Packrafting FAQs

Frequently Asked Questions About Packrafting.

Packrafting is not one set thing, it can can take many forms.

It’s all about having that potential to travel by water stored away just waiting to be utilised. A packraft is a tool.

Here are some examples of how you can enjoy your packraft:

Hiking and paddling- This is packrafting in it’s truest form. Hike until you come across some water, jump into your packraft and go. Biking and paddling AKA Bikerafting-Bike until you get to some water, strap the bike onto the front of the boat and off you go.

Skiing and paddling-You get the idea. Particularly good for accessing ski spots that might otherwise be impossible to get to

Driving and paddling Keep your packraft in your car boot and whenever you come across somewhere you fancy a paddle just inflate it and off you go. It

certainly beats messing around putting a kayak on the roof!

Motorbiking and paddling Want to travel by motorbike to your paddling location, no problem. Alpine lake fishing-Packrafts are great for this because how else would you get a boat to some of these remote lakes

Extended adventures and Expeditions For the more adventurous among us, make a packraft part of your planned adventure Cross a mountain range. why not cross an entire country. The possibilities are literally endless with a packraft.

Inflation Bags are a Lightweight Alternative to Pumps​

To explain how inflation bags work, imagine holding a bin liner/ large bag open towards the wind and catching all the air that blows inside.

You simply catch the air, twist the top of the bag shut, and squeeze the air out of a valve at the bottom of your inflation bag and into your packraft.

As you get towards full inflation, you’ll need to remove the inflation bag and finish off inflating by mouth as hard as you can.

When you enter the water the coldness of the water will cool down the air in the tubes and it will sightly decrease in volume. No problem, just top up by mouth. again to achieve the right pressure.

It takes between 8-10 bags to fill the packraft, you’ll be ready to go in minutes!

 

Packrafts are all about compromise. Being able to have a boat that is light enough and small enough to carry in your rucksack all day means that something in the design has got to allow for this. That something is the material it’s made of

Packrats are made from lightweight material and this means they are prone to being punctured.

Don’t take this the wrong way. Our material is tough and durable, but at the end of the day, it’s still an inflatable.

This is true throughout the industry and spending £800 on a top brand name packraft will not change this fact.

That said, packrafts tend to bounce off things rather than puncture instantly. This is because the air inside is at a pretty low pressure. This means that the fabric is able to give, absorbing a lot of impacts, rather than simply falling

Should a puncture happen, it’s unlikely that you’ll sink immediately.

Remember trying to get the air out of your inflatable lilo when you were a kid at the beach? It would take quite some time to get all that air to pass through the small valve

The same is true with packrafts, unless you have a huge rupture in your tubes, it’s going to take some time for all that air to escape. And usually you’ll have enough time to get safely to shore. However, you should always be prepared for the possibility that you may have to swim.

Should you need to repair a puncture or a leak, then it is not big a problem. Repairs should be be feared.

Temporary Field Repairs

if you are out and about and find yourself needing a quick instant fix, DuPont’s Tyvek Tape is perfect for the job.

You can purchase it from a load of places in the UK as it’s commonly used in the building trade.

It is extremely sticky and you will want to remove it as soon as you get home funless you plan on leaving it as a permanent patch) and carry out the following steps. Long Term Repairs at Home

Ensure the area around the puncture is clean and dry Cut some of our heat seatable fabric large enough to cover your puncture with about a tcm everlap around the edges Make sure your new patch has nice curved commers so it doesn’t snag en anything Place the patch over the puncture, place some baking super over the patch and heat seal the patch to the tube with your seating iron.

Frequently Asked Questions About Building Your Own IRON RAFT.

When you take into account the volume of air in the tubes and the volume of air in the cockpit area of the boat-it would take a huge load to sink one of our DIY Packrafts.

In reality it doesn’t work like this and you’d have some serious handling problems before you got to that stage.

IRON RAFT DIY Packrafts are designed to more or less float on top of the water.

This means the more weight you load into/onto it, the worse your boat will handle and it will become increasingly difficult to paddle..

For an agile boat we recommend limiting your luggage to 25kg

We recommend you never exceed loading you boat with more than 150KG in total.

Although our IRON RAFT DIY Packrafts vary in size the difference in buoyancy is minimal between the models and the figures above apply to all our Packraft Kits.

A heat sealing iron and some common household items are all that’s needed to build your own homemade packraft

The heat sealing iron you’ll need for your homemade packraft can be purchased in the UK relatively cheaply.

