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Old 18-07-2016, 03:57   #1
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Location: Southern Westchester/Northport LI
Boat: Shiva - Contest 36s
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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" 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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Location: Florida Keys, Bahamas Bound
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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.

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Old 13-08-2016, 07:39   #4
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Location: Southern Westchester/Northport LI
Boat: Shiva - Contest 36s
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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 kit...large waterproof bag...

Here is a pic.
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