Spray Deck FAQ

Paddle sports equipment

Please note that the choice of 420 nylon pack cloth saves weight for a race and for portaging, though it comes with some trade-offs. While more lightweight overall, the pack cloth’s urethane under-coating and durable water repellent (DWR) top-coating, which initially help make the fabric water resistant, will wear over time.

A topical DWR application is a reasonable way to help prolong the life of the deck’s water resistance. Some of our customers have had success with applying McNett’s ReviveX (or similar) Durable Waterproofing Spray. There are other DWR water repellent sprays, though you can find out more about McNett’s at https://www.mcnett.com/gearaid/blog/revivex-durable-waterproofing-spray-faq

Snaps tend to fill with dirt or silt then corrode and break. The only way to fix a broken snap is to remove it and install a new one; this requires snaps, rivet gun and sometimes a drill. If you hit a rock they can become deformed, or at best it scrapes off the stainless steel coating and makes them prone to rust. If they are not steel, they are likely brass which is softer and even more prone to damage. Another important reason is snaps are very hard on the knuckles while doing a J stroke.

Velcro is simply not strong enough to withstand the force of water if the boat was breached. If your fully loaded boat is upside down and you failed to lash down your gear, the pressure of your gear and trapped water wants to push the deck off your boat. This becomes a safety concern during a canoe over canoe rescue. Even industrial strength Velcro will not hold up to the forces applied. Over time Velcro looses its holding power as it picks up debris and degrades with extended UV exposure. Canoe hulls are made from a variety of different materials, many of which the Velcro will not stick to over the long haul. As with snaps they are hard to repair in the field. Velcro is also very noisy.

Both Snaps and Velcro do not allow the deck to adjust to different load heights. 16-17 feet of deck fabric has significant expansion and contraction going from a crisp morning chill to the hot afternoon sun. If the load is above the gunwale at the beginning of your trip your deck will not reach the snaps or Velcro. Elastic or expandable cargo sections will collect water when your load is reduced. It is important to always keep the deck tight so it sheds water regardless of load height.

Our lash system is easy to install and allows adjustment of load height while keeping the deck drawn tight to eliminate pooling. They will not corrode or jam like conventional snaps. They are low profile to eliminate snagging on branches, rocks and knuckles. Attached to the inside your boat, they allow the use of a single pull lashing cord to draw the deck tight. When the deck is removed your hull retains a nice, clean look. You can run one length down each side of the boat, or multiple lengths and roll back the bow and/or stern areas while keeping what remains taut over your gear. This type of system used with our optional two and three-piece decks give you the ultimate in versatility.

Yes, they are small holes spaced every 10 and 20 inches, approximately 5 inches below the gunwale line but well above the water line. They do not affect the integrity of the hull. Once you glue the loop patch to the interior the hole is sealed and only a small loop is left on the exterior of the hull. This small loop blends into the lines of your boat and can barely been seen. Those that do see it usually want to ask about your latest adventure.

Our standard deck is made from 12-oz. PVC coated polyester with a built-in mildew and bacteria. inhibitor. The Lighter fabric version is made with red or black Military Spec 420 pack cloth with a ¾ - 1-oz. Urethane coating with UV inhibitor. Both Decks use YKK zippers and a combination of polyester and nylon webbing and pack cloth accents. All buckles are made of a polymer nylon that will not absorb water, so they keep their size, shape and strength when wet.

We work with a number of outfitters who have been using our decks for over 10 years. With regular use and clean dry storage your spray deck should last you a life time.

Our Traditional PVC deck will not expand or contract with temperature or moisture fluctuations. The Lightweight version of the deck, made of 420 Pack cloth will expand and contract a little with temperature & moisture fluctuations. Due to the North Water attachment system this will not affect the fit or performance of your spray deck.

Rolled up dimensions of a standard 16 – 17 foot Spray Deck is 10” in diameter by 16”. The weight is 3-3.5kg, or 6-9 pounds. Our lightweight model is 20% less volume and 1/2 the weight.

