Thread: Canoe hull fibbeglassing

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Between a Rock and a Hard Spot, Alberta, Canada
    Posts
    258

    Default Canoe hull fibbeglassing

    I think I have this in the best place.

    I picked up a canoe last fall that needs some TLC. It is getting warmer and the river has now opened up, So it is time to get this girl water ready.

    I have ordered all the parts it needs from the local outdoor shop. but the hull of the boat has pitting holes and some damage on the keel due to being run into a rock or two.

    I am wondering can I use Fiberglas body filler, sanding it down and doing several coats to fill in and reshape the damaged parts on the keel at the bow and stern.

    I was then going to pant it with a marine pant and put Keel tape on the bow and stern keels to protect them. ( I will be river running with this boat)
    95 XJ Hardcore, 02 Libby softcore, Comanche Travois, Gear Carrier
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  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Location
    Maryland
    Posts
    642
    I would go to this site and do some reading. They have a write up on how to do most anything you can do with resin and glass. I assume your boat is a fiberglass canoe. A glass canoe with a keel is probably not the best design or material for river running but If you already have it then I understand. keels get hung on rocks and slow down the ability to turn quickly. Fiberglass doesn't like impacts. It is easy to repair in the field if you carry a repair kit though.
    Good luck with your project.
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  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Prescott, AZ/The back of my truck
    Posts
    259
    I'd probably recommend getting a little more structure than just automotive body fill epoxy. A couple of layers of fiberglass cloth (cut on a bias for the keel) would help keep the canoe structurally sound. The body fill epoxy could come in later to fair out the bumps/hollows in the fiberglass before you paint. Also, chances are, your boat is made with polyester or vinylester resin. The up-side to this is cost; polyester resin is WAAAAYYY cheaper than epoxy. The downside is that it's a little more temperamental to work with, and requires much more ventilation if working indoors. Epoxy will usually work if the surface is prepped well, but it'll definitely be a good bit more expensive. With your intentions of running rivers, your idea of the keel strips is a good one, and if you're already repairing the keel, you might as well add an extra layer or two of fiberglass tape while you're at it...I've also seen rhinoliner sprayed onto the stem and stern instead of the usual keel-strips to help with wear and tear. I hope that helps.

    Cheers,
    West

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