Zinc chromate is used for a wide range of applications. It is an odorless chemical compound primarily used as an industrial paint coating. The compound is a beneficial coating because it is an anti-corrosive and an anti-rust primer. It is primarily used to coat aluminum and iron materials. Developed by the Ford Motor Company during the 1920s, it was historically used on aircraft by the US military during the 1930s and 1940s. It is also widely used as a paint coating for the aerospace and automotive industries, as well as, a coating for boats, due to its ability to destroy organic growth on the surface and to protect aluminum from corrosion.
Zinc chromate is on the hazardous substance list and regulated by OSHA because studies have shown that not only is zinc chromate highly toxic, but it is also a carcinogen. It has been cited by ACGIH, NIOSH, DEP, IARC, HHAG, and EPA.
Duralux ZinKromate is a high-quality synthetic primer for use in light to moderate marine exposures. It is lead and chromate free so it is safe to use; however, it offers all of the performance and quality characteristics of zinc chromate without the health and application hazards. It has good chemical and corrosion resistance, dries fast, and allows single finish coat coverage when using a like-colored topcoat. ZinKromate performance primer adheres very well to steel, iron, aluminum, or partially rusted galvanized surfaces.
S-76 Strontium Chromate Tack Coat Primer is for use on properly prepared steel, aluminum, or galvanized steel. S-76 is an anti-corrosive strontium chromate-based primer that is specifically designed for underwater metal surfaces including hulls, running gear, and the lower units of outboards and I/O’s. It provides an excellent barrier to reduce the pitting of the metal from galvanic corrosion.
Stromate Chromate tack coat primer may be used on bare aluminum in conjunction with Tuff Stuff High Build Epoxy to form a barrier for the application of copper-based antifoulants.
If you have any questions about ZinKromate primer or Stromate Chromate tack coat primer, please call our technical expert team at 888-505-2313 Monday to Friday 8 am-5:00 pm EST.
Over the lifetime of any boat there will come a time when the deck needs to be renewed. You have a choice of non-skid additives, or paints that already contain a nonskid compound. A non skid boat deck helps protect the surface as well as the occupants.
Customers painting the floor of a jon boat, frequently use the Aluma Hawk aluminum paint with a non skid additive. This paint serves as a paint and primer in one for your aluminum surface.
Interdeck boat deck paint is a non-skid deck paint by Interlux and offers an excellent slip resistant finish. It contains a fine aggregate and will apply easily on substrates. Its low sheen finish prevents dazzling that can be reflected by sunlight off decks. Interdeck is also easy to apply and available in numerous colors. The tough polyurethane resin protects decks against everyday wear and tear.
Depending on your paint choices, follow the manufacturers application instructions whether applying to aluminum, fiberglass, or wood to ensure best adhesion and slip resistance.
A livewell is a tank found on many fishing boats that is used to keep bait and caught fish alive. It works by pumping fresh water from the surrounding body into the tank, as well as keeping the water aerated.
Most live wells on boats are made of fiberglass and usually coated with gelcoat. For more information on applying gelcoat see our How to Apply Gelcoat article.
In the case that your live well is aluminum you can apply Aluma Hawk, available in white, blue, grey, black, sand and jon boat green to the aluminum surface.
For most paints, in order to guarantee efficacy, the only way we recommend changing the color of paints is to mix like paints, ie. Mixing Aluma Hawk with Aluma Hawk. We do not recommend addition of “universal” tints or pigments into our products. Many customers desire an antifouling paint in a deep, dark blue and this can be achieved by mixing blue and black.
Gel coats and resins can have a tint added, no more than 1 oz per quart, which can limit the effect. Another option is to mix two gelcoat colors, such as white and red for pink.
Antifouling bottom paint is needed if you store your boat in the water. If left in the water without protection, marine growth may attach to your boat’s exposed hull. Marine growth slows a boat down and increases fuel consumption. Here are the items that you will need in addition to the bottom paint for the proper anti-fouling bottom paint application.
• 60–100 grit – Suitable for the removal of paint or to sand gel coat prior to the application of antifouling paint.
• After sanding remove sanding residue by wiping with a cloth that has been dampened with the proper solvent.
• Masking Tape– When it is necessary to mask off areas use a high quality clean edge masking tape, especially when the masking tape will be left on the surface for a long time.
• Brushes – For antifouling paints use a natural bristle brush but not necessarily one of as good quality as you would use to apply topside finishes.
• Rollers – Most solvent resistant rollers will have a phenolic core and will say that they are for use with oil based paints or epoxies. For antifouling paint and epoxy primers, use a 3/8”-1/2” nap roller.
