VCP Hatch Covers:

It has been over a month now, and I still have not received any response from Valley, re: the short lifetime of their otherwise fine hatch covers. We had a pretty good following on this thread, and I forwarded the entire contents to Valley, and to Peter personally. I suppose they just prefer to ignore us. Suck it up and continue to pay the price for their junk, as nothing else will fit the application. Sad. Ken

I bought a kayak order from VCP
Had a couple questions about my custom made kayak. No email replies either. I know GRO is their supplier, and local reatiler, but they do mot make the kayak, vcp does. Poor.

replies regarding kayaks orders
when I ordered a custom kayak from them I got very quick email response to my queries including telling me when it was finally on a boat heading to the US and expected arrival date at the distributor.

My only complaint
is the poor quality material they persist in using in the manufacture of their hatch covers. If I can get two to three years out of them, I have done well. And then to get socked for the high price tag of replacements. Next time I will look for a kayak utilizing Kajak Sport covers. The newest of these are a vast improvement over their earlier covers, and light years ahead of VCP, who just don’t seem to care.

I’ve got both
I have VCP covers on one boat and Kayaksport on the other.

If I was shopping for a new boat,the fact that it had Kayaksport hatches would be one selling factor for me.

Another question someone might ask
If ordering a custom build, would they honor a request for KajakSport hatches?

Enough requests like that and MAYBE they’d start to get it.

When you order a car
Do you ask for the 10 year tires?

No, cause 10 year tires do not exist. Rubber is rubber, and the good stuff will be broken down by the sun. Yes, Kajaksport seems to have a formula that works, but we’re okay with replacing car tires, why is replacing hatch covers such a big deal?

Absolutely lame
But I’m sure you do Valley proud with that twisted logic.

If you’d experienced barely used covers that are stored in shade and 303 protected disintegrating in short order you’d be singing a very different tune. The fact that you haven’t does nothing to address the issues of those of us who have.

If you followed the other thread you’d know it ain’t UV, it ain’t dry rot, and it certainly isn’t reasonable wear and tear/lifespan issues as with “tires”. My patience is worn out for this “tires” analogy. I have had them rapidly deteriorate and fail on what amounts to a garaged vehicle driven only a couple times a year. Best I can tell the material simply breaks down on it’s own, and this is accelerated in hot climates.

Well, at least the crumbly bits float! WooHoo!

VCP: Large cover $65 Small cover $35
Almost the same price as a tire.

I’m with Greyak.

Just a thought…
Seeing Valley didn’t make your boat why not ask the boat manufacturer why in the world they chose to use the most expensive hatches in the first place… :slight_smile:

nermal, why is replacing
covers such a big deal?

Coz kayakers are such tight asses.

Often VCP is found on British style kayaks that seem to attract the discerning paddler.

Honestly if (only if) the VCP covers were to fall apart in a year or two as claimed (maybe is all that 303 that some seem to be obsessed with) then I would be a bit ticked off too.

However of my 12 oval covers and 6 round ones from VCP (some a year old, some 5 years old) none are showing any sign of disintegration, I have to assume that maybe the afflicted VCP covers must be stored in some mighty toxic environment.

VCP non replying to the queries is however a bit lame…

vcp hatches on new fiberglass kayaks
I’m under the impression that new fiberglass kayaks accellerate the aging process in vcp hatches as the gasses contained in the compartment of a new hull attack the rubber. I had a couple vcp hatches last 4-6 yrs stored outside 24/7. Seems ok to me.

what are you doing to them?
I had VCP hatch covers on my Chatham and they never showed signs of age

maybe you got the new corn-based eco-friendly biodegradable model

mine good
On my Impex boats, my VCP covers, 303ed several times a season, all looked like new after 5 years. Boat stored in garage when not used.

I’m curious
Are there any sources of ozone near where your store your boats, such as electric motors, engine exhaust, etc.?

If that was the case…
…every fiberglass boat would have the problem. That’s definitely not true.

Valley responsiveness and hatch covers
I’ve often had very good response by emailing Peter Orton directly. Once in a while it has taken a some time. but more often I’ve had a reply fairly promptly.

As noted on your earlier thread, we have 2 Valley boats with 3 VCP covers each, as well as 2 NDK boats and a Necky with Valley day hatch covers. We have not had to replace any from the material decaying. The oldest of these boats we got around 2000, the newest last year.

We are not particularly obsessive about care. The hatch covers get 303’d once in a while and the boats are usually stored out of the sun though often spend days on a car and 4 of them spend 4 weeks out of doors on the coast of Maine every year.

All of the covers are the ones that float and all seem to be the same material. YMMV

Unless they’re being left on the kayak when it’s stored. I always remove my hatch covers and I haven’t had any problems yet.

I suspect it’s the florida sun that’s rotting the foam hatch covers.

Kayak Sport was making a hatch cover/rim that was the same size as the valley hatches, but that would require removing the VCP rims.

Are you having a problem with the Vally hatches you now own, or you want Valley to replace the hatches you have already replaced and thrown away?

I’m not clear why there has been no mention of you returning what you thought was a defective product to the place you purchased them?

You also cut and pasted parts of the last thread (rant) and sent that to Valley, which is why they probably didn’t respond.

I’ve had two Valleys, one six years old and now one a year old… I’m not worried about the hatches one bit.

No, and what’s there couldn’t accumulate
Very open carport. Car is often not even in there, and never left running in there. Even the one main wall the kayaks hang on is just angled/spaced/overlapped 2x10s and is basically a giant vent. Blocks sun, not air flow. MUCH more ventilation than a garage. More like your covered SOF rack as far as that aspect goes.

If there’s enough ozone in the air down here to do that in an open carport, the tires and trim would be rotting off my car too.

Also, I’m not the only one they’re failing on this quickly - so I really doubt it’s some unique storage environment issue of mine (beyond the warmer climates speeding failures as we’ve already noted.

I liked the mildew theory a lot more as it is common here, but unless it managed to thoroughly invade the entire material matrix (unseen, as none was evident on/in the covers) and used it as a food source, it wouldn’t explain the way they fell apart.

So just what IS in that more environmentally friendly material anyway… Corn starch and Linseed oil?! L Only half kidding, because if anything can eat/rot these covers to that degree folks might want to know.