3M protective film?

Greetings fellow paddlers,

I have seen a few folks at various symposium and selling boats here with a protective film on their boats. I want to say its made by 3M, but I can’t seem to track down what is exactly being used.

Just curious if I could find anyone out there who has used this product and can give me some beta about it.

(e.g. how long it lasts, is it way messy when you remove it? Does it protect against UV? Is it a good way to keep your boat in great condition whilst doing rescues and the like?)

Looking forward to hearing back from folks!




It comes in various form factors. 3M used to sell it direct but seems to now only sell wholesale to companies such as those that use it to protect your car (great for that). It works very good on the top deck for areas that get banged up by paddles and such. I tried it on the keel but doesn’t handle hits by especially sharp rocks well.

Blue Water Kayak Works…
…also sells a product they call Yak Armor. I have some of it that I put on some of my deck. Their kits include the film and pattern paper. Not sure how it compares to the 3M product but I do recall reading a thread somewhere a few years back. I ended up with it instead of 3M because it was locally available from a person who was doing some glass work for me.




I put it on my boat
3M does make it, and you cannot buy it retail in plain sheet or roll form, normally. You either buy a small amount that a 3rd-party company has cut to fit a specific part of your car, or you can try to buy small amounts by the foot from a car-detailing shop. They may or may not indulge your request. I was lucky to find a place in the Denver area, when I lived near there. It is pretty expensive stuff but worth the money, and kayaks only need small amounts anyway. Don’t expect to protect your entire hull or deck.

I put it on some parts of the deck where paddle whacks tended to go. It helps shield the gel coat from those and from strap-rub abrasion. Don’t know if it protects well from hard rubs during assisted rescues but should be better than nothing.

I have not removed it so don’t know if it’s messy. It lasts a long time. No idea about UV but your gel coat pigment does that anyway.