty cheap, and good but expensive paint is also cheaper than not so good and cheap paint. So I would encourage you to select a product you think will work...and if you aren't sure how well it will work, apply more of it rather than less.

Yes, Hempel is available in Europe. As for cayenne pepper (and other "homeopathic" additions to bottom paint), they make the surface of the hull look a bit like the floor of a rocky moonscape but, despite the claims and pseudo-science, I have yet to see them make any difference. Anyone else have first-hand experience to the contrary?

Talbot, I got a chuckle out of your last comment...because it wasn't that different than what the International European sales manager was saying, and he had a chemistry degree and had been in working in formulations earlier in his career.

Jack
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Old 22-04-2006, 13:33   #9
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I know one chap who has experimented with adding copper finings to his paint. This makes it very expensive, but does markedly reduce the number of barnacles.

A couple of years ago he experimented with stick on sheets of copper. It was hardwork and very expensive, but the copper sheets were not up to the job with his boat, and a trip back from Gibraltar to UK removed great areas of the copper. I inspected it on return to UK, and suspect that his 30 ton boat running at 30 kts was just to heavy for this application, and contact with anything in the water was enough to puch a hole in the sheets and then the water pressure ripped it right off.

I suspect that it might work a lot better on a sailboat!

If the picture board was actually working I would attach a photo of the boat
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Old 22-04-2006, 15:01   #10
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The "coppercoats", that is, the application of pure copper onto hulls is greatly improving. It is expensive, but is lasting many years. It is certainly stopping marine animals from growing, but there still seems to be a slimy weed growth that needs a light scrub once a year. There are two new techniques that have been developed recently. One is blowing a pure copper powder over a special epoxy undercoat and teh other is a slow water erodable epoxy that is copper powder rich. Very different to the older technique. So far, both coats ar being Gauranteed for 10yrs, but niether have been on long enough to know if it will make it. It is still in a trial stage. Both are coming up to five years and look good still, and the apllicators have been confident enough to start commercialy applying to boat owners here in NZ.
The other difference is the form of copper powder being used. It is microspheres of copper poder. Some guy found that a conductive material will not conduct if it is made of lots of tiny spheres. So this stops the pure copper from reacting from electrolosys
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Old 22-04-2006, 16:13   #11
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Most US yards have a chart showing compatability between different bottom paints. Whatever you choose, you want to make sure it will adhere to what is there now. You could have a bigger problem if the old and new do not work together unless you are planning to strip prior to applying new.

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Old 23-04-2006, 03:57   #12
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I am actually talking about sheets of pure copper just like they used on the old sailing warships, only thinner, and stuck on rather than nailed. Unfortunately the glue wasnt up to the job, and the copper was a bit too thin!
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Old 23-04-2006, 13:38   #13
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Sorry, yes I did realise what you were talking about. I just meandered a step further in my thinking, without being clear. But taking the copper sheet idea a step further is this new process of blowing these copper spheres onto an epoxy adhesive.
I also wondered about mixign more pure copper into a standard Antifoul. The big difference in antifouls is that they use Cuprouse Oxide and not pure copper. I wonder how big a difference the two are when comparing to what crustacians like and don't like.
I am lucky, my boat is birthed in a marina were we don't have too much growth. We have good flushes of fresh water comethrough every rain. I applied two coats of Altex Devoe ABC antifouling in Dec of 2003. It is just now starting to get a bit of hairy growth on edges of things like rudder and so on. and the prop is gfeeling a little out of balance. So it will be a haulout after winter. I'll be very happy with nearly three years of protection when I haul her.
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Old 24-04-2006, 00:56   #14
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Gord:

I was concerned about your comment regarding ablatives not being able to remain out of the water for any length of time, since we've put a lot of Micron Extra on WHOOSH and may want to haul her before its all gone. I don't know if your statement is generally true because, like you, we're more experienced in using a modified epoxy 'hard' product. But in checking the .pdf file International offers on Micron Extra, they specifically note that the performance of the boat is independent of how much time it spends out of the water. Instead, they state the only variable is how much paint is left on the hull. "Retains its antifouling capability when hauled and can be relaunched without repainting" is the language they use.

Thought we should note that, since Micron Extra seems a fairly common choice. Were you thinking of specific products when you posted that note? Might be good to know what they are for the next person who patrols thru this thread...

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Old 24-04-2006, 02:38   #15
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Wheels,

I know a couple of people who are experimenting with pure copper finings added to the A/F. This does seem to be an improvement, but it is also a lot more expensive (unless you own a copper mine!)

Three years - wow! The first bit of slime normally appears in about 3 weks, and with micron, I started to get weed tentacles after 3 months.
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