To make our prototypes we began using a Clover Mini Iron 11, however we found the iron struggled to maintain the required temperature and we would not recommend this model for making a self-build packraft (at least in the UK as it is only 25W here

We have since used both the Jamara Pro Star iron and the Erolux Digital iron. We’ve had far more consistent results heat sealing with both of them, although ir should be mentioned they are far larger and slightly inconvenient to work on the smaller seans and tight areas. This is where this Smaller Electrictron comes in it maintains its temperature well, making it a brilliant iron for the seam strips and the tight areas

Whatever heat sealing iron you use, ensure it can reach 220 degrees and can continuously operate around this temperature as this is the approximate temperature required to activate our TPU fabrics

Size is also an important aspect and the mon head must be small enough to work on small team lines. For this reason, a household iron is not suitable.

The only other tools you’ll need to make your homemade packraft are a pair of scissors, Some sticky tape and a curved surface such as best for draping the fabne over for the tube seams.

It is certainly one of the east, If not, the easiest way to make a packraft at home.

All our fabrics have a technical coating called thermoplastic polyurethane(TPU).

This coding makes it passible to essentially stick the fabric togather without having to mess around the glue.

The TPL coating can be activated when heated with hot air or an iron . if you hadn’t guessed already from our name we used an iron.

We do not recommend using a hot air tool as both heat and pressure are required to bond the TPU coatings together. Unless you have a means to apply pressure at the same time as the hot air, an iron is the easier option.

Not only is heat sealing a simple method for the homemade packraft builder, i it is an extremely strong way seal the seams of your packraft.

Compare Our Packraft Fabric To The Top Brand Name Packraft Manufacturers And See For Yourself.

We sell: TPU Coated 210D Nylon. (one side thick TPU, one side extremely thin PU)

The TPU coating is suitably thick and the PU coating extremely thin, this helps the fabric remain flexible. This flexibility helps avoid punctures as the fabric is able to give and warp around any object that comes in to contact, rather than an inflexible fabric which would be more likely to fail.

Before stocking our packraft fabric we personally test the material to ensure it is suitable for making an IRON RAFT homemade packraft.

Due to the high temperatures of heat sealing fabric together, some fabrics on the market of a similar specification are not suitable for heat sealing. You will simply melt the fabric rather than seal it together

All our packrafts are made with our own fabric that we stock here in the UK. They are all made from a form of nylon that has a significantly higher metcing p and we can assure you that they heat seal correctly and do not melt when ironed at the advised temperature.

Frequently Asked Questions About IRON RAFT Packrafts.

IRON RAFT Self-Build Kits come in Small (S), Medium (M) and Large (L).

All Packrafts are approximately 35cm at the widest inside point and approximately 20cm at the narrowest inside point.

Approximate Internal lengths:

  • Small: 110cm
  • Medium: 120cm
  • Large: 130cm

For optimum performance your packraft should have a snug fit. For comfort you may want a little extra space.

To gauge what size best suits your needs, sit up square against a wall with your legs out straight. Measure from the wall to the bottom of your feet

This measurement will give you a rough idea of what sue you will want but soll vary depending on the use of your buoyancy aid, shoes, boots, use of a seat backrest etc.

When you take into account the volume of air in the tubes and the volume of air in the cockpit area of the boat- it would take a huge load to sink one of our DIY Packrafts.

In reality it doesn’t work like this and you’d have some serious handling problems before you got to that stage.

IRON RAFT DIY Packrafts are designed to more or less float on top of the water.

This means the more weight you load into/onto it, the worse your boat will handle and it will become increasingly difficult to paddle.

For an agile boat we recommend limiting your luggage to 25kg.

We recommend you never exceed loading you boat with more than 150KG in total. (You+luggage)

Although our IRON RAFT DIY Packrafts vary in size the difference in buoyancy is minimal between the models and the figures above apply to all our Packraft Kits.

Please note that the below weights are approximates.

Approximate weights: Small: 1800g | Medium: 1900g | Large: 2000g

The weight will change depending on if you add a TIZIP, luggage loops etc. The approximate weights above are for a fully built fron Raft without any of these additional features.

if you have any more questions, don’t hesitate to contact us!

We ship Globally. All prices are shown in GBP and exclusive of postage. Orders placed from outside of the UK may incur additional taxes Shipping to UKE Europe: From [4.99, the complete price is shown when you enter your Basket.

Rest of the World-please email for quotation. All orders are covered during shipping,

Your items will dispatch between 1-3 days from your purchase, unless you are contacted otherwise

Delivery of our Iron Raft kits to UK Mainland despatched with a 4hr courier

Please note that you will not receive tracking details, but if you have any questions on your order don’t hesitate to get in touch https://iron-raft.co.uk/