Weekend Work

We did some work on the boats on Sunday. This was an interesting job for me, since I know nothing about boats. But we persevered, and actually did what appears to be a decent job. All that’s needed now is to do some sanding and replacing of broken parts. I’ve got to go into London to see if Novacraft has vinyl gunwales for the canoe. We decided on the plastic ones because wood gunwales look a little out of place on a 25 year-old ABS plastic canoe. Give me a good canoe, and I’ll put in the extra care that wood gunwales require.
I started by making use of Adventure Guide’s instructions on how to get a big dent out of an ABS canoe. We tilted the canoe up against the deck and poured boiling water in the bow and let it sit for about 5 min, then emptied it out and repeated the process. Then I took a heavy rounded object (in this case, a 10lb York barbell weight) and pressed it into the dent from the inside of the bow. After a couple of tries I was able to reduce the dent considerably. If I’d have given it a couple of days worth of trying, I might have eliminated the dent completely, but I kind of like the character a dent provides in a canoe. Also, I’m a very lazy man.
R worked on patching the holes in her Laser. Apparently, I get to paint it after I sand it down.
I installed some kevlar skid plates on the canoe. Apparently this canoe was frequently used for whitewater canoeing (shudder), and it had the battle scars to prove it. Many holes needed to be filled with epoxy resin and then covered with the skid plates. We bought an actual “whitewater” skid plate kit and the pieces fit exactly over the pattern of scratches and holes.
I was even able to cover the dent on the outside, which probably helped reinforce it.
One of the tricks I picked up on the InterWeb was to put Saran Wrap over the kevlar sheets after they’d been placed. This allows you to work on them with your bare hands, so you can smooth out any air bubbles underneath. It also helps reinforce the plates, since (apparently) the resin comes to the surface when you do this. It also gives the resin a nice smooth finish, so you don’t have to do so much sanding later.
Oh, yeah, and there was beers. That helped out a lot.

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