Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
 
Old 23 April 2008, 04:08   #1
Member
 
Country: UK - England
Town: High Wycombe
Length: no boat
Join Date: Apr 2008
Posts: 14
Getting into Zap/Thundercats

Hi, This is my first post here but I have spent some time looking at some of the threads on here so I hope I'm not covering old ground for you guys.

I'm looking at the possibility of getting a 4m SIB/SLT like a gemini zx-1 or ceasar thundercat. I am wondering if it would be worth me going for an older hull for my first boat so I can learn without worring that I'm going to break anything expensive if it all goes wrong!

I can possibly spend 2.5k on hull, trailer and engine now and then trade up next summer or I could wait until next summer and have 4k - 4.5k to spend. I am allowing for additional items on top of these prices such as RYA Powerboat 2 course I am doing next month and safety equipment/handheld vhf etc so the amounts I have to spend will be purely for the hull, trailer and engine.

I am not looking to race immediately, more for fun at littlehampton & west wittering and also to take on holidays to the south of france.

So, what do you guys think? should I get one now and learn on it, then trade up to a better rig... or just wait and get one next year that will be that much newer/better condition?

Any advice will be appreciated
__________________

__________________
LiquidA$$et is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 23 April 2008, 04:38   #2
Member
 
benc's Avatar
 
Country: UK - England
Town: Southampton
Boat name: Intrepid
Make: Tornado
Length: 7m +
Engine: Twin 150 Yamaha HPDI
MMSI: 235066402
Join Date: Mar 2005
Posts: 1,319
Send a message via Skype™ to benc
I think you will struggle to a zapcat/thundercat for your budget. However, there seems to be one in Dorset which is for sale for 2,000 - but says it has a split in one of the boards. I am sure you can buy new boards from www.zapcat-racing.com.
__________________

__________________
benc is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 23 April 2008, 05:31   #3
Member
 
Country: UK - England
Town: High Wycombe
Length: no boat
Join Date: Apr 2008
Posts: 14
Yes, this is one that I was looking at and also a 2001 zapcat ended with no bids on ebay the other day for 2500 and was the Happy Racing Teams second boat for 2007.

Are most parts generally replaceable/fixable or will a hull reach a stage where it is unfixable? Does the PVC degrade over time?

I dont mind things going wrong because I'm not racing, but I dont want a lemon either!
__________________
LiquidA$$et is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 23 April 2008, 05:39   #4
alt
Member
 
Country: Ireland
Town: Galway, West Eire
Make: Cranchi
Length: 5m +
Engine: 2 x Volvo KAD300
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 661
Send a message via MSN to alt
I was in your exact same shoes a few months ago, I wanted to buy a new toy and decided on a Ceasar Thundercat.

I ended up buying a new one though, and haven't regretted it... seriously fun machines!
__________________
alt is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 23 April 2008, 05:51   #5
Member
 
benc's Avatar
 
Country: UK - England
Town: Southampton
Boat name: Intrepid
Make: Tornado
Length: 7m +
Engine: Twin 150 Yamaha HPDI
MMSI: 235066402
Join Date: Mar 2005
Posts: 1,319
Send a message via Skype™ to benc
Most, if not all, parts are replaceable, tubes will last a long time too.

Ex race boats have generally been hammered.. however, a good thing about the zapcat raceboats, the believe engines cannot be modified, they have to be factory standard to race. They are 50hp engines, and I measured the speed with Gray and I in mine, and we got about 40.1 knots. - Im not light either!

They can be scary beasts when you're on your own. I have done a few trips from Warsash to Cowes by myself in the zapcat, and although a lot of fun with "wheelies" ... there are times when you hit waves and you wish you had some ballast up front to bring the bow down again!


There are some cool movies on you tube, and www.zapcat-racing.com that show how fun the cats are!
__________________
benc is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 23 April 2008, 07:45   #6
Member
 
Country: UK - England
Town: High Wycombe
Length: no boat
Join Date: Apr 2008
Posts: 14
Thanks for all the replies guys, it is really appreciated. BenC I have seen a video of Gray in your zapcat I think, is it the black one with jaws painted on and a 'oh S***' underneath?

Alt, your gemini looks great, nice colour scheme too. A new boat would be the way to go but having just bought a new car and going to uni in September funds will be tight.

September would be the earliest I could buy, so probably best to wait until next year until I buy one for about 4k + as I wont get much use out of one if I buy this year.

