I was recently reading an article about BC’s most innovative companies and Canada Metal (Pacific) Ltd. caught my eye. They manufacture aluminum alloy anodes in Delta, BC. You may ask, “how does that relate to my boat?” Well, pretty much everything that is immersed in water (boat, watercraft, dock) require anodes to protect them from corrosion. Anodes are made from zinc (saltwater), magnesium (fresh water) or aluminum (fresh and salt) and attach to the hull, shafts, trim tabs, etc. The traditional zinc anodes corrode over time and release very small amounts of cadmium into the water. Cadmium is carcinogenic and if you imagine all the boats and all the marinas in the world, that adds up to a lot of carcinogens in the water.
Canada Metal created an environmentally friendly aluminum anode which corrodes without releasing toxins. Jason Mitchell, Canada Metal’s International and Canadian account manager says, “It’s a solution for boaters world-wide, if we can educate them to use aluminum instead of zinc.”
As well, they weigh far less than their zinc counterparts and they cost less. A zinc divers dream weighs about 2.25 lbs whereas an aluminum Diver’s Dream weighs 0.87 lbs. Historically zinc anodes have been less expensive than aluminum but that’s no longer the case. A typical zinc Diver’s Dream plate retails for about $ 54.99 whereas an aluminum Diver’s Dream plate retails for $34.99. They are sold under the trade name Martyr II and are available at West Marine and Steveston Marine.
Also remember that you cannot mix types of anodes. If a boat has multiple anodes they must all be the same or only the least noble among them will be doing all the work of protecting your equipment.