Test inflation questions - new AF convertible

PSI, Proper Technique, Valves etc.

Moderator: JCOOLEY

Post Reply
Posts: 41
Joined: Mon Oct 12, 2009 7:41 am
Location: New Jersey

Test inflation questions - new AF convertible

Post by MikeSue » Thu Apr 08, 2010 5:25 pm

Hi all, we just got our AF convertible and we did a test inflation in the backyard so we have a few newbie questions :o

1) Is there a good way to know how much air to put in chamber 1? The manual says stop chamber 1 when the kayak "begins to take shape". Does anyone have an approximate number of pumps that would be with the AE double action pump or is a rough amount good enough?

2) Same question for chamber 2. How hard do side tubes need to be without causing an over-inflation problem? Is there an approximate number of pumps? We did see a little "taco" folding when we picked it up at both ends but we are afraid to pump too much into the sides.

3) We have a concern after the kayak is inflated the orange fabric on the sides doesn't sit on top of the big grey tubes running up the length of the kayak. Instead the orange fabric is more off to the sides, kind of droopy which doesn't seem right visually from pictures I've seen. The velcro strips on the orange fabric are lined up with the velcro on the tubes. Does this correct itself when the weight of a person is put onto the floor (pulling sides up?) or is this a sign that there isn't enough air in tubes or something else? One other note - we did not have the footrest/thwart in place. Is that required to push the tubes more into orange fabric sides for a better fit?

4) I need to be the one who carries the inflated kayak myself if possible. I was able to pick it up by standing on the side and putting the middle up onto my shoulder, resting the grey side tube on my shoulder to carry it. Is this ok or will that cause any damage? The tube did not feel like it was being crushed in any way when it was resting on my shoulder.

Thanks for any help anyone can provide :)
Last edited by MikeSue on Fri Apr 09, 2010 12:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Site Admin
Posts: 991
Joined: Tue Feb 20, 2007 2:46 pm
Location: Benicia, CA

Post by JCOOLEY » Fri Apr 09, 2010 8:11 am

1) Pump the amount of air into Chamber 1 that the manual says. The kayak should begin to rise off of the ground and take shape.

2) Finish inflating the kayak by pumping into chamber 2. Basically your goal is to get equal amounts of air into both chambers. This way if one failed on you you have the other to keep you safely afloat. After chamber 2, the kayak should be firm and rigid. If you pick it up from either end and it tacos, then there is not enough air in it. You should be able to pick it up and it should be stiff. A pump with a gauge helps but if you do not have a gauge, then this is a good rule of thumb.

3) The orange fabric is not supposed to completely cover the gray tube. It will cover most. It was probably droopy because you didn't have enough air in it.

4) If you are carrying the kayak by yourself, this is the way to do it. From the center over your shoulder just as you mentioned. We are also coming out very soon with a small kayak dolly that you can strap one end to and push or pull with the other to wheel it around.


Posts: 41
Joined: Mon Oct 12, 2009 7:41 am
Location: New Jersey

Post by MikeSue » Sat Apr 10, 2010 6:32 am

Thanks Jeremy.

User avatar
Posts: 684
Joined: Fri Jun 01, 2007 5:48 pm
Location: Vancouver Island, Canada

Post by PJohanson » Sat Apr 17, 2010 7:13 pm

I have an observation about how full to pump the main chambers.
You do want enough air in the chambers that the boat doesn't simply bend when you pick up the bow or the stern -- but don't fuss about filling the chambers perfectly full. I like to paddle with my Expedition less than full. I like the feeling when the main chambers are not stiff and taut. The BackBone gives me plenty of rigidity. Sometimes I float the kayak, get in, get out and then adjust the inflation, either adding or letting out a little air.

Post Reply