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The antifoul we find best for Peace IV (winter in Bahamas and summer near the non smelly sewage treatment plant in E Greenwhich, Rhode Island in New England) is ABC #3 Black 283-S-5415 which is for use in commercial shipyards only.  It is manufactured by Ameron International. 

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Hi Charlie my boat is in Auckland and I have used both hard and soft antifoul paints before I got here. On balance I think a hard antifoul is better because it can take a rub without losing too much paint. I have made two tools. One is broad metal spatula fitted into a length of plastic plumbing pipe. This removes any barnacles between coatings. It works really well from my dinghy and saves getting wet when the water is cold. The other is a bit of carpet stuck to a wooden pad attached by  a hinge to another length of pipe to wipe down the mud slime which attaches to the hull in Whitford. I have only just made it and havent tried it out yet, but no reason why it should not work. This is the beauty of the V shaped hulls of a Wharram. This makes the hull accessible to these kind of tools. No matter how good the paint, they all need a wipe down from time to time. This exposes the active ingredients which would otherwise be covered in slime and makes them effective again. Cheers, Dave

I guess the best of the expensive hard antifoul paint I have used on other boats which summered in New England and wintered in Bahamas, was a Petit product called Trinidad.  It was not ablative and required sanding prior to recoating which I did annually.   Our finances do not go that wy now and luckily this ABC works very, very well and is affordable and has the added benefit of being ablative.  I believe this ABC is what the Navy uses on some of their very large boats. 


We are trying to avoid exposure to sand dust from antifoul.  Our older bodies cannot cope with that exposure which is part of using a hard antifoul.  So ablative is best for us now and we brush it wet with a stiff bristle brush prior to repainting so there is no chance of inhaling the dust.  We put on two coats and skip a year or two before recoating.  

   Not all ablatives are soft and the ABC is fairly resistant to wear, so we do scrape or scrub  as needed (at least twice a year).  We found that plasterers use a large putty knife type of thing and we can get the bottom cleaned fast and easy with a 4 inch wide blade made of stainless steel with a strong handle.  It is easy to remove slime build up and also any barnacles which might appear if we have gone aground on sharp sand or gravel beach (which will wear off even hard antifoul).  Thankfully we have extra layers of fibreglass on the keels so have never had damage.  For cleaning slime, we use a soft brush and usually while  the tide is going out and Peace is drying out on a soft sand beach because I now find it difficult to clean the hulls while swimming.   


Antifoul is harmful to humans and some of the long lasting paints can make you quite ill.  It really is stupid to expose yourself to too many chemicals.   Be reasonable and be careful.  By the time you are antifouling, life is getting good and sailing is surely lots more fun than being sick. 


Ann and Nev


Here in Korea every fisherman uses one of two products by KCC which I believe is hard antifouling paint. I have just never seen any other kind.

Some people say that the antifouling paint must be applied just before you put the boat in the water while others say that is does not matter wether the paint has been on for weeks in the dry dock or has just been freshly applied. As there are no particular intstructions on that on the can I am not sure what to do.

Ay ideas on that?


Perhaps you have a few small pieces of ply that are fiberglassed and scraps left over.  Perhaps you can get the local fishermen to help you test the local brands of paint by allowing you to paint each scrap with a different brand or color with the last drops of paint in the bottom of their cans.   Put these test pieces in the water (maybe screwed onto a dock in your harbor side by side all facing the same direction) and see what happens.  They are business men and might be just as interested in the results of a paint test as you are.  If they are like my Vietnamese sons, they will all want to place bets...


I have heard that some folks believe that black is the best color - something in that color helps the antifoul work better.  I would be interested in testing that.   Here we have a vast choice if budget is not factored in.  Some folks add cayenne pepper or other stuff.  All kinds of careful testing would be interesting.  On this site, we have folks all over the world.  We could all test some of the local paints this way  and maybe learn a whole lot and share  what we learn.


We are in a high fouling area in the summer here in our cove near the sweage treatment plant which is not smelly but I think does increase growth.  The fouling in Bahamas is pretty fast too over the winter.  Areas differ.  But one harbor in Ireland that I visited has copper mines up the river and they do not need antifoul on locally moored boats there because there is so much copper in the water, the lifeboat (for example) uses no antifoul at all. 


I do know, Ralf, that some paints are tolerant of being out of water for a few weeks or so during the season and others are not.  Something to test for?


Ann and Nev 

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