Tag Archives: Russian packraft

Trekkayak: inflatable ‘cataraft’

0998748c6291e317209e80430e6d88dd_largeInteresting new Swedish portable raft concept running on Kickstarter. Three kilo raft running PU bladders in a Cordura shell and proper IK valves.
ruscatraftLooks narrow and long in the video so most suited to flat water use, but using a pump (as opposed to an airbag) to inflate the cat hulls, it might be quite nippy. What is missing IMO is seat or backrest: a way of bracing for paddling efficiency (unless it’s luggage). ruscatLooks a  similar idea to this Russian design on the right and left..

Gumotex Framura

framura

Even with the new Rush models for 2020, Gumotex still claim their Framura IK, out in the UK is their fastest boat. For coastal ‘yaking the numbers certainly look great:
16kg + 4.1m x 75cm wide

That’s 29.5″ and about as wide as you’d want to be in a proper IK. I see that in France it’s homologated for use as a kosher ‘Cat C, 10km from shore’ sea kayak while in North America it’s sold as a Swing EX.

ikdims-1
framurai
Not sure I’d be dragging my IK over the sand like that.

From the bow shape it looks like it’s based on the slightly shorter but much wider Swing 2 – or the longer but also wider and higher pressure Seawave. That lightweight deck is fixed and has Swing-like struts to keep it up and shed water. Access is by straight zips or down the hatch. If they’re like the Swings they probably leak.

gumofabs

As for pressures, the Framura runs a disappointing 0.2 bar/2.9psi, not the 0.25 bar of the Seawave. But I also hear that Gumo-recommended max pressures are on the conservative side: the side tubes can be run up to 50% higher with great improvements in rigidity (the floor runs an 0.2 bar PRV so can’t be over-pressured). I also read somewhere they got 12kph out of a Framura while testing at sea. The best I ever got out of my Java or Incept was a short burst of 10kph.

frama
framurarudder

In 2016 they introduced a rudder kit (left) for the Framura/EX. I made one for my Seawave but in the end, could not be bothered with it on day paddles. On multi-day runs where you get the weather you’re given, a rudder may be a good idea.

I like the look of the 4.1-metre-long Framura but I liked my Seawave more. Framura, by the way, is a nice spot on the Italian Riviera, not far from Portofino. Not, as I thought, a hint that the new boat uses a frame(ura) to maintain rigidity. That rarely works with IKs, in my experience. Uou do wonder if the new hybrid Rush 2 supercedes i2015’s Framura.
More Framura in this video. See also this.

gumbo framura