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I have 2 stupid questions.....First, I found a hole in my inner tube and I wonder how to fix it. the rubber looks dind of dry and cracked around the hole so I dont know how well a patch would work. Maybe I just have to get a new inner tube but I dont even know where to start looking. Second, I'm trying to put together an anchor system for my pontoon but I cant seem to find one of those small anchors, where should I look?

Hey there matthewlsteward,

First of all, What 1) make and model of float tube, 2) material of Bladder: rubber or otherwise 3)warrantee and or customer service?, 4) not so important but which bladder and where is the hole, etc. There's lots of guys (10+ year veteran but not me YET) who have had to patch their tubes and you can bet they know the best stuff to use. They may have something here on this sight.

If your tube is really old, you might consider a new tube (design & materials) that might well be great for both fresh and saltwater if you haven't done so already.

As for the anchor, please check this site first, then the tuber sites, next the kayak sites if you have time. There's posts on how to rig your collapsable anchor so it will never get hung up on a couple of sights, those guys might help. The only stupid questions are the ones not asked!


a.k.a. JapanRon
I cant cover a tube Questions but I can do a ancor one.

what you want is a small ancor. they do have them at boat shops all the way down to 3-5 pounds.

I used a paint can filled with concreat and stuck an eye bolt with a nut on the threads. on a 17 food deap "V" aluminum boat. it takes a 15-25 mile an hour wind to push that boat around with that block of concreat on the bottom of the lake.

now that is a bit heavy for a tube so I would sugest if you cant find one you can make one out of a soup can or a large tuna can if you fill it with lead.
[cool] If you have a traditional round tube, you will probably have a 20" truck tire tube in it. If you have had it more than two or three years, and if you have fished it much in salt water (without rinsing after each trip), the tube is probably ready for replacement. Start looking for tire dealers in your area that have truck tires. Then call and see if they have 20" inner tubes. There are still a lot available, but not at very many stores. You might even do an online search.

Don't let them sell you a "radial" tube. They cost more and you won't get any better "ride" in your craft...or more mileage either.

If the rubber in the tube is still "healthy", it is worth patching. Go to almost any auto parts store and you can find tire repair kits for cheap. Don't buy a big one, with lots of patches, because it is unlikely you will ever use it. You may need another patch, but once you open the volatile cement, it begins to evaporate and harden, no matter how tightly you close the cap. You can put it in the freezer to extend the life, once opened.

I periodically buy new, unopened kits to keep in my vehicle. That way, if I have driven a couple hundred miles on a multiday trip...or down to the beaches in Mexico...I can patch a tube and save a trip, without finding that my cement for the patches is all dried out.

If you have never done it, repairing a rubber tube is not too bad. You first find the hole. If it's a large hole, that is usually easy, because you can hear the air escaping when fully inflated. If it is a slow, pinhole leak, you have a more difficult task. You have to either immerse the tube in water and look for a stream of bubbles...or go around it with a soapy water mix in a spray bottle and squirt the most likely spots first...front end, bottom, etc...where you would most likely get fish spined or pick up a puncture from something on the ground.

It is virtually impossible to hold a fully inflated air chamber under water. You have to rotate it around, immersing one small section at a time. Use the family bathtub (spouse permitting), a kids' wading pool or even a swimming pool. If you don't have one, make friends with a neighbor who does...preferably one who already knows you are crazy and won't freak when they see you playing with your tube in their pool.

A third alternative is to make up a super soapy solution and just dip it in your hand and smooth it across the surface of the tube, one area at a time. That has been the only way I have been able to find some of the tiniest spine punctures over the years.

Once you locate the hole, mark it with a waterproof red or some other visible color. Deflate the air chamber and allow it to dry completely. If you are dealing with black rubber, you need to rough up the surface around the area to be allow penetration and bonding of the patch cement. There is usually a roughing tool included in most patch kits. I use a little sanding drum on my Dremel drill. Make sure the area is stretched flat across a hard surface and don't grind a hole in the tube.

Chose the appropriate sized patch from the assortment in your kit, or cut one out from a larger piece of patch material. Apply a small amount of the patch cement directly to the scuffed area on the tube. Use a SPARE kitchen spoon or table knife (not sharp), to work the cement into the roughened area and allow to dry for several minutes. Do not touch the cement with your fingers to determine if it is dry.

Remove the protective backing from the sticky side of the patch. Holding around the edges (not the sticky part), lay the patch carefully over the dried cement. Press firmly into place with finger pressure and then use more force with a roller or the back end of a kitchen knife or screwdriver.

Once the patch is applied, it creates a chemical bond that is tough and waterproof. You can immediately air your craft back up and get back out on the water.

Repairing vinyl air chambers is slightly different. If anyone can't follow the directions on their craft's manual, I'll be happy to render a similar dissertation on repairing vinyl bladders.
Thanks for all the ideas. I'm gonna try to fix the hole. If I cant patch it I will try to find a new tube. Only one more question. My tube is a caddis highback. My neighbor says that caddis will replace punctured tubes but I dont have my recipt or any warranty paperwork. He says it doesnt matter but I'm not too sure. Anyone know?

do a search on their web site.

and you can ask the horse himself.

at the vary least you will have a contact point for getting a replacement.
[cool] You can't get a conviction in court with "hearsay" evidence, and I doubt if you could get a new tube from Caddis just because your neighbor told you so. I have been using Caddis tubes for years and have never heard of that policy. They guarantee their new craft to be free of defects, but will not replace a tube if you sustain any kind of damage during the course of using it. That would be too costly for them.

How old is the tube, and do you know how you got the hole in it?

Hey MathewlSteward,

I read posts on another tube board about Sportsmart, here in southern cal, exchanging bad tubes (split seams) twice!and bladders for new ones ON THE SPOT! Don't remember what brand or what store location. I'm sure they would be more willing to exchange a bladder faster than the whole thing but ....... things change.

Anyway, just another thought when considering WHO you're going to buy from.

a.k.a. tsurikichi

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