F. Ball repairs and upgrades decks on board MV Discovery

F. Ball and Co. Ltd’s range of marine approved Stopgap subfloor preparation products and Styccobond flooring adhesives have been used to repair and upgrade the decks on board the global cruise ship, MV Discovery. F. Ball’s products provided the reassurance of IMO marine certification, as well as proven high levels of performance.

Built in 1972, MV Discovery last underwent a major refit in 2003. As part of the current refurbishment programme, 3,400m2 of floors in the ship’s public areas and 300 cabins were upgraded.

Areas demanding particular attention during the refurbishment of older vessels, such as the MV Discovery, are the decks. The impact of movement and vibration of the ship’s structure, as well as frequent foot traffic, while sailing the heavy seas, caused the subfloor above the steel deck to crack and even crumble in some areas of the ship. In the most badly affected areas of the subfloor, this had created holes up to 35mm deep. To repair the damaged areas, specialist flooring contractor, team-marine, installed Stopgap 1050 Lite smoothing underlayment to level irregularities within the surface.

A lightweight, fibre reinforced system, Stopgap 1050 Lite is ideal for levelling floors where structural loadings need to be considered. Designed to offer significant weight savings, it has a cured density of 1050kg/m2, which is typically half that of a conventional smoothing underlayment. Its lightweight properties also facilitate ease of manual handling, a particular benefit for multi-level sites where access is difficult, such as the MV Discovery, which features eight decks. Moreover, as Stopgap 1050 Lite can be applied up to a thickness of 20mm, it enabled the flooring contractor to level the most damaged areas of the subfloor in just two applications.

To create a smooth surface for the new floorcoverings, a second smoothing underlayment was installed across the entire subfloor, which was first primed using Stopgap P131. A general-purpose neoprene primer, Stopgap P131 prevents smoothing underlayments drying out too rapidly and promotes their adhesion to the subfloor.

Stopgap Blue Bag 114 floor smoothing underlayment provided excellent self-smoothing properties. Specifically formulated to avoid the need for the natural rubber latex content, Stopgap Blue Bag 114 offered the additional benefits of being low odour and protein free, making it ideal for hygienically and clinically sensitive public areas of the ship, such as the restaurants, medical centre and health and fitness centre.

A combination of carpet and LVT vinyl floorcoverings specified by designer, BJ Tycoles, director of 2B Interiors, was then installed, using a range of Styccobond adhesives approved by Det Norske Veritas (DNV) for marine floor installations. Styccobond F44 adhesive was used to install the vinyl floorcoverings in the ship’s medical centre and yacht club. A solvent free acrylic emulsion adhesive, Styccobond F44 is designed to give a high bond strength, strong initial tack and a long open time which promotes ease of installation.

To install the carpet floorcoverings selected for the ship’s restaurants, bars, entertainment lounges and cabins, a release bond adhesive system was selected. This will allow the carpet to be lifted and replaced in the future, without damaging the subfloor. As such, Styccobond F40, a high tack adhesive was applied to the subfloor, allowed to dry completely to provide a peelable bond, then the carpet underlay was fitted. Finally, Styccobond F3 was used to stick the carpet to the underlay. The flooring market’s leading adhesive, Styccobond F3 is a water-based rubber/resin adhesive. Offering excellent wet grab and an early build up of strength, Styccobond F3 is ideal for securing carpet in a broad range of flooring applications.

Kerry Johns, Project Manager for team-marine, comments: “F. Ball’s IMO approved products provided excellent levels of performance and a high quality finish for the carpet and vinyl floorcoverings selected for the ship.”

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