What AQUASTAR boat are made of and why do they have black inserts ?

Inflatable PVC boats are very popular among tourists, fishermen, hunters and all those who is fond of outdoor activities.

What is PVC? What are the features and special characteristics of PVC material? What are the requirements to PVC material used for inflatable boats production?

Let’s start with the fact that PVC is a synthetic material made of chlorine (57%) and carbon, derived from oil/gas (43%). PVC is a white powder, tasteless and odorless, with a number of useful properties. It is not soluble in water, alcohol, gasoline, not exposed to acids, alkalis, salts, solutions of mineral oils. It is good dielectric, does not burn in the air, can withstand low temperatures down to -15 ° C.

PVC is very thin by itself and its strength may be compared only to a plastic bag from the store. So, the question is how to make inflatable boats from such material? To make ordinary PVC strong, durable and able to withstand dynamic loads the reinforcement process takes place. PVC layers are put on both sides of a special rigid grid.

Special rigid mesh (cord) made of intertwined polymer filaments is put between the PVC layers. Special highly adhesive substances connect together the cord and PVC at the molecular level and turn them into single unit.

Thus, the obtained material is tear-proof, withstands ruptures and cuts, has perfect hermetic abilities, mechanical abrasion resistance, elasticity and resistance to aggressive environment.

Material density

The more layers of PVC are applied to the reinforcing mesh the thicker and stronger becomes the fabric itself. Material density means the quantity of PVC fabric in one square meter. And it is the most important characteristic for a boat.

AQUASTAR PVC boats are manufactured by welding so the density of material is very important for welding equipment. In case the density is less than 800 g/m2 the welding machine just burns it out. To avoid such problems, all the fabrics is thoroughly weighed and checked before use.

Material strength

The second very important aspect of boats production is the strength of used materials. The strength depends upon the size and thickness of reinforced fibers and width of reinforced cells. We have checked a lot of suppliers and found out that each of them has their strong and weak points. European manufacturers produce boat fabrics with thick reinforced fibers but with wide reinforced cells. Other manufacturers’ material has thin reinforced fibers  but they are arranged more densely.

Material flexibility

Flexibility depends upon the amount of plasticizers added to the material. It is important primarily for rowing boats that subjected to constant bending. For motor boats the strength of the material is more important than its flexibility. That is why for big motor boats we use materials with higher density.

About black inserts

The “cheekbones”, conus and bottom are the most damage-risky parts of the boat and they need an additional protection.

In 2009 the Korean vendors began to produce fabric with thicker reinforced fibers for us. The fabric was of green color as 98% of our boats were green. It was good and we did not want to change it. But with the lapse of time we have noticed that the color of each new roll of fabric is a bit different from the previous one. The boats with different shades of green color looked awful. And there came the idea to make those inserts black, without additional plasticizers. Black inserts are produced from 1080 grams/m2 density fabric. They make the most damage-risky parts of the boat more stronger and more plastic.

This means that the boat will be protected and will serve you for a long time!