If you’re itching to get out on the water but don’t want to deal with the bulk and hassle of hardshell kayaks, inflatable kayaks might be your ideal vessel.
There is a lot of misinformation floating around, but inflatable kayaks can be a lot of fun. A well-informed purchase is the result of careful consideration and research. Let’s dive right into the essentials of kayaking with inflatable kayaks below.
Can I try before I buy?
Try-before-you-buy options usually pretty limited for inflatable kayaks. This is where unbiased ratings, images, and especially videos come in handy for making a decision. However, if you’re keen on giving one a try before you buy one, a local rental outfitter is your best bet.
Because there is such a wide variety of inflatable kayaks on the market, it’s a good idea to do your homework, go with your gut, and make sure the product you end up purchasing has a good guarantee and warranty.
What exactly are inflatable kayaks made from?
You can find inflatable kayaks in PVC, Pennel Orca, or Nitrylon.
Most commonly, PVC is used. PVCis a tough plastic that can be modified to be more pliable and flexible by adding plasticizers.
PVC has several uses and advantages, including:
- It has the potential to be quite long-lasting
- The item is glue- and weld-able for easy repairs
- Strength and tear resistance can be added to other materials by using it as a coating, such as nylon.
PVC material has the drawback of not being resistant to chemicals, high temperatures, or ultraviolet light. To prevent sun damage to your inflatable kayak’s fabric, it is essential to spray it often with a UV protectant spray.
Pennel Orca is an exceptionally robust and long-lasting synthetic rubber. Abrasion resistance is just one of many advantages of Orca material inflatable kayaks. They can also withstand exposure to ultraviolet light, high heat and chemicals without breaking down. Typically, nylon or polyester is used for the kayak’s interior, while Orca is used for the exterior coating.
They excel in the most demanding conditions, including extreme whitewater and rough use.
The material is more expensive to utilise, so the final product will be more expensive. Welding isn’t an option, thus it must be glued instead. Kayaks that have been welded typically have fewer bumps and a cleaner look (less glueing errors).
Nitrylon is a synthetic rubber and natural rubber laminated onto a low-stretch polyester fabric.When compared to Pennel Orca and PVC, this material is a more eco-friendly option.
How long do inflatable kayaks typically last?
All in all, they tend to be well-constructed and resistant to puncturing so can last a long time. In terms of puncture resistance, lesser kayaks (those costing less than $500) will perform worse than more expensive and sturdy versions. If well taken care of they can last for many years.
How stable are they?
Most are extremely steady and require considerable effort to topple. The narrower the kayak, the faster it will move through the water, but the less stable it will be. Choose a broader or larger version if you need more support. It will be incredibly steady and easy to paddle.
Are there benefits of a traditional kayak?
Yes, without a doubt! In reality, fishing from an inflatable kayak has becoming increasingly common due to its many benefits.
- They are easily transported, allowing you to reach remote, pristine areas that would otherwise be inaccessible by boat. T
- hey can be moved around with minimal effort and stored away with minimal footprint.
- They may be quickly cleaned and dried after use.