I must have watched the youtube and other vids over and over for weeks now :-) Even been to some SA and NZ forums to see how those guys do it. There is just not much specific info around on owning/keeping these beasts!

What should I look out for when viewing them? Should I try to find someone who knows what they are looking at and take them with me or are problems easy to spot such as wear and tear etc?

Also, I will need to store indoors at all times which means that it will need to be deflated after every use. I understand that will be a bit of a pain but would this cause the boat to wear more quickly? I could imagine consantly folding up the tubes and instering/removing the floorboards would cause more wear than just leaving it inflated between uses? Also is it possible to dismantle the trailer for storage at all?

My current list is as follows, can anyone see if I have overlooked anything?
Zapcat, engine, trailer
Saftety equipment, helmet, wet/dry suit
Handheld waterproof VHF, flare pack like ones used by kitesurfers
RYA Powerboat 2 course
12 months fully comp insurance

Thanks again
:-)
__________________
LiquidA$$et is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 23 April 2008, 08:08   #7
alt
Member
 
Country: Ireland
Town: Galway, West Eire
Make: Cranchi
Length: 5m +
Engine: 2 x Volvo KAD300
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 661
Send a message via MSN to alt
You're diong the right thing - plenty of research

The SA and NZ forums are great, lots of experienced guys over there - Just remember that they'll be trying to squeeze eevery last knot out of it

I was giogn to buy 2nd hand but decided to new for 2 seasons:
1) Personal - I'd never bought a new boat before
2) The majority of 2nd hand ones were raced, hence the b4lls driven out of them

For 4k you should get a package no problem. If you're not buying until September, may aswell wait until the next spring to buy - it'll be too cold if you're out in the winter and could take the enjoyment out of it

I deflate mine a little after each use, especially the hijackers - they run at around 9psi fully inflated so it's advisable to let teh pressure off to increase the life of the seals/valves etc.

I am delighted with my Ceasar. Mullacott marine kept me in communication with the assembly etc. and provided pics whenever I wanted.

At first I didn't want the red boat, but now that i'm used to it I love it (I wanted blue but 6 week wait) because it all matches. The red on teh boat and engine match, and the grey tubes go with the black engine
__________________
alt is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 23 April 2008, 08:13   #8
alt
Member
 
Country: Ireland
Town: Galway, West Eire
Make: Cranchi
Length: 5m +
Engine: 2 x Volvo KAD300
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 661
Send a message via MSN to alt


[YOUTUBE]CDI4Y-0VB54[/YOUTUBE]
__________________
alt is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 23 April 2008, 10:47   #9
Member
 
Country: UK - England
Town: Buckingham
Make: Ribcraft 4.8
Length: 4m +
Engine: Mariner 75
Join Date: Feb 2007
Posts: 353
Have a chat with Neale (BS Motorsport) 01296 658 422 - they are at Westcott Venture Park (between Aylesbury & Bicester) which is only about 30 minutes away from you. He had quite a few Zapcats down there last year (he was racing them and building some very clever trailers). I have no sales connection with him or the company but they have serviced my car in the past !
__________________
BumbleAbout is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 23 April 2008, 11:35   #10
Member
 
Country: UK - England
Town: High Wycombe
Length: no boat
Join Date: Apr 2008
Posts: 14
cool thanks for the vids alt, something to tide me over till I get mine!!

Bumbleabout, thanks for the info, I had seen mention of him before but could not find any info other than his location, I will give him a call sometime.

Does anyone know of any events in the south of the UK anytime soon? This weekends T-cat worlds Scarborough event is just too far for me at the moment but it would be good have alook and get a feel for it all. I was hoping to try my luck to get a place as a co-pilot this season but still need to get my RYA course out of the way and most racers seem to be based on south coast but I wont be moving there until next year sometime. I suppose the worlds is a bit outta my league but you never know lol
__________________
LiquidA$$et is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 23 April 2008, 12:04   #11
Member
 
Country: UK - England
Town: Mighty Penryn
Boat name: Little Joe.
Make: Avon Searider
Length: 4m +
Engine: Honda BF50
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 8,869
What happened to the two blonde birds that race a Thundercat? 'Femme Farter' or someting similar.
__________________
Mollers is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 23 April 2008, 15:24   #12
Member
 