Sea Hawk Tuff Stuff Epoxy Primeris an effective water barrier and universal primer. When applied to metal hulled boats it can serve as corrosion protection below the waterline. Therefore many boaters want to have that sort of protection on their Jon boat, and apply Aluma Hawk Boat Painton top. Aluma Hawk is an aluminum boat paint that is one of the easiest and most popular paints for aluminum boats. It is a quick-dry, high-solids, corrosion-inhibiting coating designed for use on an aluminum surface without the need for additional primers. It is chromate-free and may be used above or below the waterline in fresh or saltwater environments. You can paint Aluma Hawk with a brush, roller or spray. Apply 2 coats following the proper dry time requirements. No sanding is necessary between coats of Aluma Hawk if less than 48 hours between coats. Thinning: thin if necessary with MEK.
When over-coating Tuff Stuff Epoxy Primer it is important to meet the required over coating times in order to achieve the best adhesion because temperature and humidity have a direct impact on dry times. QUICK and EASY RULE: When the coating is dry to the touch, yet still has some tack, it is ready to be over coated. Your thumb will leave a print without lifting any epoxy. This is called hot-coating. However, if the coating is completely cured (or after 24 hours) it needs to be thoroughly sanded with 80 grit sand paper to remove the shine, or you must apply another coat of Tuff Stuff within 6 days. Then you have an additional 24 hour maximum window to overcoat with paint.
These two products are great on their own, but they can do so much more when working in conjunction with each other.
First Identify the paint that is there. Is it compatible?
If yes – Sand, Primer, Paint
If no – the previous coating needs to be taken down. Sand with 80 grit paper until the coating is gone. Sand blasting is not recommended because it takes away the aluminum itself.
How do you know if previous paint is compatible with Awlgrip? Perform this test:
Need a rag and some Lacquer thinner
Sand the surface with 80 grit sand paper
Apply lacquer thinner to the rag and hold it on the sanded area.
Put a piece of plastic on to to hold the rag so the Lacquer thinner doesn’t evaporate.
Hold rag for 35-45 min.
Remove rag slowly. Is surface bubbling or lifting? If no, scrape surface with the blade of a knife. If the paint comes off with the blade or the paint feels rubbery you have identified an acrylic based paint. Awlgrip may be applied on top of it. If the surface was bubbling or lifting, the paint is not compatible and must be removed.
II. Apply Awl-Wash Primer CF (Mix Part A and Part B) within 4 hours of cleaning the surface. This provides excellent adhesion to the aluminum surface. Awl-Wash CF can be overcoated with primers after 1 hour of application. Maximum recoat time without sanding is 6 months.
III. Apply a Primer to the Awl-Wash Primer CF. There are 2 main choices.
545 Epoxy Primer – Thin, building primer. Usually applied when there is no need to fill scrapes or gouges.
Awlquick – a medium build, primer/surfacer. Applied to a surface that needs to be filled where there are scrapes or gouges. Awlquick Base + Converter.
IV. Apply a topcoat.
Awlgrip – may be brush rolled or sprayed – usually lasts 7-10 years.
Awlcraft – must be sprayed only – usually lasts 4-6 years.
When painting a boat used for hunting/fishing, such as a Jon Boat, typically a flat finish is desired so you’ll want to use one of our camouflage paints. A primer coat is used to help the paint adhere to the aluminum surface and provides an extra layer of protection from corrosion. You may also use Aluma Hawk, which is a paint and primer in one.
The Aluminum Boat Paint Greenor Aluma Hawk (available in Black, Jon Boat Green, Blue, Sand, White or Aluminum Grey), will serve as paint and primer in one so no need to purchase a primer! Aluma Hawk is one of the easiest and most popular paint for your aluminum boat, and available in (white, blue, Jon boat green, black, aluminum grey, and sand). These are both a paint/primer in one that can be applied to most surfaces with little preparation needed.For more application details see our ‘how to paint an aluminum Jon Boat’ article. When using the Duralux Camouflage Paint on bare aluminum apply two coats of Duralux Zinc Chromate. These should be used when you desire a dull flat finish.
How do you paint Aluma Hawk on a boat?
You can use a brush, roller or spray gun. Most applications will need 2 coats of Aluma Hawk following the proper dry time requirements. No sanding is necessary between coats of Aluma Hawk if less than 48 hours between applying coats. If needed, MEK (Methyl Ethly Ketone) can be used for thinning, as well as clean up.
If you desire a gloss finish, look to theMega Gloss by Blue Water, available in quarts and gallons, is affordable, easy to apply, and only recommended for above the waterline or moderate use on the bottom (1-3 days in the water, not extended periods). This topside paint works best in very thin coats and can be used on fiberglass, wood, aluminum, and steel; see the prep recommendations found on the product page on the “how to use” tab. The Mega Gloss Primeris recommended when applied to bare metal, if you have concerns about sealing your aluminum, see the Bottom Protect by Blue Waterfor a barrier coat. See herefor more application tips.
