Flexithane Flexible Hypalon Paint User Guide

The use and application of Flexible Paint to Hypalon and Rubber variant Inflatable Boats, and RIB’s

flexithane-flexible-hypalon-paint-coPolymarine have formulated a specialist paint called Flexithane for the renovation of inflatable boats made from Hypalon PU and rubber variant fabrics. Flexithane is matched by Superflex the for same great results on PVC Dinghy Fabrics.

Flexithane has excellent adhesion properties and is highly elastomeric with an extreme stretch ratio that will not crack or flake off. Flexithane’s coating properties are highly opaque and normally require only one coat for true colour rendition. A second coat will enhance the smooth satin appearance and improve the lasting durability. product


The Unique Properties of Polymarine Flexithane Paint

  • A fully flexible paint formulated for Hypalon PU and rubber variant fabric
  • High Adhesion
  • Hard Wear and Abrasion Resistance.
  • Smooth satin finish, will not crack or flake off
  • No mixing required, just a vigorous shake or stir.
  • Apply with a brush, Touch Dry in 5 minutes at 20°C
  • Second Coat can be applied when entire surface is Hard Dry in 20 minutes at 20°C.
  • Full Dry is achieved after 24 hours.
  • Used for renovating Hypalon inflatable boats and RIBS
  • Also used for resealing and preventing rubbing strake and mouldings from powdering
  • 1 x 500ml Tin is enough to apply two coats of paint on 4 to 5 square metres.

Flexithane Paint Application Guide for Best Results

Materials needed:-

flexithane-hypalon-paint-kit• FLEXITHANE paint
• P510 Hypalon Solvent Cleaner
• or Flexithane 2681 Thinners
• Good Quality Paint brush
• Lint free cloth
• Paint Kettle
• Protective Gloves
• Masking tape


Before preparing and painting please note:- your workplace needs to be well ventilated, dry and comfortably warm ideally 10 to 20°C. Damp and High humidity may cause blooming. Do not use a gas fire or naked flame heat source as the paints and solvents are highly flammable.

WARNING – Flexithane must not be used on any PVC coated fabric surface.

4 to 5 square meters per 500ml: Each 500ml Tin of Flexithane will cover up to 10 square meters in one coat. For best results apply two coats which gives an average coverage of 4 to 5 square meters per 500ml Tin depending on surface condition and application.

It is recommended to repair and reattach components or patches that may be coming lose prior to painting. Use a hot air gun to soften old glue. Wipe away with 2903 solvent.

The surface to be painted should checked for any rough imperfections which can be lightly sanded with 80 grit paper. Lightly abrade the entire surface to be painted to improve adhesion of the paint.

The inflatable tubes must be cleaned of dirt, oxidation & grease by using Polymarine Inflatable Boat Cleaner and then thoroughly rinsed and dried.

When the entire surface is clean a final preparation of the surface is made with Polymarine P510 Hypalon Solvent Cleaner applied with a clean dry lint free cloth, paying particular attention to seam joints, nooks and crannies. The P510 will quickly dry and flash off ready for painting. (NOTE: 2681 Flexithane-Thinners  can also be used to clean and prime).

Masking areas can be done by using standard Low Tack Masking Tape ensuring it’s firmly aligned at the leading edge. When painting to the mask with a brush, don’t use a freshly loaded brush, wait until it’s semi depleted (less paint) and always paint along and away from the leading edge, not into it, to help avoid bleed under. If masking a freshly painted surface, ensure paint is ‘Firm Dry’ and tape is low tack masking.

Shake the Paint Tin vigorously prior to application. Add the approximate amount of paint you intend to use in one session to a paint kettle or similar container. Stir the container of paint every few minutes.

BY BRUSH (recommended)
It is recommended that Flexithane be applied using a good Brush with Natural Bristles. Synthetic Bristles may dissolve due to the solvents present within Flexithane.

ROLLERS (not recommended)
Use of Gloss Paint Rollers is not recommended as they’re usually synthetic and prone to breaking down due to solvents, thus spoiling your final finish.

SPRAY PAINTING – Professional use only with appropriate breathing apparatus
Spraying can be done using the Polymarine Flexithane 2681 Thinners, at a mix ratio of 1 Base to a maximum of 15% Thinners. Two spray coats should be applied as a minimum. Refer to SDS for cautionary and safety procedures.

First, ‘cut in’ around edges of all seams, patches and up to the leading edge of masking tape.

Then apply to flat areas in light, even strokes using low build for maximum flexibility (avoid thick coats).

A second coat is easiest to apply when at least ’Firm Dry’. Note; Apply the second coat with a full brush, do not over work otherwise the second coat will re-dissolve the first coat.

