Is bottom paint necessary in fresh water? - SailNet Community
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post #1 of 13 Old 01-15-2008 Thread Starter
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Is bottom paint necessary in fresh water?

I have seen postings in other internet forums claiming that there is no need to apply bottom paint to your fiberglass boat as long as it is used in fresh water only and hauled out at the end of each season. Some recommend a good coat of wax only. Anyone have experience with this?
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post #2 of 13 Old 01-15-2008
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Um, I don't agree. On the Great Lakes (Fresh Water) you need protection.

Only if you haul your boat after every daysail would I consider it.
More than two or three days and your going to get some slime.

Launched in Spring and hauled in Fall, you will have a hairy growth on you boat.
It will be more than just slime.

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post #3 of 13 Old 01-15-2008
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I know people that don't put on bottom paint in freshwater, but they are able to clean the bottom with the boat in the water. Depending on where you are, zebra mussels can be a problem as well.

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post #4 of 13 Old 01-15-2008
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If the boat sits in the water the whole season, you'll probably wish you had put on some sort of bottom paint.

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post #5 of 13 Old 01-15-2008
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I doubt that wax would do much good if it sat underwater for a season. You need bottom paint in the great lakes.

Those grand fresh-water seas of ours - Erie, and Ontario, and Huron, and Superior, and Michigan, - possess an ocean-like expansiveness...They contain round archipelagoes of romantic isles...they have heard the fleet thunderings of naval victories...they know what shipwrecks are, for out of sight of land, however inland, they have drowned full many a midnight ship with all its shrieking crew. --from Moby Dick
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post #6 of 13 Old 01-15-2008
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A boat that lives in the water 24/7 needs anti fouling, regardless of whether it's a freshwater or saltwater environment.
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post #7 of 13 Old 01-16-2008
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It's been said numerous times, but yes, you need bottom paint if you want to slow the accumulation of slime/critters/algae. It's also a tremendous help in removing said sludge after haul-out.

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post #8 of 13 Old 01-16-2008
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I live on a freshwater lake. The only boats that dont grow slime and zebra mussels are the ones that are cranked up on a boat lift every night. All the other ones grow stuff, and do it really fast later in the year when the water gets warmer.
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post #9 of 13 Old 01-16-2008
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You DO need bottom paint in fresh water! Obviously there are different paints for different regions, but even WITH bottom paint my boat grew algeae in MN 20 years ago.

It was bad paint, but still.
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post #10 of 13 Old 01-16-2008
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VC 17m is very popular here for a reason as it's not a great salt-water paint, but it keeps the slime and critters largely at bay. The bottom of my keel is nearly impossible to reach (as the boat sits on it) and the mussel growth there is significant. Elsewhere, we use Pettit Premium Performance liberally, and that does the trick for us. On my FG boat, it's VC 17m, which may change if it's raced next season.
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