Finally time to put the new boat together and check it out. Some immediately noticeable items really caught my attention. This is likely the boat that should have been purchased years ago. It goes together easily and is light enough for me to manhandle. The Folbot, www.folbot.com , quality is untouchable. Absolutely no weird contortions are required to assemble the boat. No serious straining required at any point.
Here we go with the first assembly. From the Folbot forum the warning is that the first time may be difficult. The aluminum struts and pieces are bent to fit almost. After the parts get the right “set” it will go together easier.
The smaller bag was unpacked. This boat has many optional configurations so today there are “parts leftover”. Here we have the skin laying out to relax for fitting the frame into it.
Next the long bag was opened. It contains most of the frame and the paddle. It looks like a big mess in this picture, but is really easy to sort and prepare.
After getting the main pieces sorted and placed for assembly, the task looks less daunting than in the above picture doesn’t it?
After a little rest break to compensate for the stretching around a fat tummy, the frame was put into the skin. The latches were started to being closed.
The gunnels were assembled and installed. The fasteners that were loose fit were now tightened. The seat was placed in the boat in position. The seat fasteners were not fastened since the seat will be stored inside the Truck camper.
Here you can see how roomy the boat is behind the seat for items. Not yet installed is the blow up float bags that will be used to reduce the volume of water inside the boat in case of swamping. The boat has inflatable sponsons built in that provide the safety flotation required by law and common sense.
From the front you see that there is lots of room for stuff up there. All kinds of toys will fit up front in easy reach. Any room not used for toys will be filled with float bags.
One of the many additional configurations of the boat is what Folbot calls mini decks. Fundamentally they are spray decks for the front and back of the boat. There is a strut added to dome the spray deck so water that comes over the bow or sides will be encouraged to run back outside the hull. In this next picture the deck is not “installed” so it is not tight as it will be when installed.
My boat was ordered with both the mini decks so the front and rear can be covered for foul weather. It is my plan that the spray decks will be used for sun shade on my legs not for any “exciting” paddling. Remember the mantra of the old paddler---calm and smooth.
Now the weather needs to let me have a shot at getting out and baptizing the hull in the local salt water. It will certainly be a great time for trying to have tooooo much fun. TheOFM.