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Old 04-04-2011   #11
NorthernAZ's Avatar
Flagstaff, Arizona
Join Date: Apr 2011
Posts: 93
Originally Posted by Domar Dave View Post
The funky video is reflective of Aire technology. Who wants to deal with a stuck zipper on a boat? Or look for pinholes in a plastic inner tube? My next cataraft will have conventional air chambers.
My friends and I have several Tributary IKs and we've been running them regularly on the Verde River since January. We've done several day runs and a few self-supported overnighters. I've been pleasantly surprised by their durability in rocky, brushy runs even with beginner boaters--no repairs or problems yet.

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Old 04-04-2011   #12
Wolf Hole, Arizona
Paddling Since: 1980
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 45
Don't take my Aire rant too seriously. Glacial silt hasn't been an issue in Arizona for quite a few millenia. My old Cougar was a victim of unusually harsh conditions and probably inferior maintenance by the previous owner, and me. All my little problems with it were fixed at the very fine Alaska Raft and Kayak Company. I just have this one bad memory of a bladder losing air and the zipper not cooperating while trying to get to a plane rendezvous before freeze-up. Very gritty, abrasive silt worked inside the outer skin and also jammed the zipper. After that experience, I got that silt off more often, inside and out. But that was also more work than rinsing off a conventional tube. That said, I truly believe that the outer skin on those Aire boats is amazingly tough stuff. That boat never had a puncture in the exterior hide. I even had a motor mount and drove it out onto the salt water a few times. It was at least 14 years old when I sold it and is probably still going. I have no argument against Aire for durability.

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Old 04-04-2011   #13
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Flagstaff, Arizona
Join Date: Apr 2011
Posts: 93
Yup, I hear ya about the silt issue. We're really careful to get that magic San Juan sand out of those zippers every time.

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