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"The boat can stay in the water for up to three years without having to be taken out. It’s about 1,500 bucks to lift the boat out of the water plus any time involved, so that’s the big advantage."
Since Propspeed, boatie Bill Allen enjoys reduced haul-out costs, lower maintenance and more time out on the water.
Bill first had Propspeed applied to his 53-foot trawler-style launch, Pacific Eagle, in May 2013. Moored at Auckland’s Westhaven Marina, the boat was scrubbed regularly by divers every three or four months. Under these conditions,
he reports that the application lasted three years, and he’s found this to be the rule rather than the exception. “It still looked good” when Bill had the Propspeed redone in September 2016. The key, he says, is in the application
“It’s only good if it’s put on properly, like any paint job—or anything else, for that matter. When it’s put on properly, it’s absolutely fantastic. All three applications I’ve had now have been done by Hibiscus
Marine Coatings. Carla and her team do a really good job of applying it. First of all, they clean everything properly; secondly, they then rigidly adhere to the curing times.”
For those not in the know, Bill is talking about the recoat window, or the wait time between each coat applied, which is a function of ambient temperature (higher temp = shorter window). A typical application involves three coats, two etch primer coats then a final clear coat, which means two windows of equal length in between each one, generally three to five minutes. Cleaning everything properly beforehand entails removing any old Propspeed by stripping or sanding then using Propclean followed by Propprep metal-conditioning wipes.
“They do an excellent job, and they apply the correct amount of product in the correct sequence,” Bill says.
In March 2017, Bill traded up to a Riviera 61 named Halo and had the Hibiscus Marine team put on antifoul and Propspeed in September 2017. During a hull cleaning just over a year later, on 26 September 2018, Diveworx provided a written report on the condition of all underwater parts of the boat. “As they always do, they took photos,” he says. The verdict? “At this stage, I’m expecting one to two years before any reapplication.”
Bill, who lives in the Auckland suburb of St Mary’s Bay, happened to meet the Propspeed team at the Westpac Auckland Business Awards, where his son’s company, Earth Stability, was also a finalist. Bill made a point of coming over to tell managing director Clint Jones how much he loves Propspeed.
Previously the part owner of a digging company, Bill is now retired and likes to get out on his Riviera “as frequently as possible, an average of 150 engine hours per year.” He mostly goes on day fishing trips and enjoys cruising around Great
Barrier Island and Mercury Bay—“typical Auckland use.” What he likes most about Propspeed is that “the boat can stay in the water for up to three years without having to be taken out. It’s about 1,500 bucks to lift the
boat out of the water plus any time involved, so that’s the big advantage.”
What did he do before Propspeed? “We tried antifoul itself, but that used to fall off. A lanolin-based product that didn’t seem to work. So, really, the boat had to come out of the water once a year to do the antifoul and whatever you wanted
to do to the prop shaft.”
When asked what “whatever” might be, Bill says, “I think that most boaties use Propspeed, don’t they? I can’t imagine anybody using anything else, to be honest. Why would you use anything else?”
"I can't imagine anybody using anything else, to be honest. Why would you use anything else?"
Auckland, New Zealand
- Reduced maintenance
- Cost savings over time
- Product performance