Old Town Polylink3

Anybody know if OT is using Polylink3, their great 3-layer construction in anything? Everything I see in their kayaks in our Oregon stores

lately is the cheap milk bottle junk.

I seem to recall that Old Town has called their three layer roto-molded construction by various names over the years but they still use it in many of their boats. You can check out which ones here:


Have you noticed that no maker of
whitewater kayaks uses 3 layer poly? That might tell you something.

Way back before 1980, Old Town tried making kayaks out of Royalex. That didn’t work either.

Most of us consider their 3 layer poly canoes to be junk.

The recycle circle
Some manufacturers switched “materials” simply because

the items could not be recycled.

Recycle friendly

HDPE (High Density Polyethylene)

LDPE (Low Density Polyethylene)


Crosslinked plastic kayaks


I don’t consider them junk

– Last Updated: Dec-09-13 4:42 PM EST –

But I do think that "triple dump" rotomolded polyethylene hulls are decidedly inferior to Royalex canoe hulls.

The three layer poly hulls are considerably heavier, making a tandem canoe of that type of construction unacceptably heavy for many, perhaps a majority of users who anticipate doing any car topping or portaging at all.

They tend to deform over time. I have seen very many Old Town three layer poly canoes become hogged or rippled as they age, even with proper storage.

And they are much harder to repair or outfit since it is difficult to get anything to bond to polyethylene.

Well, for composting, I guess they’re OK

Old Town Polylink3
Thanks, pblanc for the info. I wanted an informative reply to a simple question and yours was the only one. My question concerned OT rec. kayaks, and I guess I should’ve made that clearer. The 3-layer OT boats I have may be a bit heavy, which only matters when loading, but the built-in flotation and the stiffness of the hull outweighs any other negatives for calm water paddling. As for one responders comment about Polylink being junk, I guess one man’s junk is another man’s treasure. Thanks again for your response, and happy paddling.

So, you find them becoming.
Slowly becoming junk.

The Novacraft Prospectors in poly seem to keep their youthful form better. But as I recall, their 16 footer weighs about 80 pounds!

If you are looking for a kayak in poly
but are concerned that single layer poly kayaks are “junk”, consider buying one of the growing spectrum of “crossover” kayaks by LL, Jackson, Dagger, Pyranha, and Wave Sport.

In each case, you get really strong, durable plastic, better outfitting and internal bracing, excellent provision for installing flotation, a storage hatch, proper knee braces, serious grab loops, and a cockpit rim that is sized and shaped for serious sprayskirts.

Some rec kayaks may be faster, but you’ll get more paddling days in a kayak that can handle rough water and weather.

So if you’re serious about what a kayak is made of, look at kayaks that are designed and made for serious use.