JB WaterWeld

I am working on a Tuff Weave Wenonah canoe that has some minor hull damage where several small chunks of the paint/gel have cracked and brocken away from the fiberglass material. Most are 1x1 inch sizes of damage. I bought some of this JB WaterWeld epoxy putty and think I might give it a try for filling in the repairs. It says its first recommended use is on fiberglass boats! Looks like some really good stuff. Anybody have experience with it?

I have it, but haven’t tried it.
Suggest you do a few and see how it levels and sands.

Just a note about Tufweave. The cloth is a mixture of glass and polyester. Wenonah gets excellent adhesion because the styrene solvent in their vinylester resin actually cuts into the surface of the polyester. Better adhesion than to Kevlar by quite a bit. I would guess that you could use a vinylester gelcoat to fill those spots. 3M, I believe, has one that comes in a small can and apparently lasts longer than ordinary vinylester resin. Because of the aforementioned adhesion to polyester, such gelcoat would adnere well.

I do kind of wish that Wenonah would not put gelcoat over Tufweave, which wears smooth without it. It would save some weight. In addition, the glass fibers are immune to UV, and polyester is quite resistant. Vinylester resin is probably more resistant to UV than epoxy, but I haven’t seen data.

I have experience with JB on non canoe applications and like it,but it’s not real flexable. I would be doubtful that it might crack off when the hull flexed. Something more flexable(G-Flex?) might be better.


I’ve been putting JB Weld on hard-used Royalex canoes for years. I apply it in a thin layer wherever the ABS starts showing through the vinyl. To the best of my knowledge I’ve never had it come off. It doesn’t look very attractive though. Someone recently thought my Viper had the foam showing all over the place. Nope. Just JB Weld.

tuffweave & gelcoat

I have seen some Wenonah comp cruisers built in glass without a gelcoat and they are spooky looking. The thin areas of the hull are transparent and the core areas mostly opaque. The Kevlar reinforcement patches along the keel line and at the stems are very visible, making the hull look like its already been repaired.

The 16’ Fisherman that Yetipope is working on is old enough it might not be Tuffweave, but regular fiberglass.


I have a Millbrook OC-1 that is
similarly spooky looking. It has SPheretex stiffening in the bottom and Spheretex ribs up the sides. Light shines easily through the unreinforced laminate next to the broad ribs. The boat has a skin coat of red pigmented vinylester. Doesn’t seem to be a problem.

I have a Bluewater that’s almost as thin in the sides, but the sun doesn’t shine through. It has dark green epoxy resin sprayed in the mold for color.

The art of using a thin layer of pigmented resin just isn’t as highly developed or consistently practiced. As for Millbrook, Kaz the builder will try all sorts of colored spray or patterned fabric to meet customer demand. He just won’t use anything as heavy as gelcoat which weighs near as much as a useful layer of cloth.

It IS Tuf-Weave BUT,…
Has the decal right on the hull BUT,…apparently Wenonah had several different layup methods of Tuf-Weave because my Sundowner 18 is Tuf-Weave and it has the foam cross-rib supports yet this Fisherman (Adirondack) has none,…just more layers of the fiberglass/tuf-weave on the bottom where it gets all the wear and damage.

I remember some tuff weave foam core
canoes at Catch a Canoe in Mendocino way back that were no gel coat and paint splattered.

I fix my teeth with it.

Tuff-weave lay-ups
Back then Wenonah laid up hulls in core-stiffened, cross rib, center-rib, and extra-stiffened. Flex core came long after your hull became the Adirondack. The least expensive and heaviest was the extra-stiffened. It did not use ribs or a core, just extra layers of cloth. Most of the extra stiffened lay-ups had woven roving on the inside as the top layer. All the other Wenonah lay-up were finished with cloth inside.


This 16ft Fisherman is Extra-Stiffened
OK well that explains why this canoe is heavier than I thought it would be. It MUST be the Extra Stiffened. The inner hull does have a woven-roving look to it. The fabric is very course compared to other types of fiberglass. It is definately TUFF!

Livery Grade
That is one Tuff layup. Smooth floor, no ribs to fracture, easy to load coolers, tolerates people walking in the canoe while beached, and too heavy for renters to carry away. High 60# range.

Again the balance of features being a compromise. Stiffness durability, and low oost offset by a weight gain