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Thread: How rough is too rough? The bottom of the canoe.

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    Default How rough is too rough? The bottom of the canoe.

    Hello. I am looking for some advice, or rather some reassurance. I got this Coleman Outback 16' in a Craigslist trade earlier this summer. I have taken it on some lakes and it seems to work just fine for me, it floats. I am just curious about the bottom of the boat. How do you know when there is too much damage from rocks and age? There are a few deep gashes and the bottom seems to be kind of bubbled or rippled, I hope the pic shows what I am talking about.

    Should I be concerned? It still feels pretty solid and I only need it to work until I can afford to upgrade to something nicer later. I've just never seen the bottom warp like that and want to know if anyone has any thoughts. The guy I got it from said he purchased it from a canoe rental outfit about 20 years ago. So I'm not expecting it to be glamorous, I just want to be sure it is safe. Thanks.






    I'm trying to show the rippling here:




  2. #2
    Member AKDoug's Avatar
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    If it makes you feel any better, mine looks worse and I still use it
    Bunny Boots and Bearcats: Utility Sled Mayhem

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    I've seen lots of them like that. They still seem to work well enough. The warping probably comes from spending winters upside down with snow piled on. If the gouges get deep enough they can dig through or perhaps crack, but unless something digs out more material in the same area you're probably ok.

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    the wear and tear shown is normal for these boats. the "warping" is a coleman signature. i don't think i've ever seen a used one without it. there is nothing to worry about. its got many many miles of rock scrapping ahead of it.

    the biggest drawback is one of performance, it just won't paddle as nice as a "real" canoe, ie. one that costs about $1,000+, that has better structure because its made of high quality material.

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    when it leeaks it is time to repair it an use it some more, they take a lot of beating if you are realey worried about Max on this forum runs some of that type of canoe in his canoe rental down south an he applied spray bed liner on it. [truck] an his canoes take a lot of beating ,
    I think his handle is ALASKACANOE
    SID

  6. #6

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    I've got a coleman that looks worse and still takes a beating. All colemans that I have seen warp like that including mine. Keep going until she quits on you, which will probably be 'never'. All the best.

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    That looks like pretty normal wear and tear to me. Nothing to be concerned about in the short term anyway.

    the warping is pretty much inevitable with the type of material Colemans use. its just a consesquence of the plastic. it looks odd and may affect the speed and handling of the boat a little but isn't dangerous from a safety perspective.

    Higher end canoes use different materials in thier construction and don't have the same issue as much however that may be just that more expensive canoes are taken better care of. (see left outside in winter comment above)

    don't worry about scratches on the bottom unless it starts to leak. Even then there is patching material available that can fix that too.

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    Thanks everyone!

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    (Wrote this two weeks ago, somehow forgot to post it. Duh!)

    The Coleman RAM-X canoes are manufactured by Pelican Int'l in Canada.
    Pelican Consumer Service: 1-888-669-6960 http://www.pelicansport.com/

    One source for a polyethylene repair kit: http://www.oakorchardcanoe.com/repair.php
    The source for plastic welding materials listed on Pelican's website: http://www.urethanesupply.com/
    If you're worried about damage, bring a roll of quality duct tape with you on the boat!

    The whole "Patching plastic canoes" thread is worth reading, but especially this post: http://forums.outdoorsdirectory.com/...ll=1#post28121
    It explains why repairing RAM-X is so different from working with any other plastic.

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    Default A fix

    I paddled a Perception Matrix for three seasons on the Kern River in Ca. It was hashed just like this after one season from rocks. It's roughness bothered me. I used to take scratches out of motorcycle plastic with a torch. I got a propane torch out and kept going over my kayak for about a half hour. The minor scratches healed up very nicely, the major ones just got smoother. After I was done, it was so much better. You have to be really really careful though. There's a fine line between healing a scratch and making a hole! Start off slow and distant with the torch on the minor scratches to get a feel for how the plastic reacts. Do a few areas where you can back it up with your hand for a feel for that too. On some large gouges, I got a wet rag behind it in the boat just to make sure I didn't permanently harm my boat.

    It's intimidating, but it worked great. I accidentally made a few extra minor dips in one spot getting too zealous with a big gouge but overall, I liked the results.

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