Originally Posted by chipko
I've also more or less decided to go for a CL380 and like most have never seen one in the flesh, so very grateful to Kaman for his photos and info.
While I'm OK making a decision based on spec sheets, I expect these boats will be fast and efficient but give a bone jarring bouncy ride in any swell/chop. No 71kg 3.8m rib with a shallow V (15 deg dead rise) will be anything other than harsh and lively when pushing on in these conditions. To be more seaworthy/forgiving you really need the weight and deep V of something like the small Seariders.
The Ribeye TS370 & 400 are very similar to the Highfield and I did consider these as well.
If your OK with more weight then the next step up would be something like the Mercury Quicksilver Ocean Runner 420 & 460. At around 120/130kg and deeper 20 deg dead rise these should be slightly better in chop. Getting too heavy to haul up the beach though and also need long shaft motors (up to 40/60hp - nice). I was also tempted by one of these but practically take you firmly into the fully trailered launch and retrieval category.
Personally, if you don't need to roll/fold up your boat then the lightweight aluminium hulled Highfield & Ribeye ribs provide real performance advantages over similar sized sibs, while still retaining the ability to be hand launched on transom wheels if required.
Excellent info, thanks Chipko.
I'm in no real hurry to change just thinking ahead. I always trailer my Aerotec now so this opens up different options for me.
Would like an SR4 just not sure I could launch one at low tide where I like to launch, so will have to compromise. I recently bought a 2006 X trail (for the wife, honest) to get me on the beach and it's great for retrieval at mid water up to high tide but I wouldn't want to launch at low water with it. So will probably be looking at one of the lightweight ribs that I can take off my trailer on the safe bit of beach and walk on launch wheels down the fairly short steep bit of beach.
Like I say retrieval will be easy with no need to drag back up the beach as I always land mid tide up.
Ill watch this one. Cheers.