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Old 04 August 2018, 18:01   #1
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Zar Mini Rib Pro any use?

Ok, so I posted a while ago asking about ribs for sale for a friend of mine.
He had several leads but none that suited unfortunately.

He has decided that he wants a “Family Rib” and his OCD is putting him off buying second hand.

He’s asking my opinion on the above mentioned “Zar Mini Pro”

I personally don’t know anything about them, it may be fine for what he wants, have you guys any more info on them? What would the resale value be next year if he wants to upgrade?

Thanks in advance guys!👍
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Old 05 August 2018, 05:23   #2
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I don't know the RIB design. Apparently Italian designed, German tested. European built. Looks like what I might call a Mediterranean RIB.

I'm not sure what a "family RIB" really means. Is that 2 Adults and 2.4 children? What are they doing? A nice sedate cruise round to a beach - anchor up, pop ashore, BBQ Lunch, return? Wave jumping with teenagers? Towing inflatables etc? Inland Lough, Sea, Waves etc

In a show room that boat will look like it accommodates 6 people without parking anyone on a tube. On a flat calm sunny day on an inland lake - I'm sure that could be perfectly pleasant even at 25+kts. Add some chop and the three "seats" in front of the wheel become unpleasant at best.

Back benches are one of those things people love or hate in my opinion, and I suspect that may depend on who sits on them. Helm can't easily watch the back seat. The back seat is darned close to the engine. Disobedient Children near engine worry me!

The Bolster Seat for helming is not my personal choice either. There are times I prefer to stand, but if its more than a short journey that gets hard work on legs and I dont think a bolster is any more shock protecting than a seat. But I tend to be doing safety boat/coaching type stuff, so lots of sitting around drifting...

Google tells me this is an aluminium RIB. These are relatively new kids on the leisure block, and as a result the RIB.net jury has been out a bit over them. X-Pro were the first player but don't seem to have penetrated the market as well as expected (I suspect in part because their max size was 4.2m)- but a very capable boat by all accounts. Highfield were the first to really hit with bigger boats and opinions vary from great value for money to poor build finish. I've driven a Highfield and really wanted to like it. I like the idea of needing less engine because it is lighter. I remain undecided on the durability of the hull - may be "stronger" but if it needs a major repair it will be a major job not a DIY task for the average joe. However having driven one - it isn't on my shopping list. I'm not quite able to put my finger on what I didn't like. I suspect the V is too shallow - it felt like it slid sideways at lower speeds. I still want to drive a 4.2m XPRO.

If you are buying new - nothing will beat getting out on one and trying it.

There are other aluminium players - often in the small end of the market, aiming for the "hang it off davits" tender brigade. Hence the weight saving is important, but in car terms that means you can get away with calling a Mini Countryman a 4 x 4. Doesn't mean if you want the ability of a Landrover you'd buy it... But if he has a bikini clad family who just want to look good on it at the beach...

Presume they are PVC tubes.
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Old 05 August 2018, 06:15   #3
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Can't comment about that particular boat, but when we were in Croatia last year, Zar boats were very popular. They make some huge cabin ribs much loved by Italians that cross the Adriatic to cruise the Croatian coast. They do seem to be built for the climate in terms of colour & layout.
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Old 05 August 2018, 08:44   #4
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Zar is made in China.
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Old 05 August 2018, 11:40   #5
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Thanks guys, my first question to him when he asked for my opinion was “what exactly are you expecting from the boat and what do you want to use it for?”
Horses for courses and all that.
Personally it wouldn’t be my cup of tea but as mentioned above, if he just wants to use it on a flat calm day with the family then it will be ideal, but if it starts to chop up a little I think he will miss the jockey seats and deeper V.

Is there a resale market for these things? I suspect if he does commit to the purchase that come next year he may want to change
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Old 05 August 2018, 12:55   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nordburg2001 View Post
Thanks guys, my first question to him when he asked for my opinion was “what exactly are you expecting from the boat and what do you want to use it for?”
Horses for courses and all that.
Personally it wouldn’t be my cup of tea but as mentioned above, if he just wants to use it on a flat calm day with the family then it will be ideal, but if it starts to chop up a little I think he will miss the jockey seats and deeper V.

Is there a resale market for these things? I suspect if he does commit to the purchase that come next year he may want to change
That would be a very good reason not to buy new
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Old 05 August 2018, 14:30   #7
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Zar is made in China.

I’m not sure all are, but apparently that one is - there is a review of small ribs including this Zar in this month’s powerboat and rib mag. The article lacked any real substance or critique (it seems the editorial policies haven’t changed) and seemed to mix boats half the price which is odd to me, especially since the narrative doesn’t really elaborate on the value for money (eg resale expectations, build quality etc)

I’d want to sea trial it with that standing bolster in uk conditions before buying. For 15k I think you could do better. In fact for 15k you could buy something much more suited to a family!
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Old 05 August 2018, 14:38   #8
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X-Pro were the first player but don't seem to have penetrated the market as well as expected.

Really? Did ribeye not predate them by some way? There may have been others especially in the antipodeas...
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Old 05 August 2018, 15:27   #9
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I think he’s trying to convince himself on the seating arrangements. I’m with you guys, if I was spending £15k on a Rib I think I’d have myself something a little more sea worthy. I appreciate your input
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Old 05 August 2018, 15:54   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nordburg2001 View Post
I think he’s trying to convince himself on the seating arrangements. I’m with you guys, if I was spending £15k on a Rib I think I’d have myself something a little more sea worthy. I appreciate your input


If he's considering buying new now, with a view to swapping next year, he'll blow his brains out on the resale. He's either VERY rich or very silly. Either way, if I'd £15k burning a hole in my pocket, I wouldn't spend it on that boat, certainly not for UK use anyhow.
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Old 05 August 2018, 16:00   #11
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I’d say the resale value will hurt!
He has been very fortunate so far with boats, he’s either made a little profit or broke even, he’s very fussy, anything he owns sits spotless and well looked after. He does have deep pockets but ordinarily doesn’t let go of his money too easily....
He just wants something really tidy and he wants it ASAP. He’s been looking for months now and not managed to turn up anything suitable. I think he’s looking at the Zar as a last resort.
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