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Old 14 August 2012, 06:12   #1
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Urgent Help Needed - Boat Repair in Spain

Sorry if this is posted in the wrong place but this looks like the busiest forum and I'm hoping that I'll be lucky enough that somebody reading this will have had to repair a tube in Spain.

We have a 2 year old Seapro 470HD which we tow to Spain each year. We've never had any problems before but the first day we came to use it the front tube had deflated almost completely. One of the front seat patches had started to peel back but the glue was still sticky so we tried to push it back into place. We then part inflated the tube and it seemed to hold air although there was a bulge under the patch and the tube was not quite the correct shape. We left it over night and then fully inflated it but as soon as we did that we could hear the air escaping from under the seat patch.

The boat has never had any damage to the tubes and has never had any kind of repair work done. Up until now the tubes had always held their pressure brilliantly.

We're now stuck in Spain with a boat that can't be used and my wife and children are none too happy with me. Does anybody have any suggestions? Have you come across this problem before?

We're in the Costa Brava in a place called Pals which is 20 minutes away from Estartit. I'm going to get in my car now and drive up and down the coast in the hope that I see a boat repair place but I thought I'd post this here just in case somebody has had a similar problem in the same area of Spain. I know it's a lot to hope for but I'm at my wits end.

Fingers crossed.
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Old 14 August 2012, 06:33   #2
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If you can it may be worth posting some pictures to give everyone a better idea.
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Old 14 August 2012, 06:39   #3
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Sorry, I'm trying to but the internet connection's a pain. I'll give it another go.

Cheers.
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Old 14 August 2012, 06:42   #4
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Hopefully this has worked.
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Old 14 August 2012, 07:39   #5
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If you can't find a chandlers, go to a dive shop, there are loads in L'Estartit. If you ask you may well get one of them to help you, basically you need some of the glue they use to repair wrist and neck seals on dive suits, and a patch. They should have all that knocking around. At a push a cut off section from a dry suit might work for the time being, I'm sure others will comment.

With enough glue you may well just need to re stick, I can't really tell from the picture
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Old 14 August 2012, 07:58   #6
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All SEAPRO inflatable boats use 1,100 denier polyester fabric, which has been specially coated on both sides with P.V.C.

The fabric is completely airtight and highly resistant to tear and abrasions as well as water, fuel and harmful sunlight.

Our confidence in our fabric is reflected in our 3 year fabric warranty.
from the seapro website.
Glueing PVC could be tricky.
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Old 14 August 2012, 08:03   #7
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If you can't find a chandlers, go to a dive shop, there are loads in L'Estartit. If you ask you may well get one of them to help you, basically you need some of the glue they use to repair wrist and neck seals on dive suits, and a patch. They should have all that knocking around. At a push a cut off section from a dry suit might work for the time being, I'm sure others will comment.

With enough glue you may well just need to re stick, I can't really tell from the picture

You'll need the correct glue and thinners depending on what the material is, not just the stuff they have for dry suits!
The stuff for drysuits may be suitable for hypalon but not PVC.
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Old 14 August 2012, 09:59   #8
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From the pic, it looks like the patch is not glued down at all (or the entire bond has failed, judging by the fold and wrinkles.) Odd that it appears to be stitched to the tube as well. I'd really want to know exactly how the patch was put on, and exactly why it's leaking underneath.

Drysuit repair can use all kinds of adhesives; I've done an emergency seal replacement with a tube of hardware store contact cement (it was a bit of a kludge, but it outlasted the seal that was replaced.) Wouldn't recommend that for boat repair.

jky
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Old 14 August 2012, 10:12   #9
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If you don't have any luck in L'Estartit, you could try up the coast at Empuriabrava - it's full of boats and lots of boat sales places. Although lots of these are selling rather upmarket boats, they must have to deal with tenders/SIBs.

Gerry

P.S. There's quite a decent size harbour/marina at L'Estartit, isn't there, so I would have thought someone there would be able to help?
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Old 14 August 2012, 13:04   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vincent Vega View Post
One of the front seat patches had started to peel back but the glue was still sticky so we tried to push it back into place. We then part inflated the tube and it seemed to hold air although there was a bulge under the patch and the tube was not quite the correct shape. We left it over night and then fully inflated it but as soon as we did that we could hear the air escaping from under the seat
If its only a seat patch thats come adrift
How come its loosing air
Or am I missing something?
Did you get the damage done to the floor/tube bit done before you left
Re your other post?
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Old 14 August 2012, 14:00   #11
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The damage to the floor was just to the PVC cover on the bottom of the boat that covers the inflatable keel and yes that has been repaired professionaly. There has never been any damage to the tubes or the inflatable keel.

