Search

Typical Questions Customers Ask

WHAT IS A KLEPPER FOLDING KAYAK?
A Klepper Folding Kayak is an Eskimo style kayak that is made of a folding wood frame and a pliable skin. It folds into one or two carrying bags for transportation and has been developed by German craftsmen and engineers more than 100 years ago. It is nowadays a “state of the art” seaworthy kayak with full upwind sailing capability.
HOW DO THE FIVE MODELS DIFFER?
The Aerius Series covers the full range of boating options from kayak touring to extreme expedition kayaking. The Aerius Scout and Aerius Classic are designed for the recreational user while the Aerius Expedition meets the needs of the experienced adventurer. The specialist, professional or armed forces kayaker prefers the Aerius Quattro XT. New owners often excel quickly and become great travelers, excellent sailors, and experienced sea kayakers. When choosing your boat keep this in mind. .
HOW DOES A KLEPPER FOLD?
There are 31 wooden pieces that interconnect via patented "snaplocks". First one half of the frame is snapped together and slid into the "skin" and afterwards the other half. The two halves are connected, a coaming is put on, air sponsons are inflated by mouth and you are done. See Slide 'n Snap Assembly.
HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE?

The average assembly time for one person - bags to boat- is 15 minutes with no tools and no force. All parts are color or number coded. Disassembly takes less than ten minutes. Two people can comfortably cut these times in half.
WHAT SETS A KLEPPER TRULY APART FROM THE COMPETITION ?

The Klepper is designed for full upwind sailing. Every model is equipped with a maststep, mast support bracket, stayfittings and rudder bracket to accommodate four sails: two drift sails and two full sails. See Sail Upwind. Also, every two-seater model from1997 on has a built-in solo seat in the center of the cockpit which converts a two seater to a one seater in a matter of 10 seconds
WHAT MATERIALS IS IT MADE OF?

The frame is Austrian white mountain ash and Finnish birch (age dried for three years), the individual pieces are then joined by way of patented fasteners. All fasteners are made from hardened specially treated aliminium. The Hull is made of specially treated and waterproof cotton and the bottom part is now made of very durable and robust TPU.
Klepper now also offers Carbon frames.
These are available for the Aerius I 490 and the Aerius II 545. The carbon frame is made of epoxy resin, carbon fiber fabric, fiberglass netting and aramid fiber. These components are very light and are also used in aircraft construction. This allows for light and solid frames.
WHY DOES KLEPPER NOT USE COMPOSITES FOR THE FRAME?

The editor of Canoe Magazine once said, "If wood was invented today, it would be considered the miracle material of all time. " Specifically, wood of the grade quality that we work with is the ideal material for the frame of a folding kayak because it is strong AND resiliant, it works synergistically with itself and with the fittings when under constant stress, it floats, it is the easiest material to repair in field. Parts are relatively inexpensive to replace, parts do not seize together, it lasts and lasts for incredible lengths of time, is warm to the touch, quiet and aesthetically pleasing now and over time. There are no composites that fulfill all of these Klepper requirements.
WHAT DO OWNERS LIKE BEST ABOUT THEIR KLEPPERS?

First of all: the boats are more seaworthy and more versatile than any other boat in its class. The design (suspension-like frame/perimeter air sponsons/complex variable multichine shape) is totally unique and unparalleled in its record of accomplishments. The boat can run rough rivers and cross oceans. It paddles, sails, and can be used as a diving platform among countless other applications. If the boat ever capsizes, you just climb right back in. The Kleppers are the most stable and safest of all kayaks. Moreover, they will last the longest and be the easiest to repair of all the boat materials. Finally, they have classic lines and strong color schemes, never go out of style, and age like fine leather.
WHAT MEANT BY „MILITARY APPLICATION“?

The Klepper MK13 (civilian expedition model) was the official "stealth" kayak of NATO since 1953 and has recently been replaced by the four air sponson Commando known  in it's civilian version as the Quattro XT.
CAN I SOLO PADDLE AND SAIL A TWO SEATER?

