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Go Back   SailNet Community > On Board > Gear & Maintenance
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  #1  
Old 01-25-2007
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High pressure zodiac

Does anyone have experience with zodiacs high pressure floor inflaitables. I'm looking at a slightly used CFR310 acti-v. I could get it for the same price as an entry level inflatable with a sectional plywood floor. And comments?
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Old 01-26-2007
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I asked the same question on another board and got one reply that was positive. Thy do look like a good alt to a rigid hull with better than roll up preformance. BTW, ot no bad replies, they are new ya know.
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Old 01-26-2007
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camaraderie is a jewel in the rough camaraderie is a jewel in the rough camaraderie is a jewel in the rough
I wouldn't want one in the Bahamas or Caribe due to coral but they DO perform quite nicely under power and are more convenient than solid floor models.
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Old 01-26-2007
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The inflatable floor models are almost as good as the RIBs when it comes to planing and tracking. You'll go faster with less power. And they add another air chamber for increased buoyancy/payload/safety, obviously. They row much easier too - less drag.
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Old 01-26-2007
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Cruisingdad is a jewel in the rough Cruisingdad is a jewel in the rough Cruisingdad is a jewel in the rough
I have had a roll-up Zodiac, Avon Rib, and now a Avon HPIB.

They are "ok". We keep ours on davits. It performs "OK" compared to a RIB, but MUCH MUCH better than a roll-up. You will need to get an engine on the top side of the spec's for good performance and to really pop you out of the water with gear or people.

If you are cruising, the tender will be your most used and abused piece of equipment... period!!!! The RIB is BY FAR the best, but it has serious issues too. First, it is so heavy that you are not getting it on your boat easily. Davits help (and are argueably a neccessity)... but even with a large purchase it is a strain. You can keep it on the davits offshore, but you better watch your weather pretty close. I won't go too much into an explanation on this on this thread as it has been well covered before, but if you get pooped you can loose the dink (and a nice bit of damage) and if you tow it you can lose the dink. Many people put them on the deck (the best choice)... but that is a serious pain in the butt and a good breaker will still play havoc on them. Also, towing it, you will drop about a knot.

The HPIB does not perform nearly as well, will not take the beaching as well, but it sure is a lot easier to put on davits, stow on deck, and tow behind. It still will run with the seas, but does not jerk as hard because it is not as heavy. The HPIB was our choice... but honestly, the jury is still out and I may go ahead and buy another RIB. I have two dogs, two kids, and a wife... and that really is a bunch for a HPIB. It does not plane out very easily when loaded... but I only have a 6 on there. I may try upgrading the engine first. Other than that, I have had no issues.

I know that was a lot of information, but I hope that helps. You can write back or PM me with any other questions.

- CD

PS As far as a roll-up, I would never own one again. HPIB is much better.
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Old 01-26-2007
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The HPIB also has an inflatable keel for better tracking and the floor can be removed for the kids to play on in the water or you to lay on, on the deck. If you have a place to store the engine you can more easily roll up the inflatable and store it on board. The engine can sometimes be heavier than the dink. You cannot use them around beaches with barnacles, oysters or other sharp surfaces, great for going to the dinghy dock though, or just zipping around to explore. They are also easier to put in the trunk of your car to take somewhere else.
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Old 01-26-2007
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thanks everyone. I think I may opt for the more traditional sectional plywood floor with just the high pressure keel tube. The main reason is going to be cost because the HPIB I could get such a deal on is PVC and as I am going to the tropics for a few years I think I want hypalon. I agree that the RIB is probably always going to be the best but I don't like deck clutter. I feel having a dink on davits or even on deck is dangerous as well as a pain in the butt. Our engine is located forward of the companionway so we have a huge space below the cockpit to stow a soft bottom inflatable and engine.
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Old 01-26-2007
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camaraderie is a jewel in the rough camaraderie is a jewel in the rough camaraderie is a jewel in the rough
I think you will kick yourself about the rib in a year Newport...but there are a lot of rollups down there too!
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Old 01-27-2007
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Fair enough Cam, I have a very ancient RIB now. I realize the advantages in performance. I think the only thing that'll sway my decision now is the advantages of the rib over coral and rough beaches. I was thinking about ribs with a removable tube as well. I don;t have any experience with them but it would be nice to have less bulk on deck for passages. As far as the soft bottoms I do like the sectional pylwood with the inflatable keel over the true rollups. It might just come down to what I can find cheap that meets our needs. Thanks for the input.
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Old 01-27-2007
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Newport...one of the most surprising things to me when we went cruising was how extensively we used our dinghy. We'd always just used one for getting into shore from the boat...a few hundred yards...no big deal. I bought a 5HP engine for my Rib on that basis. The reality is that we sometimes use the dink to go miles and miles....around islands, out to reefs....to another key for groceries. I'm glad I got a Rib....but I'm still waiting for the damn reliable Merc 5HP to die!!
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