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Thread: Tell me about coal tar epoxy-

  1. #1
    Member Frantically Relaxing's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Salt Lake

    Tell me about coal tar epoxy-

    We've owned our SkipperLiner for going on 9 years now. Has a steel semi-V hull, dead-flat at the stern, 9 up front. I'm fixing to pull the boat this weekend after 3-1/2 years in the water for some much needed maintenance, the biggie being sandblasting the hull to inspect and repair anything if needed and finishing up with coal tar epoxy.

    Not sure if I'm going to do the sandblasting or pay to have it done. For simply the money's sake, I'd rather do it myself. I have access to a diesel blaster with all the goodies, but I don't have a lot of free time, so I'd be doing this on weekends until weather doesn't permit.

    Regardless of who does it- What is needed before applying the coal tar? Is primer necessary? If so, what type? If not, what kind of prep is needed to the bare metal immediately before applying the coal tar? Are there different types or grades of coal tar epoxy? Is anti-fouling paint needed?

    thanks in advance!
    1988 SkipperLiner 53x14
    1995 Tracker Party Cruiser 32 *for sale*
    2003 Chaparral 260 SSI
    2000 Allegro Bus 40' DP

  2. #2
    Senior Member easttnboater's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2002
    I had coal tar epoxy on my first houseboat. It was blasted and the epoxy was applied that same day. If you leave the hull bare for a while before applying epoxy and it gets surface rust, then you will have to lightly blast it again. The epoxy goes directly onto the bare steel. I think that all coal tar epoxy is synthetic these days. I go mine at a commercial Sherwin Williams store. It is pretty easy to work with and does not set up too quickly. I would apply at least two coats below the water line. - preferably three. It is tough stuff. Anti-fouling paint is up to you. Stuff will grow on the coal tar epoxy paint, but will not harm it.

  3. #3
    Super Moderator OLD HOUSEBOATER's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    Gulf Shores Alabama
    This is not a week end project job. The Coal tar MUST be applied right after blasting before any corrosion can form. The second coat needs to be applied within 24 hours of the first coat.

    This is a dirty labor intensive job. The upside is that you have a coating on the bottom that needs a chisel to remove. Life on a coating job is 5 to 7 years wit periodic touchups to scrapes and bruises. If you are going to use anti fouling over the Coal Tar, wait a year. Anti fouling doesn't bond well to fresh coal tar. Lee Spry was top notch on Coal Tar jobs but I don't know if he's still in business.

    I never needed anti fouling on the Tennessee River.
    The fries are cold so we gave you extra.

  4. #4
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Wheeling, WV
    I had my Kingscraft blasted and put on Coal tar. It was indeed a messy job. Bottom looks great though and it has held up great.

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