Kevlar fabric tape on keels

Technical discussion of ARC products
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Posts: 184
Joined: July 24th, 2012, 7:02 am
Boat Make/Model: SuperCat 15#315
Location: Falls Church VA 22042

Kevlar fabric tape on keels

Post by gahamby »

My search turned up nothing. Has anyone put Kevlar fabric tape on their keels?
The keels on my 15 are showing signs of wear. I've fared out the pits and scratches with 3M Vinyl Ester Marine Filler.
Should I gel coat the area? I find myself beaching on some rough spots sometimes.
Kevlar is hell to work with. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
Thanks GH

Bill Roberts
Posts: 515
Joined: November 17th, 2003, 9:13 pm
Location: Stuart, Florida

Re: Kevlar fabric tape on keels

Post by Bill Roberts »

Don't use Kevlar. It becomes a mess in an abrasion situation. Test: Sand Kevlar with a very rough sandpaper like sliding up on a sandy beach.
The Kevlar does not sand away but it holds on and turns into a steel wool pad. The resin goes away somewhat but the fibers stay and become a giant fuzzy mess almost impossible to get rid of. Fiberglass tape with gel coat is the best repair. Then, don't sail upon a rough sandy beach. Stop the boat in knee deep water and pick up your friends. Have a nice sail.
Many a Hobie 16 has been ruined by sailing the boat up on sand beaches at speed. This rounds the sharp corner at the keel and then the boat won't sail to windward. It just slides sideways even more and won't tack.

Kevin Keller
Posts: 338
Joined: September 24th, 2006, 2:56 am
Boat Make/Model: SC-20, ARC22
Location: Honolulu

Re: Kevlar fabric tape on keels

Post by Kevin Keller »

I bring an anchor and try to leave it in the water if I can. Depending on the wind.

Bill is right about sanding. When I was repairing the beam saddles on my 20 I came across Kevlar in that area. At first I didn't know what it was but figured it out. It does fuzz up when sanding. It also has a problem wetting up with the resin.

I'd just put several layers of fiberglass tape on my hulls to protect it from inadvertent groundings.

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