Looking to buy a raft - Mountain Buzz
 



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Old 06-08-2011   #1
 
USAF Academy, Colorado
Join Date: Jun 2011
Posts: 14
Looking to buy a raft

Hi,

I am new to the forum and appreciate everyone's help. Seems like a pretty awesome community here.

I am looking to buy a river raft for a paddle setup. I was thinking of something that would be good for 3 people plus gear for over night trips. Would something in the 12' range be sufficient or am I going to want to go to a 14?

I am a senior at the Air Force Academy so will only be around Colorado for one more year most likely. I won't know where I am getting stationed until Feb so I have no idea if I will be near anywhere I could use it after this year. My brother is starting at the Academy this year though so worst case scenario I can pass it off to him.

I don't think that it is likely that I will be trying anything over class III with possibly the occasional class IV( if I even get that far).

I would prefer to keep the cost down as much as possible but don't want to buy total junk.

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Old 06-08-2011   #2
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Colotucky, USA
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go contact Joe at RM rafts he is down in the springs and is a great guy to deal with
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Old 06-08-2011   #3
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
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A 12' has plenty of room for 3 people and gear for an overnight trip. I have a 12' NRS Otter that I really like. I think I paid a little over 1k for it new, but I know they've gotten a lot more expensive in the last couple years.

As far as whitewater, a 14' is going to have bigger tubes and be more survivable, but a 12' is lighter and more maneuverable. I much prefer the small boat because I think it's a lot more fun, but I know a lot of people like the comfort factor of the bigger boat.
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Old 06-08-2011   #4
Cpt. No Scout
 
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In a Van, Down By the River
Paddling Since: 91
Join Date: Feb 2011
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I would buy a cheep used boat. That way you can learn about rocks, cleaning valves, and general raft care on something you can screww up and not feel too bad about. Then if you get into rafting, you will have a totally different perspective in two years than you currently have. Then buy new for your next boat. My gut says 12' is too small. I run a 13' and feel its a bit small. I think you can get around 1000 lbs of people and grear (including frame and oars) in a 12'er?? Good luck
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Old 06-08-2011   #5
 
USAF Academy, Colorado
Join Date: Jun 2011
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Do you have any suggestions on where I could find one? I also don't plan on moving to an oar setup so does that make a difference
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Old 06-08-2011   #6
Cpt. No Scout
 
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In a Van, Down By the River
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lonewolf210 View Post
Do you have any suggestions on where I could find one? I also don't plan on moving to an oar setup so does that make a difference
The buzz has classified ads. NRSweb.com has some. Sotar has a "Hotsheet" on their web site. Maravia has a couple boats list as used. You don't need a oar set up if you can get a paddle crew together.
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Old 06-08-2011   #7
 
Palisade, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1975
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denver craigslist has an AVON @ Idaho Spgs for sale today...looks like a good deal
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Old 06-08-2011   #8
 
USAF Academy, Colorado
Join Date: Jun 2011
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How hard is it to patch a raft? would it be worth getting one that needs a patch or two to save money and then do that myself? Is it like patching a bike tire which is pretty straight forward?
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Old 06-08-2011   #9
 
pocatello, Idaho
Paddling Since: 1991
Join Date: Feb 2010
Posts: 471
Buying a fixer upper raft is a lot like a house. There are really good deals at time and there are money pits. having some experience helps a lot, unfortunately for you.

Patches are fairly easy to do at home with a decent patch kit. match the right glue and the patch to the raft material and you are set. lots of folks on here will be happy to tell you what you boat is made of and the apporpriat glue.

1) is it coming unglued at the seams? pass
2) did it just get a hole poked? possibly buy it + $30 patch kit (which you should buy anyway)
3) extensive wear? your call, could be a project at the end of the servicable life, could be a good deal
4) leaky valve? maybe $50 fix if that is really the problem and parts are available

Good luck!
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Old 06-08-2011   #10
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Hopelessly Stuck in Yesterday, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1994
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1- Get a 14. Gear/psgr hauling capacity is far better, Very little diff in maneuverability. Great diff in stability

2- Stay away from a fixer upper until you have a few years under your belt. It's entirely possible to get a POS that will sour your experience and keep you off the river indefinitely. Get a real boat, spend your time on learning to use it, not learning to fix it.
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