How to restore a 1997 Wenonah Sundowner Royalex Canoe


I’m a newish paddler and recently picked up this 1997 Wenonah Sundowner Royalex canoe off facebook marketplace for $300. Not sure if it was a good deal or not but I just wanted to get my first boat and have it be a Royalex. My goal with this boat was to use it for overnight trips in the bwca on flat lakes with minimal portaging. I’m looking for some advice to restore some life back into it.

It doesn’t leak, however, it looks like in the back there was a fiberglass repair done some time ago and it looks like it is peeling off a little bit. Not sure if I should take it off and spend $100+ on a new patch kit or if it should be fine because it’s not leaking. Also, the skid plates on the stern and the bow have thick layers of resin and I’m wondering if this is something I should try and sand (150 grit??) or if it should be fine even though it’s not flush with the rest of the boat. There are some scratches that I was planning on filling with J-B Weld and sanding over as well as giving the whole boat a new paint coat and finishing it off with 303. Not sure if this would all be necessary but I am kinda lost on what to do.

Any advice would be greatly appreciated!

Thank you so much,


I’m kind of a “if it ain’t broke don’t fix it” guy. No leaks, just paddle. I wouldn’t try sanding the yellow skid plates as they are kevlar felt and it fuzzes terribly if you sand down to the fabric.

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I’m also in camp run it till she gives you problems. Then when it does, fix it with tape and keep using it. You can fix it proper come winter. Summer is for enjoying your boat, not cursing it.