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Old 05-02-2009   #1
old colorado city, Colorado
Join Date: May 2008
Posts: 4
New Mini-me to mini?

I know the hyside mini-me raft has been much discussed, but I had some additional questions if any of you can shed some light.

Is the new mini-me to small since moving from 10.5ft to 9ft and from 2 thwarts to 1 thwart? I am mostly interested in R2'n and R3'n (with a 10 year old son) and possibly throwing a dry bag in the back for light multi-day use.

Also, how does it feel to R2 with one thwart in regards to foot placement and feel? Are there footcups or would they be worthwhile? Or can you jam your feet in the front and rear tubes pretty easy and feel bomber?

Do you take on water R3'n and does it feel to mini?

I am thinking of dropping in on the mini-me for economic reasons and may still think about trying to get a 12 footer. However, I want to get an outfitter series boat. Thanks for your time and energy.

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Old 05-02-2009   #2
raftus's Avatar
Boulder, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2000
Join Date: Jul 2005
Posts: 1,128
I think the 10.5' boat is the maxi-me and the 9' is the mini-me. The big advantage in my eyes of the mini me in the outfitter line is it's weight - 46 lbs. Not sure how much the maxi-me weighs. I have seen a lot of people r3-ing a mini me, haven't done it myself. I've heard that they are fun and can be run down class V, but that they are somewhat tippy and require a fair bit of high siding. If I were you I would call Hyside and see if they still make the 10.5 version, and get weight and cost numbers from them.

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Old 05-02-2009   #3
God Amongst Men
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Phuoc My, Da Nang, THE 'NAM
Paddling Since: 1845
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 1,988
ha ha ha mini me's are great. my buddy here in gunny has one that he calls "the pickle" and he's pretty out of hand with it. he got a tiny little oar frame and set it up with some not so little oars and the thing is a beast now.this is a great clip of it meeting the yampa

like i said he has the oar frame, but he also takes it out and R2s and R3s with it, its actually a pretty versatile little craft, there are many options you can decide from with it
"Don't f$&@ing eddy out, just run it! Whaddya doin??" -LMyers
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Old 05-02-2009   #4
youngpaddler06's Avatar
Fort Collins, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2006
Join Date: Nov 2007
Posts: 173
I have R2d a mini me a few times. The boat we used had foot cup for the front foot then we would stratle the thwart with wour back leg and it really held us in tight. Its almost more like a kayak in the lines that you have to run and how it interacts with the water. Im about to get the mini max 10.5 just so i can run bigger water and take it on multi days easly. Both are sweet boats that are tons of fun, just be ready to flip.
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Old 05-02-2009   #5
TakemetotheRiver's Avatar
Durango, Colorado
Paddling Since: 05
Join Date: Oct 2007
Posts: 1,477
I had the chance to R3 the Mini-Max last weekend on the Racecourse (Rio Grande) and it was a lot of fun, but definitely wobbly! I had two fairly stout guys paddling and every time one of them shifted it almost threw me off the back. We didn't take on much water- it bails as easily as a bigger boat. We didn't have any trouble stuffing our feet in- except the guys had to vie for room. I don't think it would be easy to R3 a mini-me- it's perfect for R2-ing. The boat we used is for sale in the Buzz swap and there's a pic of us R3ing to get a better perspective.
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Old 05-04-2009   #6
Carbondale, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2007
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 262
Mini-Me = Big Fun!

Although I haven't run the boat through its paces completely yet, I can tell you that the mini-me is doable R4...

Me (6', 200#) and three other dudes about the same size did two laps in Shoshone this weekend (4280cfs!) and it was an absolute blast! We had no flips and only one person did fall out for a 4 second swim in the Maneater/Superstition hole near the bottom. I will say that the stern floor was flooded with water but the boat stilled manuvered like a champ. Also you need to watch the lowside tube pulling into eddies like a kayak, we almost got sucked under a couple of like reflexes saved us...

I have an oar frame for the mini as well and I look forward to running Yampa some day and I will be sure to square up to that wave a little sooner The oar frame is fun but I can't say much as I have only run with it on the Roaring Fork class II section...

