Discussion in 'Watercraft' started by Robert Engleheart, Aug 17, 2012.
I don't see the point, but am open to more information
I like it.
I don't know the details of this boat, but in my mind a SELF BAILING driftboat would make a lot of sense. The frame work looks like it would be modular like other NRS frames. Easy to adjust and customize with extra components readily available but parts also easily removable for space and weight savings when needed.
I have a lot of questions though:
Is it self bailing, float when filled?
Is it foldable? Flyable? Need a trailer?
Is it PVC or hypalon and what fabric wieghts used?
Glued or welded seams?
What type of valves, if any?
Weight and capacity.
Length and width.
Repairability, warranty and cost.
Depending on answers to these questions, I may agree agree with Robert about whats the point. Since 1980, I have owned multiple Campways, Riken, Achilles, Avon, Slide Rite and Clackas. I have also used Hyde, Incept, Maravia, Sotar and NRS boats both comercially and privately. I currently own 5 Aire boats and have owned and used many other Aire boats. Since Aire's inception I have never had a reason to buy any other brand because I believe in their durability, serviceabilty, warranty, performance and value.
I generally would not buy an NRS inflatable only because I believe Aire has been personally the best value in inflatables for me. That said, I really like NRS products, warranty and service and have to believe that a lot of R+D went into this boat and it deserves a hard look, if for no other reason than there is nothing else like it and it is made by NRS.
I look forward to any user reports or additional info in the future.
Interesting. When I first read this, I was thinking it was a knockoff of Willie's driftboat/raft combo. I actually considered that. In case any of you wonder what I'm talking about, what Willie did was make an actual hard inner compartment that a set of tubes wrapped around. Basically the floor and thwarts were taken out of a raft, and there was a custom aluminum insert that went into it that locked in as it was inflated. So you had a solid floor, seats, etc, basically a full fledged driftboat inside and a raft outside. Saw the promo and test boat. Never saw anything else of it. I loved the idea.
I'd like to see more info on this one myself. Interesting......
What gap is this trying to fill?
I'm thinking it's the one disadvantage to rafts.......width. I know my old Eastside can maneuver through slots no normal raft can because of width. Most rafts are 6' to 7' wide. They may float higher then most boats but in summer conditions on allot of rivers you get enough exposed rocks that a raft can't squeeze through. I've squeezed through slots where rafts had to portage around because they were too wide. I lifted oars and scraped through bring only 48"wide. So am thinking they want the width of a drift boat and the safety of a raft. What I'm guessing here. Plus there are some guys that simply want that drift boat look.
That's a good point, Jerry. But this new design takes away the benefit of the self-bailing raft; it's a bucket. Fills with water and can sink. Of all the benefits of any boat type, floating is always on the top of my list. Interesting development, but I think the problem's already been solved.
Good question, but I believe the designers weren't likely trying to answer that question -- at least not as the primary driver of the design. Rather, they likely were thinking, "Can we do this?"
Frequently designers come up with novel ideas and just want to see it if would work out. Usually, the end result isn't really a great marketable product, but many of the techniques used in that novel design get incorporated into other, more useful, products. I'm guessing that will be the case here.
The inflatable drift boat will be a niche product for guys who just gotta have the latest innovations. But I see the real potential for it in its component pieces, especially for the use of more 'shaped' welded inflatable structures within crafts like inflatable kayaks and specialty rafts to replace or supplement the old standard round tubes.
Does it sink? I can't find any info on it anywhere except that link. Wasn't sure if it may have some sort of self bailing aspect.
And yes, there are driftboats that won't totally sink. I've done what I call "half assed" rescues on driftboats that never went below the gunnels of the boat. In fact, alot of the Lavros have so much floatation (most of others may too, I've only dealt with sunken Lavros mostly that were still floating) that I was able to easily pull one out from a sweeper (it was pinned under one) and it bounced right up out of it. The bear was getting it to shore to pump the water out of it so we could get it up enough to pull plug up out of the water to drain the rest of the way.
Oh, and onto floating. I think you mean your main point is sinking actually. They all float. It's coming up from sinking is what you're worrying about. And that's all inflatables pretty much. I wish I still had my old cat. Think you'd have second guessed your Maravia. Designed that original frame to sit high, ran over alot of rocks so could ride between the rocks with the tubes, design of tubes made it respond like a driftboat, but it DID run much faster then any of my driftboats (the downside).
Benefits - you can break it down and fit it in your trunk, store it easily, ship it economically, fly it in to the backcountry, run whitewater you wouldn't normally take a DB on, and the price is competitive with other DB offerings. This definitely isn't going to define the future of drift boats, but it does open the door to creative opportunities.
Regarding the self-bailing, or non, floor, I haven't seen a definitive answer to that. I wouldn't be surprised if it was. Of course, it wouldn't be the first sefl-bailing drift boat. Most manufacturers have already done that. Even if it's not a self-bailer, it wouldn't sink. Likely if it were to get swamped it could be retrieved, flipped and bailed.
As someone who tows a travel trailer, it would be nice to have the option of having a driftboat as well. I figured i was stuck with either a pontoon or raft since they were the only options that would break down for portability and storage in the bed of my truck. I like the looks and capabilities of this boat.