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Aluminum boat with copper paint problems



2004

I have recently purchased a used 16 foot aluminum boat. It had previously had the bottom painted with a copper based paint. Now, under the barnacles, there is oxidation and corrosion. The hull does not leak and the rivets appear solid. What must I do to ensure longevity and integrity with this bottom?

Tom Anderson
teacher - Burlington, Washington


affil. link
Marine Aluminum Restorer and Polish

2004

The first thing you need to do is get the copper off there because it causes galvanic corrosion. Copper-based bottom paint is used as a biocide to deter marine build-up, it is not a corrosion inhibitor. It is only appropriate for use on plastic. It is probably impractical to test the hull integrity of a small boat like this, but a marine surveyor could look at it to make you more comfortable.

Ted Mooney, finishing.com Teds signature
Ted Mooney, P.E.
Striving to live Aloha
finishing.com - Pine Beach, New Jersey


2005

What do you suggest I use to remove the copper paint on my aluminum boat. There are no real signs of corrosion yet. I also want to remove the paint over anodized on the sides of the boat. It is a classic FeatherCraft I have begun to restore.

Roger Heidt
- Belleville, ON, Canada


Hi. When you folks speak of "copper paint", I'm assuming you mean ablative bottom paint that has copper in it, rather than copper colored paint. I imagine that it can be removed either with Aircraft Stripper or by abrasive blasting. But as far as I know, bottom paint is a hazardous material, so the blasting service may need to do something about containment. Good luck.

Regards,

Ted Mooney, finishing.com Teds signature
Ted Mooney, P.E.
Striving to live Aloha
finishing.com - Pine Beach, New Jersey


2007

I am currently restoring an aluminum hull boat I have DA sanded it completely with 80 grit paper and a stainless steel wire wheel. I am applying PPG DP-40 zinc chromate primer over all. I am then applying epoxy sandable surfacer,then a 3 stage urethane topcoat. I have used it over the years on all bare metal surfaces. It comes in several colors and has never failed me.

Shaun Ramirez
- Clackamas, Oregon


March 30, 2009

Where can I buy PPG-DP-40. Shaun, tell me where I can buy everything that I need to paint my boat? Thank you.

Russ

Russ Hanson
- Belvidere Illinois


November 19, 2009

Hi, Russ. I don't know about the PPG brand, but Awlgrip [affil. link to info/product on Amazon] offers zinc chromate primer. Zinc chromate is labeled "For Professional Use" because of the toxicity of chromates.

Regards,

Ted Mooney, finishing.com Teds signature
Ted Mooney, P.E.
Striving to live Aloha
finishing.com - Pine Beach, New Jersey

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