repair question

I have the chance to get a cheap used Necky poly touring boat, but one of the reasons it is cheap is because of a dent on the bottom about a foot or so in front of the seat, probaly caused by someone tying down the boat improperly to a regular car rack. Is there a chance to “pop” this back out? Thanks JD

Heat & Weight
will take the dent out. But depending on how long that dent has being there it may come back. Also, if there is a visible crease in there, forget about it.

Generally, if you oil can the hull on a hot day, just leaving it upside down in the sun will bring it back. However, repeated oilcanning in the same area will give the dent a “life” of its own. In this case, take a heat gun or hot water to it, put something heavy right where the oil canning is and leave it be. Let the cooling and weight do the job in smoothing out and re working the plastic.

Frankly, most of my plastic boats have some level of oil canning. If I put my face just right over the bottom and look down the line, they’re there,the ripples distorting the perfect line. They have any perceptible performance of the boats, at least no in how I use them.

How cheap? Could be a great deal, or an okay one.


In addition to heat and gentle
mechanical persuasion, you can consider putting in a short 3" minicell wall to force the dent down. This will only work if the dent extends mostly past the front end of the cockpit. Such a wall can be held in place by contact-cementing some strips of foam at the base of the wall, and by putting in some pop-riveted L brackets on the underside of the top of the hull. On my Necky, I just put the short wall in after I am in the boat. I could probably put some straps on it so it could do double duty as a paddle float.

If this is too much trouble, reconsider whether it is a bargain. Usually dents and waves UNDER the seat are harder to remove, because they represent longitudinally stretched plastic. Dents farther forward may represent latitudinal shortening under pressure, and they are easier to correct.

thanks for the info
we were able to heat up the dent by putting the kayak in the sun and rubbing almond oil on the dent. when it was soft enough we pushed it out with the head end of a hammer then cooled it down with water while still pushing on the dent from the inside. It now looks like there was never any damage and we got a great kayak at a great price. Thanks sing JD

Myself, I prefer snake oil.