Flexithane becomes ‘Touch Dry’ after approximately 5 minutes at 20°C and ‘Hard Dry’ after 20 minutes. Once the paint surface becomes ‘Hard Dry’, the second coat can be applied. A ‘Full Dry Finish’ will be achieved after 24 hours drying time.

IBS-Finish-Comp-72Once fully dried, the Flexithane painted surface will have a Satin Finish that is highly elastomeric with an extreme stretch ratio that will not crack or flake off. It is resistant to wear, scratching and abrasion and will last many seasons.

To help maintain the new finish and to further resist the effects of UV, a regular coat of Polymarine  ‘Inflatable Boat Finish’ is recommended to be applied each time you clean your inflatable.



  1. Hi , can you please explain how Polymarine Sealflex is applied in practice since, I have an old (1997)Nuova Jolly Raider 600 , 19ft ,which its material is more likely to have reached its lifetime but I wish to try and extend its lifetime for maybe another 2 years.

    I have only found 3 leaks on the top parts which in my opinion its coming form the fact that the hypalon material has worn out with sun so now my worries are that more areas will become problematic.


  2. Hi Mark, Good question, the answer lies in a different product. Polymarine ‘Inflatable Boat Finish’ which is very effective on PVC & Hypalon inflatables, ideal for Dinghies and RIBs to protect the as new look against harsh marine environments and damaging UV sunlight. See the full details here…

  3. Hi. Is it worth coating a brand new Hypalon dinghy with a prevention better than cure approach ?? does it have good or better UV protection than Hypalon ??

  4. Yes, Superflex is designed to adhere to all PVC fabrics

  5. If you mean as a surface treatment to stop leaks, then no, however it would improve the look of your old Caribe. With regard to tiny pin holes and porous fabric, then Polymarine Sealflex would be ideal as it coats the internal surface of the Hypalon Fabric to seal up pin holes and porous surfaces.

  6. will flexithane help with air leaks on a hypalon older caribe dinghy?

  7. We are looking to do some painting on inflatable bouncy houses, would this time of paint work on them?

  8. Hi Jeremy, the Flexithane would be excellent to restore the finish of your fabric, however, it would not re-enforce fabric that is worn through. In places that take a lot of wear, adding a protective wear patch of Hypalon Fabric will re-enforce and prevent wear through. Dinghy Fabric is sold in small rolls and by the Sq Mtr. Often a D ring Patch or similar accessory if suitable, is a good solution.

  9. Hi, I’m a restoring a hypalon RIB and have some areas where the inner threading has been exposed. Would an extra layer or two of Flexithane for hypalon be enough to re-enforce these areas?

  10. Where can I get all your products (Polymarine Inflatable Boat Cleaner, Solvent Primer Cleaner and Flexithane) in one place?
    Is there a equiv. product to the Cleaner and Primer – in case I can’t get them?
    I’m in NE Florida, but any internet provider would do.


  11. Hi James, Yes Flexithane is ideal for blocking out your old colour with a tough durable finish. Flexithane’s coating properties are highly opaque and normally require only one coat for true colour rendition. A second coat will enhance the smooth satin appearance.

  12. Can flexithane be used to change the colour of my tubes – they are currently yellow and I was thinking of having them grey or blue

  13. Hi Zach, Yes there is Polymarine’s SP54 Hypalon Antifoul, Fully flexible antifoul for use on Hypalon material. Can also be used on non-flexible surfaces such as GRP. Hull and tubes can be protected on your RiB with just one product. https://www.polymarineshop.com/product/sp54-hypalon-antifoul-blue/
    In addition, to clean up a fouled or stained surface, Polymarine Dispel a GRP Stain Remover. Removes rust stains, organic stains, algae stains. https://www.polymarineshop.com/product/dispel-grp-stain-and-rust-remover/

  14. Hi, we have a Hypalon RIB that is in the water and used all summer long on a passenger vessel. We cannot pull the boat each time we are done, we just tow it behind the big boat. We paint the rigid hull with ePaint anti fouling paint, but would like to know if there is an anti fouling paint compatible with Flexithane that we could use on the lower portion of the tubes. Also, there is some stubborn growth residue in that region, what might be a good product to prep for painting the Flexithane so it adheres properly? Boat is going in the shop for work/paint in a week or two, would like to do this right. Thanks in advance for any advice.

  15. Hello John

    Yes the Polymarine Hypalon Paint is ideal for re finishing tired, dirty and sticky rubber components like your rubber rub rail strip.

  16. I want to paint the rubber rub rail/strake on my RIB. It is mold stained and I can’t get it clean. Can I use this product for that application? Thanks in advance. John

  17. Hello Mike

    If your cover is made from Hypalon yes, however, it’s more likely you cover is made from PVC and Flexithane should not be used on PVC.

    Instead use Polymarine Superflex, which is ideally suited to painting PVC boat covers, dodgers etc

  18. need to repaint my boat cover would this be sutable cover is red

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