What Paint/Preservative to use, Above and Below the Waterline, as well as in the Bilge?

by Fred van Mourik
(Auburn, ME)

I previously submitted a question regarding size and spacing to use for my 16' launch that will run with a 18 hp inboard diesel.

I have come to the point that I am finishing the outside planking.

It is lapstrake construction.

I treated both sides of the lap with Clear penetrating Epoxy Sealer and a bedding compound.

The plan is to the scribe the entire seam with a small gutter, which I then fill in with 3M 1400 or 1500 silicone.

I did not put 3M silicone between the laps as it would impossible to remove whole or part of the damage board, as 3M 1500 has great adhesive qualities.

After sanding I am considering painting the entire exterior with CPES, followed by paint.

Any suggestions??

The boat would stay in the water all summer, but this would be on a fresh water lake.

Do I still need some type of anti-fouling paint or what else would be appropriate.

For the inside the question is more daunting.

There will always be some water in the bilge, causing possible rot.

Should I pour hot Linseed oil in there as a preservative??.

I heard it will turn black over time, but I would do this only for those areas that would lie beneath the floor boards anyway.

I also understood that it is a treatment that can easily be repeated.

On pictures they always show some type of red (?lead) paint.

Is this still available??.

Any thoughts on other options, like Cetol Marine??

Thanks for any suggestions.


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Feb 09, 2014
by: paul

I have a 1967 Trojan which Had several layers of paint.
The paint was blistering and had to be completely removed.

More important than which paint supplier I would say, is choosing a premium manufacturer and then following the application instructions carefully...no short cuts.

I used Awlgrip and six years later the paint still looks great.
Surface pteperation, sealer , primer and application as prescribed by the manufacturer.

Pictures of my boat Kokomo is are on this site if you wish to see results.


Feb 09, 2014
by: Mike

Hi Fred,

Its good know that you are still working away on your launch.

I think that your idea of using CPES, followed by paint is the way to go.

Use a good quality paint or varnish with UV filters.

Having sealed the wood with CPES there will be no point using Linseed oil, red lead (even if you can find any) or Cetol as these work by soaking into the wood.

Whether to use anti-fouling paint or not depends on location.

The best way to find out is to ask around at your lake to see what others are using or not, as the case may be.


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