Drill, fill, drill

Hello all, I’m installing my foot braces today in my clc 17. I’m using the simple bolt through hull with the “drill, fill, drill” method. So my bolts are 1/4" so I drilled 3/8" holes that will epoxy today and then re drill the 1/4 holes for the bolts. My plan is to tape off one side and fill with epoxy from the other. Does it matter whigh side I fill from? Also the machine bolt head will completely cover the 3/8" epoxy surface and I plan to apply lexel to the underside of the bolt head when I install the bolt. Everything sound about right here?


– Last Updated: May-02-16 8:23 PM EST –

is the hull of wood ? looking to delaminate ?

I dunno. Gonna run the Grand Canyon of yak to Spain ?

Rigid fastener mounts encourage tear out when scrapped against a dock or ? brush in Maine.

A coated hole filled with an SS marine type bolt set on hard rubber washers would suffice.


Sounds like yer doin’ it de right way. Good luck, Pilgrim.


no shrink epoxy

foot braces
Should work fine that way. Plan to have to sand the epoxy plugs since then tend to be overfilled a bit.

Lots easier to tape the inside and fill from the outside, one side at a time. Easier than trying to get wet epoxy up under the deck to reach the holes inside.

Bill H.

I prefer eliminating the through holes; attaching foot peg tracks with flexible methacrylate adhesive. Something about taking a drill bit to a perfectly good hull bothers me.

buy a composite
drill bit from Mcmaster/Carr



– Last Updated: May-03-16 10:21 AM EST –

Why drill and bolt if you don't have to. I'm seeing more high end boats that glue footrests in. My aluminum Yakimas are glued in and the boat is 8 years old. Yay for industrial adhesives!

Better mount instead of just gluing them in is to glass in a stud for the mount. There are lots of studs with flanges on them designed just for this. Stronger and still no thru bolts.

Bill H.

foot braces glued on inside of canoe
My Rapidfire canoe is now ten years old. I’ve used the canoe hard and frequently and the foot braces are still securely attached by the original glue. Placid Boatworks worked out this method under former partner Charlie Wilson.


– Last Updated: May-05-16 8:47 AM EST –

You really don't need to drill an oversize hole. The plywood isn't like the core of a balsa/foam core of a boat hull where through bolts would crush the hull. Simply putting the boat on its side and dripping a few drops of un thickened laminating epoxy into one side of the hole with tape on the other so the epoxy can soak into the interior grain is more than adequate.

Wrt this tip below it says the reasoning for "drill, fill, drill" is to prevent water staining. It isn't. Water staining will occur primarily from exposed edge grain plywood soaking in water like a sponge when epoxy sealed edges are abraded or dinged as on coaming edges, hatch edges. The other place where "black ick " mildew staining can occur is from water vapor steaming right through the epoxy inside the compartments when they're closed up with a little moisture inside.

When most people build these boats it's usually not with the end use in mind so corners, bow and stern points are very sharp with the same number of fill coats of epoxy on the corners as the flat areas. With pre varnish sanding the edges end up with less of a protective coat where it needs it the most.

Btw mildew water staining is primarily cosmetic, okoume is good mildew food but it doesn't indicate any structural problem. When it comes to interior sealing of compartments a couple thin coats instead of one thick coat is better. You can easily identify wood kayaks that were stored with hatches on tight. From the outside the center cockpit area is light colored and the compartment area is darker with a clear delineation at the bulkheads.


Besides who needs big screw heads grinding into other boats during transport or across ones own boat during rescues?