Anybody use Git-Rot?


Wooden Canoe Maniac
I was recently given an old Veazie. Hiding under the rail caps was a lot of wood rot in the inner rails. The rails seem to still have enough solid wood left as the canoe doesn't seem flimsy at all, so I'm thinking that this is a perfect situation for Git-Rot. Has anybody used the stuff before? And am I right in thinking it could greatly improve the strength of my rails?

2nd question: Has anybody used other Git-Rot type products? I see TotalBoat makes a "Penetrating Epoxy" and RTG Supply Co makes "Wood Rot Repair Epoxy".


LOVES Wooden Canoes
In the UK we have this, Wet Rot Wood Hardener. I've used it and was impressed. It's a very thin liquid that soaks well into soft wood and makes a massive difference. Avoid getting it on your hands - it's very sticky stuff.


Dave Osborn

I’ve used penetrating epoxy on occasion. I apply it with a syringe. Just keep soaking it until it won’t absorb any more.
Seems to work when replacement isn’t a good option.

Todd Bradshaw

"And am I right in thinking it could greatly improve the strength of my rails?"

Do be aware that any of these "rot fixers" - Git-Rot, CPES, etc. will soak and harden punky wood, but what is left has pretty much nothing in common structurally with what was there originally. They may harden the area and could possibly prevent further rot by cutting off its air supply, but the wood in those areas is by no means "fixed" or "repaired". If you go that route, you want to be damned certain that the remaining original wood in good shape can carry the load by itself, so to speak. Resin-saturated rotten wood basically has little to no flexibility, compared to the original wood, and that may in some cases be an important drawback. For those who shun the use of fiberglass coverings on wooden canoes, loading up rotten wood with this stuff is probably worse, and the obvious real fix for rotten wood is always going to be replacement. I'm not saying that you can't use the stuff but do be aware of the fact that it does not turn rotten wood back into original, real wood, or anything close to real wood.


For a small amount of rot, very contained and nonstructural it seems to offer an alternative to remaking something. That said, it's not a miracle cure. It is hard to get great penetration with it and great penetration is pretty important. I have some you can borrow to experiment with. When I give you the IG I'll bring it along.

Dave Osborn

To clarify my use of penetrating epoxy, I only use it where there may be a small soft spot on the inside of a gunwale or deck. I’m not really an advocate of it in most situations. Large amounts of rot should be replaced. Rotten rib tips should be replaced, not slathered with the stuff.
I’ve seen I’ll fated attempts of epoxy application that were ultimately failures. They look crappy too.
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Andy Rosser

Curious about Wooden Canoes
I used git rot on the outwale of a new to us canoe last year. The wood needed to be replaced, but it was part of a bigger restoration project needed. For me, it was a temporary fix to get that boat into the water for a summer of fun paddling which is exactly what happened! On our last trip of the year, I somehow ended up with two sections of outwale in my hands while lifting the canoe! So... it got us through to what really needed to happen, which is replacing the wood. I am considering painting the tip ends of the ribs prior to varnishing because some of them are softer than I would like. I still have a few projects to go before doing so, so if someone want's to talk me out of it, now's your chance!

Dave Osborn

To do it correctly and to make it last, you should scarf in new rib tips where they are soft.
If you just want a floater and don’t care about the looks, integrity, and legacy of the canoe, load em up with paint.