Patch this dink - gel coat?

Recently noticed this dink exposing fiber in the hull of the Wenonah Rendezvous.

It’s only an inch long. I have never messed around with gel coat. Is this just a chip out of the gel coat?

Any recommendations for repairing?

Left to my own devices, I think I would just level the area with an epoxy filler, then add a layer of fiberglass on top, overlapping the repair not more than an inch. How’s that sound?

The hull has enough beauty marks that I’m not overly concerned with appearance.


Looks like
Looks like the gel coat had debonded and flaked off.

I’d start by chipping more off until I got to a point where it wasn’t coming off too easily.

Then spend some time trying to figure out why this particular spot is vulnerable. Is the hull soft there? Or is it a spot that just gets whacked when you beach, etc.?

If you have the materials and you don’t care about what it looks like, just thicken some epoxy with cabosil and micro-balloons, slather it on and sand after it cures.

That might be an area that gets thumped
as the boat passes over a ledge. I agree about opening up the area until one finds the extent of gelcoat delamination from the cloth.

If the underlying cloth is not soft, and if the area that is opened up is not large, then epoxy mixed with some filler is enough.

If the cloth laminate is soft, and/or if the area of gelcoat damage is large, then I think it is time to get some fresh E glass or S glass and do a 3 layer patch. The edge of the gelcoat should be beveled a bit. The largest patch can be bias-cut (fibers 45 degrees to boat axis) and should be cut to just extend up onto the beveled gelcoat area. The next patch should be at least half an inch smaller in radius, can be straight rather than bias cut. The final patch should be big enough to cover the central damage a bit, and about 1/2" smaller than the second patch. It can be bias cut.

Put all three patches aside on a clean piece of newspaper. You can do the repair with G-flex, but it’s thicker and won’t penetrate the cloth as readily. Use West 105/205 or 105/207 if you have it. No fillers when wetting out cloth. Wet out the first, largest layer and nudge it into position with a little brush or a stick. Plunk the second layer on. It may wet out without additional resin. Plunk the third layer on and wet it out. All three should go on with a single batch of resin. Put some food wrap over everything and tension it with short strips of stretchy tape.

When the patch is hard, you can wash it to remove amine blush, and then feather the edges of the patches with Adalox sandpaper.

I leave patches clear, so that if further damage occurs, I can see through the patch to examine it. But painting a patch will protect it from UV. Or, you can use a clear varnish that has a UV inhibitor.

Ledge damage is a problem with composite boats. Of course, Royalex boats sustain ledge damage, but one normally doesn’t know about it because the vinyl skin keeps it under wraps.

Booze, you may want to examine the inside of the boat for damage, if that area is accessible.

Prodding with a utility knife, I flaked out a few more small pieces. The fabric was hard. I filled it with some white PC7 that was lying in the glue drawer and it looks good as is.

The sharp entry line under the bow shows wear, and this spot is just where it transitions to a more rounded shape. Inside the boat, the bow tank ends on the spot where the gel was chipped out.

I think the three-layers of concentric glass G2D suggests would make a stronger patch. I believe it is only a matter of time and use before wear o this area of the boat reveals more fabric and additional repairs are needed, so I will keep the concentric layers idea for the next repair. PC7 is kind of soft, so I think I will cover it with an overlapping piece of glass and call it quits for this go around.



sounds like the gel coat
got abraded so much it assumes more of a chalk like consistency and flakes off rather than impact damage per se.

I have a 25 year old boat that got scuffed enough that the gel coat just flaked off like hard chalk as yours seems to be doing. I expect that along the keel line more such areas will pop up even if I hit nothing.

I think you’ll find that it gets harder as it turns a more yellow color over time.