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Old 10-12-2010   #1
north little rock, Arkansas
Join Date: Sep 2010
Posts: 340
Odyssey Hypo?

I've been looking for a used raft, something I can load with buddies, gear and beer and float down local class I-III rivers in the great state of Arkansas. Once I get my hands on it I'll order a frame from Gary. Given my stated purpose I don't need anything spectacular, and because of my location I'm limited to sellers who will take plastic and ship. So, I've zeroed in on used bucket boats from outfitters as the most logical choice. To that end I've found a guy in Oregon who has some 14' Odyssey buckets ('95 model I believe) for $400. I've only seen pics, but they appear to be in good enough shape and have been stored inflated in a shed. They also haven't seen that much use, I gather because his custies would rather use his self bailers (go figure). Now the questions: He insists they're hypalon, but I didn't know Odyssey made hypo rafts. I have no reason to doubt him, and the material looks like hypalon in the pics. I just can't get my head around it and can't find any info on the web. Thoughts? Also, generally speaking will this raft be okay for the way I plan to use it? I have realistic expectations for what I'm spending, just don't want to waste $400 plus freight on something I can't use. Tell me what you think please. Thanks.

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Old 10-12-2010   #2
lhowemt's Avatar
at my house, Montana
Paddling Since: 2020
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 4,345
I can't speak to the materials, and Odyssey is surely a cheaper brand of raft. But for $400 you can't go wrong. I know some guys that beat the crap out of an Odyssey on the Lochsa (Class IV) for a few years. It finally met it's end this year when the thwarts blew out in a flip. This was no normal flip, these guys typically go into holes on purpose, holes that few others do. I was always surprised at that boat, and they loved it.

But, $400 sounds too good to be true (although it is a bucket boat), maybe you can do a paypal purchase so you've got some protection you'll at least get what is in the photos and it holds air.

I am a river, babe - I've got plenty of time, I don't know where I'm going, I'm just following the lines..... - "We are water" by Shaye
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Old 10-12-2010   #3
north little rock, Arkansas
Join Date: Sep 2010
Posts: 340
Good advice. Thank you very much. FWIW just for giggles I called the number on the Odyssey homepage. He said they did indeed make hypo boats back then. He also said based on what I told him that would be a very good boat for me. I'm a pretty trusting cat (probably a southern thing), but I think the seller is legit. He's been subjected to my newbie third degree several times over without once losing patience, so I guess I'll give it a shot. I've been poking around a lot and that price does seem about right for a bucket boat.
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Old 10-12-2010   #4
shappattack's Avatar
Up North, Oregon
Paddling Since: 1985
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 1,147
I had a 1992 grey odyssey eclipse. It was glued pvc. It was taken well care of. The boat had total seam failure about 4 years ago.
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Old 10-12-2010   #5
Rainy Northwest, Washington
Paddling Since: 1980
Join Date: Feb 2009
Posts: 459

It's not tough to find an older bucket boat in the $500-800 range. I bought an old Avon squareback for $500 a couple years back. It was in great shape.

I didn't know Odyssey ever made hypalon boats. I've seen a lot of them over the years, but only in PVC.

Where in Oregon are they? Send me a PM, and if they are close to Portland, I'd be willing to go check on them for a fellow buzzard/boater.
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Old 10-12-2010   #6
north little rock, Arkansas
Join Date: Sep 2010
Posts: 340
PM sent SW15. I checked with Odyssey and it's definitely hypo. He said they switched to the Mehler fabric but they still offer the hypalon if someone prefers. This has been a very educational experience.
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Old 10-14-2010   #7
north little rock, Arkansas
Join Date: Sep 2010
Posts: 340
Okay, I'm hijacking my own thread. Thanks everyone for the input on the raft. Now I have to determine how I'm going to propel it. I've been looking at the oar situation and am shocked to find a good set of oars could conceivably cost me more than the boat. I understand the importance of an oar, and I know it's not cheap to make one that can handle the rigors of class III and up water. That said, I just can't justify springing for $400+ worth of oars for my purpose. Is there anything a little more reasonable that would be suitable for trips in class III or less? Honestly I'll be lucky to use them ten times a year. Also, if I end up doing R3-4 (I think that's the term for 3-4 people paddling with no rower) trips is that feasible with a frame? If not, what's the best way to load cooler, drybox, etc.? I know I'm supposed to keep that stuff off the floor.
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Old 10-14-2010   #8
Beaverton, Oregon
Paddling Since: 2005
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 569
For reference, my oars were $275 a stick, but I'm planning on using them for many years and in really bitchy water.

If you are going to Rn anything, you won't need the frame, just the thwarts. A set of footcups ($20 and each and a million brain cells from the chems) will go a long ways. The paddles should be around $50 each. For a Rn trip, look into building a small frame for your cooler. Speedrail fittings from McMaster-Carr ($50 for four corners) and a 20' stick of schedule 40 Al-6061 1.25" pipe ($50 or so at your local metal dealer) will go a long ways. You can even build it drunk!

In summary, there is a path to having your accessory gear cost less than the boat.
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Old 10-14-2010   #9
north little rock, Arkansas
Join Date: Sep 2010
Posts: 340
Let's say for the sake of argument the inside width is 40" and the cooler width is 43". Could I simply wedge the cooler in crossways and strap the handles to the D rings?
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Old 10-14-2010   #10
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 175
So Shap - would you please tell us what you think of glued PVC?


I'll boat til the rivers run dry
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