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Old 03-24-2013
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Re: Winter Storage Covers

For years I used tarp over a pvc pipe frame on one of my boats. I quickly learned that you are lucky to get a season without ripping in winter storms in the NE. I switched to the silver tarps, which lasted much longer--enough to justify the added cost. It is essential to make sure the tarp is tightly tied so it doesn't flap--and that means establishing multiple tie points where there are no grommets.

Eventually, we migrated to a fitted cover made by a local canvas shop. It uses electrical conduit for the framework and is held together with KoverKlamps, useing the neoprene protective pads at the hard points. The polyester canvas (sunbrella or equivalent) cover shown is in its 16th year, but it is tired, has a number of minor patches, is threadbare is some places and is no longer fully waterproof. I was told to expect 10 years, so I can't complain.

When I replace it I will use the treated cotton canvas, like Fairclough uses. I have this material on a power boat and it conforms (shrinks) to the frame, whereas the polyester canvas is a looser fit and therefore can work in a breeze, resulting in chafe to the point of wearing the canvas and "sanding" the zinc coating on the conduit. The rusty conduit then acts like sandpaper to hasten the wear on the canvas. You need to stay on top of this.
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