I recently purchased a used 18’ We-No-Nah Jensen ultralight Kevlar canoe with wood trim. I need to store it outside for the winter and am looking for a water tight bag, preferably with a zipper that can handle upstate New York winters. It’ll hang horizontally under a deck so there’ll be a little protection from snow, rain, etc. Thanks for any and all suggestions
You could use a tarp
The cover need not be absolutely waterproof from all directions. You could hang the tarp over the canoe, clip it together at each end, and weight it down to the ground all around the boat, or tuck the sides under the boat and clip together any edges that otherwise would tend to flap in the breeze. As long as it sheds water and snow from above, all should be fine. Any overlapping seal (like clipped-together edges) elsewhere will be enough to keep out blowing rain or snow.
You could go the extra mile and do everything as described above, but hang the tarp so it doesn't lay snugly against the hull, since sometimes a waterproof fabric laid against a hull will cause discoloration.
I use silver tarps 25 bucks on my Current Designs kayaks 20' x 6' fold in half. I then use bungees 5/16" cut to various lengths for taper about 5-6 pc. loop on one end knot on other. Put knot through the loop and it's done. Stays on pops off in a jiff no tying. Live on the water so plenty windy never came off. My Libra XT 22' I used boat shrink wrap 24' wide and cut it 9' fold in half cover top and down sides. Works great. Boat dry in spring. The solstice, nomad and extreme I use all winter. Wife don't go in tandem in winter. Sun beats 6 x 20 tarp I fold it the other way. You have 4 sides to expose to sun last for 3-4 years so far. or just have someone shrink wrap it like a boat but put in two vents made for shrink wrap I also got on ebay they work great also 3 buck each. Put canoe upside down on 2 3'-4" wide straps no strain and they conforn to boat.
I almost bought this boat
This is a sweet ride you just picked up. Enjoy it! the J18 is probably one of the best all around canoes ever made.
Tarp can actually cause
Hulls are watertight. You can spend all year paddling a canoe: it needs no protection from water.
The vulnerable part is the wood gunwales. But aeration /drainage is key to avoiding mildew and rot. Winter air is generally very dry. Here in Maine humidity seldom gets above 30 percent in the winter.
Unless you have feet of snow going through the deck I wouldn’t worry about protecting the hull under the deck. I have seen some unhappy wood rails from under deck storage with no air movement but they were Southern boats.
I wouldn’t want the wood getting wet
There is plenty of milder weather both before and after winter, when water dripping through the deck, or melting snow on the canoe itself, or even all-day rain, should be expected. I think there will be plenty of chances for the gunwales to get wet during storage, and as always, water will tend to run toward the ends of the boat and get into the area where the end grain is exposed.
Tarps aren’t automatically bad. If it’s not in tight contact with the hull, there will be plenty of aeration. I keep a wooden trailer covered that way all year round, and the wood always stays dry.
Here’s one other idea though. For many years, my dad and his wife lived in a cabin that they heated almost entirely with wood (propane would take over only when they went away for several days). All his enormous woodpiles were kept covered with tarps, but for the pile under the deck, he installed metal siding a few inches below the deck floor, on a slight slope. All the melting snow and rain that came through simply shed off to one side.
A frame roof
over hull eaves outside hull perimeter. free airflow preventing excess condesations.
however onduline or any roofing material needs support so look at goo images: roof framing.
then drape hull with plastic tarp not woven tarp
there are grommets for tying visqueen type barriers down to stakes …success here depends on wind velocities n your skill for tying the sheet down
best to drape the hull with an impermeable film or foam then place the visqeen over that.
framing n roofing an attached hull sized roof to your house is prob a better idea. Down near the ground of course you need a permit n insurance…
next time get Al gunnels n say …
I have kept wood trimmed canoes under tarps successfully for 25 years. I use silver plastic tarps cut about 6.5 feet wide with the ends loosely wire-tied together and the edges tucked under at the rack and loosely tied aroun the boat at two or three other locations. I am careful not to let the tarp form a puddle at the tucked edge that would keep the wood wet. I second the thought that water tight covers are not desirable. Ventilation is important to prevent rot.
It is also important to keep the wood at least 18" above the earth when stored. The atmospheric moisture near the ground will cause problems over time.
Silver plastic tarps start to leak in about a year depending on sun exposure. I put a strip of ordinary clear poly sheeting under the tarp to provide water protection while the silver tarp provide shade and durability for 3 or 4 years.
no reason a waterproof top with some cushioning contact side draping down past gunwales with an open mesh fabric…actual holes … as continuous bottom layer …isn’t possible.
Sew ? adding more drape past the bottom mesh is trick.
that is what you’re thinking ?
some work getting supports uo thru the bottom layer but not impossible reaching 100% there…
Although pricey I bought a Danuu canoe cover. It is not waterproof but it does"breath". I have my canoe under a tree so snow accumulation is minimal as is sunlight. I am in NJ and have had the boat for 4 years with no issues. A good oiling of all the wood is required in the spring.
check hull/gunwale from top gunwail if hull is upside down.