Hi again big A
I was in the very same position you are now in late last year and i really liked the build quality and sea keeping of the ribcraft range so i contacted jason Purvey at Ribcraft and he invited me and a friend down to their open day at Portland last October to try out the range of boats, first we went out in the 4.2 inside the harbour, it was ok but it didn't handle the chopp outside very well, then we swopped up to the 4.8 and this was much better and a more dryer ride, thinking the 4.8 was the boat for me we went back in and swopped up again to the 5.85
WOW what a difference that extra metre or so actually made to the handling and ride of the boat, we stayed dry and the boat plowed right through everything outside the harbour very well.
Ok so reality hit home when it came to the money and the cost of buying the boat and fiting it out as i would have wanted it, and in the end i had to settle for a very cheap alternative to a new boat and build the boat up to how i want it to be.
I also worried that not having a lot of experience i'd not be able to launch and recover the boat easilly on my own, in fact i'd needn't have worried as i found it very easy to recover my 4.7 Avon on my own and dont think an extra metre would have made much difference at all, the Ribcrafts are a bit more heavier but i dont think this makes a lot of difference on a good slipway and with a bit of practice it gets easier.
Now my point is if i could have gone for the bigger boat i would have done, now because i know i could handle it and use it on my own and now because even in a relatively short period of time i'm getting more adventurous and want to go a bit further exploring my own coast line, so if you can buy a 5.85 for the same price as a 4.8 i'd suggest going for the 5.85 instead, ok so you have to decide where your going to keep it as it wont fit into a standard size garage like a 4.8 will and you need to decide what your going to tow it with as well, i believe you can still tow it behind a car but do you really want to ?
Anyway this is the fun bit buying boats, once you get your first repair bill your'll regret ever getting into boats....but thats boats for you !!!