You have many options when painting aluminum. Your use of the boat, the allotted budget, and the amount of time you want to spend on the project may help determine the right paint for you. For more information see our ‘topside boat paint options’.
How to Fix a Leaking Seam or Rivet on Aluminum Boat
As aluminum boats age they show various signs of wear and tear. One of these signs may be a leaking seam or rivet. Over time, rivets can stretched and loosen, causing a gap in the hull integrity and this results in a leak. The solution to this problem is fairly simple and may be fixed at home using just a few tools and know-how. So, how should this problem be addressed?
Locate the Leaking Rivet or Seam
The first step is to find the exact seam or rivet that needs repair. To do this, put the boat in water and observe carefully. You could also put water inside the boat and see where it allows the water to escape from.
Assess the Damage
The second step is assessing the extent of damage to the rivet or seam. If the seam is too wide to be filled or caulked, it will need additional rivets in combination with a sealant product. If the damage is easily visible a sealant or caulk will be sufficient.
Choose a Sealant or Epoxy Product
There are hundreds of products out there that claim to fix leaks and seal cracks. How do you know which to choose? The Bottom Paint Store has done most of the hard work for you and can confidently recommend 2 products that really work.
If your hull is bare aluminum you can cover the entire surface with a high build epoxy primer to help seal and protect it such as Tuff Stuff. For application details see our link for application of a marine epoxy.
Hawk Epoxy is an excellent product to repair aluminum hulls. We recommend getting one of the Hawk Epoxy Kitsthat will contain everything you need for filling in the aluminum. Hawk Epoxy is a versatile product that can be used for many other application too. Everyone should own this kit! See video for mixingand selecting fillers.
Another option is G/Flex 650 Epoxymade by West System. This liquid epoxy is more flexible and versatile than regular epoxies and will adhere to almost any surface. The bond that it creates can absorb shock, vibration, expansions and contractions. It will fully cure in 24 hours. Also, West System has created a detailed and comprehensive set of instructions for a wide variety of applications. They can be found atthis linkand below:
Now that your leaky rivets and seams have been repaired, you are ready to paint! Check out this How To Articlefor more information on how to paint your aluminum vessel. Aluma Hawk is a great option or any of our antifouling copper free paintfor aluminum.
If you do not have any coatings at all on the bottom of the boat, we suggest to sand the pontoons with 80 grit and then apply Tuff Stuff High Build Epoxy. It is a water tight barrier coat designed for use under the waterline and with aluminum hulls. Tuff Stuff will insure that you protect the aluminum from corrosion, and also aid in the adhesion of the antifouling paint. Use 2 coats. You can apply the 2nd coat within a couple of hours of the first coat. See detailed instructions at“How to Apply Marine Epoxy Primer”.
After you apply Tuff Stuff marine epoxy primeron hull, be sure to use an aluminum safe antifouling paint. The bottom paint needs to be applied the same day as the Tuff Stuff marine epoxy primer. Antifoulants in general are designed to repel hard growth. For soft growth you should have an additional biocide that help with the algae. Colorkoteis an excellent antifoul for aluminum pontoons used in salt water and/or fresh water. For a less expensive option, see Smart Solution Metal Free Antifouling paint.
WARNING:You should only use an aluminum safe antifouling like Smart Solution. Using any other type of copper based antifouling could severely damage your pontoons and will cause corrosion, pitting and eventually holes in your pontoon boat.
Jon Boats are flat bottom boats manufactured for easy maneuverability in shallow water. The most used material for construction is aluminum, making them lightweight and durable for fishing and hunting.
What kind of paint do you use on an aluminum boat?
Choose a water-resistant aluminum boat paint that adheres to aluminum. Using a sprayer or brush, paint the inside of the boat first. Paint in horizontal strokes for an even coat. The inside coat should dry for 12 hours or so before you paint the exterior.
A camouflage paint job is a good idea for hunters using a Jon boat to help blend into the surrounding land and water; choose your favorite color of Blue Water Mega Gloss for a higher gloss than camouflage paint.The easiest and most popular paint for your boat is the aluminum boat paint green or Aluma Hawk (white, blue, Jon boat green, black, aluminum grey, sand). These are both a paint/primer in one that can be applied to most surfaces with little preparation needed.
Make sure you have a location for painting your Jon boat that is free from blowing dust and debris (a garage is ideal).
Surface Prep: The surface must be dry and free of grease, wax, dirt, or other foreign matter. Scrape off all loose paint and dull any gloss area with a light sanding or power brushing. Remove all dust with a cloth dampened with paint thinner and allow to dry, you can use wax and grease remover or acetone. Sand the existing Jon boat paint surface or bare aluminum with 80-100 grit sandpaper.
