PVC Versus Hypalon
Although Iím not a Rib Lover, because Iím a traditional dinghy lover, that likes to feel the bouncing tubes and sound against water, wanted to comment this : Know these two materials pretty well for quite some years of constant use. According to my nautical experience you should sell your PVC inflatable boat every 5 years and buy a new one to avoid costly minor maintenance hand labor fees. On the other hand Hypalon is a much durable material that can cost as much as twice or more the price of PVC. Boats that doesnít have automatic pressure relief valves as in more expensive models, the use of a pressure manometer is a must during all year round. In winter you can inflate all chambers to 3.5 PSI and in summer to 3.0 PSI to achieve excellent boat performance. According to my particular 15 year experience have had not a single seem, tube nor transom problem related to under inflation procedures. Pressure gauges are cheap and will highly recommend to get one and use it. Itís impossible to correctly inflate all chambers by sight and finger touch.
Have had Zodiacs brand, they use a material called Stronjan, a fancy Frech name for PVC in all their recreational models and Neoprene/Hypalon on their grand raids series and top of the line combat heavy duty models, which costs both eyes and last endless years of hard work and mistreat.
The bottom line will be: what type of boating you are interested in, all year long or occasional go outs to decide for a recreational traditional dinghy or Rib PVC model or a more professional and costly Hypalon traditional dinghy or Rib model.. Your needs and budget will decide. Both materials have their fans worldwide and lots of brands from where to pick from.
Best regards from Peru