I’m planning on buying a canoe in the not too distant future and am weighing up the pros and cons of the different materials. Since I will be storing the canoe outside, I think I’ll go with aluminum instead of wood trim. In terms of hull material, I know how fibreglass stands up to UV, but I’m not so sure about kevlar. Does anyone know if kevlar is as UV-resistant as fg? Thanks in advance.
The UV resistance of the resin matters
more than the resistance of the fabric. I have seen contradictory reports on Kevlar resistance to UV. Some say it is more resistant than Nylon, polyester, polypropelene, etc., though obviously it is less resistant than glass. Others have said that Kevlar is very susceptible. My personal belief is that, while Kevlar darkens from sun, this does not weaken it. However, epoxy resin is certainly susceptible to UV degradation, and I see no reason to think that vinylester resin and polyester resin are not also susceptible to UV damage.
When you buy a “Kevlar” boat, or almost any other boat, you should plan on storing it where UV will not be an issue.
UV is everywhere
just plan on a tarp or build a shed or keep it inside, even with these pro-active measures give it a dose of 303 2 times a year…
cover it and forget it
if you’re keeping it outdoors, you might want to invest in a nylon or canvas tarp to keep the sun off the boat. Much easier to toss a cover on it than to spend a day going over the thing with rubbing compound and a buffer after ten years of oxidation take their toll on the finish. There are some companies that make custom socks for kayaks and canoes, though that’s always struck me as a $40 solution to a ten cent problem.
In terms of the Kevlar in sun, there’s no risk of meaningful deterioration to the material, though the bright yellow of a clearcoat boat will darken toward a golden brown the longer it’s exposed to sunlight. If you buy a Kevlar boat with a colored gelcoat exterior, the wear would be essentially the same as a glass layup.