Ok I bought a 15yr old lightweight fiberglass 18ft SOT kayak and need some advice about the exterior circumferential seem tape or whatever its called that helps seal the exterior of the mating seem of the two pieces during construction. Its the black tape that apparently serves as a bumper since it is at the widest exterior joint all the way around the outside. ANYWAY since I am a canoe guy and don’t even know what its called, it is Uv-beaten and brittle and coming off easily with any slight prying of the tape which is separating in many spots. The actual construction of the two halves is well sealed with an overlapping layer of glass and epoxy on the inside of the hull so I just want to renew this exterior seem the best way possible. I am thinking about carefully chipping back the areas that are actually separated from the hull then lightly roughen the entire edge all around the kayak and reseal OVER the existing tape with another layer of the stuff. Any ideas if I am going in the right direction OR if their are other alternatives. Where do you get that particular “tape” ?
Are you sure …
the outside seam is not plastic extruded H channel material? Very common for some manufacturers to join hull and deck with this method and fiberglass tapes seams on the inside. But, with a SOT can you even see the inside seam? If it is a plastic H channel seam, i would consider digging it all out and replacing with a fiberglass seam tape and then gelcoat on top of that. There is a discussion of seam joining on the Walrus Kayaks website: http://walruskayaks.com/blog/an-introduction-to-composite-kayak-construction.html
Two places to look and ask further. Denizens of the Forum know how to patch it together with varnish and ambergris.
To see a selection of seam tapes and
related materials, try sweetcomposites.com. They may be willing to give some advice over the phone or by email on how you should proceed.