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Old 15 October 2012, 17:18   #1
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Why are RIBs so expensive?

As A Broker, Rib owner/enthusiast and Dry Stack owner (with over 120 ribs) I have to ask why Ribs are so expensive?

EG. This week I sold: -
A Fletcher 238 with twin 4.3 Mercruiser engines, decent twin berth cabin, bimini, all over covers stove, toilet, etc for 8,950

And

A Zodiac 550 Pro Open Rib with a Suzuki 115hp outboard for 9,450

If you saw the boats side by side you would have to ask why?

Having been involved at looking at importing Ribs from China (don't worry I didn't) I just cant see where the money is being spent. If you saw a typical Rib with its tubes off you would be appauled at how little is left!

By the same token, I know plenty of people who have tried to produce cheap ribs and have come a cropper!!

If I look at (for example) a new Ballistic 6.5m retailing at over 50K, I have to ask where the money goes?? What sort of car could you buy for 50K???? It just doesn't add up!!!

Don't want to pick on any one make as I'm sure the same is true of most mainstream Rib manufacturers.

Is it truely down to economy of scale?? or am I missing something here?

Comments?
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Old 15 October 2012, 17:20   #2
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Tubes cost a lot, as I've discovered!!! :-)
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Old 15 October 2012, 17:26   #3
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I think that most of us feel the same way lets hope that someone can come up with an answer.
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Old 15 October 2012, 17:45   #4
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What I find amazing is that I first started looking a ribs two years ago and was offered that same ballistic for 33 k so what has happened in the last two years to bring on such a rise ? My next door neighbour builds ribs for the mod in Portsmouth and is in the purchasing department he tells me that they have had the same conversations about the leisure market and believe that if they had built my rib they would have at least 50% nett profit !
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Old 15 October 2012, 17:48   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dry Run View Post
As A Broker, Rib owner/enthusiast and Dry Stack owner (with over 120 ribs) I have to ask why Ribs are so expensive?

EG. This week I sold: -
A Fletcher 238 with twin 4.3 Mercruiser engines, decent twin berth cabin, bimini, all over covers stove, toilet, etc for 8,950

And

A Zodiac 550 Pro Open Rib with a Suzuki 115hp outboard for 9,450

If you saw the boats side by side you would have to ask why?

Having been involved at looking at importing Ribs from China (don't worry I didn't) I just cant see where the money is being spent. If you saw a typical Rib with its tubes off you would be appauled at how little is left!

By the same token, I know plenty of people who have tried to produce cheap ribs and have come a cropper!!

If I look at (for example) a new Ballistic 6.5m retailing at over 50K, I have to ask where the money goes?? What sort of car could you buy for 50K???? It just doesn't add up!!!

Don't want to pick on any one make as I'm sure the same is true of most mainstream Rib manufacturers.

Is it truely down to economy of scale?? or am I missing something here?

Comments?
IMHO, as I said back in May in this Hydrosport Performance Ribsl thread, there are too many manufacturers making too many variants and hence trying to recoup design/development/tooling costs over too few boat sales.

Mind you, I got slated for my opinion back then so I dare say I'll get a similar response now
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Old 15 October 2012, 17:50   #6
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Well thats a question I have been asking myself for some time.
why the hellish cost now for a rib.
I was looking at getting a new hull when my tubes went but my god there expensive for what they are.
simple 5.5mtr GRP, tubes and a console and your talking at least 7K just for that. !
my whole rig cost 10K back in 1991 boat engine and trailer.!!!. and the layout, construction and designs are still the same. but made in other countries like south africa etc to keep the cost down but it doesnt at all.
to get the same thing now your talking arround 20K. the trailers are about the same price so its all engine and boat costs.
doesnt make sense as the hulls should be cheap. I think i should start building them myself. :-)
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Old 15 October 2012, 17:54   #7
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Most hardboats are mass produced using cheap imported labour. The best ribs are hand built in the UK using expensive skilled British labour and quality materials.

Dig into a any mass produced Yank sports cuddy and the chewing gum a tissue paper that they're built of will soon become apparent.
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Old 15 October 2012, 18:37   #8
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Id love to know why too!

i know its not as expensive but to me my thundercat cost me 3.6k & a new boat & engine package is about 8k, which isnt alot compared to your big plush ribs, but i sometimes think whats the moneys gone to?? its just 2 tubes, 2 floor boards, a fiberglass nose cone & box tubing transom!? I know most of the cost is made by the engine but new the hull still costs 3k+ !!
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Old 15 October 2012, 21:03   #9
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Those that like keeping up with the Jones's are the main reason new vessels are so expensive, like..." I couldn't help but notice that i'm considerably richer than yow" type.
Personally I wouldn't buy new even if I won the roll over. there's some really good bargains out there now in the second hand market, and as already mentioned it only takes a new bit of bling in many cases to make a second hand RIB look new again. whereas to refurb a hard boat would be much more.
Plus remember RIB's and not forgetting SIB's are the ultimate affordable safest vessels around, other wise the forces etc wouldn't have so many, imagine say the RNLI with a binliner lol me thinks.
As I say the second hand market are almost giving there RIB's away, You only have to look at the for sale section here on RIBnet to see the bargains that can be found.
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Old 15 October 2012, 22:49   #10
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I'll have to go with the hand labor, I have no idea how they build tubes, repairing them is hard enough and I have a framework to work with. Not sure if that is a cause or effect of the smaller production numbers.

Also boats are luxury items. toys to most people. Why price them lower? If you got extra cash to blow on a toy I'm gonna try to get all I can out of you.

Jason
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