Royalex repair?

Has anybody come across this before?

This spring, when we brought out our Dagger Dimension, 16 foot WW OC2, to be cleaned up after winter storage, we noticed 2 cracks both about 4 inches long about a foot in front of the stern pedestal seat about in the area where the center airbags end, not end bags. One crack went lengthwise, the other side to side. There was no visible signs of damage on the outside hull. The last time we had used the boat, we had not come down on any rocks in that area that we could remember.

Then this weekend while visiting our friend with a Dagger Genesis, he showed us similar cracks in his boat. The first set were in the stern under his airbags, both ran lengthwise and about 3 inches long. The second set of cracks were just in front of his Bob Foote saddle, right side, in the area where he would bail. These cracks were more of a star pattern, but again, with both sets of cracks there wasn’t any visible sign on the outside of the hull of severe impacts. With the Genesis, though, it had just come off of the Middle Fork of the Salmon where it had been used and slightly abused. But it’s also possible that these cracks predated the trip, as the airbags had not been out of the boat before the Middle Fork in over five years

The Dimension is 18 years old, had been stored inside in a Sacramento, California garage for the first 15 years, and basically wasn’t used. We purchased it in 2004 and store it in a shed in Eureka, north coast of California (year-round temperatures average between high 30° to 60°), and usually use it on one extended outing a year (for every day paddling, we use a different Dimension-but that’s a different story).

The Genesis I believe was purchased in 1992, and is stored in Redding, California (year-round temperatures average between high 30° to 100° plus) outside, but out of the direct sun.

So the big question: Are these hulls starting to break down due to age?

How best to repair them? On the Dimension , I cut large pieces of raft material and Vynabonded them over the cracks. In the Genesis, he worked “Goop” into the cracks. We would appreciate any input on how to deal with this if they continue to appear…

Thanks, happy paddling,



– Last Updated: Sep-03-07 7:22 PM EST –

If the cracks are coming from where there is a bolt, screw or rivet that goes through the ABS plastic of the hull then it is most likely due to the fact that the boat at one time or another was exposed to a severe temperature change. and during the contraction phase it caused the plastic to split if the hole was to tight where the screw, bolt or rivet went through it. Here in the Northeast it isn't unheard of this hasppening to ABS boats that were stored outside or in unheated buildings during the winter months. One solution that some I know use is to remove all of the bolts, screws, rivets and re-drill a slightly larger hole through the ABS then put the hardware back in. Some also will loosen up the hardware on the hull if it is going to be stored during great temperature fluctuation. The cracks are repairable with special plastic strips aand a specialized heat gun-tool. Do a Google search or P-net archive search for that one. I'm sure age is also a factor.

canoe cracks
Are the cracks through the green substrate into the foam core? I have used 3M Scotch Weld urethane structural adhesive (available at or Bell Super Bond ( for small repairs. For more extensive repairs on Royalex boats check out forum and do a search on Royalex repairs. Many options exist.

Thank you to everybody who responded to my query. I’ll try to ask before I do!

Happy paddling,