The big selling point on the mini-me for me was it's dry weight, I can carry the boat rolled up under one arm and still carry something else in the other many boats can you do that with?!? you can also then toss the thing inflated on top of your car, strap it down and go...

Now, I certainly don't think the mini-me is the one-boat-quiver for multi-days if it is more than just your self but the boat is serious fun and a great addition to any rubber family...

To answer some of your questions:

1. the 10.5 is the Rio Bravo series and don't think that model is available is now 9.5 and weighs 71 pounds. You'll see on the Buzz that the Rio Bravo series Hypalon is not as bomber as the outfitter fabric which the 9' is made of...a little pricier but worth it in the long run...

2. R2ing with your 10 year old son...I would get plenty of practice on II's and III-'s before stepping up to anything bigger. I will say that you and your son should be strong swimmers and know how to self rescue with a mini-me as it will dish out swims...On the other hand a 9' raft for your son to learn to raft on is IMHO a great begginner boat for someone his age...I'm sure all his friends will be wanting to join him on and that might make you the shuttle bunny for your son???

3. We R4ed with it this past weekend...I don't have any footcups in there as of now and might not put any in as the two in front jammed their feet between the tube and floor and then their other foot wedged in the thwart...Brendo and I did the same sitting in the stern, one foot against thwart one against tube/floor...felt comfy and should you need to prevent a swim you just sort of collapse towards the center of the boat and you were good...

4. We did take on water in the stern with the 4 of us in there...the boat was surprisingly still very nimble...didn't feel too heavy at all...

If you're ever up by Carbondale just look me up and I could meet up with you for some little-boat-big-fun!

Happy Mini-Me owner,

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Old 05-04-2009   #7
Matt J's Avatar
Leadvillian, Colorado
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 381
I owned a mini-me for about a year and a half and now have the slightly bigger aire version

not to argue with Cal, but I haven't had much luck running more than 3 people - perhaps it works better with bigger water, and certainly with more experienced paddlers, but I ran it with commerical customers a few times with pretty bad results (another story in itself)

I have had awesome days in it... like running the class IV - V apurimac - and I have had some not so awesome days in it, mostly I have correlated that to weight and experience

I think Cal's number 2 is right on, and definately take him or someone else up on a test drive on similiar water to what you want to run
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Old 05-06-2009   #8
Carbondale, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2007
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 262
Night/Day Difference?

Originally Posted by Matt J View Post
I owned a mini-me for about a year and a half and now have the slightly bigger aire version
Is there a big difference between the Mini-me and the Aire Trib 9.5SB as far as performance goes? The difference in dimensions is 7" in length and 4" in width...doesn't seem like a whole lot...???
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Old 05-06-2009   #9
Matt J's Avatar
Leadvillian, Colorado
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 381
the biggest difference between the two is the weight... the trib is considerably heavier which I think is an advantage

I checked the mini for the flight down to peru and the low weight was a huge advantage, but on the water I think the trib is a little more stable - and in a boat so small a few inches makes a pretty big difference

aire glued my footcones in at the factory because I only have experience on hypalon and have a hard time sourcing chemicals that most ship sea freight and the placement is highly unusual, they're much further back than I would have put them

Cal your more than welcome to paddle mine while your here in the fall

we'll have to coordinate the timing because I may be out of town when you're here

try and determine what runs you want to get on and your budget - doing anything outside of the normal commercial runs can get a little pricey
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Old 05-07-2009   #10
Down by the River, Idaho
Paddling Since: 2004
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 197
I have had a mini-me since 2005. I love that boat!!! Piedra, royal gorge, brown's, deso, and the dolores are rivers I've taken that boat down. Paddle boat, oar rig... Whatever, either way it kicks ass! I hope to run it next year down the Grand if all works out(didn't this year b/c of the group size). R3 is tight especially if your people are on the big side of things. However, R3 on that and it feels invincible. Super stable! 8,500 on the Lower Animas and we did R4 it and it was a blast!

Little boats kick ass and are so much fun you would never regret getting a mini-me! Worth every penny.....

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