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Old 07-09-2013   #1
Smithers, Alberta
Paddling Since: 2000
Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 6
Looking to buy first raft

Looking to buy my first raft as well as an oar frame. I am on a budget. Looking to spend no more then $2500. Going to sell two Aire Lynx and put a few more bucks into it.
Should I go new lower quality raft like a Saturn or try to find higher quality raft that is past it's prime. I am at a cross roads with this. Any help would be great.
Most likely the raft would only be used for class 2 and the odd class 3 river.

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Old 07-09-2013   #2
BryanS.'s Avatar
Prineville, Oregon
Paddling Since: 2010
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 308
Go for the used better brand. Craigslist always has sweet deals, especially in well known boating areas.

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Old 07-09-2013   #3
Boy Howdy!
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Colotucky, USA
Paddling Since: 2006
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 1,054
Look at Rocky Mountain Rafts also
Who's your monkey?
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Old 07-09-2013   #4
Newport, Tennessee
Paddling Since: 2003
Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 1
Def. try Craigslist or any local outfitter near you. Much better to get a higher quality used raft, even if is patched. Just make sure the patches are professional grade. I am looking to buy a lynx, if you inbox me details for the right price I'd gladly take one off your hands and help with your raft fund
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Old 07-09-2013   #5
evergreen, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1993
Join Date: Jun 2013
Posts: 67
I agree with the above posts. I would buy a 5+ year old brand name hypalon boat, before a new pvc boat. I found out the hard way about pvc. the old saying goes you get what you pay for.
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Old 07-09-2013   #6
Learch's Avatar
Dundee, Oregon
Paddling Since: 1989
Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 655
I bought a used Sotar decently set up for a little more than your stated budget. It is a 2008 14' with an aluminum frame, one dry box and a cheap cooler. (Plus oars, straps, toilet, etc) I haven't had to add much in the way of gear to it. If you went out and bought even a Saturn raft plus the gear just to paddle it, you are gonna be at about the top end of your budget. I'd keep your eyes peeled for a deal on a quality used raft. My Dad has a 16 year old Riken that is still in prime condition, I would have purchased a Riken like his in a heartbeat given the chance. RMR would be the way to go if cheap and new is what you decide, thermo welded PVC is the best cheap deal out there.
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Old 07-10-2013   #7
snakester's Avatar
Mesa, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2010
Join Date: Apr 2011
Posts: 161
This is just a suggestion based on my three years experience rafting primarily on Class II -III rivers around western Colorado/ eastern Utah. Why not get an old hypalon bucket boat? For class II rivers you really don't need a self bailer, and hypalon rolls and stores easily. You can put the money you save into your frame, oars, straps, groover,etc. Then a few years down the road you might find the right self bailer and you'll have the frame already. This is just an idea if you really are on a budget. My bucket boat is 30 years old and it does awesome on week long trips. I have a large family and I haul a ton of gear,. Last year we added a tandem duckie and a SUP to the fleet. Good luck with whatever you decide to do.
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Old 07-10-2013   #8
Old Guy in a PFD
Tucson, Arizona
Paddling Since: 1967
Join Date: Feb 2013
Posts: 1,022
The best advice?
Yeah, you'll have a lot of fun rigging it, and playing with it and floating it, and there's a pride of ownership, and it's great fun overall.


Think of your reputation..............
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Old 07-10-2013   #9
Calgary, Alberta
Join Date: May 2009
Posts: 361
I also live in Alberta and bought a 1 year old RMR for $1500 and had it shipped to Montana Shipping Outlet at the Coutts/Sweetgrass border crossing and drove down there to pick it up.

I'm happy with the boat so far and didn't need to buy a 10 year old raft or a cheap quality boat either (read: Saturn).
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Old 07-10-2013   #10
The Old Troll
David Miller's Avatar
Gypsum, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2000
Join Date: May 2010
Posts: 458

Does it make sense to buy a bucket boat with the plan to upgrade to a self bailing floor at a later date?

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