Removing or Reducing Skid Plates?

Has anyone tried removing skid plates by grinding them down, planeing, or sanding them off?

Sure. You can use a coarse wheel on
a disk sander. Careful not to bite too deep.

You can use a course wheel, but

… make sure you don’t generate much heat or you may loosen the bond.

Wouldn’t that be a good thing? Though
I doubt it would happen.

If I had to remove a skid plate, I would grind it thin, and then I would take a sharp chisel and take both the remaining skid plate and the vinyl layer of the Royalex off. The vinyl will skim right off the ABS. Ancient boatbuilder John Sweet recommends removing the vinyl layer before putting on a Kevlar felt skid plate in the first place.

I would replace the skid plate and vinyl with several concentric layers of S-glass or E-glass and epoxy. Glass and epoxy makes a nice, hard, smooth-wearing, easily repaired skid plate.

Guess I didn’t read very closely

I “read” it as the fellow wanted to make them less prominent. I guess if wanted to remove them I’d maybe try a relatively fine sandpaper like 150 grit to heat them up. Remember to wear a mask.

“Officer, some masked man is
removing my skid plates!”

Is everyone sure that gunney’s
boat is a royalex hull?


Kevlar Hull
It’s my Swift Osprey. I bought it used and the price was right. I wouldn’t consider skid plates if purchasing new. I probably won’t take them off. Besides, it more fun to add another boat to the stable. Thanks for the advice.

Yeah, my Bluewater tandem came
with thin skid plates when I bought it as a demo. They’re much less drag than most skid plates. But when I’m done with all the other boat repairs and modifications on my plate, I’ll remove them.

An alternative would be to sand them smoother, and then cover with a thin skin of epoxy mixed with graphite powder.