Best foam for dryboxes? EVA vs Minicell (Cross Linked Polyethylene)? Best adhesive? - Mountain Buzz
 

Go Back   Mountain Buzz > Whitewater Boating > Whitewater Rafting > Rafting | Gear Talk


Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
 
Old 06-22-2016   #1
 
Fort Collins, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2008
Join Date: May 2008
Posts: 121
Best foam for dryboxes? EVA vs Minicell (Cross Linked Polyethylene)? Best adhesive?

I'm looking at adding some foam pads for dryboxes & coolers on my boat. I'd like to adhere foam sheets directly to the tops of the coolers, dry boxes, etc.

It sounds like Minicell is pretty commonly used, but is not UV stable. EVA appears to be similar to minicell and UV stable. Does EVA have the same dense, firm feel as minicell? Which is a better option for our application on rafts?

And, I see that you can get white minicell, but see it in dark grey everywhere. Seems like white would be a better option from a heat perspective. Is there a good reason why folks don't seem to be using white minicell?

Lastly, what type of adhesive do folks recommend for closed cell foam to aluminum? Closed cell foam to plastic coolers?

spenceuiuc is offline   Reply With Quote
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
Old 06-22-2016   #2
 
Portland, Oregon
Paddling Since: 2005
Join Date: Apr 2014
Posts: 47
EVA is the way to go. Its very comfortable, waterproof and holds up well to abuse. I have it on the top and bottom of my dryboxes. Keeps people from banging them on rocks on shore and keeps aluminum stains off the raft floor. A cheap way to go is buy interlocking exercise mats. You can get them at lowes or Walmart for $20 for a pack of four (takes 2 for one box top). They have a textured top that provides a little anti skid. The bottoms I used basically a contact cement similar to shore adhesive. Warning, line it up properly. Once it sticks, its on for good. The tops I just ran Velcro strips around the perimeter and 2 in the middle so I can remove the foam and replace it easily if it wears out, and it allows me to fully dry to box top. Removing glued foam from a drybox down the road is an absolute bitch. The Velcro holds the foam to the box really well. Never had it slip or come up. Link to the pads below... they come in various colors. Much cheaper than buying precut sheets the exact size.


Shop Grey Anti-Fatigue Mat (Common: 4-ft x 4-ft; Actual: 49.21-in x 49.21-in) at Lowes.com
wabashabi is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-22-2016   #3
 
Fort Collins, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2008
Join Date: May 2008
Posts: 121
Do you know if the mats from Lowes are made of EVA?
spenceuiuc is offline   Reply With Quote
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
Old 06-22-2016   #4
 
Fort Collins, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2008
Join Date: May 2008
Posts: 121
Looks like the Wally World version is EVA: Gold's Gym High Impact Flooring Puzzle Mat, 6 Pieces - Walmart.com and more sqft/$
spenceuiuc is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-22-2016   #5
 
Portland, Oregon
Paddling Since: 2005
Join Date: Apr 2014
Posts: 47
Yes its closed cell EVA foam. If you google 'eva foam mats' you'll get a whole bunch of other color and purchasing options, but I just get the grey ones from my local lowes. Only drawback is you will need 2 interlocking pieces to do one box instead of one exact sized piece. Its never been an issue on our box and still looks and feels great and you cant beat the price. I can take a pic of it tomorrow if you like.
wabashabi is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-22-2016   #6
 
gringoanthony's Avatar
 
Boise, Idaho
Paddling Since: 2008
Join Date: Jul 2009
Posts: 138
I used minicell (AKA cross linked polyethylene) on my drybox. 3 busy, very sun-filled seasons later, it's holding up perfectly. I've noticed no UV degradation yet. The only thing I noticed is that it shrank the tiniest bit after I glued it on. No clue why. It was a very minor, insignificant amount--maybe 1.0-1.5 mm per side. If that.

I glued it using spray contact cement. The 3M kind, I believe. That is holding up perfectly as well.

Here's where I bought it:
Cross Linked Polyethylene Foam - Closed-Cell Foam Padding, Packaging, Foam Sheets

I used 2lb density, 1" thick, black foam for my seat. I have no complaints as far as comfort is concerned. The longest trip I've taken, sitting on this foam, is 7 days and still no complaints.

Leftover scraps come in handy for making floats for river tools. After losing my socket wrench to the bottom of the Salmon, I drilled a hole in the handle of my new socket wrench and attached a piece of foam on a lanyard to it.
gringoanthony is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-22-2016   #7
 
readNrun's Avatar
 
Niwot, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2005
Join Date: Aug 2013
Posts: 960
Wow - all kinds of good suggestions here. I was just going to put some 1/4" closed cell foam on the bottom and sides of my drybox and may have a different approach based on this info. Most of what I'm trying to do is save the Al transfer to the boat (mostly in transportation). I like using the 3M spray adhesive - I assume you should use the strongest one they have - there are multiple versions of this adhesive.

Also - I can assume that 1/4" is fine for just protecting the sides and bottom of dryboxes?

I have ethafoam on my drybox right now and will probably make a winter project of getting that off and putting some EVA on it instead - maybe even use velcro for that.

Velcro question - do you pull it off when trailering the raft? Seems like wind buffering would be problematic.
__________________
“We steer the boat, we don’t alter the river.”
readNrun is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-22-2016   #8
 
gringoanthony's Avatar
 
Boise, Idaho
Paddling Since: 2008
Join Date: Jul 2009
Posts: 138
One more thing-- if you go the minicell route, getting a clean cut takes a very sharp blade some practice with different techniques until you figure out which works best. Worst case scenario-- you can always clean up a messy cut with a sanding block and some fine grit sandpaper.
gringoanthony is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-23-2016   #9
 
out west, Idaho
Paddling Since: 1998
Join Date: Jul 2009
Posts: 129
Quote:
Originally Posted by gringoanthony View Post
One more thing-- if you go the minicell route, getting a clean cut takes a very sharp blade some practice with different techniques until you figure out which works best. Worst case scenario-- you can always clean up a messy cut with a sanding block and some fine grit sandpaper.

I wonder if a table saw would make a clean cut...?...
brasscap is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-23-2016   #10
 
Portland, Oregon
Paddling Since: 2005
Join Date: Apr 2014
Posts: 47
I don't trailer mine, but I would definitely take the foam off before heading down the highway. It only takes a second to remove the foam. A roll of adhesive backed Velcro is $10. If you decide you want to glue the foam on permanent later the Velcro comes off easy enough. It does trap moisture so you have to dry the top off after a trip or for 10 min when reaching camp. Just used a razor blade to cut the foam to size. Foam in the pics is 2 years old so has a little wear on it.
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	IMG_3593.jpg
Views:	360
Size:	1.35 MB
ID:	11815   Click image for larger version

Name:	IMG_3592.jpg
Views:	281
Size:	1.12 MB
ID:	11816  

wabashabi is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Topic Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Fixing foam to foam.. JIMM Kayaking | Gear Talk 0 04-25-2016 04:18 PM
Minicell foam -- where to buy? What Size? fishingraft Rafting | Gear Talk 5 12-05-2015 10:40 PM
wrapping cracked polyethylene sheaths on Carlisle oars tomt36 Whitewater Rafting 18 04-15-2013 11:35 PM
linked loops ScottBarnes Whitewater Kayaking 5 05-09-2007 03:40 PM
how to weld polyethylene??!?!?? redbeard Whitewater Kayaking 2 06-07-2004 04:32 PM

» Classified Ads
Powered by vBadvanced CMPS v3.2.3

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 02:38 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
vBulletin Security provided by vBSecurity v2.2.2 (Pro) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2020 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.