Regarding it being the seat patch, I'm baffled as well. It was only the seat patch that seems to have come loose so I also can't understand why it's losing air. We tried to peel the patch back further to have a look for the problem but it's glued extremely tightly and we couldn't see any problem. It must be something under there that's the problem as you can easily hear the air hissing out.

I've now found a repair place in L'escala that can look at it on Thursday so I intend to arrive as soon as he opens, it's only about 40 minutes away. They were recommended to me by a lovely Scottish Catalan fella who builds and designs sail boats in Torroella de Montgri. It was a pain in the backside driving round all afternoon trying to find somewhere to repair it but I did come across loads of people who at least were trying to help. :-)

Thanks to you all on here for your suggestions, it's much appreciated.
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Old 14 August 2012, 14:24   #12
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It's not uncommon to cover areas of damage with patches disguised as wear patches or similar. There might be a hole under there you didn't know about. The hot Spanish Sun has increased the tube pressure to point of fail.
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Old 14 August 2012, 15:18   #13
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It's not uncommon to cover areas of damage with patches disguised as wear patches or similar. There might be a hole under there you didn't know about. The hot Spanish Sun has increased the tube pressure to point of fail.
I'd agree with Andy , and the heat of the sun on the black patch has nicely softened everything up to the point of failing
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Old 14 August 2012, 15:41   #14
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That is going to require a do over. Remove everything, clean it up and patch it properly with the right materials, and the right two part glue, at the correct temperature.
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Old 14 August 2012, 16:38   #15
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That is going to require a do over. Remove everything, clean it up and patch it properly with the right materials, and the right two part glue, at the correct temperature.
Agree with that. You'll need 2 part PVC glue such as this. 3026 PVC Adhesive, 2 Part, 250ml Tin

Area will need to be degreased thoroughly with MEK, key surfaces, clean, etc. Full details here: inflatable boat repair information and procedures about gluing and fabrics

At least you have the right ambient temperatures. It might be out of action for a day or so - but you should have it sorted for the rest of your holiday. Hope it works out okay.
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Old 15 August 2012, 05:49   #16
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You have had the boat from new but looking at your picture there appears to be the outline of a rectangular patch beneath the seat patch. This suggests that a repair has been carried out in the past and covered with a seat patch to improve the cosmetic appearance.
The black patch would get hot in the sun and this could cause the glue to soften and the repair fail.
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Old 15 August 2012, 09:16   #17
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You have had the boat from new but looking at your picture there appears to be the outline of a rectangular patch beneath the seat patch. This suggests that a repair has been carried out in the past and covered with a seat patch to improve the cosmetic appearance.
The black patch would get hot in the sun and this could cause the glue to soften and the repair fail.
This has had me puzzled as well. We bought from new, there has never been any damage to the tubes yet it does look as though there's a rectangular patch underneath the seat patch. It's more obvious in the flesh than in the picture but until the seat patch started to come away we've never noticed it. I'll be interested to see what the repair place find when they take off the patch. If I can make myself understood I'm going to ask them to take a picture for me.

Thanks to everybody for the repair suggestions. Being completely useless at DIY, and a bit of a worrier, I'm not going to risk repairing it myself. I've found a place about 40 minutes away that looks reputable so I'm dropping it off 1st thing tomorrow morning and hoping against hope that it's a relatively quick fix so that we can get some use out of the boat on holiday.

I've also been in touch with the place that we bought the boat from and they've offered to cover the repair costs providing they're not too high. Fingers crossed.

Thanks again!!!
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Old 15 August 2012, 09:45   #18
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Does the seat patch on the opposite side look the same?
If it does then there could be an innocent explanation such as the manufacturer covering up an error in build such as a logo or handle being fitted in the wrong place.

Good to hear that the supplier will cover the repair costs.

When you drop the boat off make sure that they use the correct glue ie one suitable for PVC, if they use hypalon glue it will probably seem okay initially but will fail again, especially with the sun on the black material.
The actual repair should only take a few hours but the glue does need some time to attain full strength so you will hopefully be in the water in a couple of days.
It is also probably worth covering the repair to keep the sun off it when you aren't using the boat.
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Old 15 August 2012, 10:07   #19
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I've also been in touch with the place that we bought the boat from and they've offered to cover the repair costs providing they're not too high.
That's decent of them, depending on what their idea of "too high" is.

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Old 15 August 2012, 10:20   #20
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Thanks Dave, i'll be sure to tell them that it's PVC. I'll let you know how it goes.

Cheers. :-)
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