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Old 04 April 2019, 07:07   #1
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advice- what sib to buy

Hi all, new to the site. In need of some advice on what boat to purchase and heard that this was the place to come.

I am moving to indonesia for the summers and a sib is a must have on the island I will be moving to. Ive done some research and im torn between the excel volante sd 360/90 and the vanguard 365.

Considerations include that the boat has to be shipped to indonesia from the Uk so weight is a factor. Im leaning more towards the inflated deck over the aluminium due to ease of assembly and lighter weight with more comfort. However ive been told that the bigger sd bends at higher speeds? has anyone else found this? if so would the sd 360 be a better option.

The boat will be a daily run about, to take us to and from the surf spots along with a bit of fishing. Also once the boat is assembled it is like to stay that way until the end of the summer after which it will be stored out there. Bearing this in mind would i be better off with the aluminium deck and just biting the bullet on the extra shipping fees.

All advice much appreciated, cheers
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Old 04 April 2019, 07:18   #2
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If leaving it out there I'd just buy (locally) whatever the locals out there use - and it may be a hard boat is much more suitable?
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Old 04 April 2019, 07:44   #3
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Ye looked into that, it’s quite a remote island so they don’t build locally. Kupang East Timor is the closest big port. All expats tend to be on sibs and ribs, can order these out there but they all seem to be cheap Chinese made. Want something that’s gunna last.
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Old 04 April 2019, 11:25   #4
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Ye looked into that, it’s quite a remote island so they don’t build locally. Kupang East Timor is the closest big port. All expats tend to be on sibs and ribs, can order these out there but they all seem to be cheap Chinese made. Want something that’s gunna last.


Whatever you end up with, I’d go for Hypalon if you want it to last in a tropical climate. Don’t be shy with the 303 either.
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Old 05 April 2019, 14:57   #5
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Whatever you decide - sounds like a great adventure. Good luck with it.
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Old 05 April 2019, 16:21   #6
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Airdecks are a worthwhile compromise if you’re planning to deflate the boat after each use but If it’s going to stay inflated all season I’d definitely go for the aluminium floor.
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Old 06 April 2019, 04:12   #7
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Zodiac Grand Raid MKII (4.2m) with HD aluminium floor. Okay, they are £5-6k new, but they do come up second hand from time to time. Hypalon fabric, towing rings, inter-communicating inflation valves, inflatable keel, powered by 40-50hp.

The only boat you'll ever need.
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Old 06 April 2019, 10:47   #8
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Zodiac Grand Raid MKII (4.2m) with HD aluminium floor. Okay, they are £5-6k new, but they do come up second hand from time to time. Hypalon fabric, towing rings, inter-communicating inflation valves, inflatable keel, powered by 40-50hp.

The only boat you'll ever need.
The latest Grand Raids do not have inter-communicating inflation valves, at least my 2011 model didn't... C7s instead. Not sure if this has changed again after Milpro split away. The MKII went very well with a 30hp ETEC with 2 people, fuel and a lot of camping gear.
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Old 06 April 2019, 11:43   #9
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Zodiac Grand Raid MKII (4.2m) with HD aluminium floor. Okay, they are £5-6k new,

The only boat you'll ever need.
Still not heard any good reason why anyone wants a big heavy SIB that lives on a trailer, and this one is super expensive. Worst of all worlds and the last boat I'd ever need
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Old 06 April 2019, 12:24   #10
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Honwave T40 Ali floor would suit your needs
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Old 06 April 2019, 12:29   #11
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Still not heard any good reason why anyone wants a big heavy SIB that lives on a trailer, and this one is super expensive. Worst of all worlds and the last boat I'd ever need
I love my heavy SIB on a trailer and the best reason I can give you is it suits my needs perfectly.

Why did you get a small Mercury Ocean Runner.. IMO its not the best of RIBS ? In fact its the last boat I would buy. I doubt you will have it as long as I have had heavy SIBs on trailers.
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Old 06 April 2019, 13:54   #12
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I love my heavy SIB on a trailer and the best reason I can give you is it suits my needs perfectly.

Why did you get a small Mercury Ocean Runner.. IMO its not the best of RIBS ? In fact its the last boat I would buy. I doubt you will have it as long as I have had heavy SIBs on trailers.
I couldn't resist a bargain Gurnard. Was looking for something bigger. I doubt you've had the same heavy SIB all the years you have so why would I keep the same RIB?

