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Old 08 August 2009, 10:10   #1
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Country: UK - England
Town: Gloucester
Boat name: Lunasea
Make: Ribcraft
Length: 5m +
Engine: Suzi 140
MMSI: 232005050
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 1,126
What inflatable?

Not content with the RIB, I'm now looking for a SIB to use for getting from 1 side of the Dart to t'other, and bimbling around in the river.

It has to take a max of me, Mrs Terrier & the 2 pups (5&6) or a lesser combination! I reckon 2.4.2.6m length with a 4hp on the back

I'd appreciate advice on slatted floor, solid floor / areo-floor and any other features.

It will live when not afloat in a garage - inflated ready to go, so I'm not really worried about packing it up every time.

What makes / sizes are good value, and what soret of price am I looking at?

LT
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Old 08 August 2009, 15:41   #2
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Country: UK - England
Boat name: Angel-B
Make: Ex Y boat
Length: 3m +
Engine: Suzuki 9.9HP
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 584
Prepare yourself for a series of people extolling the virtues of their own particular SIB. Me first

Is 2.4 to 2.6 metre going to be too limiting? It will get increasingly cosy as the 'pups' grow up.

Is 4HP going to be enough? Fine for the river but if you want to travel a bit further afield / be able to plane...

Name wise you are looking at Avon (hypalon) or Zodiac / Quicksilver / Honwave / Suzumar (PVC) or a wide range of 'no-name' SIBs (PVC), eg the Saturn SIBs discussed here:

http://rib.net/forum/showthread.php?t=31468

You can buy an old Avon SIB for 150 (Avon Redcrest etc - make sure you get an outboard bracket!) to 400 (Avon S250 / Rover etc) from all the usual suspects (Ebay, B&O, etc). They last extremely well.

4HP outboard maybe 200 to 400 depending on age / condition?

Cheers

Chris
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Old 08 August 2009, 19:54   #3
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Country: UK - England
Town: Bristol
Boat name: Happy Days
Make: Zodiac
Length: 3m +
Engine: Mariner 4St/4HP
Join Date: Jul 2009
Posts: 83
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Chris hit this one on the nose!

We bought our Zodiac Zoom from new, so I don't know whether that is in your plan or budget - it wasn't really in my plan, but the dealer (Bristol Boats) was so helpful and gave us a really good price on a 2008 model, we decided to go for it.

For bimbling, with very little experience, I am quite happy with it. It's aero floor, and we've now got the setup time down to 15 minutes with dual Aldi 12V pumps doing most of the gruntwork.

The only thing that has gone through my mind is whether we should have stumped up for a couple more HP on the outboard. As Chris says, fine for rivers/canals, but out on the big blue..... ?
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Old 09 August 2009, 04:29   #4
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Country: UK - England
Town: Gloucester
Boat name: Lunasea
Make: Ribcraft
Length: 5m +
Engine: Suzi 140
MMSI: 232005050
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 1,126
Thanks for the intial views guys.

I'm not really worried about planing speed or going out of the river - I have my RIB for that. It is just for bimbling around in when it doesn't make sense to et the RIB out.

What are benefits of airdeck v slat / solid floor? It won't be packed up very often.

LT
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Old 09 August 2009, 15:51   #5
CJS
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Country: UK - England
Town: Warsash
Make: Honwave T 3.8 ie
Length: 3m +
Engine: Honda 20 HP
Join Date: Aug 2009
Posts: 49
Honwave

I recently purchased a Honwave T 3.8 Air Floor with Honda 20HP and I have to say I am incredibly satisfied with its overall performance. Yesterday two of us went from Hamble River - Cowes - Portsmouth - Port Solent - over to Isle of Wight pulling up on the beach near Ryde - plus lots of solent blasting around for the hell of it then back to Hamble again - the whole day cost us less than 8 of fuel + loads of fun.

My wife is not that keen on water and my teenage daughter is barely able to roll out of bed at a weekend so I thought I would be mainly solo Sibbing. Initially I was going to get myself a 2.4m with 5HP but quickly realized that I would soon have an army of friends and family wanting to go along.

I also wanted the ability to go places instead of justing putting along a river. My gut feeling paid off and I am so glad I went for the one I did.

The downside is inflating the damned thing - far to much work and then having to reinflate afterwards to hose it down. Without a trailer it requires two people as on your own there is great potential for a busted back.

Anyway I decided to go for a small boat trailer so that should help massively.
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Old 10 August 2009, 03:42   #6
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Country: UK - England
Town: Marple
Make: Zodiac
Length: under 3m
Engine: Tohatsu 9.8
Join Date: Jun 2009
Posts: 580
Which boat

I've got a Zodiac 2.85m with Mercury 6hp. We went for the solid floor, and it does take a bit longer to assemble, but only by a couple of minutes.
There's a discussion which ended up about what floor type is "best" started by me about a month ago, you might want to take a look at that. My investigations ended up with in order of preference 1 solid 2 air 3 slat floors. The solid floor certainly makes for a solid/secure feel to the boat.
The 2.85m is great for 2 people but I would think no more than 4. I bought an air pump and it inflates the boat in a couple of minutes. It also has a simple bypass valve that basically stops any more air going in to the boat when it's up to pressure.
I went for the 6hp as it's identical to the 4/5hp versions, but has more power I assume due to internal differences. I've only been on the canal so far, so can't comment on max speeds etc.
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Old 10 August 2009, 05:40   #7
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I got the Zodiac 3.4 activ v aero floor yam 15hp 2 stroke. Well pleased, anything smaller would be a tight fit as I lay in the floor to stop me bouncing out.

Package price secondhand c 2k GBP.

May upgrade at some time to c 4m but its heavy enough already to lug around.

Only used for snorkelling in the bays but if caught out in a chop never feel as though it could not handle it.

Hope it helps.
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