skid plate installation feedback

-- Last Updated: Jun-01-05 6:49 AM EST --

I did my first skid plate installation over the weekend and it went fairly well. It was a Mad River kit. I followed the instructions and did a beautiful job taping around the unwetted felts before mixing the epoxy. However, once wet, the felts grew by a couple inches. All my taping went out the window as I had to quickly tear it all off and just go without. That epoxy drips like crazy. I was able to use acetone and a rag to quickly clean up the drips.

After they cured, I used a 4.5 inch grinder fitted with sandpaper to feather the felts to the hull. I don't like the idea of a thick pad getting stuck on a rock at a bad time.

What do others do about felt growth? I anticipated them growing a little but not as much as they did. I guess in hindsight, I should have rolled up each wetted pad so that it didn't stretch when lifted.

felt growth
If you have any of the resin and hardener left, I could really use some for the top of my head.

Not suppose to sand or grind down.
Suppose to flatten the edges down until cured. Makes a neater and tuffer skid plate.


I’m not sure what you’re supposed to do

– Last Updated: Jun-02-05 1:25 PM EST –

... but I have seen some very well done skid pads (BMO comse to mind) but none of them are feathered as well as can be done with patience and an angle grinder fitted with course sandpaper. I guess I view skid pads as less than permanent. My priorities are (in order): (1) maintain as much as possible the already diminished performance of a royalex hull (2) increase the useful life of the canoe. I also feathered by sanding the factory skid pads on my Spirit II. There is no evidence of problems after several years use.

my bevel technique
I cover the SP with plastic (not saran wrap but 2-3mil plastic)and roll the edges down with a wallpaper seam roller. Work all the wrinkles out to the edges and roll them down.

You have gotten some good advise. I don’t tape off though. It’s a slippery mess to remove and you need to wipe anyway. So I use a paper towels and acetone and just wipe for about an hour. You stay busy the first 5-10 minutes & then it starts to slow as the epoxy hardens.