Help - for the next time repair

My wife punched a half inch diameter hole in the bow of her carbon/kevlar kayak just above the bottom on one side, and a few inches back from the bow.

I have repaired lots of canoes with patches, but this was the first like this.

I had no problem reaching up into the compartment and sanding around the hole on the blind, but when I went to put in a wetted out patch on the blind, it was a different story, and the dam thing folded up on me. I used a wooden stick and finally got it straighetend out after much cursing, throwing a drop light on the floor in disgust, and much anguish. thank goodness I was using West systems 105 resin and 207 hardner which has a long working life.



So my question is how do you pro repair guys do it?



Jack L

interior patch near kayak stem
The problems are similar to laying down a seam tape on the interior of a long sea kayak.



One technique is to take a wetted out fiberglass tape that has been rolled back up and try to unroll it down the length of the interior seam. I tried that once and wound up with a real mess.



I found it easier to lay down a thin bead of epoxy along the seam and then try to position the cloth over it before completely wetting it out.



You can make an epoxy dispenser by mounting a dental syringe on one end of a 6’ long (or so) furring strip. Put about 3 eye screws into the furring strip along the same edge as the syringe and thread a wooden dowel through them. The dowel is used to depress the plunger of the syringe to deposit the epoxy.



It is awkward but with practice it can be made to work. I would try placing a few dots of epoxy around the periphery of the hole and then positioning the cloth over the damp epoxy. Once the cloth is in place, squirt out more epoxy over the cloth to wet it out. To smooth out the epoxy I usually taped a disposable foam brush to the end of a suitably long stick.

I would do the repair from outside.
I always repair composite boats from outside, whether they’re thick layups with gelcoat or super thin layups like my Millbrooks. If I can get at the inside, I may also do an inside patch. I have used a pole with a nail stuck in the end to lay a 3-layer concentric, pre-wetted Nylon patch over the inside stern of a c-1 that kept breaking over ledges. But I also patched the outside, with glass.



Maybe CE Wilson will show up. He has to patch thin hulls.



It might be possible to ram a balloon in from the inside to close the hole for the outside layup.

anger issues?
If your wife punched a hole in a kayak, she might need some counseling…lol



I couldn’t resist.

While watching an eagle in a tree
with a 20 mph wind at her back and an underwater cypress stump with sharp spires.

I am the one who needs the anger management !



Jack L

The outside finish part was easy
I much prefer the patch on the inside when it can be done.

Jack L

When I patch from the inside.
Most of my experience is with simple cracks and small holes.



From the out side I lay saran wrap and then layers of duct tape over the hole. It gives me something to push against from the inside while laying the first patch. After the first layer of glass is in I let it set until it is pretty hard but still tacky so I get chemical adhesion from the following layers, but have even more to press against while I smooth out each following layer. Layers 2 3 and 4 go on one after another as quickly as I can do it. Then I put saran wrap over that and wait until it is dry.