100th Barge Blasted and Painted – C&C Marine and Repair Celebrates a Milestone at their new Robotic Blast and Paint Facility


Just nine months after opening their new Robotic Paint and Blasting facility C&C Marine and Repair has announced the blasting of its 100th barge.  “We knew we had the capability to blast and paint barges quickly and efficiently, but what we’ve been able to accomplish in these first nine months has exceeded our expectations in both speed and quality of blast” says C&C Marine and Repair’s owner, Tony Cibilich.  The 83,350 square foot facility can accommodate barges up to 320’x75’ and has the capability to blast and paint a standard 30,000 Barrel Tank Barge or two (2) 10,000 Barrel Tank Barges in 7-10 days.

The fully enclosed, climate-controlled facility is unaffected by inclement weather and allows for uninterrupted operation 24 hours a day, year round.  “We understand that taking barges out of operation to get blasted and painted costs our customer’s revenue, so painting these barges quickly is very important.” says Mike Wade, Manager of Blasting Operations.

As a result of the speed and efficiency of the fully-automated robotic blasting system, the time to blast two standard inland hopper barges takes 36 hours.  “The benefit of blasting and painting in an enclosed, environmentally-controlled facility is tremendous, because you are insulated from weather delays and humidity” states Wade.  The re-usable steel grit blast medium, used in lieu of disposable single-use medium like “black beauty” (coal slag), provides a much cleaner blast finish.  This results in an exceptional surface profile for paint adhesion and bonding.  The superior profile finish and improved paint adhesion to steel, ultimately results in fewer required paint jobs during the life of the barge.

To date, C&C Marine and Repair has blasted and painted various types of barges, such as hopper barges, deck barges, and both 10,000 and 30,000 barrel tank barges.  The projects have ranged in size from as small as 30-foot wide x 110-foot long deck barges, to as large as 80-feet wide by 300-feet long deck barges.  In addition to blasting and painting, C&C Marine and Repair offers customers a wide range of new build construction and repair services.  The repair services offered by C&C Marine and Repair including ISE work, topside repairs, hull damage repairs, bottom replacement, barge coatings and tank liners.  “We want to offer our customers the most cost effective approach to maintaining their barge fleet.  One way is by saving them time, by performing all their repair needs at one location, under roof.” says Michael Alfortish, Manager of Barge and Marine Repair.  New build construction includes 10,000 barrel tank barges, 30,000 barrel tank barges, dredges, inland towboats, offshore service vessels, and a variety of specialized projects.  C&C Marine and Repair recently added an additional 1,000 linear feet of dock space, for a total of 3,200 linear feet of frontage on the Gulf Intracoastal Waterway just outside downtown New Orleans.  The additional mooring space compliments the two dry docks, six hydraulic transporters, and over 500,000 square feet of covered fabrication bays at C&C Marine and Repair’s 80 acre facility.

The Robotic Paint and Blast facility represents C&C Marine and Repair’s continued commitment to adopting new technology and employing best practices, particularly as it relates to protecting the environment.  The indoor facility prevents overspray, contamination and run-off of paint and blast media into adjacent waterways.  The facility’s state-of-the-art air filtration system collects and encapsulates over 99% of all airborne particulates associated with the blast and paint process.  The non-toxic steel grit blast media can be filtered, separated and re-used approximately one hundred and fifty (150) times over in subsequent blasting operations.  The result is the most efficient and environmentally safe blasting and paint facilities in the barge industry.

With the first 100 barges completed, C&C Marine and Repair is continuing to expand their Belle Chasse facilities to meet the needs of their new and existing customers.  The new Robotic Blast and Paint facility is just another example of C&C Marine and Repair’s continuing commitment to remain a technological leader and innovator in the marine fabrication and repair industry.