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Old 08-08-2014   #1
TV, Idaho
Join Date: Dec 2013
Posts: 166
Info on older Riken's

I'm trying to find some information on older Riken rafts. I'm specifically looking at a 1997 Riken Hualapai. It seems to be really difficult to find much info. Does anyone have any references? Any personal opinions? Are these hypalon? Would this one be made in Japan? Thoughts?

Thank you!


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Old 08-08-2014   #2
The Russian
kazak4x4's Avatar
SLC, Utah
Paddling Since: 2005
Join Date: May 2009
Posts: 1,380
I had one from 1998 I think and it was a Riken Nez Pierce. It was a hypalon boat with i-beam floot and military valves. It was a 16 footer with diminishing tubes and 5 chambers. I still have plenty of video of my old boat on varies rivers on my youtube channel.

Everything on it was still original, the stripe had to be reglued and I had to change a valve in the floor. A couple of patches here and there and it was still in decent shape to go down any class 4.

Personal opinion: great boats, solid, even after so many rivers. I sold it to a good friend of mine who still uses it to date.

-ALEX [ youtube ][ my boat ][ ]
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Old 08-08-2014   #3
stuntsheriff's Avatar
jackson, Wyoming
Paddling Since: 1976
Join Date: Jun 2009
Posts: 164
Ah... fond memories of the hualapai.

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Old 08-08-2014   #4
Learch's Avatar
Dundee, Oregon
Paddling Since: 1989
Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 655
I started on them when I was 10 years old back in the 80's. My details might be a little fuzzy, but they were imported through a company called B & A distributing and retailed through Andy & Bax in Portland, Oregon. The grey/ silver color is the best, most durable material, and yes, it is Hypalon. My first IK was a Riken, and we have had several Riken rafts in our paddling group.
My Dad has a 1996 Riken Pioneer that is still in great condition, despite flips, pins, and regular use. (It was out on the North Santiam this week) It has never had a leak, puncture, or even an issue with the military valves. The only real problem I have ever seen is blown I-beams on the floors. The first raft I rode in was a Riken, and it is still being paddled today. (It's a blue 1986 15' self bailer)
I wouldn't pass up a good deal on a Riken, but I wouldn't pay a fortune for one either. The biggest thing to look out for is moisture in the air chambers. This will rot and degrade the material from the inside out. So if you are looking at one with a patched floor, do your best to check for any moisture in the chamber. The material is only coated on the outside, so water will ruin the backing.
Wishing I was on the river instead of surfing the web...
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Old 08-11-2014   #5
Riverton, Utah
Paddling Since: 2005
Join Date: Jul 2011
Posts: 337
Seems like NRS had a really good info page at one time on Rikens.

The guys at Inflatable Technologies in Denver know more about Rikens than just about anyone I think. Inflatable Raft Repair Specialists - Boat Repair

Call and talk to them they can probably give you some info.

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