I have a small Zodiac inflatable on a lake in Switzerland. As soon as there is more than I light breeze with some waves building up, me and my family risk getting soaking wet! This might be funny on a hot summer day but definitely spoils any trip with kids on cooler days!
As I found no useful spray water protection anywhere, I have made one myself. It works perfectly! Therefore, I would like to share my idea here hoping it helps someone in a similar situation.
I was inspired by the splash water protection of our old Sport Yak. In the past, that banana-shape protection came with those dinghys and protects quite well when rowing out to your boat.
So I tinkered the shape of such a protection with cardboard and taped it on my Zodiac. It was quite tricky to make it fit smoothly and to define the forward leaning position.
Then I brought the finished cardboard shape to a local plastic processing company to cut it from 2mm extruded polycarbonated sheet. This material is quite flexible and tough at the same time. The finished protection can be rolled to a 50cm roll. I hesitated between 2mm and 3mm and decided for the 2mm because of its lightness. However, 3mm might be a better choice for a larger protection. 3mm would also exist UV-resistant, which might be a good choice for a protection that stays outdoor all the time. (Mine is stored in the basement when not used. I wonder how it preserves over the months and years.)
Here's the way I chose to attach the protection quickly but strongly to the Zodiac:
There are 6 fixing parts like this on my Zodiac. A little plastic clamp (as found on jackets and sleeping bags) lets me quickly tighten a cord going through holes I drilled into the sheet. The cord loops around the small pollard and is finally secured it with a knot.
This might be the difficult part on some inflatable types where additional attachment eyes might be required.
Some more pictures of the protection from different sides:
At the front, I tighten down the protection with a belt, which gives a lot more stability in rough conditions:
To prevent the protection from damaging the Zodiac PVC, I put a 2mm U-shaped rubber-profile over its lower edge.
The material plus the cutting work cost me about 200 Swiss Francs. My first experience with it shows that the protection is worth its money.
I'll update this thread later about its long-time use an I plan on adding a video.