Builders' Forum Archives
Re: weight saving tip
Posted by Terry Mcadams on Dec 3, 2004
Wow Ety, I've wondered how the kayaking is in the Middle East.
Anyhow, I have boats with and without glassed decks. The unglassed-deck boats are wonderfuly light (and minimally built in many other aspects as well). My wife and I use them for short paddles on protected waters.
The boats with glassed decks are for rough waters and/or for carrying loads.
I do have two older boats that do not have glassed decks that have seen fairly heavy use. The decks have held up pretty well, though there are signs of crazing at a few stress points. This crazing will probably lead to water infiltration into the deck at some point, unless I get off my lazy butt and either glass the decks, or revarnish them and reinforce the stress points.
All this being said, many boats without glassed decks have been paddled many years/miles without deck failiure. But even a 4mm deck is going to flex in certain areas and lead to crazing of the epoxy during heavy use in surf, reentries or loaded touring. The crazing may not show up for a few years. A way to prevent most, but maybe not all of the flexing in an unglassed deck is to further stiffen the deck at high stress points using either additional wood or glass underneath.
If I were you, at your weight, and assuming fairly heavy ocean use of the boat, I'd go ahead and glass the deck - a bit of work if you have to strip the varnish, but worth it in the long run.
In Response to: weight saving tip by Ety Bahar on Dec 3, 2004