Aire 156R vs 160DD - Mountain Buzz
 



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Old 02-17-2016   #1
 
Denver, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2011
Join Date: May 2011
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Aire 156R vs 160DD

I've seen older posts about this, but wanted to see if there are any new thoughts.

I'm between the Aire 156R and 160DD. They both fit the frame I currently have, which is why the 156D isn't in my section. The 160DD is about $500 more too.

I'm going to be using this as an oar rig in Colorado, with the plan to run it elsewhere when I can pull a permit.

The 156R should punch waves better, while the 160DD should be more nimble and hold a bit more gear.

Seeing what everyone else's experiences have been? Maybe even rivers/water levels that were to low or close to being tight.

Thanks!

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Old 02-17-2016   #2
 
Boise, Idaho
Paddling Since: 2005
Join Date: Jun 2011
Posts: 247
Are you sure about your frame? the 160DD is wider with 1" smaller tubes than the 156R (21" on the DD and 22" on the R). Width on the inside of the tubes is listed as 3" wider than the 156R. I have a 156R and have floated high water Hells Canyon and low water middle fork runs in it. Handles it all well. I talked to one of the guides at the BSA Salmon river high adventure camp that was running a 160DD and he loved it as a paddle boat for a big boy scout crew, but I don't know anyone who has one and runs it with a frame and oars. IMO you can't go wrong with AIRE boats. Personally I like the bigger tubes on the "R" series.
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Old 02-17-2016   #3
 
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Window Shade City, Out of Breath
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I row a 160DD and have been really happy with it. Regarding specifications, as I mentioned in an earlier post, do not trust the dimensions provided by AIRE. The ONLY way to know if your frame will fit is if you inflate the actual boat you plan to buy and see if your frame fits. There is a lot of variation between boats of the same model. I learned this the hard way.

I've run the MFS twice with this boat, Westy, and a lot of day trips. I like the interior space provided by the diminished tubes and the maneuverability advantage over the 15R 15D models (I've rowed both). I also have the sealed floor pocket which probably helps. My front passengers are easily soaked on small waves that would bounce off a boat with bigger tubes. I like this feature for warm summer days which is the majority of the time I'm out on the river. There are circumstances when I wish for bigger tubes, but it is worth the trade off for my typical use. My biggest gripe with the boat is how much the floor pushes up when it's on the water, and how far off the dimensions were compared to what was advertised.
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Old 02-17-2016   #4
 
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Post Falls, Idaho
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Probably stating the obvious but they are or have redesigned the DD. Comments regarding the DD would be mostly if not all about the first incarnation.

I think they clearance out all the first designed boats.

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Old 02-17-2016   #5
 
Denver, Colorado
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I've found thru my research that I'm doing this a bit backwards. I have a frame that is dialed in and I don't want to cut it down. Similar to WindRiver's other post about how the floor lifts (BTW, THANK YOU!), I've been talking with Aire directly about their dimensions and what would fit.

Being that the dimensions are fairly similar, I'm trying to figure out if there's a selling point that would push me to the DD.

Anybody know when they released the current DD?
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Old 02-17-2016   #6
 
Boise, Idaho
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I don't know when the latest iteration came out. One thing I notice on Aire's site is that they don't have the dimensions or wireframe diagram of the 160DD listed... so I have no good idea what the "current" numbers are.
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Old 02-17-2016   #7
 
Denver, Colorado
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For some reason, the page doesn't load, but they sent me the wireframe. It's data 2013, so maybe that's a clue.
If anybody's looking for it:
https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B9O...ew?usp=sharing
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Old 02-17-2016   #8
 
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Window Shade City, Out of Breath
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In the bottom right corner of the wire frame, it says dimensions might change by +/- 2'' based on air pressure. That statement gave me a false sense of what to expect; I thought my boat would fit in that range. Not so. Some of the dimensions were off by more than 4''.

I emailed AIRE suggesting they expand their +/- range so people wouldn't be mislead. They assured me they would take care of the problem. That was two years ago and it looks like they are still sending out the same wire frame they sent me. It's difficult as a consumer to properly compare boat choices when manufacturers don't provide accurate dimensions and +/- ranges.
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Old 02-17-2016   #9
 
Fort Collins, Colorado
Join Date: Feb 2016
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thaGoat View Post
For some reason, the page doesn't load, but they sent me the wireframe. It's data 2013, so maybe that's a clue.
If anybody's looking for it:
https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B9O...ew?usp=sharing
Thanks for posting the wire frame. I have not been able to find it anywhere, but I never asked them for it. I purchased an Aire 160dd in December when they were discounted and have wanted to see how accurate they were to the specs that I found in random places. I found that the boat I received was 44" tube - tube so not far off of the 45" that was listed specs and would have easily been pushed out with thwarts. The biggest gripe with the boat is that they switched the handles and the d-rings on the side from what they show in the pictures.
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Old 02-18-2016   #10
 
Great Falls, Montana
Paddling Since: .3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thaGoat View Post
I've seen older posts about this, but wanted to see if there are any new thoughts.

I'm between the Aire 156R and 160DD. They both fit the frame I currently have, which is why the 156D isn't in my section. The 160DD is about $500 more too.

I'm going to be using this as an oar rig in Colorado, with the plan to run it elsewhere when I can pull a permit.

The 156R should punch waves better, while the 160DD should be more nimble and hold a bit more gear.

Seeing what everyone else's experiences have been? Maybe even rivers/water levels that were to low or close to being tight.

Thanks!
Aire told me that the 160DD uses the same thwarts and frame as the 156D. not sure how that fits with the R.

The 160DD will cary more gear and punch waves better with the deminished tubes.

Exactly how wide is your frame?
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