Absolutely! The solo seat allows center positioning for optimal trim and balance as well as proper leg and back positioning. Limitations would be a light boat in heavy winds with no load. Larger people love the boat for solo usage. It provides comfort that no other solo kayak offers. Recently, a gentleman named Joe Weight paddled and sailed from Grenada to Puerto Rico with this configuration. 
DO THE BOATS REQUIRE MUCH MAINTENANCE?

Not at all! All of the materials are chosen for maximum durability in the most adverse conditions ranging from arctic cold to tropical heat and humidity. Saltwater is not an issue. The boats should be cleaned and waxed a few times a year. For long storage, they should be packed dry. That's it!
HOW LONG DO THESE BOATS LAST?

Kleppers commonly get two generations (approximately 50 years) on frames and at least one generation (25 years) on hulls. The latter figure is based on old style hulls that used natural rubber which was eventually the weak link in the system. Natural rubber was replaced over 20 years ago by hypolon, a synthetic rubber which proves to have a longer life than natural rubber. Klepper now uses the TPU hull which is even more robust and much lighter, keelstrips on the material, to protect the hull, are not necessary anymore. Heavy tour group usage and military application may reduce these figures by half. 
CAN I DO SIMPLE REPAIRS MYSELF?

All maintenance and most repairs of Klepper Aerius folding kayaks can be performed by the owner himself. Replacement of a frame fitting is a do-it-yourself project as necessary soft rivets are supplied with fittings. Also frame, rudder, and sail parts can be ordered for replacement. Keelstrip installation or replacement of bow or stern rubber stems on hull are also do-it-yourself maintenance projects for the more skilled owner. In all of the above cases simply order your necessary parts with instructions from the Klepper Service Center or a dealer near you. 
ARE REPLACEMENT PARTS AVAILABLE FOR OLDER MODELS?

Klepper services all kayak models built from 1951. Replacement parts can be ordered from the Klepper Central Service Center NORTH AMERICA or from the Central Service Center EUROPE in Rosenheim or a dealer near you. All frame parts can be ordered individually as can boat skins. Kleppers total commitment to its customers is to provide top quality, original spare parts and service at the lowest possible price.
DO THE KLEPPERS EVER CHANGE?

The basic Aerius design will not change since the overall satisfaction with these boats is unprecedented. The attention to fine details to enhance function, comfort and convenience are always foremost. Recently, Klepper has introduced a 12 1/2' "mini" called Aerius 2000 which is aimed at smaller and younger persons. A new and exciting development is a new hull for the Aerius II called the Quattro. With four air sponsons which allow shape change from deep-sitting V to a highly buoyant U shape and anything in between. The application for this capability is endless.
HOW DO I GET A KLEPPER?

To get actual price information or to order a catalogue, please call 1 800 500 2404i in the US or 1 800 323 3525 in Canada. For outside the US and Canada please see Contact us. It is good to order at least six weeks before a serious trip in order to insure getting the type and style of boat you want. Waiting lists of one month are common on boats and hulls. Please note that repairing in Germany is only available from october to march.
Parts and accessories are available immediately or within two weeks. 
WHAT KIND OF GUARANTEE COMES WITH A KLEPPER
All Kleppers and accessories have a factory warranty to assure materials and workmanship. Warranty service is provided by any official Klepper dealer worldwide. Kleppers Guarantee is their word of  honor. If you are sincere and honest, they will rectify in the most amicable way possible. They have done this for long time now, so they know when and how things happen. In any case, they will try to make you as happy as they can. 
SHOULD I BUY A SINGLE SEATER OR A DOUBLE SEATER?

If you are an "individualist" who enjoys solitude, a single seater is definitely the best choice. If you enjoy nature more when "sharing" it with someone else, you would prefer a double seater.  Also, every two seater from 1997 on comes with a built in solo seat which is located in the center of the cockpit and converts a double-seater in 10 seconds effectively into a single seater.
WHAT DECK COLOR SHOULD I CHOOSE?

The deck color is a very personal choice. Red is a the safety color and also adds a color splash to photos; Olive or black assure camouflage; Blue is a marine classic. 
National CPR Association