What are your kayaks made of?
Our kayaks consist of two major subassemblies, the frame and the hull. The frame of all Mk I, MK II, and Commando kayaks consist of marine grade laminate white birch plywood and hardwood ash stringers with stainless steel fittings. All wood-to-wood joints are assembled with marine grade epoxy and riveted for reinforcement where necessary. The wood finish of our blonde frames consists of a 4 dip process in sealer and varnish resulting in a hard, durable, and beautiful finish. The finish on the black frames is a 3 dip process of sealer and black paint. The hull is manufactured from CSM poly fabric rubber compound. The deck is sewn to the hull and consists of either a high quality traditional breathable cotton or modern hi tech Sea Mark® fabric.
How long does it take to assemble?
Assembly time of course varies with experience. Typically it should be around 20 minutes but it has been done in close to 10 minutes by experienced crews.
Why is the frame all wood?
We use only the finest grade ply and hardwoods in the construction of our boats. These woods give our boats not only tremendous strength but also ample flexibility to survive all but the harshest of impacts. This combined with our excellent hardware and finishing technique provide you with a frame that not only is wonderful to the eye, but will potentially last many generations. Perhaps the best thing about a wood frame is that you need not worry that the frame can be disassembled. Composite or aluminum materials have been known to “freeze” together basically turning your folding boat into a non-folding boat. Not exactly what you paid for.
Why do you still use rubber hull material?
CSM poly fabric rubber compound has the advantage of being a time-tested material of known abilities. It has proven itself to be a long lasting product with great abrasion and puncture resistance. CSM poly fabric rubber compound is almost immune to the effects of sunlight, oil, and other contaminants. The fact is we do not believe there is anything available that is longer lasting or more durable for this application.
What is the lifespan of the boat?
You can expect a hull to last 15 years on average with longevity upwards of 25 years not being uncommon. A frame has an almost indefinite lifespan. With proper care there are only a few hinges and fittings that may potentially wear over a number of years perhaps decades. 50-year-old frames of similar design and material are not uncommon.
Is the boat simple to repair in the field?
Our boats are designed for extended expeditions away from civilization. The materials and design techniques used create a vessel that not only is capable of absorbing demanding punishment, but is also easily repairable in the field. Barring a catastrophic collision most, if any, field repairs will consist of applying a patch to the rubber hull. In case of a rare frame fracture a splint will usually be quite adequate. Of course spare parts are available from us.
Why should I buy a Long Haul Folding Kayak rather than the competitors?
We believe we build the best folding sea kayak available today. Every boat is hand built to our exacting standards with the finest materials available. This is not a mass produced toy. It is a well made, handcrafted vessel capable of the most demanding conditions this planet is capable of dishing out. Is it the ultimate? We think so.
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