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Old 07-02-2020, 00:19   #31
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Re: PVC vs Hypalon in the Tropics?

It's possible that Jim and I have the longest history on CF with hypalon dinghies. (1985 till 2015). When we first left to go cruising, we had a 3rd hand Zodiac Hypalon dinghy (13 ft.), glued seams. We kept using it till the hypalon started to fail---NOT the seams. It got really thin where we sat, and then, the scrim underneath became visible, and it started to sun rot. We used it from 1985 till 1991, in the tropics it's whole life, and believed it to be 15 yrs. old at the time of sale. Sorry I don't recall exactly, but it's a while ago.

We bought a DSB (Deutsch Schlauf Boot) hypalon dinghy. Used it also till the hypalon started to get thin. NO problem with seams. Sold it also. Bought in 1991, sold it in 2003, and bought a hypalon tubed Gemini. It proved to be made from inferior hypalon, and thereby lies a story. After the DuPont patent expired, many outfits made a product they called "hypalon", and some of it was better than others. The Gemini used the same hull as the Swift, but it was lighter weight, and we bought the Gemini so it would be faster and also, easier to haul up beaches. Big mistake, because the weight difference was because Gemini used lighter weight hypalon, which is thinner and wears out faster. Again, never a problem with the seams. But one thing we did learn along the way, is that most of the glues used on hypalon require low humidity, so unless you can find out whether it is glued up in humidity controlled shops, DON'T trust the seams. I saw a NZ assembled Nouvarania (sp?) hypalon dinghy that I could peal the trim with just testing the seam with a fingernail. Moist assembly conditions.

The Gemini dinghy had a curse on it: it was stolen and set afire; but we recovered the aluminum hull. Jim cleaned it up, and we took it back to Gemini, and had them put on another set of hypalon tubes. The cost was about 1/2 a new dinghy, and the savings bought the new motor we needed. In 2015, those tubes had worn out, too, and we then spoke with friends who owned a dinghy repair business, who informed us that just like there are differences in the hypalon they could source, so were there also differences in the PVC.

They were able to source German PVC which they convinced us was of high quality, for us at about half the cost of good hypalon, and so, we went with PVC tubes in 2015. The chaps we made for it then were WeatherMax, and are now coming to the end of their life. [There is a Sewing Group part of our Community, where I wrote about making the dinghy cover, and reported back a couple of times.] However, the PVC is in excellent condition, spending about half its life in the tropics. It is only 5 yrs old, but there is no seam failure at this point, and there is no appearance of the plasticizer going away.

If you want a good hypalon dinghy, you will have to ask a lot of questions: weight of hypalon (thicker and heavier is better); and questions relative to assembly (humidity control.) As close as I can figure out, the Swift hypalon dinghies are the best in Oz; the Bombards made for the French Navy are the best in France. Caribes and ABs seem to have good reputations, as well, but ASK THE QUESTIONS.

If you want a good PVC dinghy (and I saw a 20 yr old one in what appeared to be good condition), you will need to ask a whole lot of questions. I really don't know what Highfield are using for their PVC, but if it is -- and stays -- qualitiy like ours, you might get 8-10 yrs. out of it.

Hypalon dinghies of high quality are expensive. It would be really cool if someone from Swift could come and explain why they are so expensive.

Good luck with it...it always helps.

Ann
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Old 07-02-2020, 02:03   #32
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Re: PVC vs Hypalon in the Tropics?

Hypalon is UV resistant PVC is not, UV makes the PVC fabric go sticky.
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Old 07-02-2020, 02:30   #33
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Re: PVC vs Hypalon in the Tropics?

Which raises an interesting question.


Why don't dinghy makers offer chaps as an accessory? Or do they?
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Old 07-02-2020, 03:26   #34
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Re: PVC vs Hypalon in the Tropics?

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Originally Posted by Reefmagnet View Post
Which raises an interesting question.


Why don't dinghy makers offer chaps as an accessory? Or do they?
perhaps they don't want to admit such are necessary (even though we all know they are) ?

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Old 07-02-2020, 05:20   #35
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Re: PVC vs Hypalon in the Tropics?

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Originally Posted by sander.jorissen View Post
The manufacturer of my rib adviced to go pvc. This because hypalon tends to fail
On the glued seams long before the material itself is gone. The welded seams on pvc are much better.
Really? My Avon 310 Rover is over 15 YO, used like a workboat, and has no such problem. Maybe itís the manufacturer?

