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Old 18-07-2016, 03:57   #1
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Highfield Aluminum Rib Classic 310

First impressions of the Classic 310 alum RIP.

I have owned a series of inflatatables since 1995 beginning with an Avon Redcrest and finally 2 Aquapros aluminum RIBs. The last Aquapro, which was poorly manufactured in China began coming apart and was finally replaced last week with the Highfield C310

Classic 310 - Highfield Boats

The boat is available in Hyaplon or PVC.

construction is very robust and very neat
6 welded on lifting rings
double floor
powder coated aluminum
two seat locations (comes with one seat)
cushioned removable waterproof seat cover with multiple zippered pockets
two welded bow eyes
2 robust towing D rings
bow locker (accommodates 3 gallon fuel tank)
non skid on floor and bow locker
very robust rub rail
17" Ø tubes, large diameter alum oars (stowed inside, strong oar locks)
multiple hand hold straps on top of tubes glued on sub assembly (good!)
includes water proof boat cover, repair kit, pump, and heavy duty waterproof bag
velcro loop to manage painter inside a port bow

Boat appears light and fast.... planes easily with 2 adults with an 8hp
robust hand holds at stern and bow. Dry! Bow locker makes a great rear facing seat.

Cost for the PVC is very reasonable. Hypalon version is about $1,000 more.

This is an Italian design, with parts apparently manufactured in Poland? and assembled in China. My second Aquapro had paint adhesion problems and I see AB now does the alum. boats without paint. We'll see how this one holds up. Expectation is 5-8 yrs. Tows well... bow seems to be a bit high (drier?) Interior volume is larger than the Aquapro of the same length

I am very pleased with everything about this boat... especially the bow locker to keep the fuel (hose runs under the the sole). I would have preferred a darker gray... this is almost white and shows dirt too easily.

OAL first impressions... 2 thumbs up! We'll see how long this lasts.
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Old 03-08-2016, 09:02   #2
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Re: Highfield Aluminum Rib Classic 310

I am in year 3 with a Highfield C310-no problems. Tows easily and I used bottom paint and after a 5 week cruise, no growth on the bottom.
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Old 03-08-2016, 11:26   #3
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Re: Highfield Aluminum Rib Classic 310

AB quit powered coating their hulls, the hypalon was glued over the powder coating and once it failed or the powder coating came up or bubbled which happens it comes unattached quick and very hard to repair.
I know Inmar, marine is making heirs that way but no feedback on longevity. I'd be wary of powder coated aluminum hulled ribs myself. If it comes with a good warranty and your near a service center then I'd go for it. I have seen them and they do look robust and very well made.

Sent from my PLT1077G using Cruisers Sailing Forum mobile app
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Old 13-08-2016, 07:39   #4
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Re: Highfield Aluminum Rib Classic 310

I don't expect more than 5-6 years of use... which is fine. If the paint does not stay adhered to the aluminum.... you're in for massive problems.

We're see how this holds up.

Functionally it's a very nice boat. I decided not to spend the extra $$ for hypalon because of the issue you mentioned which I did experience.

Boat came with a cover, seat storage pouches...repair kit...large waterproof bag...

Here is a pic.
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Old 11-09-2017, 23:21   #5
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Re: Highfield Aluminum Rib Classic 310

Sandero,

Any further thoughts on your 310? We are considering getting one and would appreciate any insights now that you have had it for a while.

Thanks
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Old 11-09-2017, 23:27   #6
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Re: Highfield Aluminum Rib Classic 310

We're very happy with our Highfield. Very stable, lighter than fiberglass so easier on the davits even though larger in size, planes well although our 15hp Mercury 2 stroke has difficulty planing with more than two adults. So can plane with up to 450pounds of adults, no more in our case. No issues so far and we went with PVC.

We purchased the steering console/bench seat option, very happy with the choice. No bottom paint, as it comes out of the water often enough.
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Old 11-09-2017, 23:32   #7
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Re: Highfield Aluminum Rib Classic 310

Thanks Ken, appreciate the response! Is yours the 310 as well? Does it have the single floor or the flat double floor? How long have you had it? No maintenance or warranty issues?

We have a 15HP 2-stroke that we will be using with whatever we get... interesting to hear you can get it up on plane with no more than two adults considering that is the max HP rating for the 310.

Thanks again
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Old 11-09-2017, 23:58   #8
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Re: Highfield Aluminum Rib Classic 310

It has the flat double floor, I just went out in the rain to double check model number. We have a Highfield CL-360. Only two six month seasons on it, no issues at all, stored indoors during the winter months.

It's used daily six months per year as our car since we live only in anchorages. Plenty of room for groceries, folding Brompton bikes, and Burley Travoy folding trailer.
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Old 12-09-2017, 00:08   #9
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Re: Highfield Aluminum Rib Classic 310

Thanks for that, really helpful. It looks like your model is 27 lbs more than the 310, plus more given the steering console, and has a max HP rating of 25 HP. Glad to hear it is holding up under real cruising conditions use! This has swung me towards the Highfield over the AB we were also considering.
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Old 12-09-2017, 00:57   #10
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Re: Highfield Aluminum Rib Classic 310

For the cost difference in fabric, I could have purchased a second 360-CL so we went with the Valmex® PVC tube fabric.
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Old 12-09-2017, 15:49   #11
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Re: Highfield Aluminum Rib Classic 310

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kenomac View Post
We're very happy with our Highfield. Very stable, lighter than fiberglass so easier on the davits even though larger in size, planes well although our 15hp Mercury 2 stroke has difficulty planing with more than two adults. So can plane with up to 450pounds of adults, no more in our case. No issues so far and we went with PVC.

We purchased the steering console/bench seat option, very happy with the choice. No bottom paint, as it comes out of the water often enough.
Kenomac, you might consider a different pitch prop for that motor. We used to be marginal to plane with our Yamaha 15 2 stroke for 4, but changing props did the trick...and gave us a "spare" prop, too, so all good.

Ann
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Old 12-09-2017, 22:57   #12
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Re: Highfield Aluminum Rib Classic 310

Quote:
Originally Posted by JPA Cate View Post
Kenomac, you might consider a different pitch prop for that motor. We used to be marginal to plane with our Yamaha 15 2 stroke for 4, but changing props did the trick...and gave us a "spare" prop, too, so all good.

Ann
Good idea, I'll look into it.

Thanks

Ken
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