Interlux Pacifica Plus, the seven month test

Ben Ellison

Ben Ellison

Panbo editor, publisher & chief bottlewasher from 4/2005 until 8/2018, and now pleased to have Ben Stein as a very able publisher, webmaster, and editing colleague. Please don't regard him as an "expert"; he's getting quite old and thinks that "fadiddling fumble-putz" is a more accurate description.

10 Responses

  1. ValkyrieYachts says:

    I am pleased to hear your initial comments on these two paints. I am preparing to haul out the Valkyrie to replace a wonderful ablative paint for a copper free paint. My current choice is called BottomSpeed and is made by the company that makes PropSpeed.
    If it does not work as well as the ablative, it will be a costly mistake, but since here in CA we are trying to ban copper (not yet), I am willing to try a bit of “green” to see how well it works out.
    I would love to hear any feedback besides your two tests from others. By the way, my currnet paint has gone 3 years and still looks good. If I can get close to this I will be thrilled.
    Do you have any other reports on copper free paint?

  2. Ben Ellison Ben Ellison says:

    Yes, for those who are watching, I did take down some comments. Let’s talk about paint, not some silly old crap about a boat yard.

  3. Brian Engle says:

    You’re opening up a can of worms here (more like a bucket of barnacles). The online threads addressing this topic are endless. “The Environment” is a big place. On a parts-per-million basis, how much good these new paints are doing for the environment beyond the marina is questionable (especially if what I’ve heard is true… that commercial vessels are still using the good poison). Policies that prohibit dockside scrubbing, for example, only serve to push that activity to secluded anchorages where we definitely don’t want the impact. Frankly, I’m less concerned about the health of barnacles and muscles in marinas, where boats spend most of their lives and where most of the “impact” is to be had. That’s a trade off I can live with. As for the new paints, I suspect the greater good is being served where the product meets human tissue, in the boatyard and later when scrubbed by a diver. Our boat is steel with a flame-spray aluminum coating, so we use bottom paint suited to aluminum hulls (which use very little if any copper and formerly used tributyl tin as the toxic agent). The old tin-laden Interlux Micron 33 was fan-tastic antifouling (but I’m not a fan of diving in a cloud of it). Its replacement, Trilux 33, is less effective, however it is passable with the right mil thickness and periodic scrubs (I’m sticking with it). To its credit, it has adhered flawlessly to the old product (w/ a Primacon tie-coat), for which I am greatly thankful (not a single bonding failure anywhere in five years). Afterthought: PropSpeed on the prop and shaft has held up superbly for the better part of three years. I love that slippery stuff. Have wondered whether it could scale to an entire hull. Will be curious to see how BottomSpeed pans out.

  4. JonM says:

    I plan to use Pacifica Plus on my prop next year. While Interlux still recommends an epoxy base be applied to props before adding an active coat, the lack of metal in Pacifica allows it to be applied directly to the prop. I will also paint part of my hull with Pacifica Plus to compare performance with the excellent (for me, in the upper Chesapeake) Bottomkote ACT. Interlux reps told me to expect similar performance.

  5. Karl in NY says:

    Ah, the joys of being on a huge inland lake with perpetually cold water…
    Weren’t the tin-based biocides the only ones that actually worked, and aren’t internationally-flagged vessels still using them, and only recoating every five years? Or, should I check this in

  6. Scott says:

    If you still have Interlux’s ear, I’d be curious if they have any plans to promote Intersleek more in the near future. I think the recreational product is Intersleek 970 but trying to find anyone that has any experience with it whether owner or boatyard is difficult if not impossible.
    Understanding the speed and amount of underway time of commercial vessels is not a fair comparison to recreational power and even more so with sail, the results are still encouraging. Currently it seems Intersleek is a niche product at best but I would think in time it could benefit consumers and the environment more than any other chemical concoction.

  7. George says:

    For a nice visual graphic on why it is important to worry about “the environment” and how it is not such a big place, go here:
    The small blue drop next to the globe is the amount of water on earth, compared to the size of the earth. It is pretty shocking, but accurate. Although much of the earth’s surface is covered by water, in most places the water is not that deep.

  8. RN says:

    Hi George, I agree that it is importante, but all that your “info-graph” shows is that: compared to land, there is very little water and air….
    doesnt make much of a point…

  9. Ben Ellison Ben Ellison says:

    Thorough article about copper-free bottom paint at BoatUS:
    Non-biocide paints may be the future, but the what’s in Pacifica Plus doesn’t sound too bad:

    In the case of the Interlux Econea formulation, the EPA approved it for the recreational marine market in 2009, after five years under review. “Econea deters the hard-shell fouling,” Ekman explains. “Barnacles in particular don’t like the material and don’t tend to stick.” The product also uses zinc omadine as an added biocide to deter soft-fouling organisms such as slime, algae, and weed. While zinc is certainly a metal that falls under EPA regulation, it’s also used in small quantities in dandruff shampoo, children’s face paint, and in another very important bottom coating, diaper-rash cream.

  10. Pat Galloway says:

    Our aluminum hull boat, 16 ft. Smokercraft used for fishing only, lives year around in a river above tidal influence in western Oregon (temperate climate, river almost never ices over). I am looking for some kind of hull treatment that will minimize algal growth; we do not take the boat out of the water from one year to the next, but can clean off the growth using a brush or other mechanical device during the summer when the water is low enough to wade in. Do you have any suggestions?

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