Model Boat Mayhem

Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length.
Pages: [1]   Go Down

Author Topic: Why are so many ship hulls painted red and black?  (Read 8837 times)

hopeitfloats

  • Guest
Why are so many ship hulls painted red and black?
« on: May 16, 2008, 10:18:46 am »

a question that has been on my mind. why are so many ship hulls painted red and black. is there a practical reason or just a good colour scheme.
Logged

nhp651

  • Guest
Re: why
« Reply #1 on: May 16, 2008, 12:36:52 pm »

I presume that it all depended on the prototype that it was modeled on, but the red below represents the antifouling and anti rust paint which was originally painted with a lead based paint called red lead, and the black upper works was the easiest to paint and patch up when rust bit into it and left rusty streaks.Nohing more easthetic or sinister really.
Logged

Colin Bishop

  • Full Mayhemer
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 10,858
  • Location: SW Surrey, UK
Re: Why are so many ship hulls painted red and black?
« Reply #2 on: May 16, 2008, 06:20:41 pm »

Similar thing with funnels - many of the earlier ones were black because of the heat. However Cunard found that an orangy red ochre paint was also heat resistant which accounts for their funnel colours.
Logged

Bryan Young

  • Full Mayhemer
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 6,893
  • Location: Whitley Bay
Re: why
« Reply #3 on: May 16, 2008, 06:29:51 pm »

I presume that it all depended on the prototype that it was modeled on, but the red below represents the antifouling and anti rust paint which was originally painted with a lead based paint called red lead, and the black upper works was the easiest to paint and patch up when rust bit into it and left rusty streaks.Nohing more easthetic or sinister really.
Most ships, with whatever colour hull, will have a "redish" anti-fouling paint on the underside....but equally, unless the owners are really cheapskate, there will be a "boot-topping" colour. This is the bit of the ship that is 'twixt wind and water". A good example would be the "Ben Line" with a grey hull, green boot-topping and the red (sort of) anti-fouling paint below.
Logged
Notes from a simple seaman

farrow

  • Guest
Re: Why are so many ship hulls painted red and black?
« Reply #4 on: May 17, 2008, 08:46:16 pm »

When I started working at sea, red lead was a basic metal primer paint which often never went of hard, but made surface over itself much like boiled linseed oil which at one time was a favourite coating for steel decks, as when it was scored it just remade a new surface and I have seen ships go for scrap with perfect decks because they were only coated in boiled oil. Have  been told by an old tankerman where he knew of some old tankers where old engine oil mixed with diesel was used as deck coatings also with no paint covering.
Also I suspect old time ship owners probably bought black paint as that was what was available and cheapest and also suspect early vessels were tarred before paint came available and ship owners were traditional in outlook. Dutch Coasters and barges until recent years used coal tar on their ships sides, I have seen it used by them in my youth and a old master swore it was the best stuff to treat steel sides.
As for red antifoul now, besides traditional views, it could be due to the chemical make up as you could get green antifoul once but that was stopped because it contained copper which made it illegal under environmental laws. When I saw the liner Orsovia in Tilbury drydock, the lower part of the hull near the bottom was left bare steel just before they re floated her.
Logged

westcoaster

  • Full Mayhemer
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 165
Re: Why are so many ship hulls painted red and black?
« Reply #5 on: May 21, 2008, 11:01:26 pm »

Can't see how anyone could possibly keep their footing on a deck coated in "old engine oil mixed with diesel"
Logged

MikeK

  • Full Mayhemer
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 991
  • Utter Bloody Chaos !!
  • Location: Hampshire
Re: Why are so many ship hulls painted red and black?
« Reply #6 on: May 22, 2008, 07:47:15 am »

I can remember humping 5gal oil drums of the stuff from the depths of the engine room and slapping it all over the foredeck, as apprentice, but I cannot remember if we left it like that or painted it with the usual red lead/deck paint after it had been left to 'sink' in. (Cardiff tramp in the tropics - where else do you do those types of jobs !  {-) )

Mike
Logged

john strapp

  • Guest
Re: Why are so many ship hulls painted red and black?
« Reply #7 on: May 24, 2008, 10:26:57 pm »

Sorry Colin, but Cunard colours came about in a different way.
The Glasgow ship builders and engineers , Robert Napier and his nephew David Napier; when they built their steam engines for a customer, they also supplied boilers with the engines.

Napier would paint the lum on their boilers in red with a black top, and narrow black bands and this was their trademark.

Some of their regular customers retained those colours, thus the connection with CUNARD;  PORT LINE:  Isle of Man Steam Packet Co;  FURNESS WITHY; and MACBRAYNES
Logged
Pages: [1]   Go Up