Choosing a Sombrero

Choosing a Sombrero for your raft is as simple as measuring your raft and frame. (Don’t forget you need mounting hardware if you don’t have decking.) So grab a tape measure, and let’s get started!

 

1. Choose your Sombrero

Original Sombreros deliver affordable shade with 7/8″ aluminum frames, tough nylon hardware, and your choice of fabrics, perfect for shorter trips and family use. Deluxe Sombreros upgrade the nylon hardware to stainless steel for added durability and come with premium Sunbrella fabric. Expedition Sombreros include full stainless steel frames, stainless steel fittings, and premium Sunbrella fabric for multi-week trips and commercial use.

2. Select Length

We recommend 6′ River Sombreros for rafts up to 14′ so the Sombrero won’t overhang off the end of your raft when folded down. 8′ lengths are great for longer rafts. 6′ Sombreros are 64″ long when folded down, and 8′ Sombreros are 74″. A typical mounting position is 6-8″ behind the oar locks, so add 6-8″ to the folded down length and measure to ensure the length you choose won’t overhang the rear of your raft.

3. Select Fabric (Original Sombreros only – Deluxe and Expedition Sombreros come with Sunbrella fabric)

Original Sombreros are offered in Sharkskin and Sunbrella fabrics. Both are opaque solid colors offering the same amount of shade and water resistance. Sharkskin is a more economical fabric made of 6.5oz material with a 5 year warranty. Sunbrella is a premium 9.25oz solution-dyed material, meaning the individual fibers are dyed before being woven. Sunbrella is the #1 marine fabric worldwide with 50 years in the field and backed by a 10 year warranty.

Sharkskin (very good)

  • Fabric: 100% Acrylic Coated Polyester–6 1/2 oz
  • Lightweight and durable
  • Breathable, water repellent, mildew resistant
  • Warranty: 5-Years Limited Warranty
  • Made in USA

Sunbrella (the best)

  • # 1 marine fabric worldwide with 50 years in the field
  • Fabric: 100% Solution Dyed Acrylic–9 1/4 oz
  • Premium long lasting fabric in fade proof colors
  • Breathable, water repellent, mildew resistant
  • Warranty: 10 Year Limited Warranty
  • Made in USA
4. Select Width

For frame mounting, measure centerpoint to centerpoint of your frame and select the width that matches. For deck mounting, measure the width just inside your oar locks at a place you can screw into your decking. Be sure you will be able to fold the Sombrero poles down without hitting anything. Sombreros are designed to fit a range of widths. For example, the 61-66″ size spans 63″, and the poles are designed to flex to accommodate widths of 61″ to 66″.

5. Select Color

A full range of colors is available for custom Sombreros. Light colors will reflect more sunlight, but Sombreros don’t trap heat the way an enclosed tent would, so darker colors work equally well. Choose a color you like and fits your raft!

Sharkskin Colors

Sunbrella Colors

6. Select Mount Kit

Unless you have decking to which you can directly mount the Sombrero, you will need to purchase a mount kit. Our mount kit is made of solid aluminum, machined to perfectly fit the contour of your frame tubing. The 1 5/8″ size fits all NRS frames and frames with similar diameter. The 2″ size fits Riverboat Works, Down River Equip and most commercial-style frames.

Height

All River Sombreros are 54″ high from the mounting point to the center of the top. This leaves enough space for most people to stand in the raft.

Delivery Time

Original, Deluxe, and Expedition Sombreros are made to order and ship in 7-10 business days. If you need one sooner, choose from our Quick Ship Sombreros. Our factory can also expedite orders for 10% extra, and have it ready to ship in three days or less. Overnight and 2nd-day air shipping is available. Please call us at (719) 539-9323 if you need your Sombrero expedited.