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Old 07 July 2016, 09:03   #11
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Why the obsession with top speed? Boats are always a compromise, your pursuit of top speed at this level of boating, will inevitably compromise handling further down the speed range. Unless you're fortunate enough to be cursedblessed with permanent flat calm waters, the times when you can run flat out will be far and few between. Many would argue that RIBs are at their best when it's lumpy & challenging, that's when you need control & holeshot, not top end. If all you want is speed, you're looking at the wrong kind of boat. IMHO of course😏


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Old 07 July 2016, 09:17   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pikey Dave View Post
Why the obsession with top speed? Boats are always a compromise, your pursuit of top speed at this level of boating, will inevitably compromise handling further down the speed range. Unless you're fortunate enough to be cursedblessed with permanent flat calm waters, the times when you can run flat out will be far and few between. Many would argue that RIBs are at their best when it's lumpy & challenging, that's when you need control & holeshot, not top end. If all you want is speed, you're looking at the wrong kind of boat. IMHO of course😏


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He's on the Great Lakes on the Chicago side.

It's pretty flat most of the time, but it can get really nasty in less than an hour.

Lake Michigan, I've started a dive with glassy water conditions (seriously, 0-2 mph wind, no waves at all), then an hour later, surfaced in 1 meter swells. The wave ratio is quite high too, they're not slow rollers...they're fast, choppy swells.

RIBs are great for top speed, thanks to their power to weight ratio... less GRP = more speed per hp!
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Old 07 July 2016, 11:38   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pikey Dave View Post
Why the obsession with top speed? Boats are always a compromise, your pursuit of top speed at this level of boating, will inevitably compromise handling further down the speed range. Unless you're fortunate enough to be cursedblessed with permanent flat calm waters, the times when you can run flat out will be far and few between. Many would argue that RIBs are at their best when it's lumpy & challenging, that's when you need control & holeshot, not top end. If all you want is speed, you're looking at the wrong kind of boat. IMHO of course��


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Basically, I am trying to see if the higher cost of a 550 hull is justified. Top end isn't the only thing I'm worried about when it comes to performance, acceleration and maneuverability are just as important in my eyes. Maybe it's ill advised of me to try and gauge overall performance characteristics by comparing top speed, but what else can you really try to slice and dice between the two numbers-wise?

No one seems to really know what a Bayrunner 500 with a 70 horse motor on the back will do. A dealer told me I shouldnt expect speeds higher than what US Boat Test saw on theirs with only a 50 horse (37mph), which is confusing given that it would be a 40% increase in power...

The thing keeping me from getting a pre-outfitted 550 is the seating, it just doesn't look that great for "sport cruising" as Zodiac puts it. I was just hoping someone knew how I could outfit a 550 hull so that it'd be a more comfortable craft for speeding around in. I also don't know if I can get the overall length of a 550 on a trailer to be under 20 feet even with the addition of a trailer tongue hinge, having to rent a 30' long storage bay is far more expensive than a 20'
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Old 07 July 2016, 14:17   #14
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The thing keeping me from getting a pre-outfitted 550 is the seating, it just doesn't look that great for "sport cruising" as Zodiac puts it. I was just hoping someone knew how I could outfit a 550 hull so that it'd be a more comfortable craft for speeding around in. I also don't know if I can get the overall length of a 550 on a trailer to be under 20 feet even with the addition of a trailer tongue hinge, having to rent a 30' long storage bay is far more expensive than a 20'
You know, Zodiac offers multiple seat configurations of those boats... You could order it with a factory installed jockey console or a stand up console with a bolster if you wanted.
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Old 09 July 2016, 07:39   #15
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Defender has the Zodiac Pro 550's in numerous configurations on their website. They generally have a good selection in stock also.
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Old 10 July 2016, 23:33   #16
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If you want to run a fast rib in chop with passengers then I think sideways facing bench seats at the front are probably the worst possible design.

There's no way I'd be sitting on there at 40 knots.

I've no idea why you'd want to overpower it before you've even tried it, giving you warranty issues. Zodiac know that HP is not = weight.
I'm over the over-powering prospect, no mechanic would do it, boat it plenty fast enough anyway.

I'm curious though, what would you do for seating up front then? A forward facing bench? Two bucket seats? Whatever it may be, it must: provide ample seating for two adults, be secure feeling enough for 40-45mph operation, and not take up so much space that the bow becomes cramped. This may be a tall order, but getting the 550 over the 500 would be pointless IMHO unless I can figure some great solution for forward seating.
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Old 10 July 2016, 23:37   #17
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Defender has the Zodiac Pro 550's in numerous configurations on their website. They generally have a good selection in stock also.
I'm not really a fan of Zodiac's Touring or Classic Pro setups, which are the two non-Bayrunner choices. The Touring is like having a jet-ski seat behind a center console, I just don't get it. And the classic has just one seat.
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Old 11 July 2016, 08:25   #18
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I'm not really a fan of Zodiac's Touring or Classic Pro setups, which are the two non-Bayrunner choices. The Touring is like having a jet-ski seat behind a center console, I just don't get it. And the classic has just one seat.
Pro Open 550? Different boat, but it'll give you the seating you're looking for.
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Old 11 July 2016, 08:40   #19
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The jockey style seating (jet ski) is very popular among sailing coaches as they are centered and can easily reach either side of the boat if need be. At the same point it can comfortably run standing up while straddling that seat.

Nothing says you have to use a factory or dealer set up either. Since the seats and consoles are bolted in your layout choices are wide open. That is one of the reasons why Zodiac had sold so many Pro model boats over the years.
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