Features May 2012 Issue

Antifouling for Aluminum Boats

Are zinc-silicate paints good for protecting aluminum hulls?

When Achim and Erica Ginsberg-Klemmt upgraded to an aluminum sloop, they had to confront one of aluminum’s major pitfalls: copper-based bottom paints don’t like aluminum. After years of good performance from a foreign-made, expensive-to-import inorganic zinc-silicate coating called Inversalu, the couple sought an affordable option distributed in the U.S. Their research led them to a PPG Amercoat product, a hard two-part zinc-silicate paint called Dimetcote 21-5. Practical Sailor’s report covers their prep and painting experience, a look at how zonc-silicate paints works, and Dimetcote’s performance after eight months in Florida waters.

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