How to glue the inflatable tubes to a RIB (rigid inflatable boat)


A guide to sticking inflatable boat sponsons to GRP hulls as found on RIBs with either PVC fabrics tubes or with Hypalon inflatable fabric tubes.


NOTES on glues and adhesive:
A/. PVC Adhesive does NOT stick to Rubber or Hypalon Fabrics


B/. PVC Adhesive WILL  stick to Hypalon Adhesive


C/. Single part glues are good for quick and temporary repairs and in the case of Hypalon adhesive, for priming surfaces prior to gluing PVC fabrics and components using PVC adhesive.


D/. Adding the use of a curative provided in small bottles, makes it a Two part Adhesive. The use of a curative increases the strength of the bonding for permanent repairs and boat construction.


E/. Solvent Primers are used to ensure a clean grease free surface and helps the bonding process especially with PVC fabrics.


Polymarine Adhesives are known in the marine trade as one of the best glues for all repairs and construction.


Adhering the sponson tubes to a GRP RIB hull.


To glue Hypalon tubes to GRP hulls.


Use 2 part Polymarine 2990 Hypalon Adhesive.


Both the GRP surface and the Hypalon fabric will need to be lightly sanded to key the surface. Then solvent cleaned with P510 Solvent Primer for Hypalon Fabrics before applying any adhesive. The rest of the adhesive application process is basically the same as per sticking fabric to fabric. (see guide here)


To glue PVC tubes to GRP hulls.


First the Hull will need to be lightly sanded to key the surface and solvent cleaned with 2903 PVC solvent cleaner surface primer.


Second, apply ‘2990 Hypalon’ adhesive as the important primer on the hull (to take the PVC adhesive later).


Single part Polymarine 2990 Hypalon Adhesive is ideal as the primer. Once cured, the primed surface of the hull is ready for the adhering of the sponsons.


Continue the process using Polymarine 3026 2 part PVC Adhesive. Polymarine 2903 Solvent for PVC Fabrics should be used to clean and prep the PVC surfaces (no sanding with PVC). The rest of the process is basically the same as per sticking fabric to fabric. (see guide here)


To Fit the Sponsons
The method of fitting the tubes onto the GRP hull is more complex and specific to the make and size of the RIB.
An example:  How to install a rib Boat tube tutorial on YouTube


Polymarine Adhesives are available in 70ml, 250ml, 1ltr and 5 ltr containers.

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