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Old 05-08-2011   #11
Boise, Idaho
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 427
Originally Posted by jpbay View Post
The seams are leaking anyone have a fix for that?

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Old 05-08-2011   #12
Join Date: Dec 2003
Posts: 65
Gasket care

Me and a buddy were just discussing this today, used to be you'd get 4 yrs out of gaskets with 80-100 days use per yr. I sent my Kokatat back last yr for pressure test and gasket replacement, mabey 75 days total and the gaskets are turning grey already, iuse 303 once/twice a week....
I've come to the conclusion that gasket material aint what it used to be, and w/ current rubber used your lucky to get 1.5 seasons out of it, i've tried different sources of rubber, Kokatat etc...but it all seems the same...
Not sure if it correlates, but alot of metal tools/parts i use in my business come out of China and i have similar issues. My father raises cattle/alfalfa, and he will drive 200 miles out of the way to buy a USA made parts for his equipment, not because he is a "patriot" but because the standard is much higher and longer lasting.
Dont know were most of the gaskets originate from, but i have an idea

kelly is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-08-2011   #13
Jackson, Wyoming
Paddling Since: 1492
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 283
Thanks to everybody who has responded so far. This is all just sort of confirming or at least extending my thought process on the "problem." For 20+ years, I pretty much counted on getting 3-4 seasons of 75-100 days of paddling out of my gaskets, barring some stupid rip from a stick or catching a sharp screw head when shouldering a boat (put a huge rip in a neck gasket that way).

Maybe the gaskets were better 'back in the day' and the ArmorAll wasn't doing any better at protecting them, etc, or maybe the 303 just reacts differently with latex even though it provides better UV protection. Whatever the deal is, it's disheartening to have gaskets lasting 1/4 to 1/2 as long as they used to last, when you would think they'd be coming up with better ways to make them last longer. I'm definitely gonna try the silicone spray and/or the McNett SealSaver. I've just had enough of what 303 seems to do to the gaskets overall, and I'm boycotting it for at least the next two seasons.

If nothing else, at least ArmorAll is super cheap in comparison.
So many rivers, so little time..........
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Old 05-09-2011   #14
Woodland Park, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1975
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 43
I've used 303 in the past, but now I don't use anything and the seals are lasting just as long as before.....303 is a waste of time in application and it doesn't last more than an hour once you get it wet.
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Old 05-09-2011   #15
OlyPen, Washington
Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 85
No way will I use Armor-All on latex gaskets, or synthetic rubber (butyl), for that matter. I've seen how it dries out dashboards. It looks good at first but eventually damages the material.

303 has worked very well on my vehicle dashboards, rubber hatch covers, tire sidewalls, and other items. No drying-out. I've been using it for 11 years now.

However, I don't treat my drysuit's latex gaskets with anything but TLC! The ones on my first drysuit lasted more than 4 yrs before beginning to show signs of UV damage. I never treated them with any substance, only rinsed out the suit after every wear. After hanging outside to dry I'd bring the suit in ASAP. I am treating my new drysuit the same: avoid exposure to sunshine except when actually wearing it.

Besides sunlight, there are at least two other common substances that damage latex:

1. Sunblock/sunscreen.
2. Emissions from electric motors. I read somewhere that keeping latex near a refrigerator is bad for latex. Make sure your storage space is well-ventilated.

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