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Case Study: Underwater Bulkhead Cleaning

How do you clean steel bulkheads and other structures that not only are submerged, but have been submerged unattended for decades? How do you get them really clean for inspection, welding, and recoating?

Pro Con Construction found the answer during a demonstration conducted at the Little Creek Amphibious Staging Area at Virginia Beach when they asked EcoQuip Inc. to clean corroded and encrusted corrugated steel bulkheads using The Farrow System´┐Ż. What they got were bulkheads cleaned back to white steel - the complete removal of rust, old coatings, and marine life. And this was accomplished by a single diver in record time!

Traditional methods of underwater cleaning, like hand scraping or pneumatic grinding or scaling, are extremely tiring and not very effective. This means labor costs go up, the time to complete the job increases, and the resulting surfaces are not clean enough for accurate inspection or to enable underwater coatings to adhere properly. Ultra High Pressure water jets are not 100% effective either, and are extremely dangerous to the operator.

The Farrow System™ demo was conducted at a depth of 25 feet, and used the low pressure of 60 PSI. The diver reported little "kick back" and that he could completely control the process with just one hand. After he was done, the steel was completely clean - clean enough for thorough inspections, free welding, and underwater recoating. The Farrow System™ was also tested on a naval ship's hull in the water with similar results. An additional benefit is that The Farrow System™ uses a natural, chemical-free, environmentally inert media, Farrow Green Clean™, so there is no harm to the environment and no special containment required in most cases.

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