The boat fits your needs. Great! So does mine. Your smaller boat has a rigid hull maybe you made a mistake lol.
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Old 06 April 2019, 14:38   #13
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Nope..no mistake in my behalf Limecc.. the RNLI also prefer heavy SIBs (D class for close inshore work)..possibly for the same reasons as me

“The Gurnard” Quicksilver 4.3 is now 14 years old and I have owned her for half that time. I could by a rib on a trailer tomorrow but wouldn’t as I have had my fill of heavy fibre glass boats over 40 years of owning various boats and they don't tick the same boxes as a heavy SIB on a trailer

I notice you have owned yours since November.. any decent trips under your belt yet ? Anyhoo Im now delighted you have the experience to tell me Im possibly wrong
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Old 06 April 2019, 16:06   #14
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No doubt a soft floor can take a knock Gurnard, but they also rip and tear, on our first outing in the big heavy Excel SIB we nearly came a cropper with a submerged metal spike poking up out of the murky tidal Trent. Close inshore work

I've been a boat owner for 38 years less than you and it took less than two years to hate the thing because of the weight. The RIB is a complete pleasure. Maybe I'd have a smaller SIB though and the Sevylor canoe is great. Should I have purchased a trailer for it? No. The thing would still flex and bend, would still have the prop cavitating air bubble forming under the hull at speed, would still bounce, skate and slap on the water, still be seated uncomfortably low down, still have the tiller steer with engine vibration, still get wet despite having a bow canopy, other stuff like sea temperature affecting the handling so having to top up pressure, etc etc.. So I'm a complete newbie. We have opposite experiences and I can't understand your reasoning why a RIB wouldn't work for you (or Jeff). You would do the same customizations but on a better base.

Came across the Ocean Runner by chance last year on holiday as our caravan neighbour had decided to upgrade after owning it from new for 6 years and he sold it me at a low dealer trade-in price. I couldn't lose money on it, just as well because the SIB cost me best part of £4K and I sold it losing a grand with just 20 hours on the engine.

We used the RIB for two weeks in September last year just before end of season. It does everything right. 27 knots, dry, comfortable, fast yet economical, I love the console and instruments. It performs well and is very balanced, you'd hate the jockey seat which makes it that way. You can grip it like riding a horse so a very secure feeling for my sea-fearing wife. Sadly I doubt we'll ever get the full use out of it but baby steps first and there's always hope (unless I go out on my own).

Ps. Was sarcastically referring to your f-rib 'mistake' which i believe is an excellent choice of craft.
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Old 06 April 2019, 17:23   #15
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No doubt a soft floor can take a knock Gurnard, but they also rip and tear, on our first outing in the big heavy Excel SIB we nearly came a cropper with a submerged metal spike poking up out of the murky tidal Trent. Close inshore work

I've been a boat owner for 38 years less than you and it took less than two years to hate the thing because of the weight. The RIB is a complete pleasure. Maybe I'd have a smaller SIB though and the Sevylor canoe is great. Should I have purchased a trailer for it? No. The thing would still flex and bend, would still have the prop cavitating air bubble forming under the hull at speed, would still bounce, skate and slap on the water, still be seated uncomfortably low down, still have the tiller steer with engine vibration, still get wet despite having a bow canopy, other stuff like sea temperature affecting the handling so having to top up pressure, etc etc.. So I'm a complete newbie. We have opposite experiences and I can't understand your reasoning why a RIB wouldn't work for you (or Jeff). You would do the same customizations but on a better base.

Came across the Ocean Runner by chance last year on holiday as our caravan neighbour had decided to upgrade after owning it from new for 6 years and he sold it me at a low dealer trade-in price. I couldn't lose money on it, just as well because the SIB cost me best part of £4K and I sold it losing a grand with just 20 hours on the engine.

We used the RIB for two weeks in September last year just before end of season. It does everything right. 27 knots, dry, comfortable, fast yet economical, I love the console and instruments. It performs well and is very balanced, you'd hate the jockey seat which makes it that way. You can grip it like riding a horse so a very secure feeling for my sea-fearing wife. Sadly I doubt we'll ever get the full use out of it but baby steps first and there's always hope (unless I go out on my own).

Ps. Was sarcastically referring to your f-rib 'mistake' which i believe is an excellent choice of craft.
I tend to agree with most of these sentiments, a rib will always out perform a similar sized sib. A sib isnt always lighter than a similar size rib when you look at the current aluminium hulled ribs.
Carrying a sib permanently on a trailer you loose out on its only advantage which is its ability to pack into a relatively small space.
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Old 06 April 2019, 19:45   #16
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I tend to agree with most of these sentiments, a rib will always out perform a similar sized sib. A sib isnt always lighter than a similar size rib when you look at the current aluminium hulled ribs.
Yup..totally agree with you there Beamish ..I am one hundred percent certain that is correct

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Carrying a sib permanently on a trailer you loose out on its only advantage which is its ability to pack into a relatively small space.
I totally disagree with that statement although I imagine that in your circumstances it is correct .

l can only hope the OP will excuse me adding to the thread as it is now going off topic...but perhaps some of the reasons may help ?


My circumstances dictate my heave SIB on trailer is sat in my driveway in full view of a public road. I dont live in a bad area but I feel that having an expensive outboard engine sat in view of the public would attract the wrong people to my house. Therefore the 25HP two stroke on my SIB is removed every time I park up the SIB in the drive. The boat is then covered by an old stained tarpaulin so no one looks twice at it. If I had a RIB on a trailer..the Outboard would possibly have to be bigger and this heavier.. also plumbed with remotes so it cant be lifted off. I sadly read a recent post where a RIB with engine had the OB stolen because of similar parking up...so please don’t think it does not happen.

