Construction/Materials Accessories Assembly + Video Purchase

Construction/Materials
FirstLight Kayaks have used an innovative engineering approach and introduced new materials to produce a range of folding kayaks that are both strong and exceptionally light. With slender lines and a design which maximises the boat’s water-length, these kayaks are fast and easy to paddle. FirstLight kayaks have used only top quality materials and components which have been selected to provide optimum strength and durability while minimising the weight.

Hull
The hulls on our kayaks are made from incredibly tough and elastic urethane film which will stretch to over 200% of its original dimension and still return to its original size. This elasticity has two important benefits:

  • It enables us to cut the entire hull from a single piece of material, meaning there are no seams under the waterline.
  • It means that when the kayak encounters an object it is unlikely to penetrate through the hull. Instead, the hull stretches at the point of impact and then regains its original form.

The hull will also resist abrasion and scuffing for many years and will not weaken or split despite repeated cycles of use and storage. In the unlikely circumstance that the hull is cut, the cut will not tear or run and can be easily field-dressed using duct tape and long term repairs can be made using sealing tape and/or the material in the repair kit supplied with each boat.
The standard hulls supplied with each boat are strong enough for most uses however for those seeking additional strength, we offer optional keel strips. These consist of two additional layers of urethane, running approximately three-quarters of the length of the length of the kayak, which are bonded to the inside of the hull and positioned to rest under each of the two keel rods. Please contact us through at info@firstlightkayaks.com for more details. Black hulls are standard in FirstLight kayaks with clear hulls as an option on all models. The clear hulls will perform to the same high standards as the black ones, though the urethane will yellow somewhat with age, especially if left exposed to sunlight. Please note that the keelstrip option is not available on clear hulled boats.

Deck
Our decks are made from a three layered composite polyester fabric with a 1000 denier rip-stop. We chose this material for its strength, light weight and water proof (to 100 psi) properties.
You will note from the photos and videos on this web site that we have experimented with several colors as we have developed our kayaks and we have settled on red as the color for our kayaks. We would love to be able to offer more colors (and will do so as soon as possible) however for the moment the economics of minimum order runs imposed by our suppliers mean we are restricted to one color.
As with the hull, and damage to the deck can be field patched using duct tape and longer term repairs can be done using the material supplied in the repair kit.

Deck fittings
Our kayak skins are fitted with 10 pairs of D ring attachments which enable you to rig a range of deck fittings to suit your requirements using either the deck cord supplied with the boat or by adding additional cord.

End Caps
The ends of the kayak are protected from impact damage by injection moulded urethane caps which are permanently bonded to the outside of the skin.


 

 

Longitudinal Rods
Our use of Carbon Kevlar rods is the key to providing the ultimate in light weight folding kayaks. Not only are these rods light and strong, but they provide excellent torsional rigidity. For ease of assembly the rods are shock-corded and tipped with color-coded end pieces moulded from the same tough material as the cross ribs. Because there is no metal in these rods, they can be left assembled for some time without the joints “freezing”.

Cross Ribs and End Frames
Our cross ribs are exceptionally strong and are moulded from Dupont Zytel® Super Tough nylon. This material is virtually indestructible and will not crack or break under any circumstances we can foresee, however the ribs will flex to allow the rods to conform to the shape of the kayak.

End Units
The 3-dimensional shape of the bow and stern is formed using light weight moulded foam end units. They cushion and protect the inside of the skin from damage caused by chaffing from the frame and reinforce the bow shape.

Seat
Our seat is made from the same light weight closed cell foam as the end caps and is braced by a pair of webbing straps which connect to the foot rest.

Foot rest
Our foot rest is made from a light weight Kevlar tube covered in foam.

Knee brace rods
To provide additional bracing we supply two foam covered rods which fit into the groove in the forward main cross rib and can be adjusted and held using a cleat attached to the cross rib.

Coaming
Our coaming system is a unique solution to the problem of providing a rigid coaming which will hold a spray deck in dumping waves and yet can be packed easily and carried comfortably on your back. We use lightweight fiberglass rods held in place inside a marine grade vinyl sleeve by anodised aluminium sleeves.

Tensioning system
The tensioning system is one of the innovations in all FirstLight kayaks. There are two components to the system which tensions the kayak skin and frame. Firstly the longitudinal rods are expanded and held in place by a set of clips near the stern. Secondly the structure is stabilised using a webbing system which runs from bow to stern under the cross-sectional frames. The webbing is tensioned to limit hull flex and control rocker.

Warranty
We offer a two year warranty on all parts and workmanship in our kayaks. If you have a problem please contact us at info@firstlightkayaks.com. We have put a lot of time and thought into the design and construction materials used in our kayaks and we want to ensure your FirstLight experience is trouble-free.

 
FirstLight kayaks can be handled by anyone
The 420C on flat water
The expansion clips are part of the unique tensioning system
Light weight and low pack volumes mean FirstLight kayaks can be carried anywhere.