Royalex Canoe RIP - Landfill?

When my royalex canoe reaches the end of its life - is the landfill the only alternative?

Possibly, but so what?
When you consider the fact that that canoe will probably provide good service for a minimum of 20 years (potentially much longer if you don’t abuse it), and in that 20-year period the average American will send 32,850 pounds of waste to the landfill, that extra 60 or 70 pounds in the form of an old canoe is pretty meaningless. Anyone who wants to worry about unnecessarily filling up landfills should have bigger fish to fry.

20 yrs?
Can a person really get 20 years outa a plastic canoe? I think they get deformed just after a few years.

I would take it to the landfill after your done with it.

At least 20

– Last Updated: Aug-31-14 11:53 AM EST –

Ah's got a Royalex Old Town Tripper fro' 1978 dats still goin' strong. Dats 36 years..... an' a Mohawk XL13 dats 26 years old.


Royalex doesn’t deform unless…

– Last Updated: Aug-31-14 12:05 PM EST –

... severely abused. I've only seen one Royalex boat that had the same kind of indentations from roof-rack straps as are the norm on poly canoes. Perhaps others here have seen more examples of this than I have, but I think anyone would agree that loss-of-shape issues are rare on Royalex boats. My brother has a Royalex boat that's 34 years old, and except for the scratches, you'd never guess.

Paddlers of big whitewater will quickly point out that past the 20-year mark, Royalex may become too brittle for their tastes. However, given the context that's implied if you know the original poster, wood/canvas canoes will break if they take a big hit in whitewater too, so again, my answer is "so what?" (hey RPG, you know I'd never look for reasons to say bad things about wood/canvas!).

I have Royalex canoes that are around 30 years old which are not misshapen.

They make nice composting bins.

I have a Mohawk Whitewater 16

– Last Updated: Aug-31-14 3:08 PM EST –

that is 25 years old. It's still going strong even after getting wrapped around a rock. I have two solo WW boats (Encore and Impulse) that are about the same age. No reason that any of these boats shouldn't be around for another 20 years. I don't find that it gets brittle with time.

I believe yours is

– Last Updated: Aug-31-14 3:03 PM EST –

polyethleyne. Not royalex.

Royalex does not deform readily. Several of my friends have Old Town Tripers and Kennebecs from the late seventies.

Pete I am referring to Meopolites boat . Not yours. Sometimes posts dont show in the appropriate place.Sometimes its because of wonky connections ( mine is satellite and fades in and out)

People get all knotted up about that sometimes.

ur right
Mine is poly. Probably wont get more than 5 yrs from it. Royalex though can last forever.

It varies
I have seen old three-layer poly boats that were in good shape. To some extent, how well they hold up seems not entirely dependent on age and how they were used and stored.

I have certainly seen polyethylene whitewater kayaks that were a couple of decades old that were sound and had very minimal deformation, but these are single-layer (solid) polyethylene.

Minor hogging and/or rippling of the hull bottom does not render a polyethylene canoe unusable. It might not paddle quite as well as a non-deformed hull, but if the deformation is not that severe I suspect many paddlers would not notice much difference.

meopilite said:
“ur right Mine is poly. Probably wont get more than 5 yrs from it. Royalex though can last forever.”

I have an Old Town Discovery 115 (polyethylene) that was bought in the early 90s and is still going just fine. That makes it at least 20 years old. I am redoing the wooden thwarts and wood seat but the boat itself, while scratched up a bit is not brittle or mis-shapen or in anyway unfit to paddle. I don’t leave it on the racks of my truck when I am not on my way to or from using it, and I store it inside in a sling and pulley arrangement that lets me get it up off the floor in the workshop.

If you have a poly boat that you think is unusable I am sure you can find someone who will put a little effort into it and paddle it for many more years.

I have a 5 yr old poly canoe
That doesn’t suck much worse than the day I bought it.

cabinet ?

ok - so this is all very intersting, but
does anyone know of a better way to dispose of a royalex canoe other than the landfill?

Not kidding…
Seriously, I think an old canoe would make a really fun sandbox for a couple of preschoolers. Of course you would have to check it over thoroughly to assure that nothing about it is going to hurt little hands & fingers of the sand boxers. But that is just common sense anyway…

I’ve hinted several times to my wife about turning an old beater into a flower bed. My wife isn’t buying it yet. But I may do it anyway, by putting it in close proximity to my “loafer’s shed”. Sometimes I take no as a challenge.

Have heard non serious suggestions about using it for worm farm, or giant litter box for cats.


How about this?
Use that boat to plan your own Viking funeral.

With all the money you expect to save on the expense of a coffin, you can probably buy several new boats now.


– Last Updated: Aug-31-14 9:21 PM EST –

There is a broken and abandoned fiberglass canoe at my local put-in. It's been there for over a week. If it's there next Saturday, I'm going to bring it home, paint it red, and put it in the back yard and turn it into a planter. Who wouldn't want to look at a canoe everyday???

burn it? probably too much pollution tho

Maybe in a stove, for heat
In years past, my dad has tossed old oil filters (only after they’ve been thoroughly drained) and small pieces of tires in the wood stove of his garage, back when he lived in a place where he heated the garage with wood while doing work out there. There’s just an amazing amount of heat released when burning either of those items. As to the pollution factor, well, there seems to be a lot less pollution when stuff like that is burned at night! :wink: