WW canoe outfitting

I just bought a used whitewater boat. In general the boat is in great condition but definitely needs to to be re-outfitted (pretty much all the foam is thrashed). Does anybody have any good tips for removing foam and glue to make it possible to put down new foam?

I don’t know about a good tip but…
I used a paint scraper and a lot of elbow grease. I’ve seen people recommend heat or acetone, but have never tried it. Getting the old stuff out is a pain, but putting the new stuff in is a lot of fun. Good luck.

for contact cement, apply fresh contact cement over the old, let it get tacky, and then use the new to pull up the old. It takes time, but it does work.

For Vynabond used to attach anchors, etc. I’d just leave it and not risk messing up the hull with chemicals that probably won’t work anyway. You can sand it a little.

If it’s a WW boat, you’ll have better things to do than worry about old outfitting tracks.

Have fun.

Use a paint scraper or spatula but be careful not to get under the inner Vinyl layer of the Royalex when you remove the old foam. You will leave a little of the old foam behind. If you are glueing new foam in the same location you don’t need to get all of the residue off. Just make sure you remove any loose stuff. You can use 100 grit sandpaper to take off the loose residue then apply your contact cement over it.

If you are repositioning the new foam and want to try to get all the old residue off in the places it will show, you will probably need to use some solvent to get the glue residue and foam off. You can try mineral spirits first. I have generally found it necessary to use acetone and some type of mild abrasive pad like a Scotch Brite kitchen pad.

Acetone must be used with care as prolonged contact will eat into the ABS of the hull. If you dampen a pad with it and wipe up any drips immediately you can get nearly all the material off with care and patience.

Old vinyl D-ring patches that have been glued in with Vynabond can be heated with a hair dryer or heat gun and slowly and carefully peeled off. Work up the edge of the patch with a paint scraper or putty knife and grab it with a plier. Pull the edge of the patch back at an acute angle and carefully warm the edge of the patch to loosen it. Avoid excessive heat as it can damage the foam core of the ABS.

I agree with the others
There is just about nothing that will take it off all the way down to the flat surface including acetone.

I cut and scrape and then get it down as close to the original surface as possible without hurting the original surface.



Removing D Rings is also pain
Unless you need to glue a new anchor on the same spot, I find it easier to take a razor blade and cut off the webbing that holds the old D ring. The vinyl that remains will have a little stubble on it. You can see the remnants of some old D rings up near the gunwales in this picture:


Since the vinyl was well secured to the boat, I was able to glue new anchors over it. You can also see remnants of some of the old foam around the knee pads - doesn’t effect the outfitting and gives the boat charactor.

Ditto either hair dryer or heat gun(on LOW), and keep it moving a bit…ie don’t fall asleep with it focused on one point. As pblanc mentioned, it’s not difficult to work thru the top layer when hot. One or a couple of flexible putty scrapers work well. Contact cement takes a while to heat up, but once warm…it’ll all pull up slowly. Can’t be rushed.