What bottom paint-albative or hard antfouling

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    Irish Mist

    My 35 Dickerson Irish Mist has been using hard epoxy since I purchased it in 1982. I keep it in Deale MD and take it out every other year to paint the bottom, usually with two coats of Interlux Bottomcote.
    This year, which is the second year on the paint, I had to have a diver clean the botton about once a month, before I went sailing. Did not clean it for 30 days and went out last weekend and was slowed down considerably by slime build up.
    So after some research and talking to Barry Creighton decided to look at applying an albative paint. You can find many on the Internet but some of the ringers are Micron Extra, West Marine PCA Gold, and Pettit Ultimate SR. A relatively new product line is made by Blue Water Paints in New Jersey. Of course the prices and composition varied somewhat but in general the albative multi seasonal paints were $200 a gallon or more.

    I found a product Blue Water Copper Shield, muti seasonal albative with 45% copper  that was rated very favorably by Practical Sailor. I bought two gallons at cost of $99 a gallon from Ship2Shore. Will be using it next year.

    Joe Slavin, Irish Mist

    Irish Mist

    Here is a comment I received by e mail from a Dickerson Sailor. I would be interested in hearing from others on type of bottom paint you use, how often do you clean the bottom and where do you keep your Dickerson. Thanks

    Hey Joe,

    This is a tough one and there probably isn't a perfect solution.  Every location seems to have it's own challenges — mine might be the most difficult as we have very salt water/
    tenacious barnacles and persistent slime.  To combat these factors, I haul every other year/ use two coats of ablative paint and contract a diver every 6 weeks.  That combination seems to balance the amount of growth, and the durability of the bottom paint (at two years, it's gone).
    If I used hard paint, I'd need a diver more frequently and even sailing more frequently with the ablative paint would not obviate the need for the diver.  So you have to figure the balance.

    I use West Marine PCA ablative paint (made by Petit), but I really don't think that there is a good “paint and forget” solution.  And to make matters more complicated, don't forget that the propellor is important.

    Irish Mist

    I have been talking to several people to get more comments on this subject.

    One comment from a Dickerson sailor who keeps his boat on the Chesapeake North of Baltimore was that he uses an ablative paint and has not cleaned his bottom for 3 years. Maybe the water is brackish where the boat is docked,  but this seems unusual especially when that boat is clearly fast and winning races. Some of us are cleanning the bottom once a month or certainly before every Dickerson race.

    Let us know of your experience


    Al Sampson

    We all know that all saltwater is not the same. Wanderlust resides in RI. To me the water is very salty. I have been using Interlux ACT ablative for 18 years with good results. The boat is only in the water six months of the year. At the end of the season it's power washed, to remove some slime, when it's hauled. In the spring it gets a very light sanding with a scotch brite pad and one very light coat of paint. We get no pealing with this paint. We have made two extended trips back to the Chesapeake. Each time I have noticed the bottom stays cleaner than in home waters. As for the prop, I have not yet found any thing that works! What we use to use is no longer available. So we go for a swim about once a month.   

    Irish Mist

    Hi Al,

    I do not usually get barnacles on the prop. I use a hard epoxy Interlux Bottomcoat

    Am switching to ablative Blue Water

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