Specialty Fabrics Review March 2020 - 32

Inflatable watercraft, such as canoes and kayaks, are growing in popularity, especially
as competition has driven improvements in quality and durability, says John Hoge,
partner at Sea Eagle Boats Inc., Port Jefferson, N.Y. Photo: Sea Eagle Boats.

This 35-foot boat produced by Demaree Inflatable Boats Inc., Friendsville, Md.,
is used by guides for Grand Canyon rafting trips. Thanks to a healthy economy
in 2019, many guides had profitable summers and are now placing orders for
replacement boats after repairing boats year after year, according to Demaree
president Dave Demaree. Photo: Demaree Inflatable Boats.

as well, most made from rotomolded
polyethylene. While cheaper, the plastic
boards are heavier, and users often found
better performance from an inflatable SUP,
further spurring their adoption. Today, Sea
Eagle sells nine different inflatable SUPs,
including two models designed for fishing.
Other types of inflatable watercraft,
such as canoes and kayaks, have also been
growing in popularity, manufacturers
say, especially as competition has driven
improvements in quality and durability.
"There are so many good products
out there you can't really survive putting
out a junk product," says Dave Demaree,
president and head designer at Demaree
Inflatable Boats, which manufactures
industrial-grade inflatable watercraft
and related products in Friendsville, Md.
"Fortunately, I'm pretty old school. I
believe in making a product worth buying."
Inflatable kayaks are slower on the
water than rigid models, but they offer
other advantages, says Hoge, such as better
buoyancy, portability and self-bailing

32 REVIEW MARCH 2020

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Specialty Fabrics Review March 2020

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