A trip on a rubber dinghy can be a great experience. It’s fun and also ensures excitement and variety.
However, one thing should be noted: although inflatables are usually very robust, repairs may also be necessary. Of course, you should also be prepared for such cases. The following section explains how such a repair is carried out for ordinary people and which materials and tools are required for this …
Where can I get a repair kit?
Of course, wherever there are inflatables, there are also suitable “repair kits” that usually contain all the materials needed to mend the inflatable.
These repair kits are usually not available when you buy the boat. You have to buy them individually. However, it can also make sense to buy a repair kit when buying a boat so that planned excursions and rubber dinghy tours do not “fall into the water”.
What should you pay attention to when repairing?
A hole is quickly in the boat. But that doesn’t have to be a reason to dispose of the whole boat right away. Often the holes can be mended without any problems.
Inflatable boats are usually made of PVC. The repair of the PVC material usually works quite well with glue. However, if the boat is made of rubber or some other plastic rather than PVC, the adhesive properties may be limited.
A suitable repair kit belongs in every boat. In any case, it should contain a 2-component adhesive, various patches, a brush, scissors, a polyethylene cap for mixing and waterproof sandpaper.
Seal the hole with a patch
In the case of inflatable boats made of PVC, the patch used should also be made of this material. In addition, you should use an adhesive with softening substances that is especially suitable for inflatable boats. So it’s best to buy where there are boat accessories. Then the boat can often be repaired safely and easily.
Step-by-step repair instructions:
Below you will find a step-by-step explanation of how damaged inflatable boats (small holes) can be completely restored with the help of a repair kit:
1.) The first step is of course to locate the existing hole (attention – there are often several!). This usually works very well if you inflate the boat completely or only partially and then exert gentle pressure on the surface. By exerting pressure, the air will escape from the damaged area, so the area can be located acoustically precisely (provided, of course, when the valve is closed!).
2.) Then the patch is cut to the appropriate size. The hole should be completely covered with the patch – a slightly larger patch is better here than one that is too small and does not cover the hole properly!
3.) Then the patch and the edges around the hole are roughened with sandpaper and the adhesive mixed.
4.) Now the glue can be spread over the patch and the edges. This should be done quickly as the glue dries out quickly.
5.) After the first application, the adhesive should dry for about 20 minutes, then a second layer is applied, which should dry again for 5 minutes.
6.) Then the patch comes on the hole and is firmly pressed there. Before the boat is used again, the adhesive should harden for at least 2 days.
Tip: You can repair inflatable pools in a similar way.
- A boat always needs maintenance. The less it is cared for, the more repairs may be necessary.
- It is recommended to inspect the boat for damage every year before using it for the first time.
- Furthermore, really major damage to the boat should be left to a specialist in a professional workshop. Small damage can of course also be repaired yourself (as described above) with the right accessories.
- Particular care is required when handling sharp objects in the boat. Above all, anglers should be careful that the sharp-edged fishing tackle and hooks do not get stuck in the boat skin.