Keel Eazy Problems?????

I have now installed this on three different boats. Seems like a nice product, but I have had some problems with my latest installation.

I installed some on my surfing boat recently and it is not staying on well after only a couple of uses.

It is peeling up from the sides on the center of the boat.

Obviously any boat that you use in the surf zone is going to have contact with sand when launching. specifically you will often need to pivot the boat in order to keep it pointed toward the water when launching as the water often wants to spin you sideways. This is particularly true when you get surfed all the way in to shore and have to re-launch.

I think this is pretty normal use for a boat that is used in the surf zone.

This seems to be causing the strip to peel up in several places on the bottom—assuming this is why it is peeling up, but I don’t know.

Anyone else had this problem?



Adhesive failure is often due to poor preparation of the surface.

I haven’t used it
but I have heard reports from those who have used it on whitewater boats that it breaks off too easily when the boat scrapes over rocky ledges or boofs rocks.

Obviously the solution
Is to coat the entire bottom with it

Try sealing the edges with G-Flex
I wasn’t real impressed with the adhesive that comes on the Keel-Eazy strips. Try sealing the edges with a bead of G-Flex. That stuff will stick to anything, even polypro (with proper surface prep) and is tough as nails. Dries to a high-gloss finish, too.

I’ve actually been planning to do a keel strip with G-Flex & fiberglass tape. You can color G-Flex with gelcoat colorants, too. A buddy of mine did his in black; I’ll do mine in white.

I also recently repaired a crack in my fiberglass blade with G-Flex & fiberglass tape, and rebuilt the top edge as well.

bowler, is the surface flat where the
strip lies, or is there a “peak” on the centerline of the boat?

The keeleasy would not have enough flexibility in the crossways dimension to deal with a peaked hull center.

Heat application?

– Last Updated: Aug-28-13 7:48 PM EST –

The strip is supposed to be thermoformed to conform to the surface, including edges and ridges. So, the glue should not be fighting the strip tension, just keep it in place as if the surface was flat.

If enough heat was applied, then it is just the glue failing (possibly due to dirty surface or just too much force from the sand). Wen I applied a strip on my kayak, I cut away about 2mm from each side of the strip where there was no glue - I did not think it would stay in place with the sides glueless as they were, so I trimmed it along its length. As a result, I do have a bit of extra glue around the edge of the strip, which is a bit unsightly, but I think is stronger and does not allow debree or water to lift the strip edges. I did apply heat to it and mine stays in place, but admittedly, I have not subjected it to any mechanical forces other than gentle paddling in summer waters...

Agree with Kocho

It probably came off
because the glue doesn’t go all the way to the edge of it. If sand gets under the edge it comes off.

WW boaters care?
PB, you’ve heard of whitewater boaters using KeelEazy? Really? I wouldn’t think that after a day of whitewater abuse that the ww boater would care anymore. (maybe just a NE thing where there can be more rock than water molecules)


Scrub the released area with a rubbing alcohol soaked Mr. Clean Magic Eraser Sponge. Paper towel excess alcohol. Reapply KeelEazy. Warm with heat gun and use a roller to work it onto/into hull.

Still a problem, contact Chris at KeelEazy. Perhaps he can shed some light on it.

See you on the water,


The River Connection, Inc.

Hyde Park, NY

There was this thread on cboats dot net with some early test results:

I think there might have been a follow-up thread on the same forum but I couldn’t find it with a quick search. I remember reading something elsewhere as well, but I don’t recall the venue at the moment.

I do know a number of open boaters who have been quite happy with the product for non-whitewater use.

so far it’s worked for me
on fiberglass & plastic hulls.

I always install on a warm day - 75 degrees and up, letting the hull warm in full sun.

Hull has to be immaculate. Rubbing alchohol. And smooth (superfine auto grade sandpaper if needed)

Then clean again w. rubbing alcohol.

while applying heat (1000w or better)I keep working the entire strip pushing from the center of the strip out to the edge w. my fingers. This might spread the adhesive more to the edges. Also of course, work the strip longitudinally with fingers, too, or a credit card, down the length of the Keel Eazy.

Improper fix, but holding
I had some keel easy peeling off my stern. The gooey adhesive was sticking to the hull, but the keel easy was pulling away anyway.

I’m pretty sure the proper fix would have involved replacing the keel easy, or at least peeling it back and cleaning the adhesive off the hull, then resticking the keel easy with an appropriate adhesive. But, I planned to paddle the same day and decided to try a quick and dirty fix. I did clean what I could get to with alcohol, then I appliedd a small amount of SikaBond Universal and taped, tied, and wedged the keel easy against the hull. That was about noon, and I paddled the boat at about 5pm. The product instruction says “tacky in two hours, full bond in 5-8 days.” I’ve paddled the boat at least ten times since and the keel easy is still sticking. It’s a little early to declare victory, but so far so good.

