Cedar Strip Canoe Build # 35 Fiberglassing The Inside

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Blog entry by farmerdude posted 02-14-2016 11:53 PM 1861 reads 1 time favorited 7 comments Add to Favorites Watch

We decided to glass the inside on Saturday. Unfortunately, the epoxy did not cure enough to sand. I tried to sand and found that it was way too soon. The epoxy was sticking to the paper.

Some of it would even smear on the wood.

So I guess I need to wait one more day.
Here it is, Sunday morning. The temp outside is 8 below zero, in the shop it’s a flat 32 degrees. If we are going to glass today I’ll need get after the wood stove. I may as well sand while waiting for the temp to come up. All you want here is to rough the surface enough for the epoxy to grab. You don’t want to sand too deep and go through the sealer coat.

The next move is to lay out the cloth.It bunches up at the ends, but it will improve with a little smoothing.

Here we go, start three feet or so from one end. Work your way to that end and when you are about a foot and a half or so from the point stop and cut the cloth. Cut straight in toward the point and down inside to the bottom of the hull.

Now deal with the bunches and folds of cloth. It’s kind of a mess.

Just slowly work the cloth into the point and work out the folds.

Next get a pencil. When you have the cloth tucked into the point as best you can, take the pencil and mark the cloth from the bottom, up around the curve of the hull, right to the top.

Now carefully pull the cloth out as much as you can and cut along the pencil line. This will make the cloth end at the center of the point.

Do this with both pieces of the cloth. Then wet out the cloth up to the point. When the canoe starts to get really narrow it’s easier to forget using the squeegee and just use your gloved hand. It’s much easier to get the cloth to lay flat with your fingers because you can feel what you’re doing, you can’t really see in there.

It’s a little aggravating to get the wrinkles out, but if you take your time you will get it. When it’s done it is worth the effort.

Now that you have the point done it’s clear sailing for a while. I mixed up a 24 ounce batch and poured it in.

Just like the outside, work the mix ahead and up the sides. Wet out the cloth all the way up to the edge trying not to let any run down over to the outside. If you lose a little bit it’s OK because you can sand it to clean it up before putting on the poly. As you go you will have some big folds and wrinkles to deal with. You can push, pull, tug, and flatten with the squeegee. The wrinkles will work out without cutting the cloth, it’s hard to believe, but it will.

Do the same thing with this end. Split it, mark it, cut the line , lay it in place and wet it out.

When it’s all done you will have to watch for bubbles. Anywhere there is a staple hole, or a tiny hole between strips, there is a chance for bubbles. It’s worse on the inside because the outside is all sealed with fiberglass. The air can’t go through the wood so it comes out through the cloth and appears as a bubble.

They aren’t very big, but they will leave a mess if they harden. The spots I worry about the most are bigger and appear to be more of a delamination. You really want to keep an eye out for these.

You will probably have some epoxy that got over the top and ran down the side. This is nothing to worry about. As I said before you can clean it up later with the sander.

So there you have it. The inside is done. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, It looks great, and the next thing I will do is sand it.

That’s it for today. I’ll let it cure tomorrow. I may sand it and put on a filler coat on Tuesday. If I do I’ll update after. See you then.

-- Jeff in central Me.

7 comments so far

View bearkatwood's profile


1809 posts in 1612 days

#1 posted 02-15-2016 03:03 AM

It is looking amazing. Great progress!

-- Brian Noel

View hoss12992's profile


4165 posts in 2493 days

#2 posted 02-15-2016 03:09 AM

Wow that looks great. You make doing the ends look easy but I’m sure they will be a pain for me. Thanks for the update and look forward to the next one. Great job buddy

-- The Old Rednek Workshop

View English's profile


682 posts in 2077 days

#3 posted 02-15-2016 12:51 PM

You have done a great job, the canoe is looking real good. But as the designer of my boat said in his instructions, sand, sand, and sand some more.

Thanks for sharing this build with us!!!!

-- John, Suffolk Virgina

View JoeinGa's profile


7741 posts in 2607 days

#4 posted 02-15-2016 02:22 PM

You have done a great job, the canoe is looking real good. But as the designer of my boat said in his instructions, sand, sand, and sand some more.

Thanks for sharing this build with us!!!!

- English


-- Perform A Random Act Of Kindness Today ... Pay It Forward

View CaptainSkully's profile


1612 posts in 4159 days

#5 posted 02-15-2016 05:11 PM

Been enjoying your build very much. Am about to start building Passagemaker dinghy. This step is very familiar to me. Nicely done!

-- You can't control the wind, but you can trim your sails

View farmerdude's profile


670 posts in 2639 days

#6 posted 02-15-2016 08:18 PM

Thanks everyone.

-- Jeff in central Me.

View English's profile


682 posts in 2077 days

#7 posted 02-17-2016 12:17 AM


I have thoroughly enjoyed reading your blog. I hope to build a cedar strip canoe this summer for my grandson. So I have been watching your build very closely. As for the Dark Filler on the splash well of my build, you have a good eye. I used Douglas fir flour on the hull and topsides but used pecan flour on the splash well. I ran out of DF and had a quart of pecan I had bought to get an idea of the texture of the “wood flour” needed for filler.

Thanks for the nice comments. and I will keep watching your build with great interest.

-- John, Suffolk Virgina

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