Older NRS hypalon Cataraft tubes - Mountain Buzz

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Old 11-25-2017   #1
Colorado Springs, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2016
Join Date: Jul 2017
Posts: 48
Older NRS hypalon Cataraft tubes

Any information on the older NRS hypalon cat tubes with two valves. They are constructed with an inner support tube which fills with one of the valves, and then an outer tube which is filled with the other valve. They look just like the current NRS River Cat models, only 2 valves instead of three. I have a pair of 12' X 22" that I want to make into a single person whitewater sport cat, but would like to know the durability and general overall construction and quality
be for i go to the expense of building the new frame. Thanks for any info!

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Old 11-25-2017   #2
Join Date: Feb 2005
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I owned a 16' set like that, purchased in about 2000, and my son has them now. Still going strong.

Never had a bit of trouble with them in literally thousands of river miles, including three GC trips.

I always inflated the inner tube first, to a hardness that would support that side of the boat if the outer tube failed. Then inflate the outer tube to whatever you wanted for rigidity.


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Old 11-30-2017   #3
Colorado Springs, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2016
Join Date: Jul 2017
Posts: 48
Thanks for helping out, they sound like a good set to work with. Anyone else with info?
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Old 12-01-2017   #4
Cd'A, Idaho
Join Date: Mar 2005
Posts: 41
How old?

Can you find the serial number plate on it? The last part of the number would indicate the year of production.
I don't think NRS-brand hypalon cat tubes had an inner chamber, at least in the 90's and 2000's. Maybe that's changed since the mid 2000's, but I wouldn't call that "old". If they're from, say, '95 or earlier, they might not even be hypalon.
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Old 12-01-2017   #5
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Tabernash, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2000
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No experience with the specific product you are asking about, but NRS hypalon has been Bomb proof from what I've worked with. My '95 E-140 is still going strong after about 10 or so years of commercial use on the Ark, and then the rest being heavy private use by me. I have really been kind of a terrible owner to my boat.

In 9 years of commercially running NRS, I have seen 1 blem, it developed this weird de-lam, and so we sold it cheap to a private boater, saw that thing at the put 6-8 years latter, it looked like hell, but he was still running it down the Gorge, and really happy with it( guess he did not care about looks).

I would expect a cat to wear a little faster, since they usually don't have the extra layers of rubber, but if it seems like a sound boat, I would probably go with it.
Do make sure not to over pressurize the inner chamber, I know an owner that had somebody do that to his NRS cat near the start of a Grand trip, exploded the shit out of the guy's boat! Limpt it to camp on ducky's, used every scrap of Hypalon on the trip to patch her up, I believe the tubes made the rest of the trip.

Hope that's somewhat useful, enjoy your new small cat, they are funner than shit!!!
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Old 12-01-2017   #6
Avon, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1997
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I have a 14' river cat set (serial -99....1999). Has the dual chamber. They are bomber. Covered and rolled in winter. Look practically new, going to my son in a few years.
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Old 12-02-2017   #7
Colorado Springs, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2016
Join Date: Jul 2017
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According to the serial number the tubes were made in 1999. Definitely Hypalon fabric. Mine have a tag saying only inflate the inner tube to 1 1/2 pounds first, then fill the outer tube to desired pressure presumably 2 1/2 pounds. Maybe the inner tube is not constructed to take too high a pressure.
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Old 12-02-2017   #8
Cd'A, Idaho
Join Date: Mar 2005
Posts: 41
My mistake. I do remember the inner chambers now that I think about it...

Those tubes should be really solid. Only thing to maybe check is the air seal around the nose cones. Inflate the tubes and check around the lip of the plastic cone. If it leaks much, you can take a hex wrench and spin the bolt out of the tip, then pull the outer half of the cone off. The outer part and inner part pinch the fabric of the tube between them. There should be some old silicone in there keeping the inner cone held in place. Clean all the old silicone off the inside and outside of the tube material, clean the plastic cone surfaces, apply new silicone, and bolt the nose cone back together. While the new silicone is still wet, inflate the outer chamber of the tube to about 75% so that it holds shape, and carefully position the nose cone to align properly with the top and length of the tube. Tighten the cone bolt and let the silicone dry.
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