kayak repair and skid plates

i own a wolderness systems Tsunami kayak. It is a polyethelene boat. I would like to make a skid plate for this boat as the rivers and creeks we run are quite rocky. I used to shape and glass surfboards, so my thought was to lay a 2-3 ounce layer of fiberglass cloth and glass it to the contours of my hull. I understand that I must first sand and polarize the area for where i want to do this. My problem is that I have been told that the glassing agent, epoxy/resin or something similar, does not adhere to polyethelene. Any help, insight, or other suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

Keep on paddlin, Peter Fremont

while it may ‘stick’ for a while, it won’t be permanent.

the resin we use is pretty darn tough and it would take alot of abuse w/o any skid plates. If you do need extra protection you could weld plates over the stems but we are talking ‘ugly and slow’.

Just go try and wear 'er out and live with it, IMO.


Wait until it leaks
I my opinion you are better off to wait until you actually have a leak. Then take the boat out of the river dry it and temporarily patch it with duct tape. After you get back home remove the duct tape and make a fiberglass patch. By waiting until the boat actually leaks you’ll have a much better surface with deep scratches for the resin to adhere. in time your patch may work loose. If you notice it is loose remove it and reapply it with contact cement.

West System published a couiple of articles on bonding to plastic boats. Check out : http://www.epoxyworks.com/16/index16.html

“Plastic Repairs” and “Bonding a skeg to a polyethylene kayak”

Anybody used north Sea Resin
A very high tech adhesive. One version is designed to adhere to poly.


Recommend you not bother, or if you
find the wear excessive for the thickness of the plastic, that you pick up a used whitewater kayak for your rocky creeks. I have seen WW plastic kayaks crack or wear through under the seat, but I have NEVER seen one wear through under the bow or stern. There is lots of extra plastic in those areas.

Thank you all
Thank you to all who replied. I appreciate all of yor input. Guess I will live with the scratches until I can find a used whitewated kayak. Thanks again, PF