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Vactanned water tank - two years on


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8 hours ago, Wee Vee said:

 

Surface preparation looks quite onerous. Grit blasting, needle gunning or grinding. As with all paints, proper surface prep is the way to make it stay on!

 

Nice to see a photo on the page of a real life water tank painted in the stuff, rather than glossy images photoshopped to death that tell you nothing. 

 

 

 

 

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1 hour ago, Mike the Boilerman said:

 

Surface preparation looks quite onerous. Grit blasting, needle gunning or grinding. As with all paints, proper surface prep is the way to make it stay on!

 

Nice to see a photo on the page of a real life water tank painted in the stuff, rather than glossy images photoshopped to death that tell you nothing. 

 

 

 

 

Isn't it! Hi Mike, nice to hear from you.

Yep, grit blasting could be interesting if stood in the tank – we'd need leather chaps. ?
I wondered if a good prep followed by Vactan would be a solid base to paint on. I'm going to make a start and see how good I can get it.

Doubting if Maxkote is any more cost effective than Jotun DW though, as 1L only covers approx 2sq m (I can't find coverage specs for Jotun).
It's about £85 for a 2L tin so that would add up in a tank our size. 

As always when I start investigating anything boat-related, it feels like a can of worms has been opened. ?

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  • 8 months later...
On 18/04/2020 at 08:35, Wee Vee said:



Doubting if Maxkote is any more cost effective than Jotun DW though, as 1L only covers approx 2sq m (I can't find coverage specs for Jotun).
It's about £85 for a 2L tin so that would add up in a tank our size. 

As always when I start investigating anything boat-related, it feels like a can of worms has been opened. ?

Can I ask what the final outcome was?  Did you use a lining coat or just stick with the Vactan?

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3 minutes ago, Hippy Steve said:

Can I ask what the final outcome was?  Did you use a lining coat or just stick with the Vactan?

 

You might not get an answer as WeeWee has not logged onto the forum since 1st August.

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After having an underfloor plumbing leak, leading to the replacement of all the plumbing for half the boat's length, I then decided to give some attention to the water storage tank. The tank is in the bow section and integral. The coating was of the bitumen sort. Having got that off and cleaned and scraped for three days, I couldn't bring myself to use bitumen again. 

 

I had considered Vactan as a stop-gap, It was beginning to turn wintery and time was running out. The Vactan never happened, because it is not readily available at chandlers. The inside of the water tank remains bare steel and used. It will have to do, until better conditions come around in Spring. I use the water that comes from the tank and filter it twice. Still haven't completely decided what sort of a finish I'm going to choose for the inside of the water tank. Some epoxy finish suitable for potable water is in first place at the moment. 

 

The use of an epoxy coating will mean spending more time in discomfort preparing the steel surface. Blasting the surface to a suitable standard is likely to be out of the question. 

 

 

  

Edited by Higgs
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On 01/01/2021 at 17:26, Hippy Steve said:

Can I ask what the final outcome was?  Did you use a lining coat or just stick with the Vactan?

Hello Steve!

Re. our rusty old water tank:
I knew the prep wouldn't be perfect without it being sandblasted, but I spent the best part of a week with a mix of power and hand tools. The pitted areas is where I struggled to get a really good result – the white mineral deposits were very difficult to remove completely. So in the end I decided to go just with Vactan (two coats), until I could assess how successful the prep had been.

That was nearly nine months ago, and bar a few white streaks coming from the heavily mineralised areas, it's still looking pretty damn good. My intention is to drain again next time the boat is out for blacking and prep and touch up those areas which have failed.

The only other gem of wisdom I can offer is that Vactan takes a very long time to cure below the waterline. I certainly wouldn't attempt a refurb outside of spring/summer if the boat's in the water. I used a heater to speed things up and that was early May.

Hope that helps!

Vickie

PS. The casualties of this project were:
1 x headscarf
1 x tee shirt
1 x bra
1 x pair of trainers
1 x set of overalls
The washing machine
and a friend's bath

It took over a week for the greasy rust coating to completely leave my skin. I looked like Donald Trump for quite a while.
My advice would be to purchase a hazmat suit! 

PPS. 'Before' pics attached, I'll upload 'after' pics, in another reply.

IMG_7448.JPG

IMG_7436.JPG

On 01/01/2021 at 17:26, Hippy Steve said:

Can I ask what the final outcome was?  Did you use a lining coat or just stick with the Vactan?

Here are the 'after' pics. :)

IMG_7550.JPG

IMG_7561.JPG

3a51d23e-4872-4e28-a1ef-745560f3190f.jpg

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On 02/01/2021 at 08:03, Higgs said:

 

After having an underfloor plumbing leak, leading to the replacement of all the plumbing for half the boat's length, I then decided to give some attention to the water storage tank. The tank is in the bow section and integral. The coating was of the bitumen sort. Having got that off and cleaned and scraped for three days, I couldn't bring myself to use bitumen again. 

 

I had considered Vactan as a stop-gap, It was beginning to turn wintery and time was running out. The Vactan never happened, because it is not readily available at chandlers. The inside of the water tank remains bare steel and used. It will have to do, until better conditions come around in Spring. I use the water that comes from the tank and filter it twice. Still haven't completely decided what sort of a finish I'm going to choose for the inside of the water tank. Some epoxy finish suitable for potable water is in first place at the moment. 

