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Old 23 December 2012, 06:32   #1
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Country: Australia
Town: Adelaide
Boat name: Futura
Make: Zodiac
Length: 4m +
Join Date: Dec 2012
Posts: 6
My new zodiac futura

Hi all my first time ever on a forum.

I have just bought myself a zodiac futura 4.2 metre with a 35hp Johnson. When I picked it up the owner had detached the motor and said he never tow's with it attached. My last boat was a quicksilver with a 25hp mercury and never took the motor off. The Johnson is a lot heavier and I go diving for crayfish and can drive up to 4 hours away each way.

Is it safe to drive that long with the motor attached?

Also after reading this forum I'm starting to think the 35hp might be to large.
I still have my 25hp mercury force would this be a better match?

The other thing the zodiac has a air floor where my quicksilver had a hard floor. My initial thoughts was I don't like the idea of a air floor.

Are the air floors sturdy enough for dive/fishing gear?

Also the zodiac is a 97 model but is in immaculate condition. The owner brought it over to Australia from the uk 8 years ago and hasn't used it at all since being here.

Should I be worried about the age,glue and seems etc?

Taking it out for its first spin on the weekend.

Cheers
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Old 23 December 2012, 06:52   #2
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Country: UK - Scotland
Town: Aberdeenshire
Boat name: Sula
Make: Ribcraft 4.8m
Length: 4m +
Engine: Tohatsu 60hp + aux
MMSI: 235087213
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 3,268
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It's fine to tow the boat with the engine attached. You can always fit a transom saver - which is basically additional support from the trailer to the leg of the outboard, which can be tied down to avoid any vibration while towing.

The new Zodiac MkII FR (air-floor) uses a long shaft outboard and is rated to a maximum 30hp. Think older models used a standard-shaft engine? More details here: http://www.zodiacmarine.co.uk/boat/21/futura-mark-ii-fr

Regards the Zodiac itself. I'm assuming it's PVC given it's age. Early Zodiacs had the seam running on top under the rope lace cuff and rowlocks, but it was subsequently moved below the waterline. Again - yours should be below. Any sign of brittle glue or patches and handles lifting - then clean thoroughly and re-glue with a 2-part PVC adhesive from Polymarine. Needs to be cleaned first with MEK or acetone. You'll find instructions on the web.

Double check the boat material is indeed PVC. If you remove the air inflation valve - if the tube material is the same colour inside and outside it will be PVC.

Finally - the air floor. Personally I prefer the HD Futura with aluminium floor. Adds rigidity and some more weight to the boat and is perfect for fishing. Air floor will be fine if you use additional protection to avoid abrasion from anything you're carrying on it. Make sure it's inflated to the correct pressure.
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Old 25 December 2012, 23:21   #3
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Country: Australia
Town: Adelaide
Boat name: Futura
Make: Zodiac
Length: 4m +
Join Date: Dec 2012
Posts: 6
Thanks for your reply Spatacus. I've found out a bit more about my boat it is a zodiac fastroller 97 model 4.2m. All the seems are in excellent condition.

It is rated to a maximum of 30hp like you mentioned.

So does the extra 5hp make much difference as I'm keen to keep the 35 rather than changing it to the 25hp.

The 35hp is a Johnson long shaft

I'm also keen to get an aluminium floor as the boat will always be on a trailer and I much prefer the idea of a solid floor.

Any ideas where I can order one of these?

I still have my 4.2 quicksilver(which the seams are pretty much stuffed) with a wood floor and have considered trying to see how it fits in the zodiac.

What's your opinion on that? Good or bad idea?

I'm new to boating. What is a VAT?

Cheers
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Old 26 December 2012, 05:11   #4
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Country: UK - Scotland
Town: Aberdeenshire
Boat name: Sula
Make: Ribcraft 4.8m
Length: 4m +
Engine: Tohatsu 60hp + aux
MMSI: 235087213
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 3,268
RIBase
Quote:
Originally Posted by Garnsy View Post
So does the extra 5hp make much difference as I'm keen to keep the 35 rather than changing it to the 25hp?

The 35hp is a Johnson long shaft.
The boat ID plate is key. In real terms 5hp is neither here nor there, however if there was an accident your insurance (I'm assuming you're insuring the boat) would be null and void as you've exceeded the maximum rated hp. This is done for a couple of reasons, engine weight and of course engine torque which can have an adverse effect on boat handling, transom joints, etc.

With the engine on the boat - the anti cavitation plate should be level with the hull. Double check this. I'm sure early Futuras (your one is a 97 model) were configured for standard 15" outboard shafts. New Futuras have over-sided sponson tubes and use a long-shaft 20" outboards.

Quote:
I'm also keen to get an aluminium floor as the boat will always be on a trailer and I much prefer the idea of a solid floor.

Any ideas where I can order one of these?
Not an option I'm afraid. Only thing you can do is sell your current Zodiac FR and buy the HD version. It can't be retro-fitted.

Quote:
I still have my 4.2 quicksilver (which the seams are pretty much stuffed) with a wood floor and have considered trying to see how it fits in the zodiac.

What's your opinion on that? Good or bad idea?
Not advisable to try and fit a wooden floor on a boat that's equipped with an air floor. You have no way of securing it without the stringers (wooden or aluminium supports) that run parallel with the sponsons.

Quote:
I'm new to boating. What is a VAT?
In the UK we pay value-added-tax on pretty much everything. Currently at 20%. Don't get me started!
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Old 26 December 2012, 06:59   #5
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Country: Australia
Town: Adelaide
Boat name: Futura
Make: Zodiac
Length: 4m +
Join Date: Dec 2012
Posts: 6
Gee I hope I haven't bought the wrong boat. That will teach me for not doing my research first. The guy was heading back to the uk and I got it at a really good price so just snapped it up straight away. Its only my second boat so dont know a heap about them.Will take it out for its first run in a couple of days.
Thanks for your advice!
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