Inflatable kayak – kayak types, model comparison

Fans of active rest, participating in long hikes during water tourism, will surely appreciate the inflatable canoe. It is light, quickly assembled and disassembled, and has a rather simple construction. It takes only 15-20 minutes for experienced raiders to assemble and disassemble it. A question that interests many fans of the alloy, – Which inflatable kayak is better?

  • Kayak Types
  • Inflatable Kayaks
  • Browse popular models

Kayak Types

Inflatable Kayak
Kayak – it is a light, narrow boat with sharp lines. The boat is controlled by a two-bladed paddle, which distinguishes the canoe from other rowing vessels. There are single, double and triple boats, where rowers are placed one after the other in the direction of travel. Triple kayaks are rare, more often sports and tourist boats, single or double.

Distinctive features of these boats are: tightness of the hull from the ingress of water through the seats, design features oars (with different angles of rotation of the blades or with the same), equipped with air tanks on the bow or stern to create unsinkable.

All boats of this type are divided into two large groups: collapsible and non-collapsible. The first type is usually single, made of plastic. Non-separable models are used for passing difficult rapids and waterfalls, they are not intended for long water trips. Other name of the ship – kayak.

Depending on the manufacturing technology, collapsible kayaks are divided into the following types:

  • Multi-section plastic vessels;
  • Frame, consisting of a wooden or metal frame, covered with skin.
  • Inflatable
  • Frame-inflatable, similar in design with a frame, but with inflatable cylinders, creating a reserve unsinkable.

Collapsible kayaks are used in multi-day trips because they are durable and easy to carry. The most common inflatable and frame inflatable boats.

Inflatable Kayaks

The advantages of inflatable kayaks in contrast to other species are:

  1. Lightweight, two to three times less than frame.
  2. Large load capacity
  3. The air creates a reserve of unsinkability, and at the same time stability, especially in rough water and with strong thresholds.
  4. Small sediment, creating convenience when rafting in shallow water.
  5. Compact assembled size for easy boat transport.
  6. High «vitality»due to the fact that if the hull of the rocks is damaged, the boat will not sink to the bottom, since the remaining intact sectors with air will keep it afloat. And if it hits the bottom, the water will not rise above the waterline.

At the same time, there are some drawbacks: these are difficulties in managing in strong winds, the small capacity of most models of inflatable kayaks. In addition, the speed of this type of ships is less than the frame of an average of 1-2 km / h.

Inflatable tanks under the outer shell of this type of watercraft can be either removable (two-layer inflatable kayaks) or solid (single-layer) with a protective PVC surface. The market is more common monolithic version, more convenient during assembly. It is necessary to pull out the cylinders from the double-layered boats in order to inflate, then insert again. In this case, periodically you need to shake out sand that has fallen between the cylinders and the shell.

Browse popular models

Among lovers of rafting there is a prevailing opinion about popular domestic models of inflatable kayaks.

  1. «Swallow»

The kayak is heavy for transportation by hand, since it is made of rubber: the two-seater model weighs almost 20kg. The material of the boat after blowing off requires special care, which can create some inconvenience. The ship develops good speed, is an excellent option for calm water trips. Among the drawbacks, there is a small capacity, a strong attachment of the skirt, which can prevent you from jumping out of the boat when killing. Average user rating – 8 points out of 10.

  1. «Pike»

Kayak Pike
Kayak – it is a light, narrow boat with sharp lines. The boat is controlled by a two-bladed paddle, which distinguishes the canoe from other rowing vessels. There are single, double and triple boats, where rowers are placed one after the other in the direction of travel. Triple kayaks are rare, more often sports and tourist boats, single or double.

Distinctive features of these boats are: tightness of the hull from the ingress of water through the seats, design features oars (with different angles of rotation of the blades or with the same), equipped with air tanks on the bow or stern to create unsinkable.

All boats of this type are divided into two large groups: collapsible and non-collapsible. The first type is usually single, made of plastic. Non-separable models are used for passing difficult rapids and waterfalls, they are not intended for long water trips. Other name of the ship – kayak.

