Updated: Jan 23, 2019
All you need to know about taking care of your Maravia
INFLATION & DEFLATION
CAUTION: Over-pressure is a leading cause of damage to rafts! Select an area free of sharp objects such as rocks, roots, or debris. Unfold the raft and lay it out flat. To avoid tears, do not stand on the raft during inflation. Open all valves including the thwart valves. The raft can be inflated by using a foot pump, hand pump, or any other low-pressure pump.
HIGH PRESSURE DEVISES SUCH AS A SERVICE STATION COMPRESSOR SHOULD NOT BE USED FOR INFLATION.
The raft is divided into air chambers differentiated by bulkheads. The raft should be inflated sequentially as shown in illustration #1. Initially, the raft should be semi-inflated to take shape. Then, reversing the order, inflate to full pressure until it is firm. How firm is firm? You should be able to depress the surface of the tube with moderate finger pressure. Get a low-range pressure gauge and test what operating pressure feels like! Operating pressure for the main raft tubes and thwarts is 1.5 to 2.5 PSI.
Over-pressuring the raft will reduce tear and puncture resistance. Extreme over-pressure can cause structural failure. Top operating pressure is 2.5 PSI. Pressure changes with changes in barometric pressure and temperature.
CAUTION: Monitor and adjust pressure throughout the day! On Sunny days and when the rafts is pulled ashore you must perform periodic air pressure checks.
CAUTION: Do not bring each air chamber to full pressure before inflating the other chambers! The bulkheads are designed to "float" (see illustration #3). Inflating one chamber at a time to full pressure can cause undue strain and failure of the bulkheads.
When transporting an inflated raft, ensure that the raft is secured to the trailer and that all points of abrasion are padded. Driving an inflated raft over a mountain pass will DRAMATICALLY increase pressure. If the raft is to be deflated during transportation, it is best to reverse your pump during deflation, remove all the air from the boat, and secure the valves. This allows the raft to be folded into a smaller package. Again, ensure that all likely points of abrasion (particularly sharp, folded edges) are securely padded during transportation. ** We STRONGLY recommend that rafts be protected with tarps or boat bags during transport. **
Prior to storage, your raft should be cleaned. Warm water with a liquid detergent, such as Boat Cleaner or Simple Green works well. A plastic scrub pad and large soft bristled car wash brushes are effective. Wash down the raft with clean water first, removing all sand, grit, stones, and other abrasive materials that may have accumulated in use. Use cleaner, water, and elbow grease to clean and remove dirt. CAUTION: Do not use wire brushes or metal fiber scrub pads! On the urethane surface, lightly abrasive cleansers, like soft scrub or small amounts of MEK, can be used sparingly in a well vented area. Mr Clean Magic Erasers are a miracle cleaner on floor and the smooth part of your tubes, us them with your cleaning solution and watch the magic happen. We recommend treating your tubes with 303 twice a year, once in the Spring when you are taking her out for the season (assuming you aren't riding her all year round, if you are LUCKY YOU!) and then once when you are packing her down or storing her for the off season. As with the cleaning make sure she is completely dry and the 303 has soaked in prior to packing her down. One last thing to check before storage, thoroughly clean and (if necessary) lubricate the valves. Ideally, the raft should be stored semi-inflated (enough to keep its shape) in a clean, dry place on a non-abrasive surface. If the raft must be stored folded, make sure it is clean and dry, then fold as shown in illustration #2 and store in a tarp or boat bag making sure that all sharp edges are protected against abrasion.
FOLDING YOUR BOAT
It is best to fold the raft loosely to avoid unnecessary creasing. When storing the raft, keep it covered with a tarp and out of the water. Avoid folding or storing the raft on abrasive surfaces like concrete.
1. Fully deflate with a pump. 2. Secure all valves.
3. Use the above fold lines for best results.
4. Fold over side tubes as pictured. NOTE: Avoid folding at valves, bulkheads, and at hardware points such as the D-Rings.
5. Fold opposite side over top of previous fold.
6. Begin folding at one end until the boat is completely folded, they don't roll.
NOTE: It may take some experimenting to determine the smallest possible fold depending on the boat size/model. If your floor is urethaned it may take a little more practice.
** At the risk of repeating ourselves, make sure you wrap your boat in a tarp or store it in a boat bag and make sure that all of the edges are protected against any abrasion where it is stored. **
For detailed repair instructions, refer to the instruction card in your repair kit. NOTE: Please see your repair kit list and what needs to be added before you hit the river! Your raft has a seamless coating of urethane on the outside of the raft form. When repairing the raft, you will need to sand any urethaned areas where a patch will be applied, roughing it up so the glue will stick. The inside of the raft tubes is a plastomer coating that can be cleaned and prepped or repaired with a rag damp with MEK. The repair kit has material that is plastomer coated on one side and colored urethane on the other. The plastomer side can be prepped with MEK. No sanding is necessary. See your repair instructions. The pigments in the urethane coating will change with continued exposure to sunlight. This is more noticeable and will occur sooner in light-colored rafts. Storing your raft out of the elements will give your color a very long life!
CAUTION: Operating pressure on your self-bailing floor is 1.0 to 1.5 PSI. Pay close attention when you are inflating it, this will save your floor and improve your rafts performance. A low-range pressure gauge can help you learn the feel of a full floor.
Air-adjustable shocks are an option on cars that allow you to change the type of ride you get according to the load you are carrying and the terrain. Your Maravia drop-stitch floor can do the same. In BIG WATER when there is more of a chance of flipping it is best to run your floor soft, it should feel like a standard floor that depresses easily by light hand pressure. This allows the floor to ride up higher inside the raft. The side tubes sit down in the water lower. Your center of gravity is lower. The raft tracks a little better. It drains slower, carrying more water and more weight, through holes.
THE VALVE (see illustration #1)
Your raft comes equipped with either Maravia AD-2 , and/or a Halkey-Roberts or the C-7 valves. All valves are poppet-type with a center, spring-loaded, two-position poppet stem. When the poppet is in the up position air can be forced into the valve and the spring pressure will reset the seal. Depressing and turning the poppet 1/4 turn will lock it open allowing air to exit.
The core of the AD-2 valve screws into a threaded opening in the valve boot, using the hex-shaped flange on the valve core. The AD-2 valve core may be tightened or removed using a 2-inch socket (available at hardware stores or from Maravia). The Halkey-Roberts and C-7 valve have a core that screws into a backing inside the raft. It can be tightened or removed using a wrench available from Maravia. All valves come with a cap. The valve cap is a part of the air-holding system; it is important to keep the valve core clean and to keep the valve system operational.
Rubber O-rings are designed into the valves to help create an airtight seal. As the O-rings age, they may become hard and lose the ability to make a seal. This can be solved by a quick squirt of WD-40 into the valve core periodically or at the end of each season of use.
Valves that are on the side tube are constantly washed out, giving less chance for sand, dirt, and water to enter when the valve is opened. The floor valve requires a little more care. Before opening, pour a bucket of water on the valve and wash away dirt and sand. Then use the first few strokes of your pump to blow residual water and dirt from around the opening.
DO NOT ALLOW WATER OR DIRT TO ENTER THE INFLATED FLOOR.