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blacking the hull of my 60 foot narrowboat

I am getting so confused about what to blacken the hull with. I think that Bitumen is what I am going to use, but not sure what brand to use as some state that no protection against oil etc. I thought that all Bitumen was the same! Can someone please tell me what I am supposed to use?

Asked by: Net Watmough  | 7.32pm, Monday 8 May

WW says:

The usual blacking applied to narrowboats is bitumen; however ordinary black bitumen is not very resistant to the oil which is sometimes found on the water surface. If you wet a rag with white spirit and rub the blacking on your boat and the rag becomes black, it is standard bitumen paint.
Unless the previous owner told you that the boat had been epoxy painted, which would be a selling point, it has most likely been painted with either the standard thin bitumen or the more expensive but better lasting thicker versions such as Intertuff.

Rupert Smedley  | 11.24PM, Monday 8 May

The coal tar based paints offer better protection against oil and most of the two-part epoxy paints are modified tar.
Bitumen should not be painted on top of tar paint as it will react. Epoxy paints need to be applied to a very clean surface, ideally shot blasted, but can be used on top of existing epoxy paint.

Rupert Smedley  | 12.31PM, Tuesday 9 May

Readers say:

Thanks, that has helped

Net Watmough  | 2.13PM, Tuesday 9 May

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