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Canal Boat Reader Offer

Thank you for visiting the SML Marine Paints website. If you are intersted in Ballastic Black - our premium hull blacking product click on the link below and enter CBOFFER (all capitals) in the voucher code in the basket to receive a 10% discount. 

Why use Ballastic Black?

To put it simply: SML Ballastic Black offers better protection for less money. Ballastic Black contains much let solvent (see table below) than other leading bitumen brands meaning that when applied at the same spreading rate Ballastic Black will provide superior corrosion protection.

Ballastic Black Bitumen Table - Narrowboat Blacking

Another advantage of Ballastic Black is that it can be applied on to virtually all existing coatings which saves on the time and expense of taking the hull back to bare steel.

How much Ballastic Black do I need?

When application is by brush and roller we find that the average coverage is 6-8 square metres per litre. Therefore a typical narrowboat measuring 48ft (16m) requires 7.5L of Ballastic Black per coat. We recommend applying two coats of Ballastic Black if application is to an existing coating and three coats if application is on bare steel.

Application Hints & Tips

If painting outdoors it is important to make sure the atmospheric conditions are right. If you try and paint when it is too cold, too hot or too windy application will be much harder and the finish will be much worse. The ideal painting conditions are cool, calm and dry. 

If you do find yourself having to paint in conditions that aren't perfect then keeping Ballastic Black warm (for example by keeping it indoors overnight) will reduce the viscosity and help it to flow out better. A similar effect can be achieved by thinning with SML Alkyd Thinner or high quality white spirit, but remember the more you thin the paint the less protection each coat provides. Ideally try to thin by no more than 10%.

Ballastic Black is dry to recoat after 24 hours at 23°C so a coat a day is what we recommend.  If it is hot and/or windy drying time will be reduced.

Always wear suitable protective clothing when applying bitumen paints.

For technical specifications and quotes please call us on 01285 862 132.

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What our customers say

Your website is imho, one of the best in the business. Great products, advice and all the ancillaries needed to get a first rate result, delivered swiftly at a very fair price indeed. Tops! - Tim Allen - East Sussex