making my own packable raft

Discussion in 'Watercraft' started by uncoolperson, May 9, 2009.

  1. uncoolperson

    uncoolperson *splash* *splash* *splash*, I need a life vest

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    Looking for material/design/construction ideas.

    don't have the $$ to spend on an alpacka, want something better than the sevylor.
     
  2. PontoonerinOregon

    PontoonerinOregon New Member

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    Could you pimp out and strengthen one of those cheapo walmart rafts or similar types. I have no idea how you would do that, but just a thought I guess.
     
  3. Ed Call

    Ed Call Mumbling Moderator Staff Member

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    ? Buy one in the classifieds ? They move there inexpensively from time to time.
     
  4. tomc

    tomc Member

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    Hell,, try it. The pack raft police won't come get you if you do not get it right. You will probably have a good time playing around with new materials. If you are successful, you will most likely to sell as many as you want to build.
    Good luck, and let us know what you end up with.
    Tom C.
     
  5. uncoolperson

    uncoolperson *splash* *splash* *splash*, I need a life vest

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    the el cheapo one's are way too heavy for me, want something that i can throw in my backpack without having to sacrifice too much beer weight (or kill me).

    making or atleast trying to make my own is always funner (or atleast for a number of other things i have done). Want to see if I can pull this off.


    not planning to sell, and will only share as much info as I can (some people that have given me info might not want it too public).
     
  6. Dustin Bise

    Dustin Bise Active Member

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    i know its been said 1000 times before, but when ur concerned about the wieght of beer just take whiskey instead.
     
  7. Ed Call

    Ed Call Mumbling Moderator Staff Member

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    iagree and if you don't like whiskey you can find something else lighter than a bunch of beer. Best of luck on your project. Keep us posted on the progress. I have a float tube that I've put in a pack and hiked in, it is heavy, but not so heavy that it isn't doable. If you find a way to lighten it a few pounds then I'll have more room and weight for beer too.
     
  8. uncoolperson

    uncoolperson *splash* *splash* *splash*, I need a life vest

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    I'm working on that one to with a homebrewing friend of mine.

    (been getting bored at work lately, when engineers get bored bad things happen)
     
  9. Norm Frechette

    Norm Frechette Googlemeister

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    why not an ultralight float tube vs raft??
     
  10. uncoolperson

    uncoolperson *splash* *splash* *splash*, I need a life vest

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    solo trips I still don't feel comfy in a tube
     
  11. Craig Hardt

    Craig Hardt aka Nagasaurus

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    The nice thing about something like a Curtis raft (no longer in produciton) verus a float tube is that you don't have to carry the significant extra weight of waders and fins (and wading shoes if your fins require them). A good raft keeps things really light since you use your sleeping pad to insulate the floor and then use small lightweight hand paddles instead of oars.
     
  12. Randall Dee

    Randall Dee Castaway

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    I would think that a tube would end up being close in weight to say a Curtis type raft and then you still have to bring waders and fins.
     
  13. Zack Leake

    Zack Leake The user formerly known as "Zekester"

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    I'm working on a freeze dried beer recipe. If I can figure it out, I'll be a millionaire! :beer1:
     
  14. colton rogers

    colton rogers wishin' i was fishin'

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    fins i can see packing them in but waders! your all mambie pambies;) but i will never pack neoprene:D they if i ever go hiking somewhere with yall, if you pack neoprene then ill carry your beer{i don't drink} only if you promise not to screw me over if i get caught with it:D

    i would love to see how this works out in the end........pics:D
     
  15. uncoolperson

    uncoolperson *splash* *splash* *splash*, I need a life vest

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    I'm thinking imagine the weight savings if I found a material like some of the stuff sacks (but actually waterproof under a little pressure) and made me some waders, I'd have to work on the some booties, but that'd be cool.
    really sucks the wife doesn't like sewing clothing, cause I don't know how to do this stuff in general.

    eying this right now for atleast that project
    http://www.rockywoods.com/Fabrics-H...ics/Cuben-Fiber-Fabric-0-08mil-Polyester-film
    (lighter than those ripstop nylon stuff sacks)

    gotta put it through a few controlled test first (air/water permeability at pressure, abrasion, seam sealing, etc...).
     
  16. Mark Walker

    Mark Walker Active Member

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  17. uncoolperson

    uncoolperson *splash* *splash* *splash*, I need a life vest

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    too far in R&D right now to anticipate this actually working.... although with the material I have lying around from post R&D I could probably pull off some hippers.
     
  18. Freestone

    Freestone Not to be confused with freestoneangler

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    I have had a few ideas but I'm not sure if I'd ever risk trying them so proceed at your own risk! First, I'm not sure I'd try to duplicate a Curtis or Alpaca but I've thought of some other floating devices that one could create. I would start with replacement urethane bladders from a float tube or pontoon boat as urethane bladders are very light and strong. I'd try to find ones with the red inflation tube or a Boston valve for easier backpacking inflation. Note that these would be intended to be used only for fishing on small alpine lakes by someone with a death wish...a pfd would not be optional!

    In my first 'design' is not the lightest but less outlandish. I'd use 2 urethane pontoon or long float tube replacement bladders and sew cuban or silnylon covers for them to provide protection. Then, I'd lash my collapsed trekking poles to the tubes with some thin Spectra cord to create a frame of sorts. My sleeping pad would be lashed on top to make a padded seat; if I weren't too worried about weight, I'd use a T-rest chair kit on top. I might play with using my pack as a seat or part of the 'frame' depending on the pack's construction. I'd play with the trekking poles to see if I could have a small gap between the tubes so I could use fins, maybe making the tubes into a V-shape so I didn't overstress the trekking poles. I'd make some knee-high waterproof wading socks from light heat-sealable nylon using my regular hiking socks underneath for insulation. For fins, I can think of 2 light options: There is a company that makes Lexan fins designed to be worn with Tevas. Though not the lightest camp shoes, the Tevas would serve a duel purpose so they might be worth the extra weight. The other option is to use my 'Flips' fins, a very lightweight fin once sold by Orvis. I'd just strap these on over my stocking foot, knee-high wading socks. Then I think I'd say a prayer before pushing off from shore...

    A lighter weight idea could work if you are a tarp camper though I'd first try it at home in warm shallow water! I'd buy a replacement bladder for an Outcast Odyssey, Scadden Escalade, Deschutes, etc which are basically one long, thin urethane tube. I'd blow it up and lay it on top of my tarp bending the tube into a circle. I'd draw the tarp up over the tube gathering it in the center. Gasping the bunched up tarp ends, I'd use some cording to tie it off (like you tie a trash bag together with a twist tie). I'd use a knot that was quickly released as I probably would need to occasionally drain water that seeped in. I might play with the tightness of the tarp to see if I could create a raft-like well in the middle and use my pad for insulation. I'd use hand paddles to propel it or preferably NRS Propulsion gloves. This set-up would be extremely light as the only additional weight would be the bladders and the gloves.

    If one could be content with an even simpler albeit less comfortable idea, I would try the tarp cover idea over a replacement urethane doughnut-shaped bladder if you can find one. I have an even lighter weight idea but it's probably best not to publically encourage anyone to really risk their life!
     
  19. uncoolperson

    uncoolperson *splash* *splash* *splash*, I need a life vest

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    going with a raft to minimize the by myself in the middle of nowhere scary factor
     
  20. uncoolperson

    uncoolperson *splash* *splash* *splash*, I need a life vest

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    anyone have any experience with CO2 inflation systems?
     

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