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Old 15 February 2017, 15:41   #1
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Country: USA
Town: Santa Barbara, CA
Make: Avon Searider
Length: 5m +
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Hello from California

Hello,
I joined the site a while back when I first started my boat search. The limited supply of RIBs in the states made finding the right boat difficult. My search continued and I went back and forth between RIBs and fiberglass boats but ultimately ended up back with a RIB. What I wanted was a solid platform that would safely get me (and 1-2 others) out to our local Channel islands for free dive spearfishing. I didn't need a bunch of deck space or storage as I only rod and reel fish occasionally. I also wanted something that wasn't going to strain my aging Ford Explorer and to have something that's economical to use.

From the beginning I was fairly set on the Avon Searider after reading nothing but positive reviews and knowing of a few people that had the same needs that i had that were more than pleased with the boat. Also, there seemed to be a few of these boats floating around from time to time out in CA. Through this forum I made connections with a few extremely helpful and generous members (thanks NCP and Tworotorturbo!) who gave me plenty of advice on possible boats.

Last weekend I finally pulled the trigger and purchased a 1987 5.4M Searider. The boat needed a trailer and I was lucky enough to pick one up from a member that was local... thanks Olekils! The tubes appear to be in good condition, no leaks detected (yet), hull and transom appear solid. The engine is a Suzuki 85hp but is in need of replacement.

First on my list to do is remove the old engine and inspect the transom and fill/seal/repair as needed. Then I'll move on to removing the remaining bottom paint from the hull and most likely fill and resurface. From there I will replace the "Deluxe" seating arrangement and figure out how I want it laid out. The boat has apparently been sitting in a storage container for the last 20 years.

Once the boat appears to be structurally sound and spiffed up a bit, Ill take it out in the water with a borrowed 8 hp engine to see how she floats.

Looking forward to finally getting out and exploring the sea on my own vessel!
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Old 15 February 2017, 21:34   #2
ncp
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Make: Avon 5.4m Searider
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The upholstery on those seats look remarkably good. And, you'll finding that A-frame handy for mounting stuff - that would be $500 to get it made.
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Old 16 February 2017, 13:32   #3
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Country: USA
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Yes the seats are in great condition, I'll probably see if I can sell those. The rear bench seat fits snuggly over the 2 12g. fuel tanks (which appear to be basically new!). Not sure if I'll be able to use them but could be a cool seat behind the jockey. I also have the original windscreen for the Delux setup in what looks like the original storage/carrying bag. Maybe someone can put that to use...

I'm still interested in your console/jockey. Not sure if I have anywhere in LA you could drop them off but if needed I can always make a trip down to you. Would be cool to finally see your boat and maybe even get out for a spin. Then I'll have something to compare to as I still have not ridden in a Searider.

The A frame was something I really wanted to have. The fact that it's a double tube is even better. Speargun, floatline, and dive flag holder. Currently it's bolted to the front and top of the transom. I'll have to change that a bit because the top mounting doesn't seem as solid as it's mounted to a couple pieces of wood that sit on top of the transom edge.
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Old 16 February 2017, 13:51   #4
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Country: USA
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i like beanbags for seating, somebody will groan, I say that all that time. Comfy and flexible. take only what you need. Of course you need some place to stash them when you get to diving, I have a t-top and a slightly larger boat. Still you could probably work something out on an A-frame. Same for speargun racks, best thing ever. Easy to whip up with sratboard or even PVC pipe. Again, mount to the a-frame or maybe even the outside of the transom.

Jason
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Old 16 February 2017, 14:02   #5
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Boat name: SRMN 600
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Length: 6m +
Engine: Honda 90
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Slap a 90 on that beast and lets have some fun.
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Old 16 February 2017, 23:32   #6
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Bigtall- I've heard of the bean bag chairs but never tried one. Nom sure they are a nice comfy seat. I'll keep that in mind.

Justin- i need to get to work ASAP... thinking of taking a couple days off of work so I can jump on that deal. I'd buy it now but the slim chance that the transom isn't up to par could mean I'm sitting on a unuseable outboard for sometime. Bought a foot pump tonight and got the tubes back up... left some room for them to expand but they look better than I remember! Very happy with the purchase thus far. Did you decide on power for your boat?
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Old 17 February 2017, 01:20   #7
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I have an F115 lined up for the Willard 540. Strip that outboard and bracket off there and lets see how that transom looks.
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Old 17 February 2017, 09:52   #8
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Once the engine and bracket are off, if there is any questionable core in the transom, should I try drilling a slightly larger hole to see how much further out the water damage has gone? And if it looks tight and dry, how do I go about filling it? I tried searching this topic figuring it would be a simple straightforward procedure but looks like there are many different opinions on how to go about it.

Do I want to mount a plate to the transom? I def want to do this right.
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Old 17 February 2017, 11:14   #9
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You can easily fill holes with an epoxy putty. Mix you own using epoxy and wood flour (fine sawdust) or a glass filler. Lots of good fiberglass and boat building info here, http://forums.bateau2.com
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