They donít make my 310 Rover anymore, but if and when I have to replace it, it will be with a used 310 Rover. That should get me through the last days of sailing.
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Old 07-02-2020, 05:30   #36
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Re: PVC vs Hypalon in the Tropics?

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Originally Posted by Tetepare View Post
Really? My Avon 310 Rover is over 15 YO, used like a workboat, and has no such problem. Maybe itís the manufacturer?

They donít make my 310 Rover anymore, but if and when I have to replace it, it will be with a used 310 Rover. That should get me through the last days of sailing.
Iíve never had a hypalon Seem fail

The failure modes on my past tenders have been tube ends from physical abuse and the rib hull to inflatable tube joint on the inside , rib sole
This joint gets filled with sand, sea shells , stones broken glass..... then chafes thru the fabric

Good idea to fill this hypalon to sole joint with round profile foam tape or a caulking of your choice to prevent contamination from entering
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Old 07-02-2020, 07:29   #37
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Re: PVC vs Hypalon in the Tropics?

i have watched pvc fail after 2 days in zihuat--not mine-- i watched pvc last 6 yrs..not mine... i have seen hypalon of a caribe bubble after a year-- also not mine, and in san diego, hardly tropics. belonged to a neighbor.
my actual real time experience is slightly shorter than ann and jim--1990-current.
i use a walker bay plastic boat for a reason.
riprap.
steel pilings.
sand.
sharp stuff in sand.
sharp stuff in water..
i used to love inflatables err deflatables... but i can rely on the structural integrity of my plastic boat when others are finding leakage from rip rap of wharves and docks a problem when returning to boat from land.
so far the only issue my 10 ft wb has known is someone made the water letter outter a water letter inner... i had to replug the drain hole. hahahaha the plug is affixed to dink so it was no big deal. was funny.
from 1990 until 2010 i had hypalon and engine and fun fun fun, but the travel reality is hard to find 2 part glue to repair the hypalon boats.
pvc just dies and hard to keep fixed once it fails. cannot mend the seams. failure can happen as soon as 2 days, as one acquaintance learned in zihuat, or as long as 6 yrs, which we learned in gom with an old second hand pvc dink without chaps. .
and let me tell ye about those soft floors aaarrgghh. no likee.. the first thing to fail.. i prefer polystyrene floors custom made. i was lucky that way with a 1984 achilles i got or 50 usd with 64 knife holes patched for 4 yrs..was excellent boat.
caribe somehow gets water inside the double hull... gets very heavy. mine. got rid of it for another which also did same thing.. not a fan.
best o luck in whatever you decide...just remember it is the return to the boat with loads of provisions a computer and whatever other items you feel the need to transport in said dinghy that actually matter.


ps caribe used to provide chaps for their boats-- but quit that in early 2000s as they were not so profitable.
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Old 07-02-2020, 08:20   #38
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Re: PVC vs Hypalon in the Tropics?

Quote:
Originally Posted by zeehag View Post
i have watched pvc fail after 2 days in zihuat--not mine-- i watched pvc last 6 yrs..not mine... i have seen hypalon of a caribe bubble after a year-- also not mine, and in san diego, hardly tropics. belonged to a neighbor.
my actual real time experience is slightly shorter than ann and jim--1990-current.
i use a walker bay plastic boat for a reason.
riprap.
steel pilings.
sand.
sharp stuff in sand.
sharp stuff in water..
i used to love inflatables err deflatables... but i can rely on the structural integrity of my plastic boat when others are finding leakage from rip rap of wharves and docks a problem when returning to boat from land.
so far the only issue my 10 ft wb has known is someone made the water letter outter a water letter inner... i had to replug the drain hole. hahahaha the plug is affixed to dink so it was no big deal. was funny.
from 1990 until 2010 i had hypalon and engine and fun fun fun, but the travel reality is hard to find 2 part glue to repair the hypalon boats.
pvc just dies and hard to keep fixed once it fails. cannot mend the seams. failure can happen as soon as 2 days, as one acquaintance learned in zihuat, or as long as 6 yrs, which we learned in gom with an old second hand pvc dink without chaps. .
and let me tell ye about those soft floors aaarrgghh. no likee.. the first thing to fail.. i prefer polystyrene floors custom made. i was lucky that way with a 1984 achilles i got or 50 usd with 64 knife holes patched for 4 yrs..was excellent boat.
caribe somehow gets water inside the double hull... gets very heavy. mine. got rid of it for another which also did same thing.. not a fan.
best o luck in whatever you decide...just remember it is the return to the boat with loads of provisions a computer and whatever other items you feel the need to transport in said dinghy that actually matter.


