Capacity of an Aire Lion 14ft vs. 14ft raft? - Mountain Buzz
 



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Old 05-11-2017   #1
 
Fort Collins, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2008
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Capacity of an Aire Lion 14ft vs. 14ft raft?

I've got a 14' NRS Outlaw 140 and have been kicking around the idea of going to a cat. I want to be able to do multiday trips with a passenger onboard.

Seems like most say to size up to a 16ft cat to get similar capacity of a 14ft raft. But, I'd like to keep my craft as small as possible and squeeze into a 14ft if possible. Does that still hold true with the larger diameter cat tubes (i.e. Aire Lion)?

Anyone have an idea on the max load capacity of the 14' Lion (25.5" tubes) as compared to the 14' Outlaw (21" tubes) where you can still maneuver them reasonably?

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Old 05-11-2017   #2
 
Durango, Colorado
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Check out the Jacks plastic website, he used to have a load to tube size calculator that was awesome. Keep in mind that the floor adds a lot of buoyancy, and capacity. Bucket boats have a higher capacity than self bailers also.


Rafts are safer and more comfortable for passengers, why do you want to move to a cat?


If I was in your situation I would stick with the round boat. If you are looking to go without a passenger on class IV/V, or big water a cat may offer some advantages...
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Old 05-11-2017   #3
 
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Colorado Springs, Colorado
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I have a 15' Sotar Legend w 24" tubes which works fine w oarsman and one passenger plus some group gear. I'm 195, she's around 125. We carry a Yeti cooler plus full dry box, kitchen, water jugs, handwash, dish buckets, gear bags, tents, etc.

If I were to do it again I might get oversized 25" tubes but would not go any shorter in length. Might even consider 15'6" or 16' tubes. You really don't notice a one ft length diff when on the water. My guess is 14' tubes is pushing it.
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Old 05-11-2017   #4
 
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Rivertown, West Virginia
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14' lion 4 inch draw 422 lbs
5 inch draw 582 lbs
6 inch draw 754 lbs

14' Legend 4 inch draw 372 lbs
5 inch draw 512 lbs
6 inch draw 664 lbs

15.6 Legend 4 inch draw 394 lbs
5 inch draw 542 lbs
6 inch draw 702 lbs

The legend draw is an estimate because Sotar does not give a water line measurement. But I took an educated guess. I used the barrel on it side formula to do the math. Also I used 24 inch tubes on the 14 foot legend because that is what mine are and I wanted to see how it stacked up to a 15.6 legend.
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Old 05-11-2017   #5
 
Denver, Colorado
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Just my opinion based upon experience and zero science. If you use the 14' tubes go as big in diameter as possible. I started with 14x24 and have since moved up to 16'. Run my rig down the same stuff my buddies do in their 13' & 14' rafts no problem. Only thing I screwed up was I now have an extra foot hanging out the ass-end of the trailer.

IMO- 15' JPW would be the perfect compromise.
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Old 05-11-2017   #6
 
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Rivertown, West Virginia
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I just stretched the water line 4 inches on the 15.6 legend and only gained a gallon per tube so you only get 16 .68 extra pounds per inch of draw. The lion will do better because they have zero kick so they gain even more volume as they are sunk.
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Old 05-11-2017   #7
 
Southern, Oregon
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The 14ft NRS and Aire Lion will haul a passenger and as much gear as you could want for two. I have had both, currently have the Lion 14ft.
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Old 05-11-2017   #8
 
Southern, Oregon
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I should clarify, "the 14ft NRS" River Cat with 25" tubes. I have no idea about the Outlaw.
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Old 05-11-2017   #9
 
Meridian, Idaho
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Floatin mucho View Post
Bucket boats have a higher capacity than self bailers also.
Maybe a rookie question but why is this? Seems a self bailer with more buoyancy would offer a higher capacity?
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Old 05-12-2017   #10
 
Durango, Colorado
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bwaters932 View Post
Maybe a rookie question but why is this? Seems a self bailer with more buoyancy would offer a higher capacity?
It is because when you overload a self bailing boat, the water can cover the floor because of the bailing holes. A bucket boat will keep the water from entering through the floor, leading to more buoyancy because the entire surface area of the raft is resisting the weight of the gear.
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