There are real differences in the design and construction of floating foam mats that will impact both the longevity of the mat, as well as your enjoyment on the water. At Noodle Mon, we've never been about building the cheapest foam mat on the market; we're about building the best. Shop, compare and feel the Chillraft difference.
Q.: I've seen some mats that are thicker than the Chillraft, won't the thicker mats be better?
A.: In a word, no. When comparing floating foam mats, compare the quality of the foam layers. The thickness of any floating foam mat plays only a small part in how durable or buoyant the mat will be. Thicker foam mats constructed from lighter (less dense) foam are much more susceptible to rips and tears, and in many cases provide less flotation than the Chillraft. ChillRafts are made using two outer plies of highly dense foam laminated to a reinforced inner core. This precisely engineered combination of material density and thickness provides a tough surface that resists tears incurred during play, and keeps the mat flatter on the water during use. The stability of a Chillraft is the key to its buoyancy. The flotation properties of a foam water toy is a function of its ability to make contact (displace) the surface of the water. Thickness doesn't help if the mat rolls, folds and a large part of it fails to touch the water. Our 1.5" thick Chillraft will outperform mats using much thicker, heavier, and less expensive foam.
Q.: Why do I care about the cord used to secure the mat to the boat; they're all pretty much the same, aren't they?
A.: Actually, the anchor and tether system is the most commonly broken component on most competitive foam mats. The reason is that most all competitive mats use a 'grommet' style anchor assembly that is placed inside of a single round hole in the foam. This system is inexpensive and easy to manufacture, but over time the hole elongates during use and the grommet falls out. You then have a hole in the foam that will tear through. Chillraft's use an anchor plate that is bonded from both sides using (6) mechanical fasteners and (2) through-plate tether line attachments. All (8) openings are heat finished and sleeved with polymer bushings. We then add over 100" of specially manufactured, UV resistant shock cord with a stretch capability nearly 100% of its length. This insures that the raft is both a safe distance from the anchor point, and helps absorb excessive load forces. The Chillraft tether system spreads the pull forces out over a 300% to 500% larger area than our competitors meaning your anchor plate can take a beating and stay in place.
Q.: Why do you put a reinforced core in the Chillraft?
A.: Floating foam mats take a beating. Many compstitors use only light density foam throughout their mat. This construction saves cost, but at the expense of durability and stability. Chillraft's are designed for durability, stability, and comfort.Further, we extrude the dense outer ply material using a highly refined micro-cell technology that produces a surface that is smoother to the touch, and gentler on skin.
Q.: I've seen floating foam mats that are less expensive than a Chillraft; why should I pay more for a Chillraft?
A.: That's a decision that is of course entirely up to the individual buyer. What we can tell you is that the raw material cost to build a Chillraft is approximately 25% greater than most any other mat on the market. The extra money we spend on higher quality foam, increased UV protection, stronger anchor tethers, etc. are a big part of why the Chillraft out performs, and outlasts, competitive products. Not only will it stay looking better longer, but even one or two extra seasons of use make the Chillraft a better value. Regardless of price, we would argue based on both technical and practical merit that the Chillraft is the finest product of its kind anywhere in the market