A folding boat is a small boat between two to six meters. They can be easy carried by one person and fit in a car trunk, or on a bigger boat when folded.They come in several varieties. There are folding kayaks and folding canoes. These types often use a wooden or aluminum frame and PVC or waterproof fabric for the hull. Other folding boats consist of plastic sheets or marine plywood.
Folding boats are very advantageous, but they are not so commonly used as expected. People use more Aluminum or inflatable boats for various reasons. For example, Seahopper is one of the best selling folding boats of the moment. Sailing versions are considered very popular.
There is also a vintage video presenting the Seahopper on their own website. I was impressed, but mostly because the prices are inviting, otherwise the boat looks very vintage herself.
It seems that one of the first types of folding boat were developed in 1890 by a company named Mellard Treleaven Reade which made them from mahogany and canvas
Folding Boat – Related types
Traditional folding boats include inflatable dinghies and small aluminum boats. Inflatable boats try to solve the portability problem with an inflatable keel and side pods. This allows better storage and weight advantages. Their main problems are that they are still quite heavy, they can puncture while on the water and can be time consuming to inflate and deflate. Folding boats require ten to fifteen minutes to set up and put away but are much tougher than an inflatable craft, and may ultimately be smaller in storage as an inflatable boat may have hard board components for the floor. Aluminum boats cannot be disassembled, and the strength of some wooden ply is actually greater than aluminum. The lower stiffness and rigidity may add to potential safety of a folding boat by allowing it to flex over waves. This stops the boat from the rocking effect of an inflexible boat. I actually like the rocking effect
Powered Folding Boats
Some folding boats have a transom for attaching an electric or petrol engine outboard. These are usually between two and four HP but can be up to ten HP. Electric motors are also recommended on a folding boat and are well suited to calm water fishing due to low noise and weight.
Above you have a video exemplifying how fast some boats can be unfolded. Unfortunately, they are much more expensive than the Seahopper. It must be the modern look.
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