Saturn Rafts? - Mountain Buzz
 



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Old 08-29-2007   #1
 
Join Date: May 2007
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Saturn Rafts?

Hey All,
I've yet to see one on the river, but this inexpensive boat seems to be showing up on the internet. Anybody have any experience with boats manufactured by Saturn. They are very affordable-unless they need to be replaced in two years.

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Old 08-29-2007   #2
 
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Wheat Ridge, Colorado
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i saw one on Seidell's last May. The owner said that there's not enough room between the floor and the tubes to allow water to quickly drain so the SB feature's really slow. It depends on what your use will be but I'd rather spend $1500 on a used Hyside or Vanguard than $1000 on a Saturn at this point. There's been talk about them on Raftzone-dot-com and someone in the industry says there's no way they can sustain the business they're doing with the promises (warranty) they make.

Once again, it depends on your use. Probably be a great flatwater fishing boat with the drop-stitch floor.

Caveat Emptor,

-AH
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Old 08-29-2007   #3
 
TOUCHDOWN, Mississippi
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blechman1 View Post
Hey All,
I've yet to see one on the river, but this inexpensive boat seems to be showing up on the internet. Anybody have any experience with boats manufactured by Saturn. They are very affordable-unless they need to be replaced in two years.
My buddy bought one this year, he's a guide on the Ark, and researched it pretty well... his quote: "for 1500 delivered you can't beat it"

I guided it, both as a paddleboat and an oar setup... tracks well, it's light as hell. We didn't have any problems with the floor not draining (and we even put in a 5'8 piece of carpet for the dogs in the paddleboat below)... but the only thing I don't like about it are 1) the straps that come built-in instead of footcups or bare floor and 2) the hard plastic handles (which are more of a hard rubber than plastic)... but still they aren't enough to deter me from buying one... which I'll probably do this winter.

I'm sold, and glad I got to handle it before buying... they're decent boat, all the boat a private weekender would ever need.







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Old 08-30-2007   #4
 
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for the money, they are good ........ and without a doubt worth 1500, to the door. (for a paddle rig) i have limited knows on the most of em, and im not sure the modle that was on my last trip, but it sucked a fat one. sat waaay high, floor was way up, and the twix tube distance was shit. I ended up carrying waaay more than my share.

I guess its really about what you wanna do with it.

if you wanna go cheaps......look at maxxon cat tubes.
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Old 02-10-2009   #5
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Saturn Rafts a Great Value

I bought a Saturn, sight unseen in 2007 and it has held up great. I also didn't like the handles, the lack of D-rings, the 2 fixed thwarts, etc. So, I called the distributor and told them if they would modify the raft to my specs, I would be a dealer for them in CO. They agreed and it is now a much better product than it was 2 years ago. Same quality materials with better amenities. The feedback about our mods has been great. The 2009 models will be even better. I am striving to improve the product while being the affordable, high quality raft on the market. An outfitter in Peru bought 3 recently and loves them. If you are interested, check out the Saturn Rafts at RM Rafts of Crested Butte Colorado. Don't base your opinion of the boat on the older models. Check out the new stuff!
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Old 02-11-2009   #6
 
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boulder, Colorado
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A good friend of mine bought their canyon model last year. The floor was stuck together when we took it out of the box. We tried to inflate it but some of the floor just wouldn't separate finally the floor seams ripped apart with not much air pressure in the floor, but the flat spots where the floor seemed to be stuck together remained. after contacting saturn they said they would sell him another boat at a discount or give him a non inflatable foam floor. Pretty disappointing if you ask me. what good is a cheap boat if you have to dump money into after only one season? I know he wishes he would have listened to me and bought a ten year old avon for 1000.