Depending on the manufacturing technology, collapsible kayaks are divided into the following types:

  • Multi-section plastic vessels;
  • Frame, consisting of a wooden or metal frame, covered with skin.
  • Inflatable
  • Frame-inflatable, similar in design with a frame, but with inflatable cylinders, creating a reserve unsinkable.

Collapsible kayaks are used in multi-day trips because they are durable and easy to carry. The most common inflatable and frame inflatable boats.

Inflatable Kayaks

The advantages of inflatable kayaks in contrast to other species are:

  1. Lightweight, two to three times less than frame.
  2. Large load capacity
  3. The air creates a reserve of unsinkability, and at the same time stability, especially in rough water and with strong thresholds.
  4. Small sediment, creating convenience when rafting in shallow water.
  5. Compact assembled size for easy boat transport.
  6. High «vitality»due to the fact that if the hull of the rocks is damaged, the boat will not sink to the bottom, since the remaining intact sectors with air will keep it afloat. And if it hits the bottom, the water will not rise above the waterline.

At the same time, there are some drawbacks: these are difficulties in managing in strong winds, the small capacity of most models of inflatable kayaks. In addition, the speed of this type of ships is less than the frame of an average of 1-2 km / h.

Inflatable tanks under the outer shell of this type of watercraft can be either removable (two-layer inflatable kayaks) or solid (single-layer) with a protective PVC surface. The market is more common monolithic version, more convenient during assembly. It is necessary to pull out the cylinders from the double-layered boats in order to inflate, then insert again. In this case, periodically you need to shake out sand that has fallen between the cylinders and the shell.

Browse popular models

Among lovers of rafting there is a prevailing opinion about popular domestic models of inflatable kayaks.

  1. «Swallow»

The kayak is heavy for transportation by hand, since it is made of rubber: the two-seater model weighs almost 20kg. The material of the boat after blowing off requires special care, which can create some inconvenience. The ship develops good speed, is an excellent option for calm water trips. Among the drawbacks, there is a small capacity, a strong attachment of the skirt, which can prevent you from jumping out of the boat when killing. Average user rating – 8 points out of 10.

  1. «Pike»

Kayak Pike
Light inflatable kayak with a single-layer bottom. To make the inner surface of the bottom more comfortable, many cover it with a foam mat or an inflatable mattress. Very easy to manage, inexpensive. It can be attached to the steering. Other advantages are good stability, unsinkability, as well as speed of assembly and disassembly. Suitable for rocky shallow rivers, but manageability on the lakes leaves much to be desired.

  1. «Viking»

There are single and double inflatable kayaks «Viking». The boat keeps heading well on the water due to the frame structure consisting of a cross strut and a keel pipe stretched along the ship’s axis from stern to bow. Two balloon cushions are divided in the middle for greater safety. It is also characterized by low windage, good stability and maneuverability, comfortable for rafting two people with a load. The boat is adapted for a long hike on the rivers to the fourth category of complexity and lakes.

Kayak Viking

  • «Khatanga»

The boat is intended for rafting both on calm rivers and lakes, and on stormy, rapids. The body is made of durable, mono balloon PVC, so it is not afraid of the rocky bottom. The warmed bottom consists of three cylinders, so you can swim in a kayak from the beginning of the flood until the end of the season. The vessel can be used with both closed and open deck. Develops high speed, maintaining stability on the water. The boat is conveniently completed inside the backpack, creating comfort during transportation. The feedback on this vessel is positive, but it is often suggested that it is more difficult to manage it alone than together.

  1. «Waterfly»

Kayak belongs to the category of tourist vessels, so its purpose – rafting on calm rivers and simple rapids. Wherein «Waterfly» well controlled and in rough water, in the absence of sharp stones. Cargo capacity is designed either for a two-day rafting for two, or for a week-long water trip alone, but with a supply of provisions. Therefore, the boat can not be overloaded.  With the fast movement of the vessel can start «to drive» to the sides. The kayak is made of durable material. A feature of this boat is the presence of self-draining (holes in the bottom) of water that got into the kayak when it rains or when overwhelming with the wave.

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