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How to Install D-Rings and Footcups

D-rings and footcups take a lot of torque and strain. To keep them from peeling off your inflatable raft, cataraft, SUP board or IK, they need to be properly installed. NRS Repairs shows you the best ways to install D-rings and footcups and permanently glue them to Hypalon-, PVC- and urethane-coated materials.

Repair adhesives and solvents contain harmful chemicals. Always use protective gloves and eyewear. Work in a well-ventilated area and it’s best that you wear an organic fumes respirator.

Start by tracing the outline of the piece on the boat with a marker. For a D-ring patch, do the job with the chamber inflated. For a footcup, deflate the floor. Use a fine,180 grit, sandpaper to buff the boat surface to a matte finish. The goal is to roughen the surface for better adhesion; do not sand down to the woven base material. NRS D-ring patches and footcups come with the gluing surface pre-sanded.

Clean the boat and patch with solvent, to remove any contaminants that will interfere with adhesion. Use toluene for Pennel Orca (Hypalon) and methyl ethyl ketone (MEK) for PVC and urethane materials.

For Pennel Orca, or any synthetic rubber material, use the combination of Clifton Hypalon Adhesive and Clifton Hypalon Accelerator. This is what we use when building our Pennel Orca inflatables. For PVC and urethane materials, use Clifton Urethane Adhesive, HH-66 Adhesive, Stabond Adhesive or STAR Adhesive plus Accelerator. Closely follow the steps shown in the video and in the printed application instructions linked on each adhesive product page.

Once you’ve joined the patch to the boat, thoroughly roll over the entire surface. This is a very important step for getting a successful glue bond. You can now use the recommended solvent for removing any glue that’s strayed out of place. Wait 24 hours before putting any strain on the D-ring patch or footcup.