Gel coat repair estimate

I got a estimate from a boat shop to repair my gel coat damage in the keel area for 250 what do you think?

I know I could buy the kit and DIY but the problem is the gel coat appears very thin and should be sprayed on . I’m leaning towards having a pro do the repair.


Keel Easy
I sell a peel and stick keel strip material that anyone can apply. It sells for $4 a foot. There is a youtube video showing the installation.


If it’s on the keel
definitely DIY it. I use pigmented thickened epoxy and lay it on heavy like a keel strip, and sand to shape when it’s cured. It lasts 3 or 4 years of hard use, and when it wears through or chips, I just mix up more goo, and lay it on where needed.

Ain’t gotta be pretty if it’s on the bottom, just tough. Of course, you could lay some glass tape on and make a real keel strip, too if you like. But no matter what you put there, it’s just a sacrificial layer to protect your layup anyway.

How well does it adhere, and how tough is it?

Bass Pro, West Marine
and others sell a repair kit with everything required including several pigments to match colors and good instructions.

If you prefer like new repairs the shop is probably the best option.

Good Luck


What is the peel and stick material you are using for the keel strip? Is it available in white?

Thanks guys.
I think that I’ll do a DIY and see how it comes out. The risk with that is if I screw it up and go to the shop to fix it the price will go up because of the screw up. FishHawk

There’s no mix up
that a sander can’t fix up. Don’t worry, you’ll do just fine.

Read this by Brian Nystrom first, and it’ll be easy:

what I think
you haven’t described the damage so it’s not possible to offer an opinion on the price. I wouldn’t fix the damage until the stern is worn down at least 1/8" deep with an obvious flat spot into the cloth. Depending on the keel shape that could be 1/4"-3/4" wide. My old Mariner Express had a wide keel at the stern and the bare glass was about 1" wide. After one gel coat repair I gave up and simply let the gel coat shed over the years.

Anyway the idea is to replace the soft gel coat in that high wear area with hard epoxy mixed with fumed silica(cabosil) or something like West Systems high density filler. Make a putty that can be put on with a squeegee then as it cures smooth it down with gloved fingers dipped in alcohol. Oh, mask the hell out of it so you don’t drip goop all over the hull and make sure the gloop near the masking tape is thin so you don’t have to sand much to get even with the gel coat. You can add tints or graphite to the epoxy mix for contrast/matching.

Peel and stick tapes, fiberglass or dynel strips are an inefective or inefficient method of putting down an abrasion resistant layer. You want something thick and ablative, not layers of thin cloth that wrap over the sides and take a lot of labor to fair out.

Some kayaks have thick gel coat in the ends and some are pretty thin. I wouldn’t bother putting a rub strip on thick gel coat that isn’t worn much, wait till it’s worn to the glass.

Keel Easy
It is 3/32nds PVC. 2 inches wide and available in white or black.

here is a video clip showing installation. Start to finish under 5 minutes

thanks lee - good stuff

Keel Easy
I have had it on my teaching boat for over a year and aside from nicks around the skeg box opening it shows only scuffs. I purposely drag the boat up the beach when I can.

As you can see in the video I apply the tape inside and recommend that the room temp be around 70F for best results. Some have used a hair dryer to warm the tape prior to application to get more stretch out of it.

Logical alternative
Advertise it for sale here on P-net. Buy a new boat in the meantime.

looks interesting
That product looks promising. $4/foot is pretty steep though. That would be nearly $80 per boat, right?

If it lasts as long as a glass keel strip, then perhaps the time savings would justify the cost.

Keeleasy weight
How much doed this weigh/foot?

The 2" weighs .6 oz per foot

Hi Lee,

Our testing on the product indicates that your comment “Peel and stick tapes, fiberglass or dynel strips are an inefective …” might not apply to KeelEazy. To prove it I am happy to send you a sample. go to and fill in the “send me a free sample form” and I will get it right out to you.