That sharp blue and white color scheme and graphics on NYC Ferry vessels is more than a design statement – it is a complete anti-corrosion system.

PPS ORCA HT Anti-Corrosion Vinyl Film is used to wrap each of the newly built ferries operated by NYC Ferry by Hornblower. Manufactured and applied by PPS Imaging GmbH, Hamburg, Germany, the product features an environmentally friendly acrylic adhesive that bonds to steel, fiberglass or aluminum.

That bond keeps water and chlorides away from the surfaces. Applied to the 86’x29’ aluminum catamarans from Horizon Shipbuilding, Bayou La Batre, Ala., and Metal Shark, Franklin, La., the finished effect catches the eye and eases vessel maintenance.

“It differs from any other vinyl film available in the marketplace. The reason why we selected this product is its superior anti-corrosion protection, durability and UV resistance,” Junior Volpe, Hornblower’s director of special projects, said in a statement.

Overall, that means lower maintenance costs over time, said Volpe. All surfaces above the waterline are covered with the film, including superstructures, hull topsides, and the tunnels between the catamaran hulls.

PPS Imaging is a digital printing company, and its Industrial Applications division specializes in vinyl films for labeling and corrosion protection. In marine use its applications include wind turbines, ferries and workboats, cruise ships and other commercial vessels, and drilling platforms. The NYC Ferry is a high-profile project for the company.

PPS ORCA vinyl film is applied to the tunnel of a NYC Ferry catamaran vessel. PPS Imaging photo.

PPS ORCA vinyl film is applied to the tunnel of a NYC Ferry catamaran vessel. PPS Imaging photo.

"Our vinyl film is first and foremost an anti-corrosion product – primarily for the marine environment,” said Peter Rasmussen, the U.S. representative for PPS Imaging Industrial Applications.

“Because it is a dry product, there is no waiting and dry time,” said Rasmussen. That means other work on a boat can proceed while the film is being applied.

“On aluminum surfaces, no primer is necessary,” he said. “The vinyl film is applied directly to the aluminum surface.”




Contributing Editor Kirk Moore was a reporter for the Asbury Park Press for over 30 years before joining WorkBoat in 2015. He wrote several award-winning stories on marine, environmental, coastal and military issues that helped drive federal and state government policy changes. He has also been an editor for WorkBoat’s sister publication, National Fisherman, for over 25 years. Moore was awarded the Online News Association 2011 Knight Award for Public Service for the “Barnegat Bay Under Stress,” 2010 series that led to the New Jersey state government’s restoration plan. He lives in West Creek, N.J.