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Old 26 January 2014, 07:21   #11
Barrowboy's Avatar
Country: Ireland
Town: Galway
Boat name: Top Banana
Make: Scorpion 9m
Length: 9m +
Engine: Yamaha 421STI
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Originally Posted by AMac View Post
Alloy hulled ribs are very rare I looked for a while but could not find what I was looking for
A lot of people say it is due to the welds suffering from stress cracks
Don't know if this is true but I do know the super fast ferries made from alloy have welders
working 24/7 on them only to weld stress cracks!!
Hmmmmm, you'd have to question the quality of the original workmanship then...

Amongst the vessels I operate on our current project are 3 x aluminium hulled, 100 ton, 26m aluminium-hulled catamarans working 24/7 (weather permitting) 90km out in the North Sea in seas up to 3.5 metres. The boats cruise at 20knts when the seas allow and frequently battle through 3.5 metre seas at 10 knts. In the past 12 months none of the vessels has required any welding of their hulls.

Plenty of other issues, but no problems with their hulls whatsoever.
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Old 26 January 2014, 07:26   #12
Country: UK - England
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Allena has a ribeye with an Ali hull.
I saw it for the first time couple of weeks ago on the nacho run.
Seemed all ok. Don't know how old it is though.
Allen are you gonna chip in??? :-)

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Old 26 January 2014, 11:09   #13
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Length: under 3m
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I know Ribcraft offer Alloy Hulls as an option....although as you'd imagine they do cost more.
I heard about some they did for 'BAE' for a certain foreign 'Defence force' ..they were designed to be unmanned,completely remote control!...and carried a Chain Gun!
Lighter and FASTER than the Fibre Glass equivalent,but quite a bit noisier underway.
There is someone on the Forum who has fabricated,by all accounts some outstanding Alloy Hulls too!not sure if he does them commercially, but if you pm me I'll put you in touch.
A clever Man learns by his mistakes..
A Wise Man learns by other people's!
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Old 26 January 2014, 11:40   #14
Country: USA
Town: Oakland CA
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I have an aluminum hulled RIB from Polaris Inflatables in Canada, but I have no info on the build (apart from a couple of fairly poor quality pics.) All 1/4" 5052 plate.

Not a RIB, but a guy I have seen built a large (26 or 28 foot) aluminum cat in his garage; Don't know full details (the guy wasn't real pleasant to talk to), but he used primarily 1/8" plate. Apparently, the guy got his welding skills down by building the trailer first (and the welds supported this), then the boat to fit the trailer. Had a couple of 150 4-strokes for power, of which one was usually broken.

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Old 26 January 2014, 12:40   #15
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Country: UK - England
Town: Newcastle, Staffs
Boat name: Just Looking
Make: Ribcraft 5.85
Length: 5m +
Engine: Suzuki 140hp
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The Highfield rib that went round Ireland was ali and on show a the Southampton boat show. They had a good write up and they apparently performed well. My impression was that the welds were a bit rough and I was told they were built in China. I would rather have one built in Coalport!

Highfield Ocean Master Aluminium 500 package 50hp Honda…16,598 » Seaswift Boats
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Old 26 January 2014, 15:19   #16
Country: UK - England
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Originally Posted by petes View Post
I would love to see some photos! I would use that grade also (marine grade 5083) tough as old boots and welds nicely. I keep seeing references to 6mm thick for hull, but like you I feel that 4mm more than adequate.
Hi Pete, I have hundreds but have scanned a few for now.


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Old 26 January 2014, 17:48   #17
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Country: UK - England
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Boat name: 3rd Time Lucky
Make: Avon 620
Length: 6m +
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Originally Posted by Will75 View Post
Hi Pete, I have hundreds but have scanned a few for now.


Many thanks Will, thanks for your trouble, would love to see more!
Looks very interesting. I like the hull shape. How did it perform? Do you still have it?
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Old 27 January 2014, 05:47   #18
Country: UK - England
Town: Surrey
Boat name: Fugly & Rokraider 1
Make: Pac 22 & Porter 6.5
Length: 6m +
Engine: Ford 250 & jet,DT140
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 681
Hayling Rescues 8 metre RIB is around 10 years old and is made from Aluminium. It is on the water 24/7/365 days a year. It is just about to have its first structual repair, which is some corrosion under the engine mounts. Other than that is has been pretty well faultless over its life. It was built by Pepe's Boatyard at Hayling Island.
Aluminium is fine, providing it is done properly.
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Old 27 January 2014, 07:32   #19
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Make: Osprey Vipermax
Length: 5m +
Engine: Suzuki DF140
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I was an approved Aluminium welder in my previous life, in the power construction industry for a global infrastructure group which included many MOD projects.
Aluminium is a fine material to work with providing it is handled by a skilled tradesman. It offers many advantages in the power, aviation, and nautical fields.
I became an accomplished triathlete where choice of race bike material became a serious issue. Steel, Carbon fibre, Aluminium, Titanium were all tried and tested. I finally settled on Aluminium as my choice of weapon due to its lightweight, stiff, responsive bombproof properties and never looked back.

I now own an XPRO Rib with Aluminium hull and am more than happy with its performance and ride qualities.
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Old 27 January 2014, 09:30   #20
neil.mccrirrick's Avatar
Country: UK - England
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Make: Aluminium
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+1 ally hull. I'm happy with mine, in fact more than happy. Robust not worried about gel coat chips. Can beach and not worry

No real downside for me

They are not as pretty I guess but then again with a decent paint job

If you don't like my opinion, I have others.
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