Fixing Scuffs and Easy to Install Skid Plates on New to Me Royalex Canoe

Hi all,

I just acquired an Old Town Osprey in what I understand to be Royalex, and there are some skuffs on the stern and bow that have gone below the outside layer. We’ll be using the canoe mainly on a large lake, but my boys will be bringing it in on a somewhat pebbly beach, and I fully expect them to continue to damage the bow and stern from time to time, though I will encourage them not to have hard landings. And, even as relatively light as it is, they will inevitably have a hard time getting it into the water from time to time, and I can see more damage in those circumstances. I was planning to put on something simple like KeelEazy, but I wasn’t sure whether it made sense to use something underneath that given the wear at this point. Should I try and use G/flex first? Something else?


Thanks in advance for recommendations.


You have erosion through the outer white vinyl layer, through the outer solid off-white lamina of ABS, and into the ABS expanded “foam core” of the Royalex.

I would do the following: first thoroughly clean the exposed foam core as best possible using Dawn dish washing detergent (with degreasers) and a bristle brush, then thoroughly rinse the same area. Finally remove any residual water by applying denatured alcohol one or more times.

Fill in all of the exposed cells of the foam core with G Flex epoxy. It would be best to thicken this moderately with silica powder. It will probably take multiple applications to completely fill in the exposed core and build it up so that you can sand it fair to restore the normal contour of the hull in the damaged area. The epoxy will tend to settle down into the exposed cells of the foam core.

The area immediately surrounding the exposed foam core will have a thinned out external layer of solid ABS. You can confirm this and determine how large this area is by pushing in with your thumb. The thinned out ABS will feel spongy. I would cover that entire area with an abrasion plate. Personally, I would utilize fabric for that purpose. Best would probably be Dynel (5 ounce/square yard, plain weave) cut along a 45 degree bias to the centerline of the canoe which will allow it to lay down over the curvature of the stem without pleating. Wet out and fill the weave of the cloth using unthickened G Flex epoxy. Then paint the abrasion plate after the epoxy has fully cured and is washed.

You can check out this photo album that shows repairs I did to a Royalex canoe that had similar stem wear. If you click on each photo in the album there will be a caption explaining what is being done.

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