Structural damage (polyethylene, thermoform, Royalex®)
- What is commonly referred to as plastic in small boat construction is most likely rotomolded polyethylene, which is very unlikely to break, assuming average use and proper storage. If your polyethylene boat has been in an accident or is otherwise unfit for paddling – please get in touch to discuss your options.
- High quality thermoform kayaks are made from several layers of ABS sheeting and a UV resistant top layer, fused together under high pressure and heat. In the very rare worst case scenario, involving a considerable drop of an empty boat on land and an edge or corner in the impact zone, a thermoform boat can be damaged, with a resulting crack going through the material. In that case, the damage needs to be repaired before the boat can be paddled again.
- Royalex®, a vinyl and ABS sandwich construction with a foam core, has been the magic material that has made canoes reasonably light weight but extremely durable. (Royalex® was discontinued in 2014, and T-Formex™ is said to be its most direct successor.) The only structural damage we have seen (and repaired) on a Royalex® canoe was a nose, nearly entirely broken off, sustained on a very unfortunate drop while on a portage.