Ama repair

AMA repair- I have a Tiger OC1 and have several cracks in the ama. I have searched but can only find repairs to the canoe.. Is it the same repair as the canoe or do I repair similar to a surfboard? Was planning on fiberglass and epoxy overlay...

Submitted by Gonzos_oc1 on Thu, 11/06/2014 - 10:01pm

I'm not sure what you mean by cracks. Are these like small , thin cracks that develop in gelcoat? The ones that look more like pencil marks? Are they more like the gel coat splitting at possibly peeling up and chipping like old thick paint on wood? Or are these cracking of the structural material, so that the area flexes? And lastly does the ama leak?

The tiny cracks in gel coat, I try to run 100 grit sandpaper inside the crack, to chamfer the crack , then skim a little epoxy across it. Then sand smooth and paint.
Pealing gelcoat is similar, except i peel away any loose gelcoat, including scraping with a razor blade to insure I have taken off all the loose gel coat, then if it is an older boat with thick gel coat, i will add a piece of maybe 2oz glass the same size as the missing gel coat, epoxy , then cover with plastic until cured. Then sand and paint.
cracks in the carbon/glass, I will grind the crack with a dremel sanding drum until i am through the first and maybe second layer of material, then build it back up with glass, or carbon( the guys at Kamanu are awesome, and will give you scrap carbon instead of filling a landfill with it) and epoxy. finish with sanding and painting.
When pressure testing , I sometimes find pinhole leaks that you can barely see. For those, I pull vacuum on the canoe/ama drip a tiny amount of epoxy on it, and let the vacuum pull it into the hole. After a few drips of epoxy i remove the vacuum. This seems to take care of the leak. Caveat: these are so small you can barely see them . Any bigger and you may need to add reinforcement. (and be very carefull how you pull a vacuum. You could destroy the seams of the canoe if too much is applied)

Wow that was longer than i expected. Now for the disclaimer. I am by NO means a professional. Not even close. so if anyone else gives you advice that is different than what i state, by all means take their advice. Also if I"m completely wrong, please feel free to correct me. Thank you.

#1 Fri, 11/07/2014 - 5:25pm

Kalikikopa, I like your suggestions. For the pinhole leaks that you can barely see, how do you determine where they are to begin with if you can't see them? Do you put a little air pressure IN the ama, then put something like soapy water, etc. and look for bubbles (like you would for a tire tube?)

#2 Wed, 11/12/2014 - 3:13am

Yeah. If you have a helper. Have some one blow into the drain hole to add a little positive pressure. Then spray the ama with soapy water. It will bubble at any leaks. If you don't have someone to blow in it, I sometimes use a Balloon with a little fish tank air hose to provide pressure. Don't use anything that will provide more pressure than a balloon. Too much pressure can blow the seam making it a big repair

#3 Wed, 11/12/2014 - 8:17am

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