And if the solution to do without antifouling paint would be to stick carpet under our boats? This is what the Dutch company Finsulate offers.
The story begins in an oyster farm that seeks to protect its parks from fouling without polluting with pesticides. Dutch academic Rik Breur looks into the problem and discovers that bacteria cannot fix themselves on small pimples of tissue. After research, he determines that the ideal length of these pins is 3 mm. Thus was born the Finsulate.
All that remains is to find a support for these pimples, to find the right sticker so that they remain in place and the deal is played. The first tests were carried out on merchant navy ships. Successfully! After several months immersed, the hulls are very little colonized and the few shells present are removed by hand without rubbing.
Test plate with and without Finsulate
After the merchant marine market, Finsulate is now opening up to yachting. It can be ordered as a self-adhesive carpet roll (12 m roll). They are applied on a clean hull (without antifouling), just covered with a primer. The junction between 2 plates is done by overlapping then by cutting with a cutter.
Benefits of Finsulate
- 100% ecological product. With its application as a self-adhesive plate, Finsulate does not release any solvent during installation. Once in water, it does not dilute into the environment. He's not throwing anything back into the sea. It is therefore a 100% clean product.
- No annual fairing. If the Finsulate gets dirty, a simple sponge blow on the hull is enough to clean it. Rubbing its hull won't be forbidden, even in a port, because the Finsulate doesn't reject anything. This cleaning just serves to return the shells to the bottom of the water.
- An interesting rate. The Finsulate is for sale 35 €/m2 delivered in France. Count approximately 1000 € for a boat from 10 to 12 m. This is the price of a traditional fairing (water outlet, cleaning and painting). Except Finsulate guarantees the product for 5 years. Great savings in prospect.
Remaining questions about this product
- Doesn't the carpet brake the boat? One may wonder if the hairs under the hull are not braking the boat. To this question, Finsulate answers with lab tests, that hair creates a vortex effect that does not slow (but does not accelerate) the boat.
- What is the shelf life of the product? The tests carried out in various seas of the world have not for the moment more than 4 years of seniority. This is why the product is now guaranteed for 5 years. But why not more longtemps??
- How to manage the junction between the plates? In antifouling solutions applied in the form of self-adhesive plates, the junction between two plates is always a problem. Indeed, it is in this very microscopic gap that the bacteria that eventually colonize these lines are housed. It is thus necessary that the installation of Finsulate is particularly adjusted (even covering) to ensure a perfect"sealing" with bacteria.
The Finsulate is now available in 3 products depending on the navigation modes of the boats:
Finsulate Antifouling Wrap
- For the highest level of isolation
- Long periods of vessel inactivity
- Everywhere, all sailing conditions, except for fast boats with planing hulls
Finsulate Speed Wrap
- Optimized for speed
- Easy to clean
Finsulate Easy Clean Wrap
- For any object that needs to be cleaned regularly
- Ideal for freshwater applications
- Anywhere, any sailing conditions
Contact France :
Marion Padioleau - tel : 06.63.75.87.97