Paint has always been one of the superyacht industry’s most discussed topics owing to the incredibly high standards that owners expect. Small changes to polyurethane paint systems have meant that they are no longer as durable as they once were. However, with CeraShield’s Duplex system a cost-effective solution to bolster gloss and durability is now available the owners, yards and paint manufacturers.
“There are two key products in our range. The first is a 10-micron clear ceramic coating that produces gloss and durability. It can be applied to new paint and it can also be applied to older gloss-restored paint. This product has been designed for exhaust areas of hulls where they experience issues with soot and exhaust fumes engraining into the paintwork. The product has an anti-graffiti property, as it was originally designed to protect the paintwork of the Deutsche Bahn trains from vandals. This product is excellent for protecting large flat surfaces, but, to protect more complex surfaces, such as a superyacht superstructure, the 10-micron coating is paired with a seven-micron coating that is perfect for rounds, reveals and returns,” starts Andy Williams, partner at CeraShield.
By now the benefits of ceramic clear coats on superyachts are well known, the offer performance, protection and durability. The ceramic coating bonds chemically with the substrate of the polyurethane paint coat and cures at atmospheric temperature. In essence, the ceramic coating provides a durable, sacrificial layer of protection to the polyurethane coating allowing a superyacht’s finish to maintain its gloss and appearance for longer periods. However, until recently, ceramic coatings had been seen as a solution for wearing paint coatings, rather than being adopted at the beginning of projects to be used as a preventative and enhancing measure.
“Even the manufacturers accept that polyurethane paints today don’t hold up for four-to-five years like they used to because the chemicals that provided the gloss and durability have been quite rightly removed because they had harmful trace elements,” continues Williams. “It must be said, that the paint systems today are still absolutely excellent, but they typically only last for around three years before they start down-glossing and becoming matt in the high-ware areas. However, when a client engages in a new build project or a new paint job, they are still led to believe that the coating will retain its gloss for five years, which has created a disparity between expectation and reality.”
Paint & finishing has traditionally been one of the most contentious and litigious elements of any build project. However, Williams believes that with CeraShield’s new Duplex offering, which will see ceramic coatings included in the initial options list for clients, many of the stresses associated with paint can be mitigated. By using the Duplex system owners’ will receive an end product that meets, or indeed outperforms, expectation. Additionally, the option of the additional ceramic system will allow yards to be more transparent with clients when they outline the unavoidable limitations of typical paint systems.
“We were first contacted by a well-known management company who was concerned that their clients were not receiving what they paid for,” explains Williams. “A number of the market’s most respected paint surveyors have also concluded that the paintwork needs protecting and, increasingly, shipyards and paint manufacturers are also inclined to agree. The paint systems they provide are excellent, but they require a sacrificial coating to protect their excellent work. CeraShield’s Duplex system can be applied to new paint and topped up on high-ware areas as and when required. It is inexpensive to apply the Duplex system and owners can be safe in the knowledge that they will not need to do a complete paint overhaul for five-to-seven years.”
Transparency and cooperation will be some of the central pillars of progress in the superyacht industry for years to come. Where transparency and cooperation are concerned here, they yield gloss, durability and performance
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