Technology, Design and Safety Print E-mail

At Pakboats we believe that the best design for any given task is the simplest one that will perform well. Simple design helps keep cost and weight down, and it helps keep Pakboats easy to assemble and maintain. But excellent function for the intended use is our main concern. Since there are Pakboats for widely different uses, it should come as no surprise that structural design varies quite a bit. Here is an overview. You will find more detail in the description of each product.

- PakCanoe Design

- Puffin  Design

- XT Design

All Pakboats are designed with a waterproof skin covering a framework of interlocking longitudinal rods and shaped cross ribs. On each side between skin and frame is an inflatable tube with multiple inflatable chambers for secure flotation. The inflatable tubes also act as built-in fenders, and by inflating the tubes, you add tension to the skin.


Secure flotation in any boat is an important safety feature. Placing a generous amount of flotation in a boat is an obvious benefit. Pakboats has gone further by placing the flotation carefully where it does most good. With flotation placed end-to-end along each side self rescue situations become more manageable. Here is why:

- After a capsize there will be water in the boat. With the flotation placed in the sides, the boat cannot capsize again without submerging the flotation, so the boat is much more stable.

- Bringing the boat upright from an inverted position, the boat will at one point float on its side. The side flotation makes it float higher at that point, so it will scoop less water into the hull while you turn it upright.

Ruggedness built in

Avoiding direct contact between skin and frame makes a great difference in protecting the skin from abrasion. PakCanoes are built for expeditions, and we have placed a closed cell foam pad on the bottom under the frame to protect the skin. On remote wilderness rivers, abrasion is inevitable, so we have welded reinforcement strips to the PakCanoe skin under each longitudinal rod.

In Puffins, Quests and XTs the bottoms are protected by extending the inflatable tubes below the chines. There is no foam floor because foam would add bulk to the packed boat, and the kayaks are less likely to be damaged by abrasion. But there is a heavy-duty wear strip factory installed under the keel on each boat.