If  you have ever been keen to fix your own boat or paddle for that matter you have probably realized that its NOT the most fun thing to do! There are however a few tricks to the trade that you generally only learn once you have already made the mistake! Things you wish people would tell you but have the sneaking suspicion that they were just keen to see you have the same dilemma they once had

Well I say dam them and here is a little ABC on simple resins if you are interested in building that general knowledge or just to prevent the next disaster fixit job!

OK hear it goes:

In my mind there are two basic resins that concern us

  1. Epoxy (super strong and needs fancy heat box I use for making paddles)
  2. Polyester (Cheep and nasty. River boats are made from it dry’s quickly)

 polyester

Epoxy

So we will only worry about polyester as that is something you can get from the hardware store easily and will use to fix your boat! But remember not to use this on an epoxy boat or paddle! The two resins should not mix and if you are a resin hacker rather let your fancy epoxy things get fixed by the right people!

 

Polyester needs 1,5% hardener to make a perfect mix! Too much and it will be hard before you finish and too little and it will never go hard or “off”. So REMEMBER 15%!

If it is extremely hot you may want to add a touch less but be careful!

So that’s the mix and always be sure to mix it thoroughly

You will need:

Gloves

Brush

Mixing pot

Chop strand

 

Putting a patch down can be a messy business! Spend the cash on the plastic gloves its well worth it! Even dish washing gloves will do the trick but throw it away afterwards.

You go get special fiberglass brushes but I think they are just the cheapest there are so don’t stress any brush will do! And a good old tin is the best mixing pot, plastic containers can melt when the resin starts to cook or go off so be ware.

Lastly you need a type or cloth to hold your resin and give it strength. For fixing boats plain old chop strand is perfect always tear rather than cut the pieces it gives an easier edge to sander after.

Now that you have everything. Make sure once your resin is mixed you are ready to put the cloth down so prepare the surface before mixing else wasted time can end in a pot full of hard resin!

Preparing the surface basically just means : give it a roughen up with some sand paper and sand out any bumps in the crack you are  fixing. Never tape the edges this causes un told admin when it comes to sanding the patch after it dry’s.

That’s it really. Paint resin down first then place cloth over then wet out the chop strand fully, rather too much resin than too little and I say three layers is more than enough. Make sure the patch is much bigger than the crack or hole to give it more area to grip! And that’s it! Let it dry! It should take a few hours no more and you are ready to neaten it up with a bit of elbow Greece! Use a thick sandpaper to start I say 80 grit and than work your way down the grits to your satisfaction! You can end with a 400 water paper if you want to take it that far but I normally get over it by 180.

There you have it the perfect fix that even a girl can do and let me tell you I learnt the hard way that’s for sure! But I think I have it down to a tee now! GOOD LUCK to you though practice makes perfect!