Boat Building Forum

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Re: Where and how to install skeg

: The advantage to having flush is that you're better protecting the
: edges of the wood that otherwise would be hard to glass. Glass
: doesn't much like wrapping around hard edges.

: Bill H.

I recently retrofitted a skeg to one of my boats.

I cut the slot with a millimetre to spare each side and set the box inside, not through the hull.

I took care to get a few good layers of epoxy on the bare wood edges.

Before doing the job I had reservations as to weather or not this was enough protection for the wood.

while sealing the slot though I realised that the grain is all running with the cut except at the very ends of the slot and would actually not be a moisture sponge to any great degree. The ends soaked up plenty of resin in any case.

If I was not doing it as a retro fit on an old boat I would take more care though, possibly make the slot a bit wider than necessary, then round the slot edges and glass them, then mask over the slot and fill with thickened epoxy, then redrill and recut the slot to fit the skeg. That would be bombproof.

Mixing some black colorant, graphite etc., with the thickened resin may look a bit better than leaving it White.

I am planning a skeg in my current boat, so I shall ponder this and post my eventual conclusion, as well as the skeg under construction. The skegs one can buy seem to be fairly crude and loose in their casings, which are like canyons. I am sure there must be room for improvement.

The skeg I retrofitted was an Oono skeg. The actual skeg is a work of art. Beautiful. The box though has a bulge in it to allow for the hinging of the cable to be extracted for servicing. This hinge allows for a very smooth rotation around the axel pin, but adds to the width of the cutout.

Also the axel pin has to be gooped up with some kind of sealant as it goes right through the box and will let in water, even though it is a tight fit. I just glassed over the whole axel bolt head and nut, which is not really ideal.

also the whole shebang, while light, and very well made, is pricey. I would pay the money again if the box was a little more sophisticated.

I am thinking of plumbing fittings bonded to the box where the axel passes through. These would be the type that have caps on them that can be removed. Then one can slide a pin through and get it out again by unscrewing the cap and pulling it out.

It would be great if Patrick from Oono just sold the skeg blades with the pin hole in them and nothing else. That would be a good buy.they are really very nice blades.

Hell maybe he does, should I check with him, or would it be lazy, should I make my own blade?