Protection of steel is key

Hempel has updated its Inland Waterways Manual Hempel has updated its Inland Waterways Manual
Industry Database

Whether it’s a new boat that is being painted or whether paint is being applied over existing coatings, preparations still need to be carried out and the correct coating chosen.

Hempel’s updated Inland Waterways Manual provides details on considerations and possible treatments for steel panels to ensure painting is successful such as what the vessel will be used for – vessels used for charter or living on board require a higher paint system both internally and externally.

Vessels that will encounter severe high abrasion may benefit from a single pack system as it’s easier to recoat.

Correct coverage

“The manual is very popular and is particularly tailored to suit the inland waterways,” explained Darren Gittins, Hempel sales manager Yacht Coatings UK.

The manual looks at protective clothing that should be worn, cleaning and degreasing – methods that can be used including abrading and application methods and tools that should be used including paint coat film thickness and tips to get the correct coverage per square metre including calculating paint quantities.

There are also sections on coatings available for above and below the waterline such as primer and topcoats and varnishes available whether its single components or two components.


One of the key coatings for the inland waterways market is Hempels’ Hempadur 45143, explained Darren, a high performance priming system that will provide a priming or finish coat and can be overcoated with a two pack or a conventional single pack finish.

“Protection of steel is one of the key areas,” he said. “The temperature of steel goes up and down and the coating has to be able to cope with this.

“There’s also the problem of underwater obstacles that a boat can hit. Epoxy can take a lot more of a bashing than a single bitumen coating.”

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