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Old 28 November 2001, 19:20   #1
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Avon 6.2 Mtr Adventure Open

I am in the process of buying a new RIB. This will be used for family cruising, but must be capable of handling rough weather if necessary. The cruising areas will be mainly around the Solent, with the odd cross channel trip and possibly sometimes around the Welsh Coast (Pwhelli ? (Spelling?) etc.

After looking at many makes and designs I have opted for a 6.2 Metre Avon with a Honda 130 4 Stroke, inbuilt SS fuel tank, consoles and seating for 6 on Jockey Seats, with the additional 2 seats in front of the console and the bow seat (both obviously for good weather). I will also be fitting the usual electronics - GPS (Not sure whether to go for simple GPS of Map type?), VHF, Fish Finder etc.

Knowing the strong opinions that are bandied around on this site I thought I would throw this open to comments ..........
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Old 29 November 2001, 03:18   #2
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I'm pretty sure that the Avon is a medium V hull, which will mean that it planes easily and is more economical than a true offshore hull at the expense of some comfort in the rough. Probably not a bad choice for the uses you have mentioned, but bear it in mind when you are on more adventurous trips!

The Honda 130 is a heavy engine, and wouldn't be my first choice for this boat. Here are some weight comparisons to look at (they are for 115's, but it gives you some idea)

Yam 115 2-stroke - 163kg
Evinrude 115 Ficht - 170kg
Yam 115 4-stroke - 181kg
Honda 115 4-stroke - 225kg (the 130 is the same weight btw)

Have you sea trialed the boat with your choice of engine? If you have and you are happy with it then go ahead, if not then make sure it is the right choice.

Is your seating from the standard Avon range? ie the wide console with front seat and 2 x 2 person jockey seats? If so, the jockey seats only have one backrest, so make sure you will be comfortable using them for any length of time with two people on them and solo.

It looks like Avon use standard seats and consoles from Outhill, so there may be other options available, depending on who is fitting out your boat.

What is the capacity of the fuel tank? Make sure it's big enough to easily get you across the Channel as refuelling at sea from jerry cans is a real pain!

Just as you thought you had made all your decisions . . .

John
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Old 29 November 2001, 03:32   #3
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Thanks John for your reply.

I am somewhat confused by the difference betwen Medium and Deep V hulls.

I understand the easier planing, therefore reduced fuel useage, but what actual difference will it make in a heavy sea if you just have to be out there - will the boat cope with it, and just how much more uncomfortable would it be than say a deep V'd Ribcraft 5.85 or similar?

I have not actually sea-trialled the boat with a Honda 130 - I took Avon's advice that this engine was well within the weight tolerances and a good choice for the boat. I will make further enquiries.

As you say - just when you thought it was safe to order ......
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Old 29 November 2001, 03:57   #4
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Powerboat hulls are always a compromise. The most efficient planing surface is flat, like a tea tray, but image who well that would work in practice! At the other extreme is a very deep V hull, which cuts through waves rather than bouncing over them. This is more comfortable, but needs more power to push it out of the water onto the plane and keep it there.

A medium V RIB takes the middle line, and is very versatile. The boat itself will cope with just about anything that you can put it through -- all the Avons I have seen have been well made -- so you don't need to worry about whether or not it will get you home. For a Channel crossing though, I would choose the Ribcraft over the Avon any day. I expect that you would find it difficult to keep up with the Ribcraft (or any other deep V design) doing a Channel crossing in moderate conditions.

However, that isn't to say that it's the wrong boat for your needs. Offshore capability isn't your primary requirement after all, and on those occasional cross Channel trips everyone will be comfortable at different speeds anyway. My first crossing was in a 5.7 metre RIB, accompanied by a 7.5 metre -- our speeds and comfort level were vastly different, but it really didn't matter.

As for the engine, it will certainly do the job but I think you would be better off with less weight at the back if you can manage it. The Camel Trophy boats were 6.5m Ribtecs with Honda 130's on and they worked OK, but it doesn't mean that it was the best engine choice for the boat!

Decision decisions!

John
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Old 29 November 2001, 04:15   #5
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Graeme..........

Brian Elliott (who posts here as "brian") is your man for advice as he used to own a 6.2m / 130hp combo. Having driven it back from the Scillies in a F6 I can say that the hull is fairly capable but not as comfortable in that type of conditions as a deeper V. Depends what sort of ribbing are you going to do. Do you want to be out in an F6!

The Honda 130 is far too heavy for that boat IMHO. I found that it a big sea the weight would mean that the boat would land tail first which is very uncomfortable! I would go for a lighter weight 4 stroke (Yam 115 for example) or a Merc Optimax 135 or 150.

BTW John K made a typo...the camel boats are 6.5 m Ribtecs not 5.5m! < which I've now corrected . . . JK >

Alan
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Old 30 November 2001, 13:16   #6
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Graeme - yet another possible engine choice

Sorry to throw yet another possibility into the ring, but you seem to have in mind a similar rig to the type I was looking for early this year.

I have been running my Raider 650 Rib (Ribcraft 6.5) which has a similar configuration (abet slightly less seats) with a Mariner 115hp 4-Stroke (a mere 175kg) since early summer.

I had originally intended to go for a Mariner Optimax 135 or 150, but after sea trialing the boat with the 115hp 4-Stroke engine I was immediately impressed by the amount of torque and the quietness when just ticking along (the quietness being important when you have a long trundle back up the river at 4 knots to base).

It has to be said that the good fuel (and oil - i.e. none) economy has been a real bonus for the pocket!

So far I have done about 60 hours on the engine, as free time has been a bit limited and am still thoroughly pleased with it.

As an add on to go with your other post:
I am also using a Garmin 235 GPS/Plotter/Sounder unit (since kind of replaced by the 238 model (shipping Nov 2001) with the facility to upload Mapsource data from CD-ROM - a great feature if you want to upload US road maps! ) and an ICOM 501 VHF. Both have been pretty good so far.
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