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 Post subject: Kayak skin option?
PostPosted: Wed Apr 10, 2013 3:32 pm 
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Joined: Mon Mar 25, 2013 12:19 pm
Posts: 46
Location: Bridgetown, Nova Scotia
Hello,
I was thinking I live close to a military base and being close to one I have access to military textiles for a reasonable price. There is a shop down here that sells government/military surplus used and new over stocked items and he has tarps that look very sturdy. They look as though they are made from the same stuff that the modular tents are made from, it feels like a coated canvas or coated nylon maybe. Anyway I was wondering if anyone was familiar with this material and knew if it would make a good skin, since the mod tents are used in extreme environments from Artic to dessert I think it might be tuff enough.
Color is a low point they come in black and green, maybe even cadpat.
Any thoughts?


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 Post subject: Re: Kayak skin option?
PostPosted: Thu Apr 18, 2013 12:24 pm 
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Joined: Fri Sep 25, 2009 10:46 am
Posts: 447
Location: inland Pennsylvania, USA
Hmm. Hard to say. I've done a lot of designing and sewing of outdoor gear over the years and have owned 5 folding kayaks and a non-folding skin on frame (that has an 8 ounce nylon ballistic cloth skin). I think one problem with what you are describing might be stretch. Fabrics good for tents don't necessarily have the same capabilities as those best used for things that will be roughly abraded and submerged, like packs, duffels (and boats).

I've also picked up some military surplus fabrics lately, including some that is allegedly Goretex (in pixellated desert camo). I admit to being a bit leery of some military surplus so the jury is still out on this stuff. One reason some stuff ends up as "surplus" is that the military rejected it from the contractor for one reason or another. I'm not gonna use this fabric I have for anything major until I have tested it out in some smaller items.

Back to kayaks, I get the sense you are overly concerned with hull abrasion. It is not hard to reinforce or patch a rubberized folder's hull with additional rub strips or entire skid plates. It is even easily done in camp (all folder owners should carry a patch kit). Most everybody who uses folders a lot does it regularly. I've seen folders that looked like the bottoms were shingled, they had so many patches.

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 Post subject: Re: Kayak skin option?
PostPosted: Tue Apr 23, 2013 10:56 am 
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Joined: Mon Mar 25, 2013 12:19 pm
Posts: 46
Location: Bridgetown, Nova Scotia
Yeah, I am a bit weary of punctures and abrasions. I am building an sof greenlandish style right now. It's my first one, not expecting much so I am trying to keep the costs low. This build, in my mind, is to prep me for building a Yost kayak. I know the construction methods differ, but it's all learning.
I am trying to find out all the alternatives so that I can use locally sourced supplies.
Over the weekend I found out about nova industrial they are a local dealer in industrial textiles I was directed to them by some local successful boat builders.
I did not know that some of the surplus was rejected stock, it makes sense it just never occurred to me. If the cost is low, I might just try it anyway. If it sinks that's no big deal, I can swim, all I need to do is recover my frame for another attempt lol.


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