The deck is very easy to remove. Simply by undoing one knot and pulling the Para-Line the whole deck will be off in just a few seconds. You can remove portion of the deck by unlacing that part of the Para-Line if you have a two or three-piece deck. To put the deck on you simply run the Para-Line through the loops on the hull and webbing loops attached to the deck.

Seats, thwarts and gunwale widths have a habit of shifting depending on the owners and manufacturers. Often boats will have adjustable seats, so by supplying us with a completed measurement form we guarantee your deck will fit. It also provides us with the correct information to get your deck to you without delay.

We ask that you choose a single position for both the bow and stern seat that will best accommodate how your boat will be loaded when it is been used.

The only part that we have seen fail is the occasional zipper after prolonged use. To help prevent zipper wear we recommend that you keep the teeth free of dirt. The deck fabric will have minimal wear even with prolonged use. If you do put a hole, rip or cut in the vinyl it can be patched with any vinyl glue. The lightweight decks made from Pack Cloth can be easily fixed with needle and thread or industrial sewing machine.

Out standard lead-time after receiving the completed measurement form is 3 - 4 weeks. For a surcharge of $150.00 we can prioritize your order and make sure you have it when you need it.

Yes. Let us know what you would like to add and we will quote you a price. Please clean and dry the deck prior to shipping.

When ordering your spray deck please specify the hull material of your boat. If you are not sure, contact the manufacture and we will make sure the correct installation kit is included with your Spray Deck

ABS or Royalex – most of these boats use a vinyl interior skin and will use our standard installation kit. If the interior skin is polyethylene you will need to use our special nylon installation loops attached by rivets.

Fibreglass, Kevlar – will use our Standard installation kit.

Polyethylene – you need to rivet our special nylon installation loops into your boat.

Aluminium – you need to rivet our special nylon installation loops into your boat.

Thermal formed Plastic – you need to rivet our special nylon installation loops into your Esquif’s Twin Tex – you need to rivet our special nylon installation loops into your boat, or use an adhesive from the manufacture.

Webbing Ladder lock attachment system

For all hull materials you can rivet our special nylon webbing loops or a continuous length of 1” webbing around the perimeter of the boat 5.5” below the underside of the. Use a 3/16” diameter all aluminium rivet with 3/8” diameter back-up washers (one for outside, one inside). The length of the rivet will be determined “grip range” required. This is determined by adding the thickness of the hull plus the thickness of two washers and the webbing loop. Hand rivet tools can be purchased at any hardware store for under $20.00.

The holes will be 5.5” below the underside of the gunnel, this is well above the water line, they are covered with vinyl patches that keep the water from coming through the holes. The nylon cordage will absorb some water. If it is a concern a little seam sealer over the threads on the back of the patches will completely seal the hull.

The deck is designed to shed water and wind. It is not a dry bag to put your canoe in to keep your gear dry. We start out with vinyl that is waterproof then by sewing components to it we stitch through the vinyl. These needle holes are very small and allow very little water inside. The cockpit and cargo hatch zipper protectors are urethane coated water resistant pack cloth.

No, the bottom of the cockpit is sewn directly onto the vinyl spray deck, the top fits around your chest and is synched up using shock cord. It is important be able to change from sitting to kneeling positions, lay back and float. At the same time you need to be able to exit the boat without releasing or pulling a release tab as in conventional kayak spray skirt. The cockpit’s skirt is constructed with long directional pockets on either side to firmly hold a PVC tube that keeps the skirt arched to deflect water. The skirt uses a tear-away 2 inch Velcro strips down the center for quick access in and out.

If you are portage using a center portage yolk you will have to undo the bow or stern and roll back the spray deck to expose the yolk. With a two or three piece deck you roll back a shorter portion. Our most popular additional feature is the Portage Cargo hatch. Appropriately named, it is intended to roll away to allow portaging without removing any of the deck. If two people are portaging the boat , one at the bow, one at the stern there is no need to remove the spray deck.

You do have to take your deck of each time you transport it unless your boat has a zippered cockpit cover for each opening and they are closed, and your boat is secured tightly to your rack. Although the webbing rub strip will provide protection between the roof rack and gunnels we recommend you use additional padding for long distances and/or rough roads. Check periodically to make sure there is no excessive wear on the deck.

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