ps caribe used to provide chaps for their boats-- but quit that in early 2000s as they were not so profitable.
Ive seen hpyalon bubble when stored wet long term. For exampl, dinghy inverted on deck and fabric in contact w deck during rainy season.
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Old 07-02-2020, 08:20   #39
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Re: PVC vs Hypalon in the Tropics?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tetepare View Post
Really? My Avon 310 Rover is over 15 YO, used like a workboat, and has no such problem. Maybe itís the manufacturer?

They donít make my 310 Rover anymore, but if and when I have to replace it, it will be with a used 310 Rover. That should get me through the last days of sailing.

I had the 340 Rover; best dinghy I ever had. Was 15 years old when I sold it and still going strong despite tremendous abuse, used as a workboat indeed, taken out to sea, crossing the Solent at planing speed, etc etc etc. Great dink. Built like a tank. Certainly not the slightest problem with the seams.


I replaced it with an Avon 310 Lite folding one. Bought used and now maybe 8 years old. Unlike the last one, this one spends a good bit of its life protected in a storage bag. Looks and works like new.



It is really a shame that Avons are no longer made. I had a couple of Highfields before; pretty good dinks but not worth the little finger of an Avon. Last maybe half as long if that.
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Old 07-02-2020, 10:07   #40
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Re: PVC vs Hypalon in the Tropics?

Quote:
Originally Posted by belizesailor View Post
Ive seen hpyalon bubble when stored wet long term. For exampl, dinghy inverted on deck and fabric in contact w deck during rainy season.
the caribe in question was in use 12 months annually and full time liveaboard on a mooring. not stored
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Old 07-02-2020, 15:27   #41
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Re: PVC vs Hypalon in the Tropics?

From my experience pvc is much easier to repair in humid environments, especially with 2 part or heat setting adhesive but a good hypalon dinghy is more rugged and last longer. . We have a 35yrs old Tinker tramp that's been amazing. . I think its important to maintain them properly. Clean out all sand and pebbles which get in the seams and never use Armour All or harse chems which can affect the glue.
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Old 07-02-2020, 15:44   #42
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Re: PVC vs Hypalon in the Tropics?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Reefmagnet View Post
Which raises an interesting question.


Why don't dinghy makers offer chaps as an accessory? Or do they?
Well i've only bought new from the one manufacturer and they will most definitely make you chaps if you want, can't comment on the rest cause i've never bought new from another or enquired....
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Old 07-02-2020, 19:33   #43
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Re: PVC vs Hypalon in the Tropics?

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From my experience pvc is much easier to repair in humid environments, especially with 2 part or heat setting adhesive but a good hypalon dinghy is more rugged and last longer. . We have a 35yrs old Tinker tramp that's been amazing. . I think its important to maintain them properly. Clean out all sand and pebbles which get in the seams and never use Armour All or harse chems which can affect the glue.
I've actually just glued some hyperlon a few days ago. My 2 part glue says it's good to use up to 25c and 60% humidity. I am well into the tropics, and the days are 28c and 64% humidity, so you do have to get the timing right.

The PVC I was trying patch on a previous dinghy before this was much more difficult.

One thing of note is getting the mixture correct is extremely difficult. A small patch might only require 10-20ml of glue mixture. Only 5% hardener is needed. How the hell do you measure that? Even if you had scales accurate enough they wouldn't work on a boat due to movement.
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Old 14-02-2020, 07:49   #44
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Re: PVC vs Hypalon in the Tropics?

Our Highfield dink is PVC and is about 7 years old. No leaks or issues so far and has been stored in davits in Florida. We have chaps to keep the sun off.
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Old 14-02-2020, 08:28   #45
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Re: PVC vs Hypalon in the Tropics?

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Originally Posted by sander.jorissen View Post
The manufacturer of my rib adviced to go pvc. This because hypalon tends to fail
On the glued seams long before the material itself is gone. The welded seams on pvc are much better.
Where are you using it? Are you using it full time or just once in a while bringing it out? Storing your body for the winter?

All the answers to these questions matter.
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