Paco Pad Corner Condoms- a do it yourself guide
Paco Pads have been around a long time, and many customers do not have problems with the corners wearing out for many years. If you understand why some pad corners wear out easier than others you will understand the problem better. Most pad wear happens in transport then the pad is not being used as a sleeping mattress. It is not possible to build a Paco Pad without a corner. These corners are hard points that can wear while the truck is bouncing up the dirt road. It is possible to avoid wear if one is diligent, but as pads get older, and the kids start using them, or you loan them out to friends, the care you gave them may not happen. It is important to note that most of the wear happens when the pads are rolled up.
This immage shows how a fold forms a hard point for wear. this happens on bats and pads. The end that wears is just a hard point that is easy to wear out
We started putting corner condoms on Grand Canyon outfitter pads about 10 years ago. Outfitters could not control how their customers use the pads, and the pads take a beating on the way back to Headquarters in the truck. Outfitters found this to work out well, and gave pads much more longevity. This system has been successful enough that we decided to upgrade all of our pads to it. Now you will not need to worry so much about how pads are loaded in the truck or if your loaner pad is getting drug on the ground and wearing out the corners.
This document is for many of you who want to put corner patches on the pads to keep them lasting a long time.
You will need any glue that is used on a Maravia, Sotar, Aire, JPW, Star Inflatable, or any other PVC, or urethane model of raft. A good time of the year to do this is at the end of the season, because you can use glue that would otherwise be replaced next year anyway. So please call us up, we will send you out a set of circles to use as corner condoms. We will send them out via US mail, so be sure to send us your mailing adress when you email us.
When you have a big hole it is a goo idea to squirt a little glue on the inside of the corner to make a new corner. This seals up the old hole. We use a syringe from the feed store and a #16 needle. That is Large enough to get glue through.
We like to put 2 coats of clifton adheasive on the fabric and the patch. Wait 20 minutes between applications. If you have injected the corner with glue, you may want to wait 4 hours before doing the patch so the glue inside the cover has a chance to dry out a bit. Heat reactivtion is the way to go, because All glued parts can be reactivated at the same time. If you do not have a hot air gun, or a paint stripper, a pan of hot boiling water will do the trick. Please take care to locate the pach with tape before putting the pan on the patch.
In this last immage you can see that the corner condom is not attached to the cover except at the welded seam area. This one is welded, and we try to weld a little higher on the end of the seam to protect the corner just like I have described moving the glued area up a bit on the glued corner condom. The end result is that the heavier material takes the wear, and protects this end of the bad from even more wear.
For more information about taking care of boats and dry bags, Please have a look at this document that deals with care and maintenance issues with rafts.
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