Kayak Scratches

-- Last Updated: May-24-07 1:46 PM EST --

How many scratches can a kayak take?

I have a used kayak with a lot of scratches in the plastic. Some are pretty deep. If I get too many scratches in it is it going to wear a hole right through the kayak? Its a dagger and it feels pretty thick skinned. I've gotten really paranoid about going over rocks now.

if a scratch is deep enough it will go all the way through.

I have friend who would drag his kayak a lot (across sand, pebbles, rocks etc) after about 7 years the plastic wore through just under the seat. So it is possible, but I wouldn’t worry too much.

You can always fill in the scratches or plastic weld any problem areas.

Once its scratched, its no good
Just send it to me, I’ll dispose of it for you.

Are you going to worry or paddle.
Have fun till it leaks…then worry.

ps, keep duct tape in the dry storage and have fun.

I have not seen cumulative scratches
add up to a leak. What you do have to be careful about is dragging the boat to/from car to water. This tends to sand through a particular area.

I can tell you that I have seen poly boats holed by rebar or similar hazards, but I have not seen a single scratch go through a hull.

Mad Magazine Quote
"What! Me Worry" Don’t, and if it does happen, as previously suggest, use plastic weld.

Any day on the water is a great day,


it depends on how thick your hull is
If you’re hull is 1/8 inch thick (or whatever), any scratch over 1/8 inch deep will go all the way through. How many scratches can a kayak take? If the same 1/8 inch scratches were side by side and covered the entire surface of the boat, the boat could disappear.

The bigger and deeper the scratch is…
—the better story it will tell.

Our fifteen year old poly rec kayaks can tell many good stories, but they still keep on ticking!