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kchalupsky
member (9)member
 
12/13/2020 10:55PM  
Ok so I am new to this forum. I built a cedar strip canoe 22 years ago when I was 17. due to life and my youth I have never finished it or put it in the water. I just got it back from my Parents house where it has been kept safe. It has never had a varnish put on it so It has been just the west systems epoxy job i did on it back than. for the most part it has been covered and not exposed to the elements but I do say for the most part. so I put it in the garage and cleaned it up and am looking to finish it. I do see some problem areas I would like some advice on as well as just some general advice on what I should do. any help would be greatly appreciated. I attached some photos and would love feedback and advice.
thank you
Kyle

 
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tumblehome
distinguished member(2455)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
12/14/2020 09:03AM  
The canoe looks not too bad. You didn’t provide any pictures of the inside.
The cloudiness in some parts of the canoe are because you didn’t use the west system 207 hardener which will not ‘blush’ or cloud as it cures. You can’t take that out. It’s in there for good. However, the epoxy you used is very strong and durable so you have a well epoxied canoe.

You need to sand the entire hull, inside and out to remove any lumps or runs in the epoxy, then give it a few coats of marine spar varnish to finish it off.

One picture you provided shows a little bit of the cloth. Leave it alone since there isn’t anything you can do about it and it is more cosmetic than anything. Surprisingly, when you varnish the hull, those spots tend to disappear like magic, really.

When varnishing, please use very thin coats, just enough to wet out the hull. Let it dry in a heated space and sand lightly with very fine sand paper then re-coat.

It does look like it was crushed at some point where I see a split in the glass. You are going to need to buy some epoxy and a piece of fiberglass cloth (4oz will work nice since it’s a little thin and will lay nice and flat)and fix that spot. Sand the damaged area smooth and apply the glass and epoxy. You will not get that spot to look like new but do your best. You might need more than one coat of epoxy. Use wax paper over the pathed area to help hold the epoxy in place while it cures. You probably have some work on the inside too. Look at each problem on your boat as a project rather than looking at the whole thing trying to fix it all in one fell swoop.

If you have other questions, please ask.

Tom
 
sedges
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12/14/2020 10:38AM  
There is definitely a problem with the glassed over keel. Fiberglass does not take well to 90 degree bends and the split glass in the photo is going to happen all along the keel eventually. My suggestion would be to remove the keel. You really don't need it and it will cause problems for the whole life of the boat. The stem band with all the screws to attach it could go, too. Those screws are just a way for water to gain access under the glass.

Run a sharp blade along where the keel meets the hull to separate the glass. Start peeling glass at that split. It will come off pretty easy. If the keel is glued to the hull you will have to plane it off. An electric plane will be a wonderful tool to use, but a good well adjusted bench plane will work, too. Get the canoe level, but low enough to work over it.

You will then have to put a strip of glass where the keel had been.

This may be a little more than you had in mind. If you want to preserve the keel you should still strip the glass off so you can seal it properly. The keel is not in anyway improved structurally by the glass. It just needs epoxy to seal it.

Most of the rest of the work is basically cosmetic.

Good luck with you project. Send us up-dates!
 
kchalupsky
member (9)member
 
12/14/2020 12:21PM  
Thank you so much for the insight I will do everything that you said. is PETIT captains varnish a good brand to use? or would you recommend something else? I have included pics of the inside too. done mind the dirt as I have not washed the inside yet.
 
tumblehome
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12/14/2020 02:54PM  
I didn’t even notice that was a keel. Agreed about the glass on the keel. If I had that canoe I would probably remove the keel too. It’s not needed to keep your canoe going straight.
The inside looks pretty good. Captains varnish is very good varnish. It’s a little thicker than some big box store varnish which is not necessarily a bad thing but it needs to be warm and stay warm after you varnish for at least 12 hours. It cures very slow. Like it’s still tacky after 6 hours. Good varnish cures/dries slower because it has fewer solvents in it.

Tom


 
kchalupsky
member (9)member
 
12/14/2020 03:27PM  
Thank you both for the insight. I am going to bring this into the shop and work on it. I will sand it all down and take off the keel. still not sure about the brass on the bow and stern. I know they have screws but was thinking of covering with glass as well. I know that seems really weird but i think i put it on to cover up some ugliness (haha) of the way i did the ends. remember i was very young when i built this. is that a bad idea? anyway i will order some spar varnish and keep you guys up to date.
 
1JimD
distinguished member(536)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
12/14/2020 10:41PM  
A thing to remember. Cedar darkens in time, often turning red. If you sand down to the wood. It will show a lighter colored spot, in the final product.

Care not to sand into the weave, as this will weaken the cloth.

The crack between the courses of strips, could be cut and filled, then patched. extra work , but up to you . I would at least add extra layers inside and out. A 2"wide strip. Feather the edges with a scraper.

Nice Winter project, especially if you have a heated shop ! Good Luck !

What design is this ?

Jim
 
1JimD
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12/14/2020 10:52PM  
The Stems look like they have some mold under the glass.

That will need addressing (Removal)

If you used Epoxy, it won't peel off easily. like Polyester resin.