Country: UK - England
Town: High Wycombe
Length: no boat
Join Date: Apr 2008
Posts: 14
Can anyone say if there will be many zapcats and thundercats at RIBex in May?
__________________
LiquidA$$et is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 24 April 2008, 08:18   #13
Member
 
Daibheid's Avatar
 
Country: Ireland
Town: Cork
Boat name: Excalibur
Make: Excalibur + Zapcat
Length: 6m +
Engine: Merc120TDI,Tohatsu50
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 272
Quote:
Originally Posted by benc View Post
I think you will struggle to a zapcat/thundercat for your budget. However, there seems to be one in Dorset which is for sale for 2,000 - but says it has a split in one of the boards. I am sure you can buy new boards from www.zapcat-racing.com.
FYI this advertiser is one of those tossers who doesn't respond to emails or repeated voicemails. I pursued him for a week without a peep back so don;t hold your breath!

Great video Alt!

I'd be wary of the ex-race cats becasue they all seem to regularly wind up inverted trying to run on saltwater so even with stripping and flushing promptly that has got to be shortening the life of bores and bearings. Maybe they don't even strip 'em. I'm guessing they take the plugs out, drain the engine, oil tank and carbs, turn 'em over a few times with oil into every orifice and then start up and go.

It's probably better for the engine to get it restarted ASAP rather than pulling it to pieces hours/days later.Anyone on here know the post drowning zapcat engine routine?
__________________
Daibheid is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 24 April 2008, 08:48   #14
Member
 
Country: Canada
Town: British Columbia
Make: Gemini
Length: 4m +
Engine: 40hp 2 str
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 2,151
Quote:
Originally Posted by Daibheid View Post
Anyone on here know the post drowning zapcat engine routine?

Copied & pasted from here;

http://www.thundercatinflatable.com....board-t39.html


Start a flipped Thundercat Outboard

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

First of all you need tools for the job and should always carry these on board just for this job.

Tools (for Tohatsu recovery)
1. Spark Plug Wrench
2. Medium Flat head screw driver
3. 5 or 6 Medium Zip ties
4. Medium Phillips head screwdriver
5. Pliers with side cutters

Once your boat is back up the right way

1. Remove Spark Plugs - Don't drop these overboard if you are not on land!

2. Pull the lower crankcase rubber pipe off, it's the one that is at the very bottom of the power head under and behind the accelerator cable. Water should come out of the brass nozzle. (Thanks to Riviera for that great tip)

3. Undo each carbie fuel bowl screw (1 on each carbie) with flathead screwdriver until fuel drips out (you don't need to take them right out)

4. Squeeze your fuel primer and watch the fuel come out of each cabie. Keep priming gently until you do not see any white looking fuel on the pan of your motor(under bottom carbie). Once all water is clear from cabies, tighten the carbie bowl screws up (don't burr the screw heads).

5. Remove kill switch from motor, put motor into neutral.

6. Pull motor over until no water is coming out of the crankcase nozzle(see step 2 for nozzle location). This could take upto 30 tries.

7. Attach crankcase hose back onto its nozzle.

8. Undo fuel line from fuel pump. Thats the line going to the bottom carbie from the fuel filter.

9. Undo Carbie air box cover (6 phillips head screws).

10. Clean your spark plugs with fuel from the undone fuel line by gently squeezing the primer and washing plugs in fuel. Sit the plugs in the sun to dry off.

11. Squirt a small ammount of fuel into each carbie throat.

12. Reconnect fuel line to fuel pump and prime the carbies ready for a start.

13. Replace the top 2 spark plugs finger tight (you might have to remove them again) and connect them to the coils. Leave the bottom spark plug out for now. (Thanks to Mark Pantarotto for that tip)

14. Attach kill switch.

15. Full choke, throttle on 25-50%

16. Try to start motor, if you hear it cough and splutter like it is about to start, back the choke right off and try again to start with 50% throttle.

17. If motor starts, give it a few revs - it will run very rough as water will be forced out of the bottom cylinder spark plug hole. Do not run the motor for more than 15 seconds! If the motor does not start, you will have to go back to step 1 and start again.

18. If the motor did start, put the third plug in and tighten all three with plug wrench, double check your carbie screws are done up, put carbie air box back on and check everything is back together.

If you cannot get the motor running after performing the above steps 2 or 3 times then you may have bigger problems than simply water in your motor.

