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Old 07 February 2008, 13:05   #1
TonyC's Avatar
Country: UK - Wales
Make: XS // Delta
Length: 6m +
Engine: 60hp // 2x90hp
Join Date: Feb 2007
Posts: 213
New RIB Opinions

ok, so as a centre we're looking to purchase a new 5m RIB to be used as a teaching platform, PB2 courses and for fleet safety cover.

I've been working on it today, and so far were looking at:

XS 5m
Humber Assault 5m
Humber Destroyer 5m
RibCraft 4.8 / 5.3

I already have a Honda 50HP 4/s engine in storage that can go on the back of it, and just basically looking for peoples opinions on the different boats. I'm currently favouring the XS Rib out of the four, otherwise possibly the Destroyer. I reckon the Ribcraft 4.8 would be a tad small, and the 5.3 maybe a bit big for the engine i have.

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Old 07 February 2008, 13:15   #2
Country: UK - Wales
Town: swansea
Boat name: Too Blue
Length: 8m +
Engine: Suzuki DT225
Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 12,791
I did my PB2 in a Ribeye about 5m with a Yam 80hp 4 stroke. It was great fun and the instructor really drives it hard - we were out in a Force 5 with some big waves and were airborne most of the time. He has had the boat a few years now and no probs - he's very pleased with it.

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Old 07 February 2008, 13:19   #3
Country: UK - Scotland
Make: HumberOceanOffshore
Length: 8m +
Engine: Volvo KAD300/DPX
Join Date: Oct 2002
Posts: 4,851
I did my advanced in a Ribcraft 4.8 and when it was bumpy it was out of the water more that it was in it. It reminded me why I'd bought a bigger boat...
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Old 07 February 2008, 17:01   #4
Country: UK - Scotland
Make: Ribcraft
Length: 5m +
Engine: 90hp
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 380
I've got a Ribcraft 5.3 with a 50 and it's a bit underpowered. On my own at WOT I can squeeze out 26knts (just) but add anyone else and more like 23knts. A full boat of students and you'd be talking 20knts.

I believe the Humber destroyer is a bit bigger (width) than assault and I can't recall but I think when I talked to Sue at humber it had a different Vee (deeper or more chines ?) - humber owners will be able to correct me on this one! Assault is rated to something like 75HP and destroyer is 90hp. I imagine the destroyer will have similar performance to the Ribcraft with same engine.

There is an XS RIB sitting close to me in the boatyard and they look pretty beamy as well. I would not be surprised if it was similar weight / performance as the destroyer.

When I did a load of digging looking for my boat I had pretty much the same boats as you in my list. I reconned (and this is a personal opinion!) the humber was a really solid boat and would take years of abuse (popular with divers around my part of the world). The Ribcraft was better finished with more options available. Depends what you are looking for I guess and also what kind of layout you want. RC5.3 you can fit 2 double jockeys side by side behind a single jockey console. I think this was possible on the destroyer 5.3 (again humber would be able to clarify). I also wanted an underdeck tank. Humber often have boats on the website (I guess cancelled orders) that are going for a good price so may be worth a look there.

My friend has just got a 5m humber so it will be interesting to see what the difference is between the boats!

Good luck!
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Old 07 February 2008, 17:24   #5
Country: UK - England
Length: 6m +
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 1,850
The 4.8m Ribcraft we use for safetyboating/kids courses was new in 2006, and I reckon it is one of the best sub 5m hulls around.

Very dry, feels very secure in the rough stuff - only downside is they do get a little twitchy at high speed. Nothing dangerous (not like a searider chine walking!), just as you'd expect from a small light boat.

Ours has a 60hp 4-stroke on it, and I suspect if the Honda is lighter, you wouldn't see much performance difference.

Can't fault the ribcraft build quality, support, or aftersales either. They don't seem too concerned with sales at the moment, mainly because they have a quality product, and their order books are full!

I'd go Ribcraft again.
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Old 08 February 2008, 03:14   #6
Pete7's Avatar
Country: UK - England
Town: Gosport
Boat name: April Lass
Make: Moody 31
Length: 9m +
Join Date: Aug 2001
Posts: 4,837
Tony, you could add the Solent 5.4 to that list, Same hull as the Ribtec 5.3m. Used to have one with 4 divers and kit aboard, no problems and stable.

Ribnet is best viewed on a computer of some sort
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Old 08 February 2008, 04:30   #7
Country: UK - Scotland
Boat name: Wildheart
Make: Humber/Delta Seasafe
Length: 5m +
Engine: Merc 60 Clamshell
MMSI: 235068449
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 4,539

I assume from the list you're not keeping it in a "standard single " garage? The Destroyer won't fit through the door (as won't either of the Ribcrafts) if so!

For what it's worth, my boat is not far off it's 30th Birthday, and is still going strong .....
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Old 08 February 2008, 05:13   #8
Country: UK - Scotland
Town: Glasgow
Boat name: Riberty
Make: xs 650
Length: 6m +
Engine: suzuki 175
MMSI: 235063328
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 377
Hi, i have not used the 5m xs however i have used the 5.5 with a 90hp 4s and would recomend them for a number of reasons;

Quality of build
Performance on the sea
Comfort for teaching - pleanty of space to move about and store gear / stability
Possibly most important - Price

In fact i liked them so much i bought one - xs 650
My brother in law who was sold on getting a Humber destroyer for diving is now specing his xs

Only advise would be if your going to get any electrics installed and you go for the under deck trunk - get them to install them as it was a pain of a job to get any wires down after engine cables are in.

Of course all the boats in the list are good but i know where my money would go.
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Old 08 February 2008, 07:11   #9
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Ian M's Avatar
Country: UK - England
Town: New Milton
Boat name: Jianna
Make: Osprey
Length: 6m +
Engine: 200 E-TEC
MMSI: 235076954
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 1,903
What to Choose!!

As others have said the XS 5.5 is a nice boat. Very dry, nicely turned out, and handles well, although in my case its aeronautical abilities were often tested; on many days out more so than any hydrodynamic qualities
The only very slight issue I had was slow speed handling; at very slow speeds it would wander slightly. In all practical senses it was not a problem, just meant a little more working at the wheel when trolling. Might just have been the 90 Opti I had on the back? Aftersales service is also very good.
The smaller XS's (5.4m and below) are less beamy than the bigger ones.
Have you considered some of the smaller Ospreys? The smaller ones seem to have the same sure footed handling displayed by the bigger ones in the range.

Dust creation specialist
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Old 08 February 2008, 09:06   #10
Country: UK - England
Town: Brum
Boat name: UTV
Make: zodiac FR
Length: 3m +
Engine: 2 stroke 15hp
MMSI: 999
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 379
I assume from the list you're not keeping it in a "standard single " garage? The Destroyer won't fit through the door (as won't either of the Ribcrafts) if so!
With the tubes deflated and no A frame my ribcraft 4.8 fits in a 1950's single garage no problems could even inflate the tubes once its past the door.

Big waves, small boat ;)
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