Re: Skin on Frame Boats (discussion)
I built a folding 18' baidarka to George Dyson's design 9 years ago, using 15 oz nylon coated with hypalon rubber household deck paint - 7 coats on the bottom and 5 on the deck (looks a lot like the boat in your picture, minus the graphics). The center of the keel is reinforced with another nylon strip that is glued on and also coated.
I've used the boat on a number of 1 or 2 week long trips on various places on Vancouver Island, usually on sandy beaches, and one month-long trip to the Queen Charlottes. So far the center keel rubstrip is a little scuffed at the stern but that's all. I've run into things but the combination of flex in the frame and the rubbery coating means it goes "thunk" and bounces off. I've also inadvertently passed over unseen barnacle covered rocks. The fabric seems to give and move away rather than puncture. No holes so far.
"A man who is not afraid of the sea will soon be drowned, for he will be going out on a day he shouldn't. We do be afraid of the sea, and we only be drowned now and again" Aran Islands Fisherman