Which parts do you need for your inflatable boat?

Which parts do you need for your inflatable boat?

If you’re in the market for new parts for your inflatable boat, it can be not easy to navigate all of the options out there. Are you looking for add-ons, or would you prefer to replace whole pieces of your boat, the easy way or fundamental? Where do you even begin? Start here! This guide will break down the various inflatable boat parts you might need when it comes time to fix or add elements up to your boat.

Gear Bags

You might think it’s silly to carry around gear bags to use while you’re in a small, motorless vessel, but hear us out. Having your gear bag pre-packed and ready-to-go keeps you prepared on those trips where there isn’t room for one more thing. 

The bag for inflatable boat also keeps your other gear from getting dirty or wet when not in use—they’re a great accessory to any inflatable boat! If you don’t have any gear bags at all, then consider keeping a trash bag or two inside of your boat to throw things in while they wait to be packed into their proper place at home.

Floor Slats

Some inflatable boats have floor slats that slide into place to provide stability. If yours doesn’t, it’s a good idea to invest in a few, which will be easy to install and remove when necessary. These must be firmly placed so that users can feel safe about placing their feet on them while rowing or steering. Alternatively, some brands allow users to choose from two or three different flooring material options instead. 

Floor slats allow more flexibility. Floor slats are commonly made out of PVC plastic but may also be made from metal or composite materials. They may also feature soft coating to prevent floors and bottoms from being damaged during storage. Replacement floor slats are typically inexpensive—so if yours become damaged over time, you can easily replace them.

Make sure that any replacement you purchase is compatible with your inflatable boat type; several are available, each with unique design features that differ depending on the brand and style.

Types of floors 

  • rigid floors in RIBs
  • hard floors
  • roll up floors
  • air floors

Roll-up Floor

An alternative to an inflatable floor is a roll-up floor. These tend to be slightly bulkier, but roll-up floors can also be packed away when not in use or stored with other boating accessories. Most roll-up beds have separate compartments that allow you to store additions, such as paddles and life vests, too. Some even come with handles, making them easy to transport from one location to another.

Hard Floors

Some boats feature hard floors. These are especially useful if you’re not planning to deflate your boat often, if ever. A hard floor is made of sturdy, waterproof material and can double as an extra seat when inflated. They can be heavy depending on what they’re made of, so carrying them from place to place isn’t always convenient or easy. Hard floors are more durable, durable, versatile than inflatable ones but also take a longer time to assemble, and they are more expensive. 

 Air Floors

Air floors are generally thinner and lighter than hard or roll-up floors. They also tend to come with handles, making them easy to carry. Air floors can be rolled up tightly and stored with other boating accessories in a bag. If you’re planning on keeping your floor rolled up most of the time, look for one that comes with a carrying case so it will be easier to transport between locations.

Rigid Floor

The floor of a RIB, or rigid-inflatable boat, is unique. Unlike other vessels that feature inflatable beds, RIBs are solid and flexible fabrics. This type of floor works exactly like those in traditional boats and helps overcome the water flow comfortably.

Foot Pumps for dinghies

As an avid boater, I’ve learned that owning a quality foot pump is necessary to keep my inflatable boat in good condition. Not only does it give me peace of mind to know that my boat won’t sink if there are any leaks on my journey, but it also allows me to adjust air pressure more easily. Of course, foot pumps aren’t just used on small boats; they are also great accessories for more extensive water vessels, such as kayaks and canoes. 

Oarlocks 

If you are looking to upgrade your oars, consider purchasing oarlocks. Oarlocks help keep oars in place and prevent them from sliding out during use.

Repair Kit 

Boats are constantly subject to wear and tear. These issues can be minor, such as a rip on an inflatable floor. However, other problems such as broken oars or a punctured inflatable bed may be more serious. The good news is that all of these issues can be repaired easily with a repair kit. These kits contain multiple replacement parts, allowing you to restore functionality to your boat with little effort or time involved.

Replacement Wood Floors

Inflatable boats are made of several fabrics and thus require replacement parts specific to their make and model. Flooring is one such part, as it’s usually made of plywood. When inflatable boat owners want to replace their flooring, they can turn to marine-supply stores and online retailers selling parts for these products. Some retailers may even offer customized floors, which means owners can choose between different species of wood grains.

Storage Bags/Covers

If you have an inflatable raft or dinghy, be sure to get a storage bag or cover to protect it from damage when not in use. Inflatable rafts are subject to punctures if they’re left out in inclement weather and extreme temperatures, so make sure to buy a storage bag with an adequate amount of padding and waterproof material that will keep moisture away from your raft. Learn how to store your inflatable boat. You may also consider buying a bag for outboard motor if you have one.

Miscellaneous inflatable boat accessories

When using an inflatable, a small investment in suitable additions can help extend its life. And considering that an inflatable will generally last longer and work better if cared for properly, spending a little extra money on a more durable product like these supplements is essential. It will be worth every penny down the road when you’re no longer scratching the boat over the floor. 

Seats

Inflatable boat seats are just as important as those on a traditional rowboat. If they’re not designed to fit your body, they can lead to health problems such as back and shoulder aches. The seats are one of those things that we don’t often think about when purchasing an inflatable boat, but they’re essential to ensuring a good time. Seats make, luckily, with a lot of different options suitable for you and your dinghy! 

Valves

Inflatable boats come with a two-piece valve system that holds air. Valves are critical to maintaining good air pressure and keeping water out. You can purchase replacements at any department store or sporting goods store. Before buying them, check with an expert about which valves fit your specific boat model. Or, look online for answers—there are plenty of forums that discuss boating and its accessory needs. 

Drain plugs

A drain plug is a fundamental part of an inflatable boat. The function of a drain plug is to release the water trapped in an inflated rubber boat. That achieved by unscrewing and removing it. There are two main types of drain plugs, which attach at one end and both ends. 

Conclusion

Every Dinghy, RIB, Pontoons and Catamarans has a different set of specific parts to improve performance. Oars, oarlocks, floor slats, replacement wood floors, anchors, transom, seats, and seat gear bags are just some of them available for sale on the market. Another thing to take into account is whether or not you’ll need any unique supplements like consoles or ring and handle additions. Feel free to contact Navigator for additional equipment for your boat! 


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