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So I am taking a trip to Colorado as kind of a senior trip type thing, to go creeking for a month, and im leaving in a week. My jefe also has a pretty nice crack in it, but is welded. Hopefully it will hold up. Is it a terrible decision to go out there with a cracked boat? I cant really afford a new one, and pay for CO. I was thinking of getting a used one for cheaper, but dont want to do that and end up breaking it in CO too and then having 2 broken boats when i get home. If i could use this boat and get through CO welding it a few times, and then putting it to rest it would make everything way easier. But is this a smart decision?
thanks for your feedback!
-clay
 

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I have gone through a boat a year here in CO and I am not the hardest on boats. I am guessing you will break that weld a few times over, so if you are a good welder and don't mind taking the time.

I would bring it and be prepared to shell out for a used jefe on the buzz at some point.
 

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Not necessarily a bad idea if you're paddling roadside, but I believe that you're part of the SE crew that wanted to hit up Vallecito, Pandoras, Big South, and some other isolated / high alpine hair cricks. A cracked boat in any of those locations means a pretty hardcore exit strategy; in terms of getting yourself and your trash (boat) out of there. I would certainly apply a liberal amount of bichethane in the inside of your hull, and take more with you on each trip. Of course, even a new boat can crack. Just be mindful that some of these stretches are no portage / hard-to-escape gorges above 9,000', and a ready-to-split boat ups your liability for you and for your crew, IMO.
 

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Just bring your welding stuff, a bunch of bichethane and buy a hippo patch at CKS and you'll be fine. Just always pack your patching stuff (bich or hippo) and a screwdriver to take out your seat (patch from the inside if need be.
 

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Hippo patch? So what's better, bitch- or hippo?
Well, I have only used bich - and its worked like a dream (dry thie inside of the boat with your extra layer). BUT Hippo is SUPPOSED to be better and is available in a single serving versus a whole role.

Hippo - Search Results
 

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I am hard on boats

So I am taking a trip to Colorado as kind of a senior trip type thing, to go creeking for a month, and im leaving in a week. My jefe also has a pretty nice crack in it, but is welded. Hopefully it will hold up. Is it a terrible decision to go out there with a cracked boat? I cant really afford a new one, and pay for CO. I was thinking of getting a used one for cheaper, but dont want to do that and end up breaking it in CO too and then having 2 broken boats when i get home. If i could use this boat and get through CO welding it a few times, and then putting it to rest it would make everything way easier. But is this a smart decision?
thanks for your feedback!
-clay
I always take 2 good ones and hope to come back with one
 

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I'll put a buck that the weld wont hold a day. So what are you gonna do with the boat if it breaks again out here? Haul it back across the country?? You could just rent a boat, but might as well get one a few years old. My dollars worth..
 

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I spent all of last season paddling a borrowed LL Huck with two cracks in it. We drilled small holes at the end of each crack to stop it from spreading, put a good square of Bitchethane over each crack (on the inside)and ran the shit out of it all season. At the end of the season I thought the boat was taking on too much water so I set it on some saw horses and filled it up to the rim. The only spots that were leaking were the accessory screw holes (seat, etc.). Neither crack was leaking a drop and I certainly bounced down a lot of runs, rocks, falls and even had a few pitons, etc. Bitch works damn good. I put some washers on the screws and it's all dry now. Of course this is a new season and I was tired of getting Hucked so I bought a Mega on the Buzz and now I don't worry about no cracks....at least for now:) i still carry the Bitch with me though. I wouldn't worry about it.
 

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I think it really depends on _where_ the crack is. If it's under or around the seat, then the boat is likely hosed for CO creeking. Regardless of the location of the crack, it's probably fine for big-water runs. Colorado's sharp rocks are really hard on boats, and even harder on patches or other irregularities in boat hulls. If the crack is in a more solid part of the boat, like the nose or near the stern, then it will probably hold and/or be readily fixable. I've been on two trips in the past two years where people started with boats with mid-hull cracks and the boats were a royal PITA as the cracks expanded and the duct tape was repeatedly scraped off. I've paddled a boat with a (welded) nose crack for several years and it's still going strong. The nose doesn't flex constantly nor get abused with every rock you scrape or boof over, but the hull does. Bitchethene works great for stopping water, but it's not structural.

johng
 
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