Royalex Repair Kit on Fiberglass

I need to install thigh strap anchors for a recently acquired Phoenix Seewum C-1. This is an older fiberglass boat. A couple years back I purchased a “Voyageur” Royalex Repair Kit, but I’ve never used it. I was wondering if I could use the materials in this kit to fashion my anchors. The kit includes: Royalex repair resin and kevlar cloth. Any comments would be appreciated.

Thanks, Warren

Yeah, you can probably get away
with it. If the resin is epoxy, it will have lasted without setting up. Kevlar is a good cloth for installing tie points. Also, Kevlar fragments and shards are not hard on your knees like glass would be. See if you can do a trial run on the resin to determine if it will set up properly. The inside of your Seewun may be Nylon, so if you sand where you want the attachments, the Nylon fuzz will help the epoxy grab hold.

You may be able to make your loops out of the Kevlar itself, but also consider using clean Nylon or polyester strap, partly frayed where you lay the Kevlar over the base ends. If you do use the Kevlar itself to bunch into loops, be careful not to let the resin climb into the loops so they do not get stiff, brittle, or sharp enough to cut your strap attachments.

Have you settled on the system you will use for adjusting the strap lengths?

Is it epoxy?
Epoxy sticks well to everything, so if you have a two-part resin, it is likely epoxy, and it would stick to your fibreglass hull.

I don’t know what else it might be . . .

More glues
I just went through my glue drawer and discovered a few more products that I might be able to use with the Kevlar cloth. PC7 two part epoxy (can’t remember what I used it for, but it was years ago); 3M Scotch-weld 3532 B/A (again don’t recall what this was used for); MA 300 Adhesive (I used this to glue my kevlar footbrace to the side of my Merlin II KevLIght canoe). Whatever glue I use (if any of these) I’m assuming the cloth (anchor) must be soaked in it before actually glueing the anchor to the hull. Is this correct? Again, I’ve never used Kevlar cloth (or fiberglass) so I’m not sure of the steps necessary for creating and attaching the anchors. I have some old 2" webbing with fastex buckles for my thigh straps. Kent Ford in his old video recommends 1". Is the 2" too wide for the C-1? It worked fine for my old royalex open canoe.

Lots of installation options
There are plenty of folks out there(North Water, NRS) that make easy to install thigh straps attachment points or entire thigh strap kits. Attaching to the inside of a fiberglass boat, you will want to sand and clean the area well. I have found that adhesives such as Vinybond work better than either Epoxy or vinylester when attaching accessories.

Not for attaching thigh straps in a
C-1. I have used Vynabond plenty, and I would never trust it in this application. Epoxy is the number one choice to attach things to composite boats, inside or outside.

I probably would not pre-soak the
Kevlar cloth, though I might consider a brief presoak of the frayed ends of nylon strap. Remember, though, you do NOT want the epoxy to wick up into the part of the strap that will form the attachment loop. I would be tempted to tie or pinch the web/strap just above the layup point to discourage wicking.

You can improvise various ways of weighting or applying pressure to the webbing ends and the Kevlar pieces as you apply just the right amount of resin. You may be surprised how little resin it will take. I think I could do the lower attachment points with a single little batch of West epoxy.

To reduce the need for smoothing after the epoxy hardens, you can put some food wrap (not Saran Wrap, just Glad Wrap, etc.) over the wet epoxy. Then put some soft foam on top of the Glad Wrap, and gently weight the foam. When the epoxy is hard, it should also be quite smooth.

Remember that if you have to apply MORE epoxy to some that has already hardened, you must use alcohol and/or soap and detergent to clean the amine blush off the surface of the epoxy. Then you should sand the hardened epoxy. If that amine blush is not removed, subsequent applications will not stick.

I hope you do not have to glass in the lateral attachment loops, the ones near your hip, usually at or just above the seam. If you do have to do those, you may have to do them one by one with the boat tipped on its side.

Lateral attachment loops
I will need to install lateral attachment loops, but I may have an alternative to glassing them in. I have anchors (plastic) for 2" webbing that I removed from an old OC1. These achors were bolted through the hull. I was wondering if I can use any of the above adhesives to attach them. My only concern would be that there isn’t enough surface area (just the small area around where the bolts are supposed to go) to grab onto the hull. I thought this might work as the MA 300 Epoxy which I attached the Kevlar foot brace to my Kevlar canoe sure seems to take a lot of strain without any problems. I also have some heavy-duty D-rings with the oval patches and D-rings with a hard plastic rectanguar base kicking aroung here. I was steering clear of the D-rings because the webbing would bunch up rather than lay flat as with the aforementioned anchors. Also the d-ring patches just seem like over-kill and the hard plastic bases (although smaller) do not look like they would conform to the hulls shape. Of course, I could just order the anchors if anyone had a specific recommendation that I could easily glue into in my boat. In any event I better do something quick, as my wife and kids will return tomorrow and the time I can devote to my paddling passion will decrease rapidly. Again, your very helpful comments are appreciated.