I found SikaBond Universal at the Lowes one day when I was looking for something to stick wiring inside my cockpit. It comes in a caulking tube. I stood and read product descriptions of caulking and adhesive products for about an hour. Surprisingly, very few of the construction adhesives claim to stand up under prolonged immersion and to be waterproof, as SikaBond Universal does.

It probably wasn’t the “right way” to fix it, but it was quick. Usually fast and easy is not compatible with effective and long lasting, but I’m hoping for a rare exception on this one.


Heat and patience
Using a heat gun on 500w setting I just applied it to the bow of an Epic 18 which has quite the plumb bow and with heat, roller and patience you can manually thermoform it to the shape. The real trick was the stern that has the part-o-the-hull rudder with flip down skeg. Same process but then cut the tape occluding the skeg, away and carefully made even rounding to the slot with the tip of the razor knife.

Fun with melted vinyl.

See you on the water,


The River Connection, Inc.

Hyde Park, NY

I went back and reapplied heat to the keel strip in the spots where it was peeling off. This seemed to help…for about one use.

The keel strip is now peeling off so badly in so many places that it needs to come off and be replaced or I need to just go without.

I think I have a total of about 6 days on the water with the keel strip. For $80 for the material I certainly would have hoped it would last longer than that.

I did follow the instructions that were on their Youtube video. Perhaps the hull needs a better scrubbing prior to application, but the video said just to use a cloth.

I may try again, but am not sure that I want to gamble $80 on it.

It is possible that this product just is not suitable for the lateral stresses that will be placed on it when launching and landing in the surf zone. There is really no way to launch and land repeatedly in the surf without subjecting the boat to lateral or torsional friction as you have to straighten the boat out as the surf pushes you off axis when launching, or when getting violently side surfed all the way to the beach.

I have emailed the company, but they never emailed back. I find that a bit annoying.

It is a neat product and a neat idea, but if it is not going to last under real conditions and given that it is about $80 for a $15 strip of tape, I am not sure that I am sold, especially given the lack of response from the company.

Maybe I am wrong but that I my impression at this point.


Seems to offer an alternative. I might use it as soon as I see problems developing with the current KealEazy bow skid late I have on my kayak…more expensive and way thicker !!!

Opinion and innuendo, not so much facts
The guy who runs that KeelEazy operation is Chris Mitchell. I think he is sort of a one-man operation. I suspect he will get back to you, eventually. There’s no reason I think that other than he is a small operation and he could be traveling or something.

What I have read about KeelEazy is that the adhesive doesn’t go all the way to the sides of the strips, and that they expect the glue to squeeze out to the edge during application. Maybe that can be done in a perfect manner, or maybe there is always going to be some voids along the edge. I expect there are voids in your application, and that is all that sand and water need to start working the edges. Like you say, lateral forces on the beach… pretty soon your KE is hanging off. I’ve never applied it, so this is just based on my reading about it.

Seems to me you have to make sure the edges are really nailed down, and it wouldn’t hurt to have a bit of material extending beyond the edge of the KE that could be feathered to prevent sand from grabbing at the edges when the boat is pushed sideways. I expect that if you are going to go to that length, you’d be just as well off epoxying fiberglass tape onto the hull instead of KE.


This stuff is expensive!

– Last Updated: Sep-02-13 5:34 PM EST –

Comes to about $30-$40 per foot for the 4"x25" skid plates at $150 a pair... The 1.5" width comes to about $1 per inch! Ouch! KeelEazy is what, $4 per foot for a 2" width?

I had to rip it off tonight. It was just way too far gone to salvage. I was able to keep the end parts on though for the timebeing.

When I inspected the tape I found that some parts were cemented down quite securely and other parts were not.

In the spots where it was not, it seemed that the adhesive had separated from the tape itself, rather than from the boat. The adhesive was intact on the boat and the tape had ripped free from it.

I will concede that it is possible that maybe I overheated it…??? I am not sure.

My heat gun only has two settings–high and low. I used high.

While I have not gotten a response back from the company, I did get one back from the dealer and they said they would send me a new length of tape (the kayak academy).

I will give it a try again I guess. Hopefully this time it will work out better.

Which heat setting would be more appropriate for my heat gun…high or low???


So what I am understanding is…
it may not be the best material to use for protection on a Thermoformed kayak that rages in the surf?