I saw the a post on this site referring to this kennel flooring stuff from Farm Tek a while back. I was building my first cataraft frame, and doing my homework. When I spoke to the people at FarmTek, they said, "why don't you just use the polymax wallboard?". I ended up using the 1/4" thick stuff, and it is great. A whole sheet only weighed 35 lbs, MUCH lighter than the diamond plate... And at $110 delivered, MUCH cheaper as well...
The people there were right, this stuff is way tougher than the kennel floor, it is downright indestructible. It is, however every bit as slippery as greased teflon... So I sanded it with 80 grit paper, and it was fine. I cut the pieces to fit just over the tubes (and spreader bars), and through-bolted them to the frame, using a bolt and larger fender washers every 10 inches or so.
truly impressive stuff, wont crack, just flexes a little.
You guys gotta check it out PolyMax Board - FarmTek