First raft questions. - Mountain Buzz

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Old 10-11-2015   #1
Des moines, Washington
Join Date: Oct 2015
Posts: 7
First raft questions.

My name is Andy, and recently joined the forum. I am looking into getting my first raft. The boats I have been looking at are the RMR 13', NRS outlaw 13' , and aire super puma. I will be building a speedrail frame for it with a cooler seat for a passenger in the front and a tractor seat for a rowers position, and maybe latter adding a rear passenger seat. A friend recently built his own frames and got most of the experimentation out of the way.
I am interested in the performance differences in these rafts.
Is the RMR that less responsive than the super puma?
How does the open pocket floor effect the handling of the super puma?
Are there any material and quality concerns with the outlaw?
Are there places any of these rafts will be able to go that the others wouldn't?

My main use of the boat will be to transport me and another angler between fishing locations and maybe some small multi day trips.

Thank you

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Old 10-11-2015   #2
Learch's Avatar
Dundee, Oregon
Paddling Since: 1989
Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 728
These topics get hit quite often on the Buzz, you might try and try the search function. Pumas are much narrower than the RMR or Outlaw. They are fast and light. The RMR is going to be wider and more stable. The RMR can be had with an I-beam or drop stitch floor. The Outlaw has a single piece of material for the main floor with a drop stitch floor attached on top of it for flotation and rigidity. I have no experience with the Outlaw, but I know people that have a 13' RMR and Super Puma, and both really like them. The Puma will be the sportiest, but the RMR will be more stable and will haul more gear. The Puma also is a diminishing tube design, and the RMR has a non tapered tube design. (The tube is the same diameter for the entire circumference of the boat) If you look at the pics of the Pumas on AIRE's site, you can really get a feel for how narrow and skinny they are. This can be a benefit or a hinderance, depending on usage.
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Old 10-11-2015   #3
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Post Falls, Idaho
Paddling Since: 2000
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 861
There is current thread titled looking for a fishing raft. It is much the same. RR are bomber for the price. The RR would be more stable and better suited for overnight gear. Puma would be sportier if not overloaded and is also great fun to paddle.

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Old 10-12-2015   #4
East MT, WestMT, Both sides of the Yellowstone
Paddling Since: 09
Join Date: Jun 2011
Posts: 1,134
The puma and the RMR are solid boats, the outlaw feels lil a pool toy. 10 year warranty on the AIRE, 5 on the RMR. Puma will be better for r2 and skinny water, RMR will do better as a gear hauler and in the bigger water. If you go RMR I'd look at the drop stitch floor, lighter and more cargo room. For a two man fishing rig the super puma or the puma would be ideal. The 12' RMR would also work, smaller tubes than the 13' and you only loose 8" of interior space compared to the 13'.

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Old 10-12-2015   #5
Grand Junction, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2012
Join Date: Jan 2015
Posts: 127
Look at Tributary too! RMR and Trib make up the affordable high quality boats. The Outlaws look alright but I think they are glued rather than welded which you don't want with a PVC boat.
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Old 10-12-2015   #6
Des moines, Washington
Join Date: Oct 2015
Posts: 7
Thanks for your answers so far. I have tried searching but the search feature on my app only gives limited results and didn't find the answers I was looking for.

Those of you who have experience with the super puma, was it the standard or sealed pocket floor?

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Old 10-12-2015   #7
FlyingDutchman's Avatar
Hampden, Massachusetts
Paddling Since: 1999
Join Date: Mar 2014
Posts: 333
I have a 2013 super puma with the standard floor. The boat is fast and easy to handle, love it... The standard floor has holes in the bottom that allow water in and out of the floor pocket. You don't notice any drag..but the water in the floor pocket helps add ballast when you are hitting big holes/waves solo or R2. The maybe 30-40 pounds of ballast definitely helps this narrow boat stay upright..At the take out, the floor takes 3 minutes to drain. No big deal at all.

The super puma is a lot of fun, great boat for R2. I sometimes use it for R5 R6. With 5 people you notice the narrow width.
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Old 10-13-2015   #8
Grand Junction, Colorado
Join Date: Apr 2011
Posts: 371
all awesome boats and yes the puma is the sporty of the 3 narrow easy to turn fast down the water. I own a 14 foot outlaw it has been my first raft to own I love how roomy it is and that the floor is flat it maneuvers well and tracks nicely my only thought is that the floor is one bladder and sits on the material on the bottom kinda laced in with a buckle system which means you can get sediment under it but if you clean your gear after every use shouldnt be an issue and if you really wanted to go so far, you can take the floor out easily. The RMR boats are nice also if I could do it over again I might of went RMR for another 600-700 dollars but NRS is a good brand and they back the product Ive taken to boat out on our local class 2 runs about 25 times this summer and no issues to think of. good luck!
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Old 10-13-2015   #9
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Cave Creek, Arizona
Join Date: Jun 2013
Posts: 688
I would definitely go Tributary over the Outlaw if it were me. For fishing, the wider boats will probably be more what your looking for since you don't really need the high performance of the narrow supper Puma. RMR use to have a bad rep before I got my first raft. They seem to have stepped up there game and everyone seems to be really happy with their boats lately. Both RMR, Tributary and Outlaw rafts are made in China. The outlaw has glued seams as mentioned above, while the RMR and Tribs are welded. The Tribs use a bladder system. Some don't like this feature, but I am a big fan. It will make on river repair a lot easier and you don't have to glue on a patch. You can also have any big tears in the fabric welded which will last longer than a patch. Aire changed the fabric of the tributaries this year from the French fabric to a Chinese fabric. They did beef it up, so I am not sure which fabric holds up better. Though the new Tribs are heavier as a result.

As far as regular or sealed floor pockets go, the regular is suppose to give more ballast so it will be more stable. The sealed pocket is suppose to give better performance and is easier to maneuver.

Hope this helps.

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Old 10-15-2015   #10
Des moines, Washington
Join Date: Oct 2015
Posts: 7
Thanks to all. This has been helpful .

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