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Old 03 September 2016, 08:25   #1
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New to RIBs

Hi - I have just joined the forum. I gained my PB2 last year, but have not done any since. I live in Scotland and am keen to explore the coasts on both east and west next year - and would like to be able to put in some hours to gain experience early in the season before I do any trips away from harbours.

So I have a few questions which it would be good to get some feedback on:
  • are there any places to hire RIBs for a day or few days in Scotland?
  • if I decide to buy a RIB, it will almost certianly be a used one - but how old a RIB is it sensible to buy... is 10 years old too old, even if it is in good nick?
  • do hulls last longer than tubes? and can you replace the tubes if that is the case?
  • any other advice about getting started?
Thanks in advance
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Old 03 September 2016, 09:41   #2
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Don't know of anyone who'd hire out a rib......not to say there isn't.

Regards your other three questions...how long is a piece of string.
10years old, there are some cracking boats out there twice that age and some junk half that age.
Hulls can largely be restored, tubes might ultimately need replacing but you are talking about a "project" rather than a boat if it's needing that kind of work doing and the price you paid would have to reflect that.
Best to start with a budget and have a look to see what that'll buy you and don't get hung up on age, the condition & history is far more important. If it's second hand it won't be perfect but so long as you put aside a budget for the apparent & unforeseen a lot can be done to bring them back to spec.

Choosing a boat is a kind of "whittling down" exercise and where you end up depends on factors like where it's going to be used, how many people you anticipate taking out, what you're going to tow it with, launch by hand or by car & obviously how much fuel you want to be paying for.

Best throwing some ideas on here and get some pros and cons.
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Old 03 September 2016, 10:09   #3
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[LIST][*]are there any places to hire RIBs for a day or few days in Scotland?
Very little in Scotland. There are a couple of bare boat charter options on the west coast I think, but they are rather fancy, rather large beasts which may be far bigger than you are imagining and they carry an appropriate price tag! Because charter is a commercial arrangement it requires coding and coding requires a big boat, lots of (frankly on a RIB pointless) kit.

You used to be able to hire a SIB delivered to your house. Even that didn't look cheap last time I looked at the costs! It very much depends how much you'd use the boat, something like 6 hires would more than buy the SIB if I remember rightly. Equally 6 hires of the bare boat RIBs for a week at a time would give you more than enough to buy a 5m RIB in non-project condition.
Quote:
[*]if I decide to buy a RIB, it will almost certianly be a used one - but how old a RIB is it sensible to buy... is 10 years old too old, even if it is in good nick?
Condition is key. Tube material and how its been stored is important. Older boats need more work but there are Club Safety Boats that take a fair bit of abuse from careless volunteers, being used at least twice a week for maybe 40 weeks a year (so 80 days a year of use, maybe averaging 4 hours per day of actual use so 300hrs + year) that are still OK boats at 10years+ (i.e. 3000 hours) but expect them to look tired and expect the engine to be in worse state than anything else.

You'll find other (especially PVC) boats less than 10 years old with failing tubes, patches all over and seams failing
Quote:
[*]do hulls last longer than tubes? and can you replace the tubes if that is the case?
Hulls last well. If there is wood involved in the hull structure (under floor, transom etc) then that may be a limiting issue. Gel coat gets scratched and chipped but is repairable.
Tubes are replaceable. You should probably be expecting 5-600 per metre of boat length for a re-tube, with you taking the boat to them. Not sure what re-tubers there are up in Scotland so needs factored in. Its not really a DIY job except on some very select boats where the tube attaches to a rail rather than being glued on.
Quote:
[*]any other advice about getting started?
Storage? Size matters
Trailer? Car towing power matters
Engine?
Intended use?
Sea / Lochs?
Number of people intended? Sitting on tubes all day is not considered great even if the boat is rated to take 8 people but only has 2 seats
Safety kit (VHF, Life jackets, anchor, wet weather gear etc etc)
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Old 03 September 2016, 10:48   #4
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Quote:
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are there any places to hire RIBs for a day or few days in Scotland?
Your options are very limited in Scotland. What you are looking for is "bareboat rib charter". As far as I recall there is only:

Scottish Rib Charter
Redbay RIB charter West Coast Scotland skippered and bareboat

