Ecoshield, the lasting rudder protection
The running gear of a large number of vessels was coated with Ecoshield over the last couple of months. The applications were carried out in China, Ivory Coast, Turkey and Sweden on different types of ships. Among the vessels treated were several container vessels, car carriers, ferries and a tug.
The vessels treated belonged to twelve different owners. Some of them were new customers, some returning ones. They had experienced firsthand the devastating effect of cavitation on rudders and other running gear coated with a traditional coating system. For this reason they decided to use Ecoshield to ensure lasting protection against corrosion and erosion damage for the rudders, nozzle rings and tunnel thrusters of their vessels.
Suited for newbuilds and existing vessels
Protection of the running gear of your ships is best begun at the newbuild phase. When a ship comes into drydock, maintenance of its stern area, especially cavitation and corrosion damage repair, can take a long time. There are strict procedures concerning blasting, painting, welding and propeller and stern tube seal work. Painting is then assigned to the end of the schedule. As a consequence it may be rushed or not done at all or else prolong the stay in drydock.
The newbuild phase is the perfect time to apply Ecoshield. However, the coating can also be used to protect vessels that have been in service for some time and are already facing cavitation and corrosion damage. Such was the case with some of the rudders coated over the last months.
Ecoshield’s flexibility makes it easy to adapt the application schedule to the rest of the activities at the shipyard or drydock in a way which does not interfere with them. Overcoating time can be as short as three hours, which means that for smaller surfaces such as rudders or bow thrusters the two coats required can usually be applied in one single day.
Groundbreaking protection for all running gear
Besides offering rudder protection Ecoshield is also suitable for thrusters, azimuth thrusters, azipods, thruster nozzles, thruster tunnels and other underwater ship gear which needs special protection from corrosion. The extra strength coating protects these areas for the service life of the ship. There is no need for recoating or major repair. For this reason the thruster tunnels of several vehicle carriers were also coated together with their rudders, as was the nozzle ring of a ferry and a tug.
If one takes into account the costs of the temporary underwater repairs and the regular inspections required by a condition of class or the costs for rudder repairs in drydock, it becomes clear that the investment in a coating system that offers extra protection from day one is very easily won back. For this reason more and more owners have Ecoshield applied on the rudders and other running gear of a large part of their fleet or have it included in the rudder specs of their newbuild vessels. These owners invest in the right coating system for the savings that will result.