Vlog 215: Up on the Roof

Over recent months I have noticed a number of unsightly rusty spots erupting on the boat’s roof. Some, I assume, are from bits of grit rubbing through the paint as I’ve walked over it; for others I have no idea as to their origins. All needed tidying up and the rust stopped in its tracks though so in this video I show you my initial attempts, which fall short of a full repaint.

Incidentally, yes my chimney stove is indeed looking rather worse for wear; that’s a story for another time.

DeWalt multitool: https://geni.us/CtC_DeWaltMultiTool
Carbide blades: https://geni.us/CtC_CarbideBlades
Fertan Rust Treatment: https://geni.us/CtC_Fertan
Hammerite Red Oxide Primer: https://geni.us/CtC_HammeriteRedOxide

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  1. Heya David.

    Firstly, i would just like to say that i am an a id viewer of your vlogs. They are always most entertaining & always informative.
    I am sure that you may already have checked this option out for a paint for your boats roof…. Or maybe not. None the less, i would like to put it to you as an option to consider.

    I am sure you will be familiar with workshops, garages floors.
    Many of these businesses, use a very durable acrylic paint on their floors. Primarily for the reason that it is extremely hard wearing, chip resistant, flexible, none slip, usually mat (so no glare) and wasy to clean those pesky rubber friction marks off from tyres.. or in your case from the soles of shoes from walking on it.

    Now, yes i know that in the majority of cases, workshop floors etc are, yes, concrete. Even though these paints do state they are for concrere, if they are acrylic based, with the appropriate preparation or in many cases, none is really needed.. These paints will and do work perfectly fine on steelwork. They adhere well, just the same as on concrete.

    I believe from memory, that one of your used before product manufacturers ‘Rustolium’ produce an acrylic floor paint.

    I have used these types of paints before myself on metal work and they are or have been perfectly fine.

    Anyway, i am simply putting it to you as an option to consider.

    I wish you well David and i hope this is useful for you.
    Kindest regards,


    • Hi. Thank you, I’m pleased you enjoy the videos. I had seen the idea of garage floor paint before but had also read comments suggesting that the modern versions aren’t made the same way the old stuff used to be and that it isn’t as good any more; I have no idea if that’s truly the case or not.

      However, I have since bought some tins of International boat paint which I will be using (once it stops either raining or being so hot that the roof is scalding). Cheers!

  2. Our household in the “City of Lakes” (Minneapolis MN) has enjoyed binging your vlog during our Covid semi-lockdown. Applaud your use of solar panels, we have them on our house.

    Might we suggest adding another solar appliance for your nautical adventure? namely a solar cooker? I gather from your many excursions that a narrow boat, in a channel, is generally far enough from trees and buildings that would block the sun, has plenty of sun exposure (when it’s out of course), and there are many models that can be set to capture the energy without being turned frequently to face the sun directly. If you’re interested, check out the Solar Cooking UK FaceBook page, Dave Oxford and Stew McLaunghlin host the page, would welcome another member, and have years of experience solar cooking in the UK that they’d be happy to share.

    • An intriguing suggestion, although I don’t really do enough cooking to warrant it, I think (especially not when the weather is hot enough for such a device to be of use). Cheers though, glad you’ve enjoyed the videos.

  3. Bruce P Landau

    Looks good! Nice job!

  4. Nice work. I admire your patience and attention to detail. Also, reminded me that I need to go up on the roof of my Winnebago RV and check the condition of the roof.


  5. Michael Higgins

    Oh . . . how I have missed these most-informative DYI fixes, a most welcome diversion to my, otherwise, mundane life David. ;) I love how you use so many technical nautical terms like “Screwdrivering” , this truly exudes not only your command of the English language, but also showcases your wicked DYI skills. Kudos for your choice of the Multitool and carbide tip blade, something I would probably not have thought of using, since I’ve never owned such a tool. I think many people would have used one of those rotating flapper-type sanding thingy’s on a drill, I think your choice of tool most shrewd. I’m wondering . . . does the Fertan Rust Treatment work in a similar way that Alodine does to Aluminum. As a chemical conversion coating, Alodine works to fundamentally change the chemical properties of the surface, making it less susceptible to corrosion and more capable of bonding with a metal finishing product. Anyway . . . it sounds pretty similar to me and is something we do in Aircraft Maintenance. I couldn’t help but to notice how your beautiful bespoke chimney seems to have taken a beating. It seems like only a short while ago, the gentleman was fabricating it for you, but that was likely two years or more ago. I’m wondering how it has gotten so beaten up? I truly have to commend you on your attention to thoroughness when working on your boat and van David. You almost always put on an extra coat of primer where most would settle for just one. You almost always go the extra mile to get the job done right and that is to your credit. Cheers from the USA ;)

  6. Nice hair cut

  7. I suggest a rubberized paint of a color of your choice applied with a roller for texture to defuse reflected light. This will also be a sound dampener. In the US this is called Rhinoliner. It is used on truck beds and RV roofs. Very durable, long lasting, attractive, and affordable.

    • Cheers. A few people have suggested that but I’ve never seen it used on a narrowboat and am nervous to be the first!

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