Skin on Frame - maintenance

Curious, what is the maintenance required for a SoF made of wood and nylon/coating?

When buying used (almost new actually but not new), what to look for?


Things to check
Look for worn spots on the keel where fabric might be abraded. Look over the outside to see if the coating is complete. Inspect the seams or any hull penetrations (rigging) to see if they appear sealed. And look inside to inspect the framing to make sure they are treated with something (oil, etc).

If There Aren’t Broken Ribs…
and the skin is intact, maintainance would be recoating the skin with paint or polyurethane when see significant worn spots or sun damage. Sand with fine grain lightly, clean with alcohol and coat.


Thanks - how to tell good one from bad?
Having never sat in one, what makes it a well built kayak? I guess sagging and flex amounts as well as type of joints b/w the parts is what I’d like to get some advice on.

Also, are the frame joints supposed to be re-tied periodically, do they wear off over time?

Does the skin need to be re-treated periodically?

Just replied as I was typing…
How about the ties/joints of the frame? Do these need to be redone/retightened periodically?

No Way To Check All The Joints…

– Last Updated: Sep-19-08 1:04 PM EST –

and ties... But look at those around the cockpit area. That'll give you an idea of the maker's "craftsmanship..."

At some point in the skin's life, it's done. When you need to reskin, that's the time to replace worn parts in the frame. Or, if like me, you have the SOF tear out of your hands by wind and land onto rocks... I fractured a couple of ribs in the bow. It was still paddleable but bothered me since I made and used the boat. I took it as an opportunity to take the skin off, repair the ribs and change the rocker by adding more wood to the center of the keel. The cost of this was destroying a perfectly good poly skin.


OK - thanks!
Someone is selling their SoF locally and if I fit in it and like how it paddles I might buy it for its light weight and low profile. Use it as a teach me to roll boat for some time to see how I like it…