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Old 16 March 2020, 21:53   #1
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Country: UK - England
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Boat name: Flatacraft
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Flatacraft Fans

Hi, new to this forum. Have been boating for many years and have a collection of old Flatacraft Ribs, I love them. Does anyone on here recall a boat called Ď Blue Buoy Racerí a blue Flatacraft F6 raced in the early years round Scotland with a variety of rigs, and even celebrities(Jim Davidson)
Would love to know of itís whereabouts if anyone has any info. Last I heard it went to Ireland some years back now.
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Old 03 January 2022, 05:12   #2
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Hi there
Amongst your collection of Flatacraft ribs do you have a Force 6? I bought one a few years ago with a Mercury V6 that has been converted to centre console unfortunately.
I'm wondering how many Force 6 models were built.
Cheers Kev
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Old 03 January 2022, 12:38   #3
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Hi Kev
Yes I have a Force 6. It’s been in our family for years. It hasn’t hit the water for a while now due to other commitments but I plan to get it back afloat this year. The Force 6 first came into production 82-83 and was built through to 95, not sure total quantity manufactured but would estimate at least 50 units and almost every one of them would be different in one way or another. I also wouldn’t mind betting they all still have years left in them. Flatacraft built them with strength in mind. Love to see pictures of your set up. Where is your boating location? Chris
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Old 03 January 2022, 19:07   #4
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Hi Chris
Thanks for the informative reply, glad to hear there other force 6 owners out there.... is yours original with seating layout etc?
Our nearest rivers with slips are the Adur and Arun and I normally trailer to Littlehampton although I belong to a club in Shoreham with beach launching into the Adur suitable for 4x4's
As a RIB newbie, I nearly bought a Humber from Paul Lemmer who was most helpful and during a phone chat and told me how solid the force 6 was back in the day.

I went away feeling sensible but after surfing Ebay, Gumtree and Schpock one night after beer, I bought a bit of a mechanical liability as I'm a huge fan of the halcyon days of big 2 strokes, both motorcycles and outboards and what with my newly owned force 6 being powered by a late 80's 2 stroke V6 150 Merc, it was irresistible.
I subsequently discovered the gear housing was split due to corrosion and the engine has been a running project to get reliable with notorious rotting loom being replaced...new reeds, carbs, stator, trigger, switch boxed
coils blah blah blah... the good/even compressions across the cylinders are the only thing that stopped me having a nervous breakdown!!
It has decent hy-drive steering. ��

The thirsty engine now sorted, I have developed an appreciation of how well the RIB is built and it handles great!! Mine seems to have had some transom web reinforcement and looks absolutely solid.... not sure if the previous owner thought he had a 200hp hence the work.(it is a 150 motor with a 200 cowl)
This spring I am rewiring the whole wiring system which seems to have been very well thought out, just with very, very messy execution.
It has a seriously looking dual battery system with split charging and has obviously had a lot of money spent on components so I'm going to thoroughly enjoy making good. (and neat)
Sorry to ramble, pics will follow.
best Kev
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Old 03 January 2022, 21:44   #5
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Old 03 January 2022, 22:22   #6
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Here's a couple more pics showing the reinforced webs and the helm, she was a bit dirty.... and last of all, the little SIB that started the addiction.
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Old 04 January 2022, 08:07   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Slimriddim View Post
As a RIB newbie, I nearly bought a Humber from Paul Lemmer who was most helpful and during a phone chat and told me how solid the force 6 was back in the day.
Paul sold me a Force 6 with twin Yamaha 50's on it about 10 years ago. Still had the side by side seating, a rare beast of a boat.
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Old 04 January 2022, 12:34   #8
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That sounds like a interesting setup, I can imaging those Yamahas were quite a tight fit between the tubes.
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Old 06 January 2022, 19:12   #9
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Looks great Kev. Looking at the pictures the boat has had a few modifications in fit out. The console and jockeys arenít original, the tubes have different cap ends but the bow section looks identical so itís possible the cap ends have been replaced at some point( these are an Achilles heel on these boats)

There were very few Force 6 with white tubes, I can only account for 2 that were built and strangely, one for Roger Taylor(Queen) and another for yacht designer Tony Castro. Strangely enough the rubbing strake colour scheme on yours looks like the one Tony Castro had. I think his had a dark blue or black hull. His boat originally had blue tubes but he rejected them and the blue material rubbed off on his clothing so Flatacraft swapped them for white. The blue tubes Iím talking about were eventually fitted to a later Force 6 called the Western Wizard, this is the boat Tim in thread above (Hi Tim) purchased from Paul Lemmer.

Anyway thatís enough anorak chat. You have a solid boat there and one that will last the journey. Great to meet up at some point, myself and a few others have Flatacrafts and we use them all along the South Coast and beyond. One of these friends happens to be the son of Tony Lee-Elliott who owned Flatacraft so thereís always good useful boat chats. Like you I love everything original so mine are all strapped with original 80-90ís Yamaha 2 strokes. The layout of my Force 6 isnít conventional, it has 2 stand up bolster wrap around seats as tyr boat was modified from standard to a race boat. Itís got a Yam 200 on it and hasnít been used for 10 years(criminal I know), work and other commitments seem to get in the way.

What are your plans with the boat this winter? I see you have done lots of engine work, great to keep these old 2-strokes alive
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Old 06 January 2022, 19:49   #10
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Wow!!
I am so, so grateful for your knowledge, it means everything and gives me encouragement, it's on the small ships register and for £35 I think it was, they said they could give me a record of almost provenance I suppose....
The tubes a getting tired with 3 patches but she holds air for weeks.... my dream would be a low hrs 140 Yam bit it goes fine with the old mariner - through holeshot feels epic to me.
Winter plans are to rip out the panel on the helm, fit new carling switches, a GPS speedo, a total Rewire of all the gauges and a new trailer with proper transom support.
Once again, thank you for the info, it means alot.
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