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Old 25 December 2011, 13:22   #1
ncp
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Willard 7m Tubes - Bolt Pattern

I tried to put my new tubes on yesterday and noted the hull holes don't match the tubes holes. ('94 hull, '99 tubes)

Anyone know if Willard changed the bolt pattern anytime in the last 17 years? I assume that I will just be making new holes in the tube skirts, correct?

Any secrets anyone wants to share about making it a little easier to get then on? i.e. lining up the holes, etc.

Thanks!
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Old 27 December 2011, 08:19   #2
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bolt holes

Personally I don't think that there is a set pattern for the bolt holes. I've been maintaining a few Willards for a customer and the bolt holes are no where near close to the same between the hulls. Wing Inflatables has a tool for marking location of bolt holes that they include when you buy new tubes from them. You might try calling them to see if they would sell you one.
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Old 27 December 2011, 14:11   #3
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Thanks cgoing. I was able to talk to Wing and an engineer at Willard.

Wing: As you said, they have a jig that fits around the skirt that allows you to mark new holes in the skirt to match the holes in the hull. They were super friendly and said I can get one when I order my urethane paint and a couple of new pressure relief valves.

Willard: Yes, they changed the bolt pattern ~1997-1998. Something about conforming to GSA and making thing easier.

Cgoing, do you have any opinions or any experience with the urethane paint coating (Techthane) that Wing uses? I was originally going to extend forward and widen the non-slip sections on top of tubes with the grey paint mixed with some grip-tex but Wing actually suggested doing everything above the rubstrake and down inside to the skirt. Any thoughts?

Thanks!
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Old 27 December 2011, 16:55   #4
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coating

Personally i have never applied the urethane coating to any tubes. I have thought about trying it myself as it certainly adds some durability to the tubes as well as grip. When it comes to that stuff I would definitely say that Wing is the guru for urethane coatings. If you do decide to go forward with it, please let us all know how it turns out. I am sure that i am not the only one on the forum who would like to hear feedback on the urethane coating.

Best of luck with your project.

-Chris
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