A Glossary of Inflatable Boat Repair Terms and Definitions Ė Repair and Restore
Are you about to repair your inflatable boat? Would you like to totally and completely restore it to its original showroom condition? You can, you know. Thereís a very unique product on the market called SRC Tuff-Coat. Tuff-Coat does everything it says itíll do. And just so you understand the lingo associated with the repairs and restoration, weíve assembled a simple glossary of inflatable boat repair terms and definitions. Weíve thrown in a couple of other basic boating terms, along with several manufacturers Ė just to really get you into the swing of things. Study it carefully, get your Tuff-Coat, follow the easy application process, and get ready to ďsail the ocean blueĒ.
- Anchor fairlead
The anchor fairlead is like a piece of pipe mounted on the bow of the boat, that the anchor rope runs through to protect it from rubbing on the bow of the boat as itís raised and lowered.
- Bench seat
A bench seat is piece of wood thatís mounted across the width of an inflatable boat, usually just back of the middle in such a position to allow someone to sit and comfortably row the boat.
- Bilge pump
A bilge pump is an electric device thatís used to pump unwanted water out of the inside of a boat.
A boltrope, sometimes called a flange, is a piece of rope wrapped in material that holds a something in place, like a buoyancy tube or a seat cushion.
- Bottom of the hull
The bottom of the hull refers to the part of the boat thatís under water, and which determines by its shape how well you can navigate the boat.
- Buoyancy tube
The buoyancy tubes in inflatable boats are the parts that are filled with air to keep the boat afloat. Theyíre usually separated into air chambers, with a baffle in between, so that if one air chamber should be punctured or otherwise lose its air, the remaining air chambers will keep the boat from sinking. The buoyancy tubes are the part of the boat that actually defines it as an inflatable.
Cavitation is what happens when the boat motor is mounted too high, or the water is too shallow, and the propeller doesnít catch enough water to propel the boat, causing the motor to ďrev upĒ.
- Choppy water
We probably all know what choppy water is, but we may not know thatís itís caused by wind and waves coming from different directions.
Coating refers to the two flexible layers that are attached to either side of the fabric used to make inflatable boats. The purpose of the inside layer is to make the boat airtight (and thus, water-tight), while the outside layer provides protection from abrasion and UV light. Damaged or worn coating can be repaired and restored by SRC Tuff-Coat.
The cockpit is where the passengers sit in a boat. Itís kept free of excess water by drains.
- Cone reinforcement
Cone reinforcement refers to the cone-shaped caps that are put on the end of the buoyancy tubes to protect them from puncture or other damage.
Decitex is a word used to measure the strength of a fabric. It represents the number of grams that 10,000 meters of yarn weighs.
The deck of a boat is a platform, usually made of wood that allows you to stand up in a boat. A deck can be found on any part of a boat, as in larger boats with multiple decks.
A D-ring is a metal ring, shaped like a D, thatís attached to a boat, allowing you to pull, lift or tow the boat.
Of course, we know that a floor is what you stand on (or sit, or lie, or jump, or whatever you like). A floor in an inflatable boat can consist of a series of slats made of wood, aluminum, fiberglass or other composite materials.
- Hand railing
The hand railing is a piece thatís attached to the boat, that helps passengers to stay in the boat, and not fall into the water.
Hypalon is a brand name of Du Pont. Its technical name is chlorosulfonated polyethylene, but you probably know it as simply synthetic rubber. Itís one of the most popular types of materials used in inflatable boat manufacture. Its more expensive than PVC, but lasts longer, being more resilient to UV damage, abrasions, and gas and oil. It has an average life of 20-30 years. Hypalon inflatable boats can be repaired and restored with SRC Tuff-Coat.
A keel is a part of the boat that extends vertically below the bottom of the hull, in the middle, and is designed for stabilization of the boat. Foldable boats have inflatable keels that you can fold up with the rest of the boat.
- Lacing cuff
A lacing cuff is a piece of fabric, mounted on top of the buoyancy tube, that holds the life lines.
- Life line
The life line is a rope that runs around the perimeter of the boat for people to hang onto so they donít fall out of the boat and possibly lose their lives (hence the name, life line). A life line is an essential boating safety accessory for any boat owner.
- MEK (methyl ethyl ketone)
MEK is the cleaning solvent recommended for use with the SRC Tuff-Coat inflatable boat repair system. Itís used as a primer, applied on PVC-covered boats before painting on the Basecoat, a necessary step to insure a solid bond.
