Copper Sink on a Boat

When you think of a boats head, the sink probably doesn’t stand out as a key accent piece. That’s because they are usually made out of some cheap plastic or something that is hidden out of the way where it won’t be noticed. Popular materials for boat sinks are plastic or stainless steel; not because these are exceptionally stunning materials, but simply because they last a long time in the harsh marine environment.

When we refit our head, we decided to take our sink in a different direction:

Copper sink! Pretty!! But will it last? Copper is rarely used on a boat in favor of bronze because copper will corrode away in no time flat! Copper, when exposed to the marine environment will turn into green dust and blow away with the wind. Putting it in a marine head where it is constantly exposed to shower water, waves that come through the hatch, and the dampness of a shower in high latitudes sounds like a death sentence.

We chose to rise to this challenge and see if it could be done! Why? Because copper sinks are pretty! I know that is a dumb reason to try something out, but being a vessel sink, we could always remove it if it died on us and replace it with anything else! This meant that if the test was a failure, we would simply have to buy a new sink; but if the test was a success, we would have a beautiful accent piece in our head!

Challenge accepted! We purchased this sink on Amazon and it arrived ridiculously quickly. We the got it installed in the new head and everything was ready to roll. Let the test begin; slowly.

The sink has now lived in the boat for 5 months and is still looking fine. We have yet to develop any signs of corrosion in the form of green powder, even though we have taken many a wave over the deck with the hatch in the head open. Salt water has been pouring over the copper sink and it has managed not to tarnish!

How? Well, to call this a copper sink would be the same as calling a house “wooden”. The sink is made of copper, but the outer surface is not copper. The outer surface is covered with coatings that isolate the copper from the world around it. This means that if moist air were to rest on the outside of the sink, nothing would happen.

Naturally, over time, these coatings will wear down and the sink will start to pour out green dust of decay, but that is only if we do absolutely nothing to the sink! Metal polish with protective waxes in them will help keep the copper bright while also protecting it from the harsh marine environment.

Our sink has been in use for a while so far and is working very nicely, regret is the last feeling in my heart when I give someone a tour of the boat and show them the head!