Every East Cape skiff is designed, prototyped, molded, and built in-house. We design all of our skiffs from the ground up with on-the-water experience and input from owners, tournament anglers, and guides. We do not splash or purchase other designs and each model is specifically designed to out-fish its competition.
With the best craftsmen in the business, our small dedicated team knows the build process from concept to delivery. Not only do we use the absolute best methods and materials but we are constantly on the lookout for better materials and processes to implement there use.
Being the most complete skiff manufacturer in existence wouldn’t be possible without having your very own custom fabrication shop in-house with over 30 years experience in marine bright-work. From super simple to the artistically elaborate creations we can provide the means.
Our vacuum infusion system is the most extensive, proven, and technically advanced in the skiff industry. It yeilds the lightest, strongest, and most air-void free composites compared to other skiff manufacturer methods. It is also the most environmetally oriented method being almost completely closed molded.
Benefits of Vacuum Infusion
Boat hulls are built in many ways. In addition to metal, composite structures are widely used in the industry. In recent years, many boat builders have started to switch from the hand lay-up to the vacuum infusion process, even for small parts. While hand lamination is not difficult, and can be very fast, there are several reasons behind the decision to change production methods. One of the main motivations for infusion is the reduction or elimination of styrene emissions. Not only is there a nasty odour, but the environment is polluted when the volatiles are not filtered. In some countries, an extraction system is required by law when exceeding a certain amount of styrene emission. In the infusion process, the vacuum bag covering the part forms a closed mould process and thus prevents the emission of styrene vapour.
Improved quality is also a big driver. As the resin is infused under constant vacuum pressure, the wet-out is consistent and not influenced by the worker’s concentration and mood (‘Monday morning parts’). Voids are reduced to a minimum, and only as much resin as needed goes into the part. As a consequence the fibre content is higher than with hand lamination or traditional vacuum bagging, which leads to higher stiffness and strength.
Despite the consumables used, the vacuum infusion process does not automatically lead to higher costs. On the contrary, bottom line comparisons often show potential cost savings when taking into account the man-hours, usable time of the moulds, rework and reduced weight (because less resin is needed). There are also potential savings from improved compliance with health and environment regulations.