CARING FOR YOUR BELL CANOEYou have selected one of the finest canoes available, a Bell Canoe. We handcraft canoes using the finest materials, fabrics, resins and trim. A few simple steps will protect your investment and ensure years of enjoyable paddling.
The surface of your composite Bell Canoe is a high gloss finish that protects the inner lamination from incidental damage. The colored vinyl outer layer on Royalex® hulls performs the same function. A few scratches come with paddling as normal wear and tear, but can be easily minimized:
- When entering, loading or unloading your canoe, place it parallel to the shore in ankle deep water. You can load without scuffing the bottom of the hull. Try not to drag your canoe over sandbars and riffles; lifting over obstacles prevents abrasion and scratching.
- After paddling, clean your canoe with mild soapy water, preventing scum build-up. If scum does build up, use a non-abrasive household cleaner to remove - scum slows your canoe.
- Protect the hull with frequent applications of 303 Protectant (visit the Bell Store). It slows UV damage, keeps the hull clean, allows road oil and scum to be wiped off easily, and restores faded gel-coat.
- To apply, spray 303 Protectant on the hull, wiping over the surface with a soft rag. Then wipe off excess with a clean cloth. Reapply 303 Protectant when water no longer beads on the hull. Do NOT wax your Bell canoe. Wax slows the hull on-water, and encourages road oil build-up. Wax can be removed with a mild concentration of ammonia water. Flush ammonia off with water. It damages the wood finish.
- Keep the interior clean with mild soap and water applied by a cloth, sponge or kitchen brush depending on accumulation. Protect the interior from sunlight, and dirt with 303 Protectant.
- If your boat has a gel-coat finish, scratches may be sanded out with wet and dry paper from our Bell Wet Sand Kit. Flush with water as progressing from 220 to 1200 grit paper. Polish with rubbing compound and apply 303 Protectant. Deeper scratches may be filled, after cleaning and preparation, with polyester automotive putty and re-painted to match. You may also use a color matched Bell Gel Coat Repair Kit (visit the Bell Store).
- Light scratches in Royalex® occur from normal use of your canoe. Deep, wide scratches and gouges may be filled with Bell Super Bond (visit the Bell Store). Clean the damaged area with a mild solvent, i.e. rubbing alcohol, and apply Super Bond according to the package instructions.