First, all ww slalom and downriver
Posted by: g2d on Dec-18-12 12:11 AM (EST)
canoes and kayaks are composite, for lightness. And there are certain special layups that are nearly as durable as poly, and more repairable, but such boats are about as heavy as poly. Usually such boats are made of some very stretchy fabric, in multiple layers, bound by a resin that forms an unusually tenacious bond to the fibers. An example was the "Fiberlastic" layup that Phoenix used to offer. Vinylester resin, and many layers of some kind of stretchy cloth. I own one such, and in 15 years of harsh ww campaigning, it only partly broke once, in a very small area.
I have two Millbrook ww composite boats, SS/KK with vinylester resin. They do break, but the layup would match the best composite sea kayak layups. Repairs are easy and straightforward. I have a Dagger slalom c-1, experimental S-glass outside, carbon inside, extremely stiff, but probably more susceptible to catastrophic breakage than an SS/KK layup. Heat cured epoxy.
I'm sometimes surprised by the lack of unanimity among composite boat builders. Maybe there's a tendency to try to be different for marketing reasons. Some builders like to use only Kevlar, or to put Kevlar outside and reinforce with carbon inside. Not rational, though with enough layers or foam core reinforcement, you can get away with it.