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Total newb, please forgive my ignorance

Discussion in 'Strippers, Stitch-n-Glue, and Other Wood Composite' started by FunDad, Sep 17, 2010.

  1. FunDad

    FunDad New Member

    I am not very experienced with canoe building or even epoxy for the matter. Some things I can figure out but I have a few points i need clarified.
    I plan on building a stitch and glue canoe(mainly glue) from some plans I got from I am not looking to make a work of fine craftmanship just a proof of concept that I can make something that floats down a slow moving river.

    1. Are there 2 kinds of epoxy? One to glue together the seems and another to treat all services of the wood?
    2. How much of each type do I need? Can I get this stuff at home depot? Any recommend brands?
    3. Is the fiberglass tape similar to what you would use on drywall?

    Thank you for your input and wisdom and forgiving my ignorance.
  2. Todd Bradshaw

    Todd Bradshaw Sailmaker

    Epoxy resin is actually a two-part system. You mix a specific quantity of the resin with another specific quantity of hardener (both are like thick syrup) then stir well to mix them, apply as needed and in a little while (depends on brand and type) it starts to harden. There are a lot of resins out there, but for wooden boat building, it's generally best (and cheapest, though no epoxy is cheap) to avoid hardware store stuff and buy something made for wooden boatbuilding. Resin alone may be used for coating and fiberglassing, but it may also be mixed with various types of filler to make putty-like stuff for other applications.

    The top four boatbuilder's epoxy brands are:
    WEST Epoxy

    System 3 Epoxy

    Maas Epoxy

    and Raka Epoxy

    There is a tremendous amount of usage information on the websites of these companies, so that's a good place to start learning. Some folks like one brand more than the others, but they are all top quality, proven products.

    The fiberglass tape is quite a bit more substantial than the stuff used for drywalling - basically a narrow woven strip of fiberglass cloth and it's available from the same places that sell the resin - marine stores and mail-order houses, some boat dealers, fiberglassing supply stores, a few woodworking specialty places like Woodcraft, or direct from the manufacturers.

    It takes a while to get comfortable with the epoxy process, but it's really not particularly difficult if you work carefully and follow the directions. Do keep in mind that although epoxy isn't particularly nasty stuff to work with (fumes aren't too bad, it won't blow up, etc.) you do want to avoid getting it on your skin. It's possible to develop an allergy to it from too much skin contact, so work clean, wear gloves, let it cure for a few days before you sand any hardened resin and wear at minimum a good dust mask if you do sand it.

    Go with goo and prosper Grasshopper!
  3. OP

    FunDad New Member

    Here is the finished product. I took her 60 miles overnight down the lower Brazos here in Texas. She even handled some light rapids ok.
  4. Kathryn Klos

    Kathryn Klos squirrel whisperer

    Bravo-- glad your project worked out as planned... I bet the kids think you are a fun dad!

  5. OP

    FunDad New Member

    Thanks next up is Buffalo Bayou
  6. pklonowski

    pklonowski Unrepentant Canoeist

    Looks like a great start... what'll your next boatbuilding project be??? :):):)
  7. OP

    FunDad New Member

    I have seen a nice pay plywood canoe plan I was thinking about or maybe a strip canoe. But I have a bunch of 1/2 in plywood in my garage i might just use to make a rowboat
  8. Dave Wermuth

    Dave Wermuth Who hid my paddle?


    They will never forget.
  9. Jim MacLaren

    Jim MacLaren New Member

    Clark Craft Boat Plans and Supplies is an excellent source for information as well as supplies. I've used their plans and supplies to build a number of boats. Their prices are relatively low and the materials are excellent quality. Specifically, I've used their epoxy and fiberglass cloth extensively with good results. Their descriptions will guide you to the correct products for a specific job. Their only down side, seems they are a little slow to ship, but they are reliable and do deliver- plan ahead.

    It's great to hear from others who enjoy building and using home made boats!


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