Use a paint scraper or sander to remove any peeling paint or areas that are likely to cause peeling on your new paint. Don’t worry about scratches because these will make it easier for the new paint to adhere by etching the surface. Use a soft-bristled brush to make sure you remove all debris left from sanding.
If you choose to use a simple one-step system on your bare aluminum Jon boat, then the Duralux Aluminum Boat Paint Green or Aluma Hawk (available in Black, Jon Boat Green, Sand/Tan, Blue, White or Aluminum Grey) are excellent choices since both can be used as a primer/paint in one over bare aluminum. You should prep the surface as stated above, and then wipe down the bare aluminum Jon boat with white vinegar prior to coating. This acts as an acid and will “etch” the surface for better adhesion. You will need to apply two coats of this flat finish paint.
To make the inside have a non-skid surface use the Non-Skid Additive with the Aluma Hawk. See the ‘how to apply non-skid paints’ for more details.
If you need the ideal barrier coat to put over roughed bare aluminum then consider Pettit Marine’s Aluma Protect Epoxy Primer. This aluminum primer kit contains strontium chromate and is designed to form the ideal barrier coat over roughed bare aluminum.
How to Paint an Aluminum Boat
If you’re the owner of an aluminum boat, you may be wondering how to go about painting it. While the aluminum hull itself doesn’t need to be painted, the aluminum deck does need to be protected from the elements. Here are a few tips on how to paint an aluminum boat:
First, clean the aluminum deck with soap and water. If there are any areas of corrosion, sand them down until they’re smooth.
Next, apply a primer designed for aluminum boats. This will help the paint adhesion and prevent future corrosion. If you use Aluma Hawk, a quick-drying, high-solids, corrosion-inhibiting coating designed for use on aluminum, there is no need for a primer. Same goes for Duralux marine enamels, which is a vinyl-type coating for aluminum and galvanized surfaces and has excellent adhesion that eliminates the need for a primer.
Once the primer is dry, begin applying the boat paint of your choice. Use a brush or roller designed for use with oil-based paints. Work in small sections and follow the manufacturer’s instructions carefully.
Once the paint is dry, enjoy your newly-painted aluminum boat!
Painting an aluminum boat such as a jon boat, pontoon or fishing boat, is a process that takes preparation and the right supplies. If you’re looking to tackle this project on your own, be sure to read our how to articles and follow the paint manufacturers steps carefully. If you have any questions or need assistance, don’t hesitate to call the Bottom Paint Store customer service team – we’re happy to help!
Outdrives are difficult to keep free of growth. The main reason for this is that traditional copper-based bottom paints cannot be used on an aluminum outdrive. Doing so will result in serious corrosion from the aluminum reacting to the copper in the paint.
When painting an aluminum outdrive you must use a copper-free bottom paint. There are a couple of different brands out there. Interlux Trilux 33 (The most popular) , and Sea Hawk Smart Solution (The best). Trilux is the most popular for spray application. However, the results are not as impressive as Sea Hawk Smart Solution (available in pint size black as Outdrive Paint) that uses the newest metal free technology. You will get the best possible results with Smart Solution, and is becoming more and more popular as the best solution for painting an outdrive. It is also the best priced of the two, but is yet not available in an aerosol spray. You can get a quart and brush it on, or you can spray it with a conventional spray gun.
Bottom paint is an essential part of protecting your aluminum boat from the elements. Be sure to choose a bottom paint that is specifically designed for aluminum boats. Some bottom paints can actually cause corrosion on aluminum, so it’s important to make sure you get the right type of paint. Apply the bottom paint according to the manufacturer’s instructions. In general, you’ll want to apply two coats for best results.
Here are a few tips on how to apply bottom paint to ensure optimal results.
Tuff Stuff Marine Epoxy Primer
Tuff Stuff Marine Epoxy Primer
Begin by pressure washing your boat, and scrubbing any debris, dust, contaminants and marks off the boat surface so it is totally clean. Give your boat a final rinse and dry. If you do not have any coatings at all on the bottom of the boat, we suggest to sand the hull with 80 grit and then apply Tuff Stuff High Build Epoxy. It is a water tight barrier coat designed for use under the waterline and with aluminum hulls. Use 2 coats. You can apply the 2nd coat within a couple of hours of the first coat. (up to 6 days)
After you apply Tuff Stuff marine epoxy primeron hull, be sure to use an aluminum safe bottom paint. The bottom paint needs to be applied the same day as the Tuff Stuff marine epoxy primer. Bottom paints in general are designed to repel hard growth. Colorkote is an excellent triple biocide bottom paint for aluminum hulls when in salt water. We recommend Mission Bayfor fresh water. I have listed links below to the products described above. These can be brushed, sprayed, or rolled. If you already have coating(s) on the hull, pressure wash, sand with 80 grit, and then apply your paint choice.