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Old 03-10-2008, 07:29 PM   #1
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Default anyone work with fiberglass?

I took my canoe out for a spin today and noticed that over the winter its either developed a leak, or one it already had has gotten worse. This isnt surprising considering I had to store it completely exposed to the elements, and we had several occasions of freezing rain.

Now then, ive already figured out where its leaking, and I want to fix it, but Im not entirely sure what to get, and how to use it.

Ive done some googling, and it seems that I should get some resin mix, and after sanding the area of the leak, apply the mix to it, then lay fiberglass cloth over it, apply more resin to that, then wait for it to dry, sand again, and do a couple more layers, is that correct?

It doesnt sound too hard, and I honestly dont care if it looks like crap when its done, my canoe is ugly as sin anyway, and its on the bottom so I dont think the fish will care too much.

Where do I buy stuff like this? Its never come up before, so I really have no idea.
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Old 03-10-2008, 07:31 PM   #2
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I take it the canoe is fiberglass?

You should be able to get resin and glass cloth at the Home Depot.
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Old 03-10-2008, 08:28 PM   #3
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haha yeah its fiberglass, I kinda figured that was assumed, but I shouldve clarified.


You think this could be sanded by hand? Thats one tool I dont have is a powered sander of any kind, except a rotary tool, and that would be somewhat time consuming.


Any other thoughts?
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Old 03-10-2008, 09:09 PM   #4
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You can get a kit at an auto parts store also. Surprisingly, I did this a couple years ago for a friend. You want to lay resin and glass matting on the inside AND outside. Rough it up with 60-grit by hand, clean it off, follow the instructions.

You really don't need to sand at all. Keep your repair thin. It'* not like a canoe will develop steering issues from a 1/8" thick fiberglass repair.
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Old 03-10-2008, 10:36 PM   #5
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Default Re: anyone work with fiberglass?

Quote:
Originally Posted by LittleHoov
Where do I buy stuff like this? Its never come up before, so I really have no idea.
Any marine supply will have better epoxy resin (if that is what the hull is made of) or polyester resin from any of the afore mentioned places.

First, bring the canoe inside out of the elements and give it a few weeks in a warm area to dry out. (resin often absorbs moisture over time.)

Once it'* dried out, grind out the damage and feather out the area. Then lay up your cloth and resin to fill the area. This will give you a solid repair and lessen the chance that your patch will delaminate off the hull later. Then sand the whole area smooth for a repaint.

(Hey, just because it'* ugly as sin doesn't mean it has to stay that way )
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Old 03-11-2008, 12:17 AM   #6
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Thanks for the help guys, I think I can figure it out, just need to track down the supplies now. Then find the time and hopefully the weather to do it.


Moving the canoe inside isnt really an option, otherwise thats where it wouldve been this winter, so Ill just have to let it air dry as much as possible.


Will it leak if I only do the outside? The inside is in a hard place to get too and im not sure how well I can repair it. There is a small groove that runs through the center of the canoe and its down inside that groove where water comes in.

Water doesnt just pour in, its more of a fast seep. Its where the hull kind of comes to a point. For example the part of the hull that would hit first when you bumped into a rock, log, etc. you can see where the layers of fiberglass have just been eventually slammed through. There isnt really a hole perse, but you could probably make one if you picked away at it long enough.

Well see how it turns out
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Old 03-12-2008, 09:58 PM   #7
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Hay if you still havent fixed your stuff & need some help & pointers go to www.fiberglast.com
You should be able to find all the answers you need there. If you can't figure something out give me a holler, I can probably tell you more than you'll ever wont to know.

Couple quick pointers I'll give you. One the cold will have almost no effect on the glass setting up, so doing it in cooler weather should not be an issue. The other thing when you repair the spot make sure you grind out any bad glass. Anything that is white or loose will not bond well & will fail sooner or later. The area you grind will need to be smoothe & solid. Use a 24 or 36 grit grinding disk, 40 grit at a minimum.
And you dont have to repair both sides if the outside repair is done well. Trust me I built & repaired boats for 5 years professionally & I've worked with glass for over 10 years.
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