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Old 11 May 2004, 13:12   #1
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Country: UK - England
Boat name: Seashell
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Length: 7m +
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A frame

I want to get an A frame for my (4.1m) RIB. I was wondering whether anyone has had one customer made, or has bought one "off the shelf", and if so, how much it cost. Not sure if I want a single or double one. I found an adjustable single A frame on the Outhill marine (www.outhill.com) website, but it's 215 plus VAT. I would even consider a second hand one off an old searider (about the same size) if anyone knows where I would find one of those!
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Old 12 May 2004, 03:26   #2
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Hi Tim

I had my A frame made to measure, my requirements were that it fits under a standard 6' garage door with the arials folded down and could accomodate nav lights and GPS antena.
I desided on a double as they look better and are a lot stronger, i had mine made by a loacl guy recommended to me, i designed the frame and he made a mild steel plug to get the shape right, once he had it how i wanted he bent and welded the stainless steel..... all this cost me 160
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Old 12 May 2004, 07:10   #3
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That's just what I want. That seems like a very special price to me. I'm going to see a local company this afternoon about getting one made.
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Old 12 May 2004, 07:56   #4
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Tim

No i think it was a resonable price for the amount of work and the cost of the materials, he seemed very happy with it and made it as a side thing to his normal work, normally he makes stainless signs for the council so bending and welding a bit of tube was no big deal for him, what took the time though was making sure he had the angles and lenghts correct and when the final frame was made up he purposely left it to long and cut it down once on the boat before welding the feet that hold the front frame to the deck, and even once the frame was bolted in he needed to brace it on a jig and bend it slightly to make the gaps accurate each side, this was his first A frame but says he could now make others easier as he's had some experience making them now.

One other thing i wish i'd thought of....make sure the plate at the top is long enough to bolt at least two arials, a GPS antena and white light and have space left for a flag staff or other fitting, mine is slightly too small and means i'll have trouble fitting a second arial when i decide to purchase DSC in the future. Its not a major problem as i can attach it to the side tube as others do, but i planned the thing out thinking i had got it right and mostly i did except i should have thought about what i'd want in the future not right now !!

So if you do find someone who does stainless work then negotiate a good price and work out a clever design, mine came from looking at lots of A frames on ribs and i designed it to hang over the tubes as this makes the frame look wider as its a relatively low frame, also think about what it is you exactly want it to do and hold !! it does make the appearance of the boat a lot better and its great to see the way it turns out.

Let us know how you get on.

R
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Old 12 May 2004, 08:43   #5
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Tim,

Just 2 pieces of advice for you. These may not apply if you get a double A-frame but are quite important if you get a single and may be useful for anybody else who reads the thread.

1) Be sure that all nav light mountings will be level when the frame is on the boat as you see below. (obvious really, but I've seen a few horrible A-frames out there with plates pointing towards the water. Should be an angle of 78 degrees between the vertical and the top of th plates, based on a 12 degree transom angle.)

2) One mistake we made on our old Valiant was that we should have added additional support between the frame and the floor as it tended to vibrate a bit when really pushing it.

Have to agree with Bilge Rat on having the frame as wide as possible as it looks far better and really adds to the boat.
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Old 12 May 2004, 16:31   #6
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Agree with Swginn and one other point i failed to mention was the hight between the red and green side lights and the white on top is supposed to be 1 metre apart !!! if like me you have a low frame made to fit under a garage door or gate then you may have to add an additional pole to the top plate and mount the white light on top of this, i've seen a stainless pole with a white light ontop and has a ratchet mounting at the base to allow it to be folded forward for transit or storage....... !
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