- Motor bracket
The motor bracket is located on the transom, and holds the motor in place.
- Motor shaft
The motor shaft is the part that extends below the main part of the outboard motor, with the propeller at the end. You can get a short, long or extra long motor shaft, depending on the horsepower of the motor.
The oarlock is the part thatís mounted on the top of the buoyancy tube that holds the oars securely in place while rowing.
Plane refers to the changes in the surface of the water in relation to the speed of the boat.
Porpoiseing is the action of the boat, relating to the plane, as it crosses its own bow wave.
- Pressure gauge
The pressure gauge is a device that tells you if you have enough air in your buoyancy tube to keep you afloat.
PVC stands for polyvinyl chloride, and is a type of flexible plastic used to make inflatable boats. Itís more affordable than Hypalon, but isnít as durable, being susceptible to UV damage, as well as wear from exposure to gas and oil. It has a shorter lifespan than Hypalon Ė about 8-10 years. Itís not recommended for use in hotter climates, or in salt water. PVC inflatable boats can be repaired and restored with SRC Tuff-Coat.
- RIB (rigid inflatable boat)
RIBs are becoming very popular in the inflatable boat industry because theyíre much lighter and more maneuverable than traditional boats. What makes them different from other inflatables is their fiberglass hulls, which remain one piece, even though the attached buoyancy tubes can be deflated for storage. Some of the more popular manufacturers of RIBs are Zodiac, Avon, Nautica, Osprey, and Delta.
- Rubbing strake
A rubbing strake is a piece of flexible but strong material thatís put on the outside of the boat to prevent damage from rubbing against a pier, dock or other such structure.
- Self bailer
A self bailer is a device with a one-way valve that, when unplugged, lets unwanted water out of the boat but doesnít let water in.
A stringer is made of aluminum, and holds the floorboards in place on a foldable inflatable boat.
- Tiller arm
The tiller arm is the lever-like part of an outboard motor that extends towards the front of the boat. It allows you to control the speed of the boat with a throttle that turns around the handle, and also to control the direction of the boat by moving it from side to side (in the opposite direction you want to turn).
The transom is the part of the boat at the back that holds the buoyancy tubes together. Itís also the part that holds the motor.
- Trim tabs
Trim tabs, or trim flaps, is the part of the boat that extends out the back, beyond the transom, on either side of the boat. It gives the boat more stability.
Tuff-Coat, or SRC Tuff-Coat, is the only product on the market that totally repairs and restores your inflatable boat to its original sparkling condition. It has two parts, the Basecoat and the Topcoat, which are easily applied by simply painting it on (after proper prep cleaning). It works as well on Hypalon or PVC inflatable boats and comes in a variety of colors. Tuff-Coat can be used on any type of inflatable boat, from kayaks to dingys, to canoes, and even on accessories. It not only repairs any damage to your boat, it also protects it from future damage. Itís a product thatís unmatched in the industry. It can also be purchased as a Zodiac repair product Ė SRC Ė same product, same great results!
- Water evacuation plug
The water evacuation plug is used, after you take your boat out of the water, to drain any excess water out of the boat. You have to tip it up with the bow in the air because the plug is in the bottom of the stern.
Xylene is a fast-drying solvent recommended for use with the SRC Tuff-Coat inflatable boat repair system. Itís added to the Basecoat (10% proportion) as a thinner, if desired, for smoother application.
Zodiac is the marine version of a household word. Itís a French inflatable boat manufacturer, known and respected throughout the world, producing some of the best and cutting edge products in the industry. Zodiac is credited for designing and manufacturing the first modern-day inflatable boat. Theyíre also the distributor of Tuff-Coat, the best inflatable boat repair product in the world. Among their lines of inflatable boats are Bombard and Zoom.
So there it is Ė the A-Z of inflatable boat repair. Weíd like to make special mention here, again, of SRC Tuff-Coat. Itís really an incredible product. Youíll be amazed at the wonderful results it has in repairing and restoring your inflatable boat. Donít throw that inflatable boat away Ė renew it to itís original condition and get back out into the water you love so much. After all, isnít that why you bought that inflatable boat in the first place?
About The Author
Gareth Marples is a successful freelance writer providing valuable tips and advice for consumers about Tuff-Coat inflatable boat repair, purchasing boat accessories, supplies & gear, and where to buy boating apparel, including deck shoes & sailing clothes. His numerous articles offer moneysaving tips and valuable insight on typically confusing topics.
This "Glossary of Inflatable Boat Repair Terms and Definitions" reprinted with permission.
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