FAQ - frequently asked questions

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WHAT IS A FOLDING KAYAK?

HOW DOES A FOLDING KAYAK FOLD?

HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE?

WHAT DO I NEED TO SAIL MY FOLDING KAYAK?

WHAT MATERIALS IS IT MADE OF?

WHAT ARE AIR SPONSONS AND WHAT DO THEY DO?

WHY DON'T YOU USE COMPOSITES FOR THE FRAME?

WHAT DO OWNERS LIKE BEST ABOUT THEIR FOLDING KAYAKS?

CAN I SOLO PADDLE AND SAIL A TWO SEATER?

DO THE BOATS REQUIRE MUCH MAINTENANCE?

HOW LONG DO THESE FOLDING BOATS LAST?

CAN I DO SIMPLE REPAIRS MYSELF?

ARE REPLACEMENT PARTS AVAILABLE FOR OLDER MODELS?

DO THE MODELS EVER CHANGE?

HOW DO I GET A FOLDING KAYAK?

WHAT KIND OF WARRANTY COMES WITH MY FOLDING KAYAK?

SHOULD I BUY A SINGLE SEATER OR A DOUBLE SEATER?

 

WHAT IS A FOLDING KAYAK?

A Folding Kayak is an Inuit style kayak that is made of a folding wood frame and a pliable skin, folds into one, two or three carry bags for easy transportation, and has been developed by German craftsmen and engineers and perfected over 100 years into a state of the art, seaworthy kayak, with full upwind sailing capability.

HOW DOES A FOLDING KAYAK FOLD?

There are about 30 wooden pieces that interconnect via fittings. One half of the frame is snapped together and slid into the "skin" and then the other half. The two halves are expanded in the hull, a coaming is put in place, air sponsons are inflated by mouth and you are done.

HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE?

The average assembly time for one person - bags to boat- is 20 minutes with no tools and no force required. All parts are coded. Disassembly takes even less time. Two people can comfortably cut the assembly time in half.

WHAT DO I NEED TO SAIL MY FOLDING KAYAK?

These folding kayaks are designed for full upwind sailing. Every model is equipped with a mast step, mast support bracket, stay fittings and rudder bracket. You have a choice of different sail types. The upwind sails come with lee-boards.  There's the adage: “Sail when you can, paddle when you must”

WHAT MATERIALS IS IT MADE OF?

The frame is white mountain ash and laminated birch. Fittings are of rust and corrosion proof metal alloy. The hull (skin) bottom is rubber reinforced with polyester cord. The natural air circulation eliminates excessive condensation and provides natural waterproof insulation.

WHAT ARE AIR SPONSONS AND WHAT DO THEY DO?

Two-four, internally mounted, full length air sponsons have two major functions.  Firstly they assure maximum stability, safety and hull protection. Secondly the final step in assembly is to inflate the air sponsons. This tensions the hull over the frame. In addition the air sponsons also provide maximum secondary stability against capsizing and allow for easier re-entry into a stable buoyant boat even when swamped.

WHY DON'T YOU USE COMPOSITES FOR THE FRAME?

The editor of Canoe Magazine once said, "If wood was invented today, it would be considered the miracle material of all time."   Specifically, wood of the grade and quality that these kayaks are worked with is the ideal material for the frame of a folding kayak because it is strong AND resilient, it works synergistically with itself and with the fittings when under constant stress, it floats, it is the easiest material to repair in field. Parts are relatively inexpensive to replace, parts do not seize together, it lasts and lasts for incredible lengths of time, is warm to the touch, quiet and aesthetically pleasing now and over time.  As material and composites develop these options will certainly be evaluated, however wood will always remain the mainstay of folding kayaks core.

WHAT DO OWNERS LIKE BEST ABOUT THEIR FOLDING KAYAKS?

Because the boats are more seaworthy and more versatile than anything in its class. The design (suspension-like frame/perimeter air sponsons/complex variable multi chine shape) is totally unique and unparalleled in its record of accomplishments. The boat can run rough rivers and cross oceans. It paddles, sails, and can be used as a diving or fishing platform among countless other applications. If the boat ever capsizes, you just climb right back in. Folding kayaks are the most stable and safest of all kayaks. Moreover, they will last the longest and be the easiest to repair of most boat materials.

CAN I SOLO PADDLE AND SAIL A TWO SEATER?

Absolutely! The solo seat allows centre positioning for optimal trim and balance as well as proper leg and back positioning, but it is not even necessary. Larger people love the boat for solo usage. It provides comfort that no solo kayak offers. The only challenge would be a light boat in heavy winds with no load.

DO THE BOATS REQUIRE MUCH MAINTENANCE?

Not at all!  The materials are chosen for maximum durability in the most adverse conditions ranging from arctic cold to tropical heat and humidity. Saltwater is not an issue. The boats should be cleaned and the Hull 'cleaned' a few times a year. For long storage, they must be packed dry. That's it!

HOW LONG DO THESE BOATS LAST?

Folding boats commonly get two generations (approximately 50 years) on frames and at least one generation (25 years) on hulls. The latter figure is based on old style hulls that used natural rubber which was eventually the weak link in the system. Natural rubber was replaced quite some time ago with synthetic rubbers which prove to have a longer life than natural rubber.

CAN I DO SIMPLE REPAIRS MYSELF?

All maintenance and most repairs of folding kayaks can be performed by the owner. Replacement of frame fittings is a do-it-yourself project; the necessary soft rivets are supplied with fittings. Also frame, rudder, and sail parts can be ordered for replacement. Keel strip installations, replacement of bow or stern rubber stems on hull are also do-it-yourself maintenance projects for the more skilled owner. In all of the above cases simply order your necessary parts with instructions from us, or have the Service Centre do the work for you.

ARE REPLACEMENT PARTS AVAILABLE FOR OLDER MODELS?

All kayak models built from 1951 can be serviced by the producers. Replacement parts can be ordered. All frame parts can be ordered individually as can boat skins. Our total commitment to our customers is to provide top quality, factory-original spare parts and service at the fairest possible price.

DO THE MODELS EVER CHANGE?

The basic design will not change since the overall satisfaction with these boats is unprecedented. The attention to fine details to enhance function, comfort and convenience are always foremost. Family sized models have got developed. There are exciting developments with hulls. Four air sponsons allow a slight shape change to a highly buoyant U shape and anything in between.

HOW DO I GET A FOLDING KAYAK?

You can order your folding kayak from Ablegatus, call us on +386/40/778874 (SLO), or on +36/20/4422593 (HU) or drop us an email @ This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it , This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it (or to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

WHAT KIND OF WARRANTY COMES WITH MY FOLDING KAYAK?

All of our folding kayaks and accessories come with a 5-year (10-year for the hulls) limited factory warranty covering materials and workmanship. Factory warranty is their word of honour. If you are sincere and honest, we will rectify in the most amicable way possible.  In any event, ultimately we want a happy loyal customer.

SHOULD I BUY A SINGLE SEATER OR A DOUBLE SEATER?

If you are an "individualist" who enjoys solitude, a single seater is definitely the best choice. If you enjoy nature more when "sharing" it with someone else, you would prefer a double or even a multi seater.  Enjoy fishing? Then consider the double, equipped with fishing package - it may suite your needs - rod holders, fish finder and live bait tank.  Also, don’t forget a double-seater can be effectively used as or even converted into a single seater in seconds.

 
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