Re: rubrails pictures?

Posted by Kurt Maurer on Jun 14, 2004

Jim, I am a great proponent of the rub rail on our homemade kayaks, although I ought to finally admit I do not know how to stick 'em on worth a hoot.

I use Cab-O-Sil thickened epoxy scmutzed all over the backsides of 'em, then stick 'em to the boat with tape (I am a bit more clear-headed here: use geen laquer tape and not that horrid blue stuff. Available at paint stores. Green is way better than blue, trust me on this'un). After they are secured thusly, I tack 'em in place with the smallest brass nails I can get, after snipping the heads off with pair of Craftsman wire snips (you can take 'em back when you mess 'em up and get a new pair free). Then remove the tape and make tiny fillets above and below the rails from the squeeze-out. Finally, paint the entire area with fresh, unthickened epoxy to smooth out the fillets and seal the rails. About the last thing on this Earth I want to do is detail-sand those tiny fillets for 64 stinkin' feet.

I likes my rub rails -- splash deflectors, actually -- thin... about 1/8"'ll do nicely. It makes for a sleaker look, and they're easier to install. I also like heavy tapers; mine go from full width to like 3/16" over a 4' run. The width is up to you. CLC's half-inchers would probably look nice, but mine are 3/4 because that's the thickness of the board I rip 'em from.

Take pains with them. They will be eye-catchers. They are definitely a PITA if you think of them as chrome trim, but round 'em over and pay attention to detail and you will not be sorry.

The wood? I say pick either a dark or light colored wood for contrast. If you use thin stock, workability ought not be an issue. Plain ol' pine is great... and cheap! Walnut would be fine... OH! so fine... Or rock maple... Oh, lordy!! But use a light colored western red cedar and you will suffer the absolute least weight penalty.

Cheers, Kurt

In Response to: rubrails pictures? by jim nelson on Jun 14, 2004