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PostPosted: Mon Jun 04, 2018 12:26 pm 
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Joined: Wed May 11, 2011 10:28 am
Posts: 57
Hi dougg

In recent years there has been a slightly puzzling divergence in the fabric that Gumotex use in the manufacture of the US Innovas compared to their European boats. So, the Innova Swing in the article that you linked to was made from Gumotex's worst material Lite Pack. European Swings were never made from this, instead having Light Nitrilon (LN) from launch. 2017 (I think) saw the US range ditch Lite Pack entirely but, it seems, replacing it with LN (essentially Lite Pack with a rubber coating on the outside). In contrast, European models from 2018 onwards are full fat Nitrilon. According to the Boat People, LN is 500 denier compared to full Nitrilon's 1,200 with a tensile strength of 1100/900 N compared to 3000/3000 N. I don't know why they've dropped LN in Europe, but I'm guessing it's because it turned out to be not all that great. What I do know is that full Nitrilon is pretty impressively bombproof. Like most other owners of full-Nitrilon Gumotex/Innova boats, I've paddled mine into rocks and other sharp stuff and never punctured. This does add weight, of course, so the 12kg boat of the review is now 14.3kg. However (and I'm assuming you're in the US) if it were me, I would still order a Euro spec boat from somewhere like Boat Park in the Czech Republic if you decide to go with Innova/Gumotex. The Nitrilon tubes are the air-holding chambers. There's no bladder inside.

Almost all of the Advanced Elements boats (including the Advanced Frame) use the 'inner tube' construction method, meaning a tough (but I think not waterproof) outer and a PVC inner. The success and failure of this method rests on the quality of the inner bladders. Cheap bladders can fail - and often at the seams, making them near-impossible to repair. I don't know anything about AE boats, so can't tell you whether they are prone to this at all but it might be worth investigating

Sorry, doesn't really help with your choosing but just thought it might be useful-ish information

Barum Albatros
Gumotex Safari
Gumotex Sunny
Gumotex Scout

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