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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've had bad luck with the PVC patch kits they sell at boat stores. I'm just wondering what works best for you all. What glue, what solvent, and what patch material? Where do you get the patch material? AquaSeal has been recommended to me, any of you have good success using the stuff on inflatables?

Thanks
 

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I've had very good results from super glue if it's a small hole. We had to reattach our lifting ring last year and used a good quality 2 part epoxy glue and it's holding well, and the dink is on the davits every single night.
I have never had any success with contact adhesives, period.
But the real trick is in the preparation. It must be clean, sanded and roughed up so that the glue has something to bind to. I think even the oils in your fingers could interfere with the adhesion of the glue, so very, very clean, may not be an understatement.
 

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I've had bad luck with the PVC patch kits they sell at boat stores. I'm just wondering what works best for you all. What glue, what solvent, and what patch material? Where do you get the patch material? AquaSeal has been recommended to me, any of you have good success using the stuff on inflatables?

Thanks
Patching a dink can be a big pain in the posterior area, after some reseach online I came up with this to work with.
My problem was that the complete floor let loose on the dinghy, so I went online and looked around to see what was available and how to do the repair.
The dinghy is PVC that I have, I used a glue which is 1 part called HH-66 (you can find it online), simple to use also.
clean the area with acetone and a scrubbie, the tape off the area, apply 2 to 3 coats of glue letting each dry to tacky, make sure to do both sides, then press together.
The HH-66 glue is cheap and it works wonders if you clean and prep the area first. I personally will use it before I use a 2 part glue.
have great luck on your repair!!!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Figured I'd cap this thread off with what I finally did to fix my dink.

I cut a patch from a bicycle inner tube, cleaned everything thoroughly with acetone, then liberally applied Aquaseal to the patch and pressed it on. Amazing stuff that Aquaseal! Holding air great and that patch looks to be bulletproof. I now keep the aquaseal, acetone and the rest of the inner tube on the boat for future repairs.
 

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Nobody has mentioned roughing the area to be bonded (contact area). Take a bit of 80 grit sandpaper, and roughen both the patch area and the patch, then clean etc. Be careful about prep and follow the directions (wait for the glue to get tacky etc).
 

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Nobody has mentioned roughing the area to be bonded (contact area). Take a bit of 80 grit sandpaper, and roughen both the patch area and the patch, then clean etc. Be careful about prep and follow the directions (wait for the glue to get tacky etc).
If you do this, make sure to clean the surface both before and after. If the surface is contaminated before you sand, you'll just embed the contamination in the material by sanding.
 

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Courtney the Dancer
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I just use 3M 5200, no patch unless it's a long tear. Clean, rough it up, and apply a liberal coat of 5200. Only downside is that you have to wait about 24 hours before inflating. By the way, this is the ONLY thing I use 5200 for on the boat. Works on PVC and Hypalon.
 

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Aquaseal is good stuff, as is Goop (both similar urethane glues) but any PVC patch kit should make a good strong fusion weld. Even the cheap kits that are sold for PVC pool repairs, all same stuff.

I'll throw in with the choir and question the surface prep, because any contamination could be a problem. Best to clean the area with isopropyl alcohol and paper towels, work your way out and treat it like you were doing surgery on yourself--you want it sterile and clean. Then rough it up, abrade with CLEAN fresh sandpaper, and not the cheap stuff that leaves grit behind. Something good like 3M Tri-M-Ite. Follow by cleaning again, to remove any dust or debris.

Then apply the solvent and patch (which is also fresh and clean one hopes) and clamp or weight until it has cured. It should be fused into the PVC and it will stay that way. If it isn't, maybe the inflatable isn't really PVC, or maybe it has another problem, like contamination causing it to fail.
 

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West Marine 310RIB, have a leak i can not find, no bubbles, have no idea where the air is going??? I patch the leak but now you can hear it inside as it leaks down. No sign as to where the air is going.
 

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West Marine 310RIB, have a leak i can not find, no bubbles, have no idea where the air is going??? I patch the leak but now you can hear it inside as it leaks down. No sign as to where the air is going.
The official diagnostic test is to mix up a solution of very thick liquid soap an water and paint on the boat and look for bubbles.
 

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I just use 3M 5200, no patch unless it's a long tear. Clean, rough it up, and apply a liberal coat of 5200. Only downside is that you have to wait about 24 hours before inflating. By the way, this is the ONLY thing I use 5200 for on the boat. Works on PVC and Hypalon.
This works great for PVC dinks that don't incorporate fabric. The extreme stretch tends to cause patches to fail but 5200 holds well.
 

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salttrip-
"have a leak i can not find, ...I patch the leak "

If you couldn't find the leak, you sure didn't patch it.

First you find it, then you patch it. Either you hold it under water and look for where the bubbles come out, or you coat it with soapy water and watch for where the bubbles blow. Ain't rocket science, just careful observation to find out where the leak is.
 

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I just use 3M 5200, no patch unless it's a long tear. Clean, rough it up, and apply a liberal coat of 5200. Only downside is that you have to wait about 24 hours before inflating. By the way, this is the ONLY thing I use 5200 for on the boat. Works on PVC and Hypalon.
Agreed. We have a 12 year old hypalon RIB and use 5200 for the occasional fix as well as for attaching the running light mount. The quick cure 5200 eliminates some of the wait and associated runs... Tried some of the expensive two part glues in the past for attaching our number plates, but the 5200 works just as well and is quite a bit cheaper.
 

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For the guy with the 310RIB

These have a partition separating the tube sections. A leak in the partition will only go from one tube to another. There is a leak in the outside some where.

Some small holes are hard to find. Inflate the raft.
Mix up a couple of big plastic bottles of 50% liquid soap (dish or laundry) and water. Try and not get a lot of foam on the raft. You just want clear soap and water, so you'll be able to see the bubbles. Have some one pick up the side of the raft and fill the air fill with soap. If you see bubbles it needs to be cleaned or replaced. Often just washing them out solves the problem or some silicone grease (get a small tube at pool or hardware stores). Do the same for the other fills. You can get new guts for about $30 each at West Marine if you can't get it to stop.

Flip the boat over Look specifically for wear or scrape marks to test. If no bubbles, pour and wipe this around the whole inflated part of the bottom. Look for bubbles flowing from a spot. There will be a telltale trail. Mark with a magic marker if you see any. If none flip it over and do the top sides.

If you find none it may be leaking inside underneath the tube. Stand the raft on its side and fill the slot between the tube and the bottom with soap. Try not to get a lot of foam. If you see a stream of bubbles there is your hole. After you locate it, You may have to deflate it a little to see where it is. Do the same for the other side and the front. If you find a leak here you may be able to patch it. Usually this type of hole is around the front from a sharp anchor. if you have an anchor locker it maybe in there.

Good luck
 
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