At the end of the season I dismantle the SIB on its trailer..turn the trailer on its side and carry it into the back garden where I then replace the SIB for winter storage . Its out of sight and I consider it safe. The OB is stored indoors at all times. I cant do that with RIB on a trailer as it is a narrow three foot entrance to the back garden.

Six years ago I bought the SIB trailer and 25HP outboard second hand for £1300. It was all in pristine condition..the OB had done approx 75 hours. Its been faultless the past 6 years of my ownership. That works out at £220 per year. It has not stopped me going round the west coast of Scotland from the Solway Firth to Loch Laxford in the far north (with the exceptions of a couple of point I have yet to join example Ardnamurchan Point and Mull of Galloway) It has gone round Arran, Bute, Mull, Jura and Skye. Do keep in mind that I fully expect it to last another 5 years ..so it could eventually be around £120 per year. Have any of you done those journeys in a RIB on a trailer that costs you £220 per year?

I enjoy the challenge of small boat and if Im honest but please dont take offence..I personally find big boats as interesting as going on car ferrys. That is just me .. as speed means little..its the adrenaline rush I get going to places like Rona and Rassay in small inflatables that compensate where you possibly enjoy the speed aspect. I prefer taking my time and wandering along only meters from the rocks. In all my years at sea in small boats I have never sent a Pan Pan or Mayday call so Im not reckless although I am a skin flint

I dont worry if my boat gets damaged on shores. I have had a ball for £1300. If I had a RIB on a trailer..I may be like many RIB owners I know.. to scared to dent their hulls..then worry if a storm gets up overnight and its moored on anchor in an unfamiliar place

I have other reasons why I prefer a heavy SIB on a trailer but have wittered on long enough so others can see that people like myself who have SIBS on trailers are not stupid. In fact I see more SIBs on trailers that RIBs under 4 meters on trailers around the Scottish coast.

Hopefully others will see a pattern that some people want SIBS on trailers..after all that I presume that is why so many are made and sold.

However I do appreciate they are not for you.. because all your circumstances are different from mine.
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Old 07 April 2019, 01:19   #17
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There is a very simple answer if you have the money and space have both. They are both very different experiences. I totally agree with The Gurnard and watching his videos who could deny the, use, fun and enjoyment he gets from his small boats.

Also Ribs are great I have a 4.5 with a 60 on the back and in truth it is only a little bigger than Donnys 4.2 and it is great fun in a different way. I also have a 24 ft Sealine, a 17 foot bowride, a Itiwit Canoe and those are fun also. My point is that all boating in my view is fun from a small coracle to a 40 ft gin palace.


I like the Gurnard do like the smaller end. I just wish I was nearer to Scotland and the Midges did not exist
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Old 07 April 2019, 03:20   #18
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There is a very simple answer if you have the money and space have both.
you missed a third essential ingredient - time to use multiple boats. There is little point in having a flotilla that barely gets used but still needs maintained and sucks up the time you could be afloat with TLC.

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I just wish I was nearer to Scotland and the Midges did not exist
If the midges were not there the place would be heaving with yappy tourists instead. I’d rather put up with throngs of the tiny airborne attackers than face “Tarquin” asking “mummy where is the theme park, whilst stuffing his face with a mcdonalds”
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Old 07 April 2019, 04:01   #19
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*Posts gratuitous photo of his only boat*
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My you have a big one that must mean you are better than all the rest of us put together...… Clever you
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Poly.... How many engines do you have. I have 10 marine to look after., 6 car, 40 + model aircraft, 3 motorbikes and some 8 other engines. I am afraid I don't have time for pointless work
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Oh and I forgot to add to the list 12 or more Gas Turbine Jet Engines...… Know anything about those do you !
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Also Ribs are great I have a 4.5 with a 60 on the back and in truth it is only a little bigger than Donnys 4.2 and it is great fun in a different way. I also have a 24 ft Sealine, a 17 foot bowride, a Nitwit Canoe and those are fun also.
Jeeze Poly, can you sort the forum volume? I was woken early by a horrible racket - initially thought it was thunder but it was just the Admiral there reviewing his fleet of Miniature Heros.

P.S. Keep those midgies good and hungry!
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Old 07 April 2019, 04:11   #20
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you missed a third essential ingredient - time to use multiple boats. There is little point in having a flotilla that barely gets used but still needs maintained and sucks up the time you could be afloat with TLC.



If the midges were not there the place would be heaving with yappy tourists instead. I’d rather put up with throngs of the tiny airborne attackers than face “Tarquin” asking “mummy where is the theme park, whilst stuffing his face with a mcdonalds”
We all have exactly the same amount of time it is just a matter of how we choose to use it.... All of mine are used throughout the year.

However you don't have to use an item to enjoy having it.... Another point you might have missed.

Maintenance is not a problem if you are sensible about it and do what needs doing not what doesn't.....
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