Glossary of terms used in discussing WING® Inflatable products.

(but not necessarily restricted to use by Wing)


Aft: The back of a boat or something located behind the boat, or abaft.

Arrowhead patch: An arrowhead shaped patch applied to the bottom aft section of the tubes to provide chafe protection against the hydraulic forces of the water while a boat is underway.

Beam: The width of a boat at its widest point.

Boat: Sometimes referred to as a hole in the water but generally meaning a tool for working on the water. Occasionally also used to refer to a piece of dining ware used to serve gravy or ice cream sundaes.

Bow: The front of a boat, quite often the pointy end.

Bow eye: usually a stainless steel “U” bolt going through the bow of a boat to which one can attach an anchor or tow line or a trailer winch cable.

Bra: An accessory used to provide easily removable protection to the bow section of a RIB.

Chafe: An abrasive action. Also an alternative term for 'rub-strake', an extra layer of material in abrasion-prone areas.

Collar: Shaped foam with a polyurethane sheath normally attached to the sides of a boat or RIB. The collar provides fendering protection for the boat when the boat comes into contact with an object.

Craft: Anything that floats on the water.

D-rings: A “D” shaped ring which is strategically placed around the boat and used to attached lifelines and to secure other accessories.

Doubler: Extra layers of material placed to give additional reinforcement and protection for wear.

Draft: The depth of a boat below the waterline. This specifies how much water is necessary to float the boat.

Elephant Trunk: Term used to describe the fabric covering a high capacity transom drain tube or scupper. The Elephant Trunk allows water to be evacuated from the interior of the craft while minimizing the ability of water to enter the craft.

Eyes: Most often used to refer to loops made of stainless steel or fabric to which you can secure something.

Fabric: The material inflatables are made from. Wing uses the toughest fabric, polyurethane, in the construction of our products. Other fabrics commonly used in the production of inflatables or RIBs include PVC and Hypalon.

Fenders:A device placed on the side of a boat to protect the boat from impacting something harmful.

Fill Valves: A location on the tube through which you can inflate or deflate the tube. These valves are spring loaded to close and contain the air inside the tubes. The valve can also be turned to an “OPEN” position to quickly evacuate the tube of air when preparing to transport the boat.

Grommet Strip: A strip of fabric fitted with numerous grommets. This Grommet Strip is usually attached around the top of an inflatable boat or tube so that life lines or canvas covers can be secured to the boat.

Handles: A conveniently located place to hold onto the boat.

Handholds: Any handle or other means to hold onto the boat.

Hybrid: A sponson combining the best qualities of both air-holding tubes and foam collars. In our case, we enclose shaped foam inside a polyurethane sheath. We then inflate a small diameter air bladder which tensions the foam against the sheath. Hybrids combine redundant flotation, very good shock absorption, and wrinkle-free form-fitting appearance.

Hypalon: A material made by DuPont. This fabric requires hand gluing to join seams and attach accessories.

Lacing Cuff: Another term for Grommet Strip. See above.

Life Lines: A rope or line strung along the top and sides of an inflatable or RIB to provide handholds to anyone in the boat or climbing back into the boat from the water.

Navigation: The act of maneuvering, piloting, steering or otherwise controlling the actions of a boat. Navigation is also used to refer to the process of determining the position of a craft or plotting its position.

Over-Pressure Valves: A specialized valve that allow excess air to be released from the tubes of an inflatable or RIB. Also known as OPs. OPs are available in many different pressure settings depending on the application of the inflatable product.

OTH: Over The Horizon.

Paddles: A flat, tear-drop shaped device that enables one to use their strength to propel a craft through the water.

Patches: Several meanings including a repair or a means to permanently attach something to the tubes.

Polyurethane: A highly durable, abrasion resistant, UV and petro-chemical fabric used to make most Wing product.

Port: The left side of a boat while looking forward. The port navigation light is colored red. Also, a safe harbor on a coast or bay.

Pressure Relief Valves: A specialized valve that allow excess air to be released from the tubes of an inflatable or RIB. Also known as PRVs. PRVs are available in many different pressure settings depending on the application of the inflatable product.

PU: Polyurethane. A highly durable, abrasion resistant, UV and petro-chemical fabric used to make most Wing product.

PVC: Poly-vinyl chloride. A lighter duty fabric used to make inflatable products.

Raft: A craft designed to run rivers or used as a life saving device. Sometimes used erroneously to describe an inflatable boat.

RIB: Acronym for Rigid Inflatable Boat.

RHIB: Acronym for Rigid Hull Inflatable Boat.

Rub Strake: A strip of rugged material that is glued to the perimeter of the sponson to give additional abrasion resistance while alongside another vessel, pier or dock. Wing Inflatables also refers to them as a “Rubby” or “Rubbies”.

Scupper: The hole in the bottom or back of the boat by which any water in the boat can be drained.

Sponson: The generic term used to describe the air-holding tube or foam collars of a RIB or RHIB.

Stainless steel: A highly corrosion-resistant grade of steel.

Starboard: The right side of a boat while looking forward. The starboard navigation light is colored green.

Stern: Back portion of any craft.

Thermo-welding: The process of using high heat to melt the polyurethane coatings of PU fabric in order to bond them together. This is a preferred method of bonding seams as there is no gluing, reducing the chance of seam failure.

Towing eye: “U” bolts normally attached to the transom, facing aft, to which you can attach a tow line or tie-down straps.

Transom: The back of an inflatable or RIB onto which an engine is attached.

Tube: An air holding part of an inflatable or RIB which comprise the sides of the boat. Sometimes referred to as a “tubeset”.

Valves: The means by which an inflatable product is inflated and deflated. A valve is attached to the tube and can be repaired or replaced with the use of special tools.

Wing-Thane: A specially developed urethane coating that is applied to the tubes to add greater abrasion and UV protection. Wing-Thane can be applied by brush or roller and is available in a variety of thicknesses and colors.