Restoring my Sea Mule

Discussion in 'Metal Boat Building' started by martinf, Apr 21, 2009.

  1. martinf
    Joined: Nov 2007
    Posts: 51
    Likes: 1, Points: 0, Legacy Rep: 19
    Location: washington state

    martinf Junior Member

    Alrighty,
    I've been posting in the design forum, but now it's time to get to work, so here I am looking for some practical advice form you good folks.

    I won't spend lots of time trying to explain my project, but quickly put it's a 58,000 lb WWII pusher tug built by Chrystler for the war. 40' long and 13 in beam and all 3/16ths steel and shaped like a shoe box. See my post http://www.boatdesign.net/forums/boat-design/big-project-big-need-advice-experience-26068.html for pics and more background.

    I'm getting ready for sandblasting and weld repair, and certainly that'll take a while, but I want to get to planning about primer and paint. And that's my question for you all: what primer and what paint.
    BUT, let me make a few points to guide your selection advice:
    1-This boat will only be in fresh water--very cold fresh water (Lake Chelan in Washington State, USA, a 1500 ft deep glacier fed lake with no sea weed, no mud, only rock and sand bottom)
    2-We're talking a lot of boat sq footage roughly 1600 ft2
    3 - As an old slow box of a boat, she doesn't need be exceptionally pretty, just sealied up and practical.
    3 - My money is really limited, so I'm not going to be able to afford expensive paint. I know, I know, you get what you pay for, but I truly cannot afford top shelf paint, yet I gotta get this thing in the water!

    So, please suggest products for me to consider.
    thanks much,
    ~martin
     
  2. peter radclyffe
    Joined: Mar 2009
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    Location: europe

    peter radclyffe Senior Member

    if it is fresh water, what we call black tar varnish is a cheap hull paint, its bitumen based, or ask a road gang if the can supply you with bitumen paint, tar, heat it up , if it catches on fire throw a water soaked sack over it to put the fire out, its cheap & works well, there is often no need for marine products inland, stay away from yacht chandleries who will stitch you up, also any steel primer, red lead, & for the inside you can use cement wash, try getting cement off a shovel to see how well it works, i have no idea of your experience, but dont be blinded by marine products, there often not needed , take a good look at all industrial coatings, by accident you may find one that lasts well, for instance some people make their own antifouling from primer & chilli peppers
     
  3. welder/fitter
    Joined: Jun 2008
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    Location: Vancouver

    welder/fitter Senior Member

    Martin,
    I'll leave the paint talk for the experts. I just wanted to touch base with you regarding the seams you have to weld up. I'm assuming that there is a transverse bulkhead just aft of the seam? Maybe you've already planned this, just thought I'd mention that you'll probably want a doubler over the welded seams for a bit of extra strength. Make sure you give yourself lots of ventilation, lost a few buddys in a barge job a few years back - dead air. Major project, but sounds like you've got a decent "create work" plan going. Best of luck!
     
  4. martinf
    Joined: Nov 2007
    Posts: 51
    Likes: 1, Points: 0, Legacy Rep: 19
    Location: washington state

    martinf Junior Member

    Hadn't thought of bitumen paint, though that stuff's hard to get here in the states, I believe--though I'd love to be corrected about that if some one can steer me towards a source here in USA.

    Actually, I'm thinking something a bit fancier than a tar coat, something that's paint and that I can put a color in. Any other suggestions out there?
     
  5. peter radclyffe
    Joined: Mar 2009
    Posts: 1,406
    Likes: 59, Points: 58, Legacy Rep: 680
    Location: europe

    peter radclyffe Senior Member

    black tar varnish is not tar, its paint, why do you ask for something cheap if you dont know what you want
     
  6. martinf
    Joined: Nov 2007
    Posts: 51
    Likes: 1, Points: 0, Legacy Rep: 19
    Location: washington state

    martinf Junior Member

    I asked for low-cost ways to seal up my hull because I am on a tight budget and I am looking for advice from those in the know...
    Why are you snapping at me when I ask for other ideas than only black tar varnish?
     
  7. peter radclyffe
    Joined: Mar 2009
    Posts: 1,406
    Likes: 59, Points: 58, Legacy Rep: 680
    Location: europe

    peter radclyffe Senior Member

    DEAR SIR, please excuse me, good luck
     

  8. martinf
    Joined: Nov 2007
    Posts: 51
    Likes: 1, Points: 0, Legacy Rep: 19
    Location: washington state

    martinf Junior Member

    No worries, Peter, thanks for the idea about the cement. Hadn't thought about it, but you're right...the damn stuff can't come off a shovel!
    I appreciate hearing that I don't need fancy products as others I've talked to are insisting that I need expensive anti-fouling paint, etc.
    If I was to go with a more basic primer and paint, what do you guys use? I'm thinking there must be some industrial products that would cost an arm or leg....
    I know one guy who brushes on Penetrol right after he sandblasts to keep the rust off until he can prime and paint. Any of you have experience with this?
    thanks for any advice.
    ~martin
     
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