The most common types of antifouling paint broken down.

With the new season fast approaching and launch just weeks away, it's time to get down to business and tackle the dreaded task of painting and protecting the hull. It's an exhausting task and I've paid my dues over the years; with that said I'm still no antifouling paint expert by any means. Let's be honest - there's so many different types to choose from and then there's the compatibility issues and application methods - PLUS the never ending battle with Mother Nature to get the warm weather needed to actually paint the boat! So, I've spent hours scouring Interlux's website to help make the overwhelming world of antifouling paint a little bite easier. 

Why antifouling paint or what is it you may ask? Industry expert Interlux explains antifouling paint is vital to protecting your boat because "once fouling has a hold on your hull it will rapidly colonise the surface, making it difficult to remove. Applying an antifouling paint will prevent the attachment of fouling organisms, such as barnacles, weeds and slime, to the hull of your boat." [1]

Before you jump right in, you need to pick your antifouling paint. This is really important because you can't just throw any old paint on. Whatever you decide to put on this year should be the same as last year. Otherwise you'll have to strip everything off from last year and start fresh - not all antifouling paints are compatible. 

Some questions to ask yourself before selecting your bottom paint:

1. What was put on last year?

Can't remember what you put on last year or want to try something new? Here's a  compatibility chart from Interlux. 

2. Where will the boat be kept? (e.g. fresh water or salt water)

3. What type of material/surface is the hull? (e.g. Fibgerglass, wood, metal, etc...) 

Now let's get to the bottom of antifouling paint!


VC17

VC17

The original antifouling with "non-stick" technology. Metallic copper powder is added to VC 17m's thin fluoro microadditive film to create a hard, super-smooth antifouling coating. Its fluoro microadditive based film shrugs off marine growth, and the exceptional surface smoothness means boat speeds can actually increase by as much as 10%.

  • Where: Below the Waterline
  • Finish: Matte 
  • NOT suitable for aluminium 
  • Recommended Coats: 2-3 
  • Thinner: V172
  • Colour Options: GraphiteRedBlue


Tip: VC 17 does not require a minimum ambient temp of 10°C/50°F like almost all other antifouling paints. You can apply it in colder conditions, such as around the 0°C mark! 

For more info on surface prep and application for VC17, see  here


Fiberglass Bottomkote 


A hard modified epoxy, fast dry antifouling paint with clean stable colors that has been developed to provide effective season-long protection on all power and sailboats. 

  • Hull type: fiberglass, wood or properly primed steel and lead
  • Water type: can be used in fresh, salt and brackish waters
  • Where: Below the waterline 
  • Finish: Matte
  • NOT suitable for aluminium 
  • Recommended Coats: 2-3 
  • Do not apply when temperature is below 10°C/50°F
  • Colour Options: RedGreenBlueBlack
  • Available in a quart or gallon (for most colours). 


Benefit: Fast dry, paint that allows same day launch + overcoats any existing bottom paint

For more info on drying time, coverage, surface prep and application, see  here

Bottomkote XXX 

Specially formulated for the cost concious boat owner requiring a good general purpose antifouling paint.

  • Where: Below Waterline 
  • Finish: Matte
  • NOT suitable for aluminium 
  • Recommended Coats: 2 
  • Thinner: Y216
  • Soft Eroding Bottom Paint for Cruising Boats 
  • Colour Options: RedBlueBlack
  • Available in a quart or gallon (for most colours). 


Advantage: Fast dry allows re-coating between the tides. 

For more info on drying time, coverage, surface prep and application, see  here

Bottomkote ACT

Fiberglass Bottomkote® ACT uses Ablative Copolymer Technology to enable it wear away with use, consistently exposing fresh and effective biocide. This technology also eliminates the build up of old spent coatings and the sanding needed to remove them. Fiberglass Bottomkote® ACT provides season to season protection from barnacles, zebra mussels, algae and other forms of marine fouling in waters with moderate to heavy fouling. 

  • Water Type: Fresh, Salt and Brackish waters
  • Where: Below the Waterline 
  • Finish: Matte
  • NOT suitable for aluminium 
  • Recommended Coats: 2-3
  • Colours Available: BlueBlack


Advantage: Paint in the fall and launch in the spring

For more info on drying time, coverage, surface prep and application, see  here

Micron CSC 

Micron® CSC* wears away (polishes) at a controlled rate, resulting in a reduced build-up of old coatings and minimized sanding at reapplication. This also allows the boat to be hauled and launched without recoating.

  • Where: Below Waterline
  • Finish: Matte
  • NOT Suitable for aluminium 
  • Recommended Coats: 2-3 
  • Thinner: Y216
  • Colour Options: BlueRedBlackShark WhiteDark Blue


Suitable for all power and sail, in all waters!

For more info on drying time, coverage, surface prep and application, see  here.

Tri-Lux II

A unique copolymer paint specifically formulated for aluminum crafts and related surfaces. It is equally compatible with fiberglass, wood, steel and lead. 

  • Where: Below Waterline
  • Finish: Matte
  • Recommended Coats: 3 
  • Ideal for aluminum outdrive and outboard motor lower units BUT is also compatible w. fibgerglass 


Reminder: Do NOT apply DIRECTLY to aluminium! Aluminium and all other metal surfaces should all be prepped with Interprotect  2000E/2001E or Primocon first.

For more info on drying time, coverage, surface prep and application, see  here


Now that you've chosen the antifouling paint you want to use, you've got to do some surface prep. The amount and type of prep you have to do depends on, again, what you put on last year and the paint you're using; thus surface prep will vary according to each antifouling paint. 

Most cans of antifouling paint will have the prep directions on the label but can also be found on the manufacturer's website's. I mean really, who can read that small print on the can?!

Still have some questions? No problem. Contact us and we'd more than happy to give you a hand! Any Fogh Marine employee would be happy to assist you! 


[1] “Antifoulin Paint”. Interlux. Accessed 3 March 2015. http://www.yachtpaint.com/can/diy/products/Antifouling/search.aspx

Tags: Interlux, Bottom Paint, Bottomkote, VC17, Micron CSC, Fiberglass Bottomkote, Bottomkote XXX, Tri-Lux II, Launch Prep, Antifouling, Antifouling Paint

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