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Surf City 30-06-2010 17:23

Grey or Red Tubes ?
Looking at replacing RIB tubes on our Zodiac. I like the red color for visability but wonder if color will be hotter? Anybody have any thoughts about color choice.

Pelagic 30-06-2010 17:39

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Either way… to increase dramatically the lifespan of the tube you should consider a canvas cover to protect it.

Our cover which is attached with Velcro is dark but has never been a heat issue... so you could easily make a red cover

Surf City 30-06-2010 18:46

How and where did you use velcro for attachment points?

Pelagic 30-06-2010 19:10

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You just glue a constant line of one side of the Velcro to the tubes (usually just above the tubes rub rail and on the inside half way down and around the handle cutouts)

Then sew the other side to the Sunbrella cover for a tight and attractive fit.

It also protects from chafe but mostly from the sunís harmful rays

Sorry I donít have better shots but it is wise to also sew in an edge to the canvas as the second photo shows as you can see it gets a lot of abuse and is easily repaired. (which we did after that trip)

Making a zippered bow cover to shade the gas tank works well as a tidy protected storage area for our beach bags etc..

Surf City 30-06-2010 19:16

Thanks for a great idea.

Minggat 30-06-2010 19:34

Velco breaks down in 2 ways. UV does a job on the hooks and repeated seperation "un-loops" the loops. Chaps for inflatables also use shock cord (which also breaks down) or simple draw strings. Sitting on dark colors that have been out in the sun can be more painful than sitting on light colors.

Pelagic 30-06-2010 19:46

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Good Point Mingat but the Velcro is under the cover and not subject to UV exposure.

Also the cover comes off about once a year for full wash and minor repairs and after 10 years still on the original set of Velcro.

Dark is always warmer to the touch and to guide the OP mine is dark blue, but it has never felt uncomfortable even in the noon day sunÖ.

BTW when not in use... the whole tender is covered which helps to preserve the tubes and also it's running cover

Minggat 30-06-2010 20:18

I spent a while working for my friend in his canvas shop. I can say that there are plenty of good uses for velcro and depending upon conditions, it's can be a Godsend.

I think really a great deal depends on where you're boating as far as this conversation goes. In the Sea of Cortez, I'd recommend as light reflecting as you can get, and minimal velcro. Just the heat would cause the glue on the velcro glued to the tubes to be a problem.

Getting 10 years out of yours says quite a lot. 4-5 years in So Cal sun will break down the thread used to sew it all together. Restitch it and go another 4-5 years and the canvas should be about toast. But I'm talking about 24/7 exposure.

All dingy chaps are a pain in my book. But if your need them, you need them. Just do what works for you.

I personally have spent way too much money on what I thought I need because other people had one, so I must need one.

After all of that, a friend of mine has a white hypalon dink. I instantly noticed that a LIGHT GRAY piece of material on the same boat was a GREAT DEAL hotter to touch than the white. He gets by with no chaps at all. My next inflatable would be white if I could get the model I want that way.

Pelagic 30-06-2010 22:12

I think if you sit on a hot vinyl or hypalon seat you can feel it, but on a cloth fabric seat…. not so much.

Each to their own…. But the cost of new tubes or a new dingy versus a protective cover seems to be a no brainer.

Mine’s was done in a canvas shop in Phuket so not sure whether they used a flexible neoprene cement to glue the Velcro on or what, but it has been amazingly resilient

GordMay 01-07-2010 05:19


Originally Posted by Minggat (Post 478264)
... I'd recommend as light reflecting as you can get ...
... All dingy chaps are a pain in my book. But if your need them, you need them ...
... a LIGHT GRAY piece of material on the same boat was a GREAT DEAL hotter to touch than the white. He gets by with no chaps at all.
My next inflatable would be white if I could get the model I want that way.


MarkJ 01-07-2010 06:48

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Originally Posted by Minggat (Post 478264)
My next inflatable would be white if I could get the model I want that way.

Our next dink will be white too. White STEEL. None of this deflating garbage. Ours will be made to last. It will be a all weather, don't care how high the harbour waves are, don't care who rams it, don't care who I come along side, don't care about the sun, UV or the damn icebergs. Ours is guuna be an indestructable! I am even thinking of having a small pilot house on it and LOADS of grocery bag tie-down points, maybe even a small Heli-pad. My dink is gunna be soooooo strong you're not gunna need to read theTT to Sea Life... you're gunna know it me!

Vasco 01-07-2010 07:01

I have always wondered why one would buy a dinghy and then have to make chaps for it. Given a choice why would one buy a PVC dink? Hyplon dinks don't need it. My AB RIB is 6 years old and the tubes are as good as new. The only cleaning it gets is from rain squalls, the bottom needs a bit of a scrub, hopefully will do that this fall. Six months hard use a year and sitting on the davits in the hot FL summer sun the other six months.

Captain Bill 01-07-2010 07:05

I had a sunbrella cover that lasted about 5 years and did a pretty good job. It was a form fitting type, but I found it was a bit of a pain. When It finally disintegrated I went without one for about 2 years. The deterioration of the hypalon was quite rapid and the boat was definitely showing the signs of wear and tear. I recently recoated the boat with a liquid rubber compound available at West Marine. I chose the grey color as it was the lightest they had in stock, but white is available online. It now looks like a new boat. I don't know how long this coating will hold up but even if I have to recoat every 3 years it will be cheaper than buying a new form fitting cover every 5 years. It took 2 quarts to cover a 10Ft RIB. The biggest pain is that it take 24 hours to set and 7 days for a full cure so you need some place to keep the dust and water off at least 24 hours. If the boat hasn't deteriorated too much they offer a top coating product in several colors including white. I have not used that product so I can't comment.

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