 

The use of an epoxy coating will mean spending more time in discomfort preparing the steel surface. Blasting the surface to a suitable standard is likely to be out of the question. 

 

 

  

It's a horrible job, but you can get the steel to a perfectly acceptable standard for a water potable epoxy with an angle grinder and wire wheels. 

 

I suppose bare steel would have rusted over winter whatever you did, but I bought a garden water butt and connected it to the pump while I was doing my tank so that I had a water supply. You could have done that rather than filling a bare steel tank with water (which if I'm reading it correctly is what you've done). A bit of flash rust from condensation over one winter would have been easier to get off.

 

Having said that, I twice forgot about the hose pipe that I'd brought into the boat to fill the water butt and had to get water out of the bilges. After flooding the boat the second time I used a water level alarm when filling it up. And I didn't drink any of the water from the butt because they're made of some nasty recycled plastic.

Edited by blackrose
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4 hours ago, blackrose said:

It's a horrible job, but you can get the steel to a perfectly acceptable standard for a water potable epoxy with an angle grinder and wire wheels. 

 

I suppose bare steel would have rusted over winter whatever you did, but I bought a garden water butt and connected it to the pump while I was doing my tank so that I had a water supply. You could have done that rather than filling a bare steel tank with water (which if I'm reading it correctly is what you've done). A bit of flash rust from condensation over one winter would have been easier to get off.

 

Having said that, I twice forgot about the hose pipe that I'd brought into the boat to fill the water butt and had to get water out of the bilges. After flooding the boat the second time I used a water level alarm when filling it up. And I didn't drink any of the water from the butt because they're made of some nasty recycled plastic.

 

I was trying to get by with a 25 ltr potable water container, but got tired of humping it into the boat. Yes, I am using the bow tank now. There will be some surface rust to clean back next season, but anyway, the whole job is going to be a pain in the neck. Glad to get rid of the bitumen; it doesn't meet modern standards and it seems like an odd material to use with potable water. But that was the old standard and older boats can still use it. 

 

Currently using water from a bare steel tank, I'm probably getting my daily requirement of iron. 

 

 

Edited by Higgs
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On 03/01/2021 at 20:53, Wee Vee said:

Hello Steve!

Re. our rusty old water tank:
I knew the prep wouldn't be perfect without it being sandblasted, but I spent the best part of a week with a mix of power and hand tools. The pitted areas is where I struggled to get a really good result – the white mineral deposits were very difficult to remove completely. So in the end I decided to go just with Vactan (two coats), until I could assess how successful the prep had been.

That was nearly nine months ago, and bar a few white streaks coming from the heavily mineralised areas, it's still looking pretty damn good. My intention is to drain again next time the boat is out for blacking and prep and touch up those areas which have failed.

The only other gem of wisdom I can offer is that Vactan takes a very long time to cure below the waterline. I certainly wouldn't attempt a refurb outside of spring/summer if the boat's in the water. I used a heater to speed things up and that was early May.

Hope that helps!

Vickie
...

 

 

Hi Vickie and big thanks for the info and pics. 

 

We've just bought our boat, integral water tank was empty so filled and sterilised then flushed through a couple of times to get rid of brown colour (suggesting that there is no coating??)

It still has a slight taste to it even after being filtered and am looking at the options for coating the inside - assuming I'll be able to get the cover off!

 

Seems to me that a couple of coats of vactan, properly cured, is the way to go, at least in the short term, then check it every time she comes out for blacking.  Just been blacked so won't be coming out of water for a while (insallah!!) so looks like it's a job for later in the year.

 

 

Thanks again, a really useful post.

 

Steve

 

 

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24 minutes ago, Hippy Steve said:

 

Hi Vickie and big thanks for the info and pics. 

 

We've just bought our boat, integral water tank was empty so filled and sterilised then flushed through a couple of times to get rid of brown colour (suggesting that there is no coating??)

It still has a slight taste to it even after being filtered and am looking at the options for coating the inside - assuming I'll be able to get the cover off!

 

Seems to me that a couple of coats of vactan, properly cured, is the way to go, at least in the short term, then check it every time she comes out for blacking.  Just been blacked so won't be coming out of water for a while (insallah!!) so looks like it's a job for later in the year.

 

 

Thanks again, a really useful post.

 

Steve

 

 

You're welcome Steve, glad it helped. :)

Ours too was very brown and silty – I took buckets of crap out after scraping. It looked to me like ours had been bitumined once upon a time, but it had degraded to the point that water had ingressed behind. Glad I got shot of it.

To clean up the water taste I added a carbon filter after the pump (so water tank–pump–filter). They're not big money in the grand scheme and I've yet to need to change the filter inside it. Have a look on Screwfix. You might want to add a one-way valve too, as I got flow-back initially, which caused the pump to cycle periodically. A valve between the filter housing and the pump sorted this out. Our water is now like Evian. ;)

Good luck! It's a shitty job but it's worth it.

Vickie

Edited by Wee Vee
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