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Old 03-23-2014   #1
everybodyswims's Avatar
Bozeman-Big Sky, Montana
Join Date: May 2013
Posts: 8
New NRS Outlaw Raft series???

I'm in the market for a raft for this season and just noticed this new line by NRS on their website. I happen to get a deal on NRS, Aire, and Tibutary, so I am narrowing it down to these boats for a brand new raft.

This new Outlaw line looks to compete with the Tributary/ RMR line at an amazing price point. Does anyone have any experience with them so far? I believe they just came out for this season as I cannot find any info on them.

I used to guide back east and paddled Hysides and Aires mostly. Always loved the profile and weight of the Hysides, but I cannot afford one on my budget. The Aires were super burly and tracked well, just heavy and the floor was high in relation to the tubes (which I don't know if I would like with a frame on it) Are Tributarys like this?

Anyone have any advice on which way I should lean? The NRS Outlaw is probably a Chinese made copy of the Otter series the same way the Tributary is to Aire. The NRS warranty is only 3 years vs. 5yr for the Tributary. This Outlaw line is appealing because I can stay way under my original budget and have money for a good frame, oars, locks, pump, and trailer.

Having a tough time deciding on boat size too. This would mainly be a fun boat for afternoon fishing, weekend class IV, flat water booze cruises, overnighters, and the very occasional 2-3 nighter. 13' or 14' for most often a girlfriend and a dog or every now and then 4 people.


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Old 03-23-2014   #2
everybodyswims's Avatar
Bozeman-Big Sky, Montana
Join Date: May 2013
Posts: 8
NRS Outlaw 130 Self-Bailing Rafts at

NRS Outlaw 140 Self-Bailing Rafts at

They are definitely heavy.

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Old 03-23-2014   #3
Sembob's Avatar
Bozeman, Montana
Paddling Since: 1980
Join Date: Feb 2014
Posts: 485
Hey Mitch they are bringing at least one in at Northern Lights the Barn. I would wait to check one out in person. Should be in soon. Like your avatar btw
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Old 03-23-2014   #4
Florence, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2001
Join Date: Aug 2013
Posts: 180
A quick comparison is also the floor. NRS appears to be glued in, Tributary is AireCell (bladder) system, and RMR is a lace in. Serious floor issue will be easier in the latter two.
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Old 03-23-2014   #5
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Bozeman, Montana
Paddling Since: 1980
Join Date: Feb 2014
Posts: 485
I have a friend with a 13 ft trib. It has been down the main, mfs, smith and many other rivers and he is very happy with it.
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Old 03-23-2014   #6
Learch's Avatar
Dundee, Oregon
Paddling Since: 1989
Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 655
I take issue with that floor design on the outlaw. Having a 2 piece floor design where the inflated deck just sits on one layer of fabric sounds like trouble. I'd like to see one of those wrapped nice and tight against a boulder with water pushing on it to see if the floor didn't just rip out. There would have to be a large pocket created towards the center of the floor below the air deck, one would think that much pressure would rip the floor out. The Trib, Hyside, NRS Hypalon boats, RMR, all have a better floor system IMHO, and if you are gonna run class IV, I'd go with something a little more proven.
Wishing I was on the river instead of surfing the web...
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Old 03-24-2014   #7
montrose, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1999
Join Date: Jul 2009
Posts: 326
That floor design is just too similar to the Saturn, Baltik, Aquamarine brand imports. I wonder if NRS is sourcing from the same Chinese manufacturer? Dosen't say if the seams are glued or welded on the NRS site or where they are made. Personally, I would not want that kind of floor.

Of course, I also hate zippers and bladders, but many folks like to clean and play with their boats and love them.
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Old 03-25-2014   #8
everybodyswims's Avatar
Bozeman-Big Sky, Montana
Join Date: May 2013
Posts: 8
I know the seams are welded, but the floor does look suspect.
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Old 03-25-2014   #9
laterwagged's Avatar
Portland, Oregon
Paddling Since: 2008
Join Date: Sep 2011
Posts: 247
I have heard from two sources that the initial run of these boats were glued. And that NRS had decided against this design in favor of welded seams. Not sure if any of the glued boats went to market or not.

I also think this two piece floor design is problematic. Anecdote does not equal evidence...but I have a couple of anecdotes saying that this design is not safe.

Say what you will about Rocky Mountain Rafts,they are close to the same price point with 4 tube chambers instead of 3, and a lace in floor that doesn't pose such a potential safety issue.
but can you see its opposition | comes a-rising up sometimes | that it's dreadful and position | comes blacking in my mind | ....and then I see a darkness
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Old 03-29-2014   #10
NOCO, Colorado
Paddling Since: 68
Join Date: Feb 2014
Posts: 143
NRS minion posts; place is crawlin with em.

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