partially sanded

After the fibreglass is wetted out, two more coats of epoxy are applied to fill the weave of the cloth and then finally bury the cloth. This surrounds the fibreglass completely in a blanket of epoxy. This is important so that any scratches the canoe receives don’t cut the cloth. Damage to the cloth fibres themselves will weaken the canoe.

The second and third coats of epoxy go on more quickly than the wet out coat. They also use a lot less resin. My second coat I applied with a foam roller. I found that to be pretty unsatisfactory due to the amount of bubbles it produced. After sanding out the bubbles when it had cured I applied the third coat with a decent varnish brush and that worked much better.

 

inner skid layer

To protect the stems from damage I’m adding extra fibreglass to them. They got an extra layer up to a few inches above the water line, and then another layer over that. The third layer is full length and goes off the stem into the bottom of the hull by 20cm or so.

So the stem under the waterline ends up with 3 layers of glass and there are 2 layers above the waterline. These extra stem plates are feathered in with each coat of epoxy so that the transition is unnoticeable. There’s still enough thickness on the stem to add a brass stem band but I believe I’ll use it without for a season and see how they hold up. Brass is heavy so if the skid plates and graphite bottom do a good job by themselves that’ll save me weight.

skid plate 2

 

 

The graphite bottom coating that I’m putting on is another layer of epoxy. So the third fill coat of epoxy I didn’t apply to the area where the graphite will go. Canoecraft recommends levelling the canoe on the floor and marking the designed waterline with a block and pencil. I wanted the graphite to be more unobtrusive than that so I picked a strip that would be below the DWL and followed that with the masking tape. This should still provide the protection where it’s needed most but not make it too obvious while the boat is in the water. I think following a strip rather than having it cut across the strips will look better when the canoe is upsidedown as well.

 

waterline 3rd coat