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Penobscot Shop Daze



The soloized Penobscot is in the shop on a mission. That heavy hauler is slated for a bunch of trips this winter and spring. It has old school kevlar skid plates put on years ago with good Old Town urethane resin. They had begun to wear, and a few years ago I stupidly recoated them with plain epoxy resin and no UV top coat.

With predictable results; peeling, cracking and lifting. Fortunately, I had a couple of lovely lady shop visitors a while back who confessed a passion for peeling dead skin (Thanks Kathy and Nikki).

With every scrap of the peeling epoxy resin removed I cleaned the stems and added a new topcoat of 50/50 mixed West System 105/206 and G\flex, with some graphite powder and a dab of black pigment.


The original urethane resin was tinted green during application of the kevlar felt, and even with graphite powder and black pigmented resin it is still a ways from being black. Applied to new cloth that graphite powder and black resin mix produces the most opaque blacks.

Now that the new resin coat has cured for a few months I can tape it off and hit it a lick with black spray paint for additional UV protection.



Much better. The epoxy topcoat has some UV protection and I always have black spraypaint in the shop for future touch ups.

When I cut and installed the wide utility sail thwart in the Penobscot I did not yet appreciate the value of an easily visible compass for sailing purposes. A couple of J-shaped deck hooks screwed into the utility thwart does the trick, but if I had planned ahead I would have left more customized compass space on the utility thwart platform.


Even with my heavy packing “style” I shouldn’t need the stem storage space in the Penobscot, so a couple of small end bags will suffice. That boat is set up for either large or small float bags, and it’s nice to have at least some floatation for empty boat explores from camp.

If I need that last bit of stem storage space for light items at the beginning of a trip I can deflate the bags a bit. The bags caged and webbing strapped, and are tied in at the tip with cord run through the deck plate drain hole and at the end corners down to a double D ring glued to the hull, so even deflated in below the cage I can snug the webbing strap and cords and still have multiple points of restraint.


I need to put on the partial covers for a gear fit test for some coming trips, and in preparation for installing a center storage cover. When tripping I just stick a damp sponge in the stuff bag with the covers and by the time I’m done packing the canoe the covers snap on easily. If I have a load that looks to protrude above the gunwales a bit I moisten the covers with a damp sponge in the stuff sack while loading.

It is a very low humidity winter day, and just for a reality check I tried fitting the covers straight from the bag. Not even close. I stuck the damp sponge in the bag, waited the usual 10 minute gear-packing time, and the cover snaps were still tight in spots. Ohhh kayyy, wet sponge, dumped some water in the bag, sloshed it around and walked away for 10 minutes.

Fit like a slightly saggy glove. And went drum taut in minutes. I haven’t tripped with the Penobscot in very dry conditions. Good to know.


While that cover is on I should look over some propulsion units. A long carbon double blade for certain. A sail of course, and a bent shaft. All of those can go on the front cover where I’m usually reaching to secure one and grab another.


And, what the hell, there is no portage on any of my planned trips, the back deck will accommodate a newly built 66” modified Ottertail I want to try for deepwater padding and sail ruddering, and my same length push pole/walking stick. Both of the latter have softly rounded grips/heads with holes drilled out to accommodate a length of 3mm cord.


If I’m in need of one or two additional tarp poles they will suffice and still leave me able to daytrip from camp with my primary paddle necessities.

More to come.
Oct 12, 2012
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Alburnett Iowa
Mike, photobucket won't let me see your pics. I get this message .
[h=2]We're sorry, we cannot find the page you requested.[/h]
Feb 1, 2013
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Your photo links have a small syntax error - open tags...you'll need to edit your post and close that last [/IMG for each photo in your post ... should be [/IMG] and hopefully the issue will resolve.