Hull fiberglass, keel strip, extra fiberglass on bottom

I live in Phoenix, Arizona and do most of my kayaking at desert lakes or the Colorado River.  Most have rocky shores.  The instructions for the Chesse 16 call for a single layer of 6 oz glass over the entire hull.  I'm concerned that this might not hold up too long with our rocky shores.  I am considering either adding a 3" wide fiberglass strip from bow to stern at the keel and/or a second layer of 4 oz glass on the bottom.  My plan is to finish the entire boat bright.  I'm wondering if the 3" strip will wet out sufficiently where it will be seen at the bow, or if it would look funny.

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RE: Hull fiberglass, keel strip, extra fiberglass on bottom

Unless you are running whitewater I would think the 6 oz glass would be fine. A bright finish will show scratches from encounters with rocks but you'll have to run into them pretty hard to go into the glass.

Extra layers of glass add weight but aren't necessarily a bad idea if you anticipate really rough use. The Shearwaters use an nice layup with 3 layers of 4 oz glass. One layer covers the entire hull. A second layer covers the bilge panels just running over the chines. The third layer runs 5 or 6 feet back along the keel from the bow and stern. This puts 12 oz. of glass where the worst damage is likely to occur; 8 oz. over the entire bottom; and 4 oz on the sides.


Ogata, eric

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