But check out this thread for more affordable options:
Bareboat hire

Quote:
Originally Posted by shiny
something like 6 hires would more than buy the SIB if I remember rightly. Equally 6 hires of the bare boat RIBs for a week at a time would give you more than enough to buy a 5m RIB in non-project condition.
yes but don't forget storing a boat, insuring it, maintaining the engine and trailer, launching and all the bits and bobs you need add to the total cost before you've even turned the key.
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Old 03 September 2016, 10:53   #5
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Many thank both Last Tango and ShinyShoe...

re Scottish RIB hire - that was my impression too, I just wanted to check that I was not missing anything obvious! So many thanks.

re age - that is really helpful too. My point re hulls and tubes was not to do one up myself (I doubt even I would go in one of those...) but if after a few years the tubes needed replacing but the hull was still good what my options are - so that feedback is reassuring.

re other points - storage is still to be determined, but with a trailer I should find somewhere. Re size I have, 3 kids so we would be 5 people all in and quite possible a couple more on a day out, so I think I am looking at 5.5+m probably 6m - with seating for 8 ideally. I think that starts to suggest an engine of at least 90hp - would that be right?

factoring in the life jackets and other non-negotiable safety gear you mention and it becomes more and more certain it'll have to a used boat!
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Old 03 September 2016, 11:05   #6
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thanks Poly - the hire would just be to get some more experience - am keen to have one to 'play' with eventually - though I know the bank manager wont approve!
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Old 03 September 2016, 11:55   #7
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Re size I have, 3 kids so we would be 5 people all in and quite possible a couple more on a day out, so I think I am looking at 5.5+m probably 6m - with seating for 8 ideally. I think that starts to suggest an engine of at least 90hp - would that be right?
5 people in a 5.5 mtr........no problem, 8 in a 6mtr would be a bit of a stretch.
It's not going to sink but you might struggle to find a boat that size on the second-hand market with an eight seat configuration. Best count the seats because you don't want people sitting on the tubes when you're underway.

Your pretty much spot on with the engine. If you're buying second hand chances are the outfit will already be pretty well matched up but I'm sure someone hear will put you right if you're about to buy something daft.
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Old 03 September 2016, 12:34   #8
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Best count the seats because you don't want people sitting on the tubes when you're underway.
When ribs were invented essentially everyone except the helm sat on the tubes! If its for short distances in calm weather with a helmsman who is not trying to show off then it works fine. If you are jumping waves, or going long distances then a proper seat is much more important.

Bear in mind that seat immediately in front of the console are usually called "suicide seats" with good reason, so if counting I would dismiss anything ahead of the helm.
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Old 03 September 2016, 14:31   #9
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When ribs were invented essentially everyone except the helm sat on the tubes!
Yeh. and I was one of them...and like the others sitting on the tubes we were divers wearing wetsuits (in the olden days divers used to wear wet suits). and we were adults (in terms of age) but it didn't mean it was clever.

Yes in some circumstances it's probably ok but those circumstances are more likely the exception than the rule.

Interestingly if you look at photos from that era it's common place for the crew of pleasure boats not to be wearing lifejackets. Again, I would have been one of them. I survived those days more down to good luck than good management and I'd rather not encourage anyone to follow my bad habits.
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Old 03 September 2016, 15:05   #10
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Yeh. and I was one of them...and like the others sitting on the tubes we were divers wearing wetsuits (in the olden days divers used to wear wet suits). and we were adults (in terms of age) but it didn't mean it was clever.

Yes in some circumstances it's probably ok but those circumstances are more likely the exception than the rule.

Interestingly if you look at photos from that era it's common place for the crew of pleasure boats not to be wearing lifejackets. Again, I would have been one of them. I survived those days more down to good luck than good management and I'd rather not encourage anyone to follow my bad habits.
Yeh but more realistically if there are 8 out, its probably because its a nice flat calm sunny day and someone is tagging along with the usual family to go to the next beach for a BBQ than to make a 70 mile ocean going passage... ...I suspect.

So if you can find a 2 jockey seat side by side with a bench you could be OK, better still a double x 2 jockey plus bench or 3 x 2 jockey...

With a 90 on it it ain't gonna fly with 8 on board. That's no bad thing!

Bear in mind if the 3 visitors are not boaty types you need gear for them too. ;-)
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