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Old 15-09-2011, 02:40   #31
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Re: Walker Bay 10 DIY Stabilizer Tube

Mahan, thanks for asking.

Here's where I'm at: I bought three yds of 18 oz white PVC fabric, HH-66 glue, and valves from an awning store. The design is worrying me.

Design woes holding me up: I am still mulling the design over, but will either create (1) a single horseshoe shaped inflatable collar (prettier but having trouble figuring out how to join two chambers at bow end) or (2) two inflatable sponsons (easier but uglier). We'll tastefully lash the things to our boat with white nylon webbing and stainless eyes/D-rings until the end of the season, and figure out some better rail and boltrope arrangement over the winter.

Performance: The diameter of the tubes will be no more than 6 - 7 in. Enough to give buoyancy if we list too far over during fishing/lobster trapping and during disembarking at docks over gunwales, but well clear of the waterline unless overloaded (we won't) to avoid interfering with the boat's streamlining--we row a lot and use the 55lb electric motor only if the old man is worn out.

Durability: Later, a friend will sew durable covers for the PVC bladders from exterior grade polyester fabric (AKA Sunbrella). Found some stuff at WalMart for $6/yd--can you believe it!
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Old 15-09-2011, 05:26   #32
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Re: Walker Bay 10 DIY Stabilizer Tube

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Later, a friend will sew durable covers for the PVC bladders from exterior grade polyester fabric (AKA Sunbrella). Found some stuff at WalMart for $6/yd--can you believe it!
Don't do it. Use Phifertex mesh instead. Sunbrella will get trashed from abrasion in short order.
I recommend the 90% mesh. Sorry I don't have pics in this computer to show you.
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Old 15-09-2011, 08:05   #33
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Re: Walker Bay 10 DIY Stabilizer Tube

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Durability: Later, a friend will sew durable covers for the PVC bladders from exterior grade polyester fabric (AKA Sunbrella). Found some stuff at WalMart for $6/yd--can you believe it!
I'm afraid that you have a disconnect here, mate: Sunbrella isn't polyester based, but instead is acrylic based. Big difference in UV resistance. Polyester requires protection from the sun...

At WalMart you get what you pay for... if you are very lucky!

Try again.

Cheers,

Jim
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Old 15-09-2011, 08:59   #34
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Re: Walker Bay 10 DIY Stabilizer Tube

Andrew,if you want to glue up a tube you can do so out of the vinyl tarp material they use for semis ,i used to make air bag presses for building snowboards and we made up 10" diameter tubes with a 10" overlap seam glued with HH66 which is a sort of contact adhesive,we ran 100psi in them so i would think a couple of inches would be plenty, we just used a tire valve of the type that has a threaded stem, you can buy them at Napa.
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Old 15-09-2011, 09:19   #35
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Re: Walker Bay 10 DIY Stabilizer Tube

"...We just used a tire valve of the type that has a threaded stem, you can buy them at Napa."

Great idea. Can you tell me more about selecting and installing the tire valve you described. How do you get it sealed into the vinyl fabric--washers? I do have a pair of Halkey-Roberts that cost $9 a piece--something cheaper would be great
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Old 15-09-2011, 22:20   #36
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Re: Walker Bay 10 DIY Stabilizer Tube

Yep, we beefed up the area with extra layers of fabric all glued together with HH66 and then used a large diameter steel washer and a soft rubber washer in and out all slathered up with HH66. As i mentioned we ran 100 psi in these things and never blew out a valve, we did puncture a couple of bags though with shards of cured epoxy which was a bit scary so we went in another direction, not a problem at 3-5 psi though.
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Old 16-09-2011, 16:10   #37
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Re: Walker Bay 10 DIY Stabilizer Tube

My next tough challenge is figuring out how to get chambers in that thing!
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Old 16-09-2011, 16:27   #38
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Re: Walker Bay 10 DIY Stabilizer Tube

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My next tough challenge is figuring out how to get chambers in that thing!
Andrewm,

You're not the first to do this. when I said to use Phifertex and that your happiness with Sunbrella would be short lived, I was speaking from experience. I've had a few PM me for instructions on this and I'd be happy to help.

