Oxidation on Royalex canoes

Best product to deal with heavy oxidation on older Royalex canoe that spent some time stored outside?

rubbing compound
applied with a mechanical buffer.

Maybe not the best but its worked for me.

I use Meguires.


No Royalex expert here but I’d think as kayamedic says, rubbing or even polishing compound may freshen it up.

What color?
I had a blue Dagger Legend 16 that was badly sun damaged when I bought it and I tried every trick in the book to no avail. I could not get it to stay un cloudy for long. I also had a red Mohawk XL 13 that was so bad that it was orange. I wiped it down with acetone and painted it with Krylon Fusion. That was like 10 years ago and I saw it not long ago and the sides look like the day I painted it (not on the bottom of course. If I had not put so much 303, Nu Vinyl and other assorted chemicals on the Legend trying to restore the vinyl, I probably could have done the same thing with it.

It’s old school…
The boat in question is an old school(1991), Mad River Flashback model #1. I believe it was designed as a whitewater slalom canoe. It is a dark red color that MR used, and still uses I believe.

The boat has been used a lot, but not abused.

I started a mini restoration on the boat yesterday. My major concern is dealing with the oxidation as best I can.



– Last Updated: May-10-16 10:14 AM EST –

In my experience there is a lot of variation in how difficult it is to remove discoloration and oxidation from Royalex. Sometimes it comes off easily but other times it seems deeply ingrained in the vinyl and getting rid of it requires removing a little of the vinyl.

I have generally first tried a simple cleaning agent like Simple Green but I can't recall an instance where that worked. I have tried various solvents. Acetone or MEK can work, sometimes very well, but care is required. Either will damage ABS and the gas can go right through the vinyl. But if you use paper towels or a rag, it flashes off quickly enough there is no damage. Avoid prolonged contact. You will see that some of the vinyl is actually dissolved by the solvent from the color left on your cloth or paper towels. Keep the solvents away from any decals or they will run or wash off.

Either acetone or MEK can leave streaks, and you may need to keep swiping at the streaks to get rid of them. MEK also gives off pretty noxious fumes.

Whitewater open boating legend Jim Michaud recommends Toluene which is less noxious. I have tried it several times without much success.

I suppose a polishing or rubbing compound will work in some instances, but if the discoloration is deeply ingrained it may need to be pretty aggressive to get it out.

If all else fails and the discoloration is really ugly you can try wet sanding with fine waterproof paper. Sanding will dull the sheen of the vinyl, however, so if you do this you will need to go down to very fine grit, then apply polishing compound and buff to restore the shine.

I have used NuVinyl and other vinyl restoration products. Used alone, I have not found these to be effective for removing discoloration.