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Old 14-05-2019, 15:34   #31
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Re: Lets talk inflatable boats

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Originally Posted by cj88 View Post
Just curious, I often see people talk about choosing fibreglass over aluminium because of ease of repair by the owner. How many aluminium ones have actually ever needed repair? It is so much more durable than fibreglass which may well need repair from time to time. if there was a hole punched in an aluminium hull one would have to wonder just how much worse the same hole would be in a fibreglass one and how big a repair job that would be. You can still do an epoxy patch repair on an aluminium hull that will hold until you can get it welded.
I don't know about aluminum but I work with FG very often with my boats and cars and it's very easy for me to fix things, even big jobs. With aluminum, I would have to pay someone and it might be expensive. I don't even want to know if the damage is close to the fabric.

I did a search after learning about tubes ungluing from the aluminum and found some people having the same problem, didn't see anyone with fg hulls with that issue. I did that search today and haven't really checked in depth the same issue with FG.
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Old 14-05-2019, 16:46   #32
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Re: Lets talk inflatable boats

The aluminum has never gotten hot on us, but maybe because that part is in the water and aluminum is a very good conductor of heat?
Only real reason to go with aluminum in my opinion is weight.
As far as repair if you wack something hard with aluminum itís going to dent, fiberglass will crack.
But really, how many have ever had to do a hull repair on a dinghy?
Not many Iíd expect.
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Old 14-05-2019, 16:50   #33
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Re: Lets talk inflatable boats

Itís been my experience having owned many inflatables that the rigid fiberglass or aluminum hulls shall by far outlive the inflatable pontoon potion of the vessel.. So thatís said I would buy Hypalon with either one and base my choice on weight vs cost. Iíve had my best luck so far with Achilles. A lighter color like white also seems to handle the tropical sun better.
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Old 20-05-2019, 06:34   #34
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Re: Lets talk inflatable boats

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Originally Posted by Wellcraft26 View Post
Hi everyone, new to the forum.

Unfortunately I need to start looking for a new boat, I went on a maiden voyage on a Johnsen 11 and that boat sucks big time, didn't like it at all, very unstable so now I'm looking for an inflatable boat with a hp rating of 15hp to 20hp and 4 to 5 person capacity, what should I look for. I'm familiar with fg bottoms but I know there are aluminum one too. What I like about fb that I can always fix it myself. Back in the 80', the popular ones were zodiac, Avon, Achilles, at least in my area.

I have been doing some research the past week or so and understand the difference between PVC and Hypalon so I decided to go with Hypalon. We live in Ga and do our boating in a lake and the occasional trip to Jacksonville Fl, that's with a whaler 15 but with the inflatable boat, we are expecting to use it more every time we visit FL, especially in the Tampa area. The main use would be for our son to start learning and so he can play in our cove as much as he wishes, we already have a 15hp engine. Although the boat would be used only about 6 months of the year I would like to get something of good quality as our plan is to keep it as long as we can. Will make a cover for it to use during the week we don't use the boat and when we store the boat in the winter time as I really like to take care of my stuff. During the summer we would keep it on a jet ski lift and winter on its trailer.

I've been looking at AB 9vs, Ab 9vl, Caribe c9x, Achilles and now Highfield but with this last brand I don't really feel that comfortable since they are basically new in the game. I know probably I don't need this more expensive brands and might be overkill for us but I do want a long lasting boat. I would like to spend the least if possible and that's why I'm here for recommendations. I do would like to have FG or Aluminum hull, would love to have a double hull and locker but depending on price. The brands and models I mentioned are more than I would like to spend (we are having a hard time spending that much) but I will buy if that is basically the best options. I know we could save some money by going the PVC route but after some reading, I don't really want to even consider it.

I used to have a zodiac back in the late 80's and it was a good one back then.

I'm not looking for anything fancy, just nice very good quality long lasting inflatable boat.

Thanks for any help for any input.
Don't buy west Marine .I did and it's falling part 14 months. Hypalon.poor customer service.
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Old 20-05-2019, 07:52   #35
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Re: Lets talk inflatable boats

I am on my third AB, this one aluminum, and loved them all. Really like the double floor.
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Old 20-05-2019, 09:21   #36
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Re: Lets talk inflatable boats

Quote:
I'm looking for an inflatable boat with a hp rating of 15hp to 20hp and 4 to 5 person capacity,
You appear to be looking at 9 1/2' (approx) boats which are rated for 4 people and a 15 hp. Is your larger boat a WellCraft 26? Do you want to use this as a dinghy? What are the logistics of towing it, vs rolling up if as a dinghy?

I have used inflatables for over 57 years. Only one was a RIB. It was an Avon 12 1/2', with a bow compartment, double hull and rated for a 25 hp. We winched it over the stern on a trailer roller/SS 1" solid stock and onto a cradle on the aft deck. We needed the 25 hp if we had 4 people and dive gear or dogs.

I wonder if 15 hp and 5 people (or even 4) will plane the 9 1/2' RIB? Currently I have a 9 1/2 Avon (PVC), air floor, which I have owned for over 15 years--I keep it rolled up between uses and have a single davit to hoist it onto the roof of the 25' pilot house boat I use for cruising currently. I think that 5 would be crowded in a 9 1/2' boat. This boat has been used 2 months out of the year, with 3x a day trips to the shore--and still in good shape. Mostly in the salt water/sand beaches of FL, and rivers/ lakes all over the USA.

My experience with the RIB was in Alaska for 4 years at least 3x a day for 6 months out of the year taking dogs ashore. Then a trip down the coast and thru the canal, too Pensacola. Often there were oyster shells, rocks etc. At the end of each season, I put another layer of sacrificial mat with epoxy and over coated with epoxy/aluminum flakes to cover any wear just at the "V" of the bow. The boat was probably over 25 years old when I sold it--and still in good shape.
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Old 21-05-2019, 11:10   #37
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Re: Lets talk inflatable boats

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Originally Posted by Wellcraft26 View Post
Thanks for replying, I read something about that and I believe AB is doing it that way for that reason if I'm not mistaken. Something tells me to just go with AB but the price tag is what it's holding me back. I would like either the AB 9VS which is the fg version with a locker but I see is at $4653 or the AB 10AL but its almost $6? which is the same but aluminum and a bit bigger with a 20hp max hp.
Didn't AB have tube/fiberglass separation issues?
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Old 21-05-2019, 11:48   #38
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Lets talk inflatable boats

Quote:
Originally Posted by cottonsail View Post
Didn't AB have tube/fiberglass separation issues?


I believe it was the aluminum boats, and Iíve heard it was only the 2016 boats, not certain, thatís hearsay.
Complaints I have heard about weíre fixed under warranty.
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Old 23-05-2019, 19:31   #39
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Re: Lets talk inflatable boats

Thanks everyone for their input, in the end, I ended up getting more than I was looking for. I bought an AB 11dlx with a 40hp Yamaha in great condition. We took it to our local lake and had a blast and my 12-year-old son loves it. I used to own a wellcraft 26 for the member that was asking if I own one but I own a Carolina classic 28 now.

Thanks again for the help.
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Old 14-06-2019, 10:43   #40
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Re: Lets talk inflatable boats

Greetings and welcome aboard the CF, Don S, and Loon.
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Old 08-06-2020, 13:48   #41
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Re: Lets talk inflatable boats

Revitalising this thread to ask about PVC vs Hypalon. Is this still an issue? I note that most tent, canopy and building (like stadium soft tops) use PVC materials.

Our PVC True Kit catamaran dinghy is coming up on two years of near constant exposure (albeit with a rain cover when up on our davits) and we donít see any deterioration or loss of strength.
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