Anyone out there have experience installing a keel strip? Would you run it along the entire length of the kayak or just along front and back upward sweeps, the areas most susceptible to impact damage? Where would you source material to do it?
Depends upon how much of a DIY project you wish to make of it. I have had good success with Keeley easy both and it’s composite and polyethylene hull formulations. It costs four dollars per foot. It costs four dollars per foot. Others here, with more composite experience, will likely tell you how to install a wet applied fiberglass or Kevlar Keel strip on to composite hull.
My preference is for running the entire length of the whol my preference is for running the entire length of the hull.
See you on the water,
The River Connection, Inc.
9 W. Market St.
Hyde Park, NY
I use mine on bow and stern . It is pretty durable.
Keel Eazy is the product name. Available from kayakacademy.com and others.
It is not perfect so watch it after application. Where it separates from the keel, apply glue. Once sand invades the join, it is hard to recover. Again … watch it post application to ensure it behaves itself.
I have a 14 foot thermoplastic kayak and applied Keel Easy to entire keel and a third of the way up the bow and stern. Following directions, it goes on easy and adheres quite well. The difficult part of the application was the more curved bow and stern. My efforts with a heat gun and welding gloves resulted in puckering in the curves but the straight parts of the keel looked great. The buckled keel strip areas do collect dirt and I ended up removing the buckled areas and cut a short piece of Keel Easy to replace them. I use concrete boat ramps mostly for access to the water and slide the kayak on and off a PVC kayak rack and the keel strip does an excellent job protecting the keel and shows no signs of coming unstuck.
Thank you all for the feedback.
I helped a friend apply Keeleazy to his Delta a couple of months ago. To do it well you need 2 people and patience. I was heating the strip with my handheld plastic welder moving slowly and he was pressing the strip down immediately following me. Took us a while, but it came out rather nice with no buckling.