Canvas vs Dacron

Trammel canoe

Enthusiastic about Wooden Canoes
We have a 1930 OT 17' HW that is currently covered with fiberglass. According to the gentleman we bought the canoe from, this was done in 1970. How would you go about getting the glass off? Next, for someone with no experience in recanvasing would canvas or dacron be the easiet to recover with? Also does anyone know the measurements for a floor rack and may even a good picture for this canoe?


The 17 foot OTCA I'm working on now has a floor rack. I will shoot some photos and get some dimensions to you. It may take a week or so.
Glass Removal

There have been some interesting discussions of this in the past-- you may want to put "fiberglass removal" into "Search" above and see what comes up.

Here's my fav guy working on a canoe that was an "easy" removal with a heat gun:

Denis did another--- well, it's only half-done at this point because the glassing-job was "very good".

Just got a chance to watch the video, thanks. We are thinking our canoe has a "bad" fiberglass job which had not been completed, so hopefully it will come off pretty easy. We began working on it some today and noticed brass screws in the stem. They don't seem to be holding anything and are to large to be for the stem bands. Has anyone seen this before?

Thanks again,

sometimes it comes off easy like this.


  • 04.JPG
    84.5 KB · Views: 426
It often depends on the resin used, polyester (easy) vs epoxy (hard).

Try soaking the canoe for a week or so 1st before heating the glass.

Fiberglass Removal

I am restoring a 17 foot canoe that had fiberglass on it and I used the heavy duty paint stripper (sterling 5F5) keeping it wet with stripper and letting it soak in for a while. I did use about three gallons total but the fiberglass once saturated with paint stripper surrendered very nicely without damaging the wood.
soaking a canoe

I soak for about a week. Like this. You need a barn like Denis and a pond like Dave. A simple $100.00 canoe can cost millions. I suppose I could loan my pond out-------


  • 100_0753.JPG
    67.7 KB · Views: 331
Thanks for the picture (after soaking in one of our ponds the interior would have a nice red clay sheen):) . Luckily using a heat gun and putty knife it peeled right off.

Thanks again,

Sorry I'm just getting around to thanking you for the pictures and measurements. They will certainly make this part of the restoration a bit easier.

Thanks again,
I've never soaked one prior to taking off the glass so can't talk to that. I've just completed removing the glass from a 1909 OT HW which isn't my first. It can be a slow process if the resin has soaked thru a lot. I found as many as three layers of glass on the bottom of the canoe. I just use a heat gun and heat until the surface starts to bubble in small patches and slide a putty knife under the glass. Once all off you'll sometimes find resin still adhereing to the wood which you can remove slowly and very carefully with the putty knife and heat gun as it's pretty easy to lift some of the wood grain if you hurry. Biggest problem I always find is removing the old layers of varnish and undoubtedly poly urethane as someone always seems to want to use that. Again I find the heat gun and a fine cabinet scraping tool works the best. I've tried most varnish removers and haven't found one yet that I liked. Have yet to try Dad's Easy Spray but plan to this week. Good luck