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How to repair a RC boat hull

Remote controlled boats are a pleasure to own but unless we keep them on display and never use them, chances are that at some point, they will get damaged. If you don't want to have to buy a new boat, then you need to be able to repair your boat. This article will show you how to repair a boat hull.

Types of boat

The first thing to consider is what type of boat you have. There are a variety of boat types from aluminium to fibreglass to polyester or plastic. Before starting your boat repair, make sure that you know what your boat hull is made of.

Repairing fibreglass hulls

If the hull on your fibreglass boat is damaged, then you can repair it using epoxy resin. Use a two-part epoxy gel to plug the hole and when dried, sand off and re-paint or re-varnish. If you have a tear along the bottom of the hull, you can pour the resin into the hull and tilt to ensure that you cover the whole gap. Every epoxy is slightly different, so follow the instructions carefully and if possible, buy the epoxy from a marine boat supplies store. If you are repairing a larger hole, you might need to take some sheets of fibreglass mesh and use these to plug the hole before applying a slow drying epoxy resin. Use some modelling tape to hole the two halves of the hull together but try not to warp the hull. Apply the glass cloth first, then the epoxy and continue to build up in layers, wet-on-wet until you have reached the surface of the hull. Add one more layer of the epoxy gel coat, then sand down to the level of the hull.

Repairing plastic and polyester hulls

Plastic hulls are the easiest to repair. Take some plastic modelling glue and stick together the boat parts that have come apart. For larger holes, use two-part modelling putty to plug the hole and then when set, sand, paint and varnish. Polyester hulls can be repaired with epoxy resin but ensure that you get one specifically for polyester as fibreglass epoxy resin does not work on polyester hulls. Try shops that sell yacht parts or marine supplies to find the correct resin.

Repairing aluminium hulls

With aluminium hulls, the type of repair depends upon the type of damage the boat has received. If the rivets are leaking, you can now buy special rivet repair kits. Some people have reported success using epoxy resin and liquid weld though these repairs only hold for a short while.

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