The steps above are a general outline, some guys do more, some do less. Some even tip there boats on there end to get the water out...I'm too lazy for that.

I and the club take no responsibility if you break/kill your motor or yourselves by following the above directions!
__________________
prairie tuber is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 25 April 2008, 02:45   #15
Member
 
Country: UK - England
Town: High Wycombe
Length: no boat
Join Date: Apr 2008
Posts: 14
I'm off to Southampton Powerboat and Rib show for the bank holiday weekend, hoping to see some thundercats in action! Anyone else from on here making a trip there?
__________________
LiquidA$$et is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 25 April 2008, 07:17   #16
Member
 
Cookee's Avatar
 
Country: UK - England
Town: Salcombe, Devon, UK
Boat name: BananaShark
Make: BananaShark
Length: 10m +
Engine: 2xYanmar 260 diesels
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 4,225
Quote:
Originally Posted by LiquidA$$et View Post
I'm off to Southampton Powerboat and Rib show for the bank holiday weekend, hoping to see some thundercats in action! Anyone else from on here making a trip there?
Yes we will have our record breaking race boat there and a slightly slower 6 metre RIB with a 115EFI on it!
__________________
Cookee
Originally Posted by Zippy
When a boat looks that good who needs tubes!!!
Cookee is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 25 April 2008, 13:01   #17
Member
 
Country: UK - England
Town: High Wycombe
Length: no boat
Join Date: Apr 2008
Posts: 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cookee View Post
Yes we will have our record breaking race boat there and a slightly slower 6 metre RIB with a 115EFI on it!
Great, I'll say hello on my way round. It looks like a great weekend, just not sure which day to make the trip down.
__________________
LiquidA$$et is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 25 April 2008, 15:26   #18
Member
 
Country: UK - England
Town: NE
Boat name: RedGazelle
Make: Gemini GRX420 SIB
Length: 4m +
Engine: Mariner 40 2s
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 105
Quote:
Originally Posted by LiquidA$$et View Post

......Also, I will need to store indoors at all times which means that it will need to be deflated after every use. I understand that will be a bit of a pain but would this cause the boat to wear more quickly? I could imagine consantly folding up the tubes and instering/removing the floorboards would cause more wear than just leaving it inflated between uses? Also is it possible to dismantle the trailer for storage at all?.....
:-)

Do you mean indoors as in a house, or indoors as in a corner of a garage?

I use a GRX420 (a zapcat with a bow - like a Ceasar Surf Cat) and would suggest that deflating a zapcat after every use is quit a bit more than just a 'bit of a pain'. I bought my boat (and a trailer that could be collapsed) with a similar intention and realised that deflating and storing away after each use just wasn't going to be an option if I was going to use it more than a few times a year.

I would really suggest finding somewhere to store the boat in the inflated state if possible.

Ed
__________________
Ed the Duck is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 25 April 2008, 22:21   #19
Member
 
Country: UK - England
Town: High Wycombe
Length: no boat
Join Date: Apr 2008
Posts: 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ed the Duck View Post
Do you mean indoors as in a house, or indoors as in a corner of a garage?

I use a GRX420 (a zapcat with a bow - like a Ceasar Surf Cat) and would suggest that deflating a zapcat after every use is quit a bit more than just a 'bit of a pain'. I bought my boat (and a trailer that could be collapsed) with a similar intention and realised that deflating and storing away after each use just wasn't going to be an option if I was going to use it more than a few times a year.

I would really suggest finding somewhere to store the boat in the inflated state if possible.

Ed
Hmmm this is what I was thinking, I dont really have anywhere to store something this big, and dont want to have to pay out to rent a garage. I will have to think about that one... Perhaps I could just rent somewhere for the summer but i havent got anywhere in mind yet!

How secure can you make one of these on a trailer? I mean, would I be able to leave it outside in a works yard chained & padlocked up under a cover for instance?

I dont know if anyone's seen this, but wow! :

http://www.yamaha.co.za/default.asp?loc=news&newsid=185
__________________
LiquidA$$et is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 26 April 2008, 01:47   #20
Member
 
Country: UK - England
Make: Avon Searider
Length: 4m +
Engine: Yamaha 50
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 5,636
Where abouts are you going to uni?
__________________

__________________
Avon Searider club on FB: https://www.facebook.com/groups/246399125778848/
Tim M is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off




Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 20:29.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
×