Again good Luck !
 
kchalupsky
member (9)member
 
12/15/2020 04:27PM  
I am not sure what the design is as i built it in high school. I should try to find out I am still in contact with my shop teacher from that time as I am now a shop teacher. weird how things come full circle. I will post some pics tomorrow of the progress that I made today and tonight.
 
kchalupsky
member (9)member
 
12/15/2020 07:45PM  
Well here is the progress that i made. I took off the brass protectors and took off the keel. there was quite a bit of damage to the fiberglass from where it came up the keel. i started to sand everything down and removed all the damaged fiberglass. had to go three strips wide but the fiberglass tape that i have will cover the area. should be ok I think. what do y'all think?
 
tumblehome
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12/15/2020 08:21PM  
That looks real nice. You have some skills.

As shown in your picture, you will want to overlap the new glass onto the old glass. After the glass is wet out and cured, you can feather sand the edge of the seam being careful not to remove too much epoxy on the parts of the canoe you are not repairing. Please wear a mask for dust.

Your canoe needs some thwarts and a yoke for strength and shape.

I built a cedar chest in 9th grade back in the early 80's. It's still in my bedroom all these years later. The skills we build in high school can help us later.

Tom
 
1JimD
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12/15/2020 08:48PM  
The cloth tape looks barely wide enough to me. I'd be tempted to run two strips of tape and overlap them. That way you would have a double layer down the middle, and be able expand the width of your tape.

It's easy to feather the edges later with a good scraper ( Carbide).

 
kchalupsky
member (9)member
 
12/15/2020 08:55PM  
yes that is for sure. I try to tell my students that all the time. I think I will make a yolk do you think that I need thwarts? I figured the seats kind of act like a thwart holding shape, and with the yolk in the middle it would be ok.
 
1JimD
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12/15/2020 09:01PM  
At least a yoke !
 
kchalupsky
member (9)member
 
12/16/2020 10:07AM  
so I was going to feather by sanding but when you say Scraper what exactly do you mean? like a regular scraper or is there one specific to fiberglass?
 
sedges
distinguished member(865)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
12/16/2020 11:10AM  
A well burnished cabinet scraper gives you a lot of control and good results.

I agree that you need to use two overlapped pieces of that tape, at least on the 3 strip wide part. You can use one piece where there was only the stem band.

As you get toward the ends that tape is not going to conform to the shape without puckering. You can cut off the selvedge, the bound edge of the tape, to release the weave. If you then pull the edges in opposite directions the weave will orient diagonally and fold easily over the stem.
 
kchalupsky
member (9)member
 
12/16/2020 01:24PM  
Addressed the first issue with the keel and got it all off and sanded down. I added some stain to try and match the color a little so it wont be so noticeable. I don't know if this was a good idea or not but hopefully it will make it blend a little better.

I know Jim mentioned the stems having mold under the glass. do you think I need to take this all the way down to the wood too? what happens if I don't? is it just a discoloration thing? would I just use tape again to blend in the fiberglass at these ends too?


 
tumblehome
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12/16/2020 02:43PM  
What I am seeing is some mold/mildew under the glass. You need to stop the penetration of water if it was getting in from the inside.

This in not uncommon when a stripper gets water trapped under the glass. I have a stripper with a couple deep scratches down to the wood and it darkened up quite a bit before I sealed it up.

For me, I would leave the discoloration all one so long as no future water gets in there. It would be a chore to grind off the glass there and re-glass it again IMO.

Not sure if you need to stain the wood. It darkens when you glass the canoe. However, with the stain you have on now, it might not darken further.

Tom



 
sedges
distinguished member(865)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
12/16/2020 08:40PM  
The stain was not good idea without testing how epoxy resin works over it. You really want that resin to penetrate into the wood as much as possible. If your stain was oil based you might have problems. Water or alcohol based stains might be ok.

I would recommend staining a scrap and then try applying a piece of that tape to it and see if it adheres properly. Don't try and put the tape on the keel without the test. It could result in a real mess trying to remove uncured epoxy.
 
1JimD
distinguished member(536)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
12/16/2020 10:00PM  
I've used a variety of scrapers over the years. Paint scrapers, cabinet scrapers but my favorite is a Carbide paint scraper Home Depot has them. Or I'm sure you can find them on line. Scrape within 24 hours of epoxy application for ease of scraping. Sanding uncured epoxy is bad on the lungs. Wait at least 7 days to sand. You can scrape within 24hrs without dust.
 
kchalupsky
member (9)member
 
12/16/2020 10:30PM  
well after reading this and not being able to sleep I was back out in the garage with a cold glass of bourbon and my sander. took all the stain off that I put on which was not too bad as i did a real light coat. it is back to bare wood and I just waiting now for the epoxy and i will run the strips in a couple of days. hopefully everything will turn out ok. I have to say that was not one of my brighter moments but that is how we learn i guess. I am way more of a construction guy than this fine woodworking. I do mostly timber frames not canoes but that is why i am here to get your advice.
 
wingnut
distinguished member (452)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
12/17/2020 07:42AM  
The keel area is probably the least noticeable area on your boat. Most of the time it will be out of sight on top of your vehicle or on the ground when you have it out of the water. Chances are the color difference won't be unnoticeable but hopefully not too distracting. There is always the option of painting the outside that still let's you enjoy the looks of the stripper on the inside.
 
tumblehome
distinguished member(2455)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
12/17/2020 12:18PM  
We learn by making mistakes. We get good at something by doing it over and over.
Dont sweat the small stuff.

I bet if I built a timber frame house it would fall over.
Tom
 
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