What I recommend in response to this question is straight forward. One long marine grade zipper along the inside. I've gone thru a couple of mods since my first attempt. What I have now has served me very well and from some of the factory units I've seen gone bad, I'd say I got it a notch above what Walker Bay offers. They do look good new, but the new wears off because they are more difficult to maintain.
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Old 16-09-2011, 16:33   #39
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Re: Walker Bay 10 DIY Stabilizer Tube

Go here.

Walker Bay Rigid 8' Dinghy - Experiences ?
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Old 18-09-2011, 08:15   #40
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Re: Walker Bay 10 DIY Stabilizer Tube

Your way of making the covers makes sense. Looks good. I looked at those fenders and they're a lot pricier than gluing my own PVC bladders together. About a hundred each? Versus $80 for three yd of 18 oz Fabric, a quart of H-66 glue, Summit valves, and some webbing--enough to make two 8-in. bladders 9-10 ft long or four bladders half as long. If you have more pictures in the future, please post them. Thx for tips.
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Old 18-09-2011, 10:45   #41
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Re: Walker Bay 10 DIY Stabilizer Tube

While i like the idea of using a string of fenders of the type with the hole thru the middle as a neat floatation solution they seem like they would be way too heavy and spendy.
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Old 18-09-2011, 21:13   #42
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Re: Walker Bay 10 DIY Stabilizer Tube

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Your way of making the covers makes sense. Looks good. I looked at those fenders and they're a lot pricier than gluing my own PVC bladders together. About a hundred each? Versus $80 for three yd of 18 oz Fabric, a quart of H-66 glue, Summit valves, and some webbing--enough to make two 8-in. bladders 9-10 ft long or four bladders half as long. If you have more pictures in the future, please post them. Thx for tips.
I don't doubt that your PVC bladders will be cheaper, but I'm thinking I spent $100 for four stowaways. Not $100 each. If your tubes can be made 10' + long, all the better. (You want them a few inches longer than the gunnels). I'm thinking you can slip the whole length into one tube and put a short zipper in to feed it thru. Make you fabric container tube a smaller diameter than your bladder so you can pump the bladder up hard. If your setup comes out baggy it might really come out looking homemade. With my stowaway fenders in and pumped up hard against the outer covering the whole thing comes out almost basketball hard. Then I lash them in place.

These photos showing flotation on both WBs are first generation with the foam flotation. That just never could stay tight as the foam would deteriorate. My lashing system is much cleaner now too. Sorry no recent pics.
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Old 19-09-2011, 10:25   #43
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Re: Walker Bay 10 DIY Stabilizer Tube

Minggat, you are using those lightweight stowaway fenders? that makes a lot more sense than the taylor thick pvc fenders which,while easy to use would i think be too heavy. It sounds like a good system.
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Old 20-09-2011, 01:21   #44
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Re: Walker Bay 10 DIY Stabilizer Tube

I like what you did there, Ming'. I think I'm close to getting started, but one of the last few things: how to I get a nice truncated tube or cone at the end of the bladders like those Zodiacs? (I'll keep a good photo diary of my work so everyone can learn from my experiences.)
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Old 20-09-2011, 01:31   #45
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Re: Walker Bay 10 DIY Stabilizer Tube

Oh, I forgot to mention--I found it unnecessary to drill holes in the gunnel/rubrail. I just replaced one of the short screws that bolts the seats into place. About an inch of threading protrudes below the hull, and I use a coupling nut to join it to a stainless eye bolt. I use a threaded eye hook to replace the screw that holds the insert below the gunnel reinforcement (new WB 10) -- so I have 3 eye bolts under the gunnel on each side, and an eye bolt about 4-5 in. below the gunnel under each seat strake. I run white webbing through these and will glue loops on the bladder at the appropriate places.
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