Thats my two cents
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Old 02-12-2009   #7
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Dave, thanks for your 2 cents worth. Sorry to hear about you friends Canyon. I'd be pretty upset also! Just a point of clarification. Canyon rafts are NOT associated with Saturn rafts. Saturn Rafts, in Boise Id, is an independent dealer for Boats to Go who is the distributor of Saturn Rafts. He just happened to be the first guy to get the web domain saturnrafts.com. He is not the manufacturer or distributor of Saturn rafts and boats. Last year he, Saturn Rafts of Boise, decided to open his own line of rafts and call them the Canyon Series. It is not a Saturn just like a Hyside is not an Avon. Two different animals. Apples and oranges. I don't know enough about the Canyon rafts to offer an opinion. I only sell the Saturn brand rafts and I will offer an opinion. I am a dealer, just like the Saturn Rafts guy in Boise, for Boats to Go. If you have a manufacturer defect, I guarantee I will replace or repair the boat. We, at RM Rafts, LLC, are committed to customer service. The manufacturer warranties our boats. Canyon rafts are warrantied by Saturn Rafts, the dealer in Boise, even though they aren't associated with Saturn.
I know there is a lot of confusion about that. Saturn Rafts is NOT the manufacturer or distributor of Saturn Rafts. He is just a Boats To Go dealer like me, RM Rafts, LLC.
Again, sorry to hear about your buddies Canyon. That sucks. If you are in CO, call us and we can show you our boats before you buy one. I have had a Saturn for 2 years and it runs great and looks like new.
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Old 02-12-2009   #8
Shapp
 
the grove, Oregon
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That is some complex 3-way and I am thinking anyone on the fence about buying one of these is thinking WTF - I'll look some place else, can you post an org-chart. That is why I baught a cosmetic blem Aire. The warranty is straight forward, you buy an Aire from anyone, even a private party, and the warranty is the same (10 year no fault), anything goes wrong, and Aire (not the dealer) practically bends over backward to make it right. Worth some extra money, plus made in the U.S.A., good to keeps some jobs around here in these economic times.

It sure would be nice if the Boise guy chimed in, he never did respond the last time this warranty issuce came up on the buzz.
J
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Old 02-12-2009   #9
btt
 
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dont want to harsh the "low cost buzz",but.....

Quote:
Originally Posted by davecosnowboarder View Post
A good friend of mine bought their canyon model last year. The floor was stuck together when we took it out of the box. We tried to inflate it but some of the floor just wouldn't separate finally the floor seams ripped apart with not much air pressure in the floor, but the flat spots where the floor seemed to be stuck together remained. after contacting saturn they said they would sell him another boat at a discount or give him a non inflatable foam floor. Pretty disappointing if you ask me. what good is a cheap boat if you have to dump money into after only one season? I know he wishes he would have listened to me and bought a ten year old avon for 1000.

Thats my two cents
theyre called aquamarine/saturn/baltic,etc.,(whatever name they slap on this week....),but theyre all sourced from the same factory,in china(?---theres usually no source tag on tubes....),and all over the 'net and ebay/craigslist.ive lost many sales over the years,to these boats,due to their price/"5 year warranty" and claims of "toughness".so when one appeared on ebay in Dec 2008,as a defective 2007 one,w/a very nasty review from its owner(he got it from the canadian ebay seller aquamarine,with low cost shipping tossed in...wow,only $79!),and basically the same warranty response(..."send us more money,and we'll send you another"....) as daveco's friend experienced,I HAD TO BUY IT!!!!what good is a warranty,with no service centers established;the folks in canada didnt even want it shipped back,to repair it,either,and of course,he found those low cost shipping rates,only work one way.i bought it to do an "alien autopsy" and see for myself the quality of construction/fabric,and the problem the previous owner experienced,after only 2 trips in montana.yes,they are beautiful to look at,but heres some things you may want to know,thats not in the webpage/brochure-----(a)no pressure relief valve in floor;(b)no bottom(or sometimes top frame,depending on model) tube chafers,for critical wear areas;(c)like all PVC boats(they put a fancy sounding name on it(as other manufacturers are guilty of,too),but its plastic after all),a real joy to roll up when cold,and you can watch the stress cracks develop,in front of your eyes;and the most important,and the cause of the previous owners problem--(d)on the webpage,they show a seam being overlapped----what they leave out,is the fact their using a "butt-joint" construction underneath---easiest way when you use CAD at the factory,to cut the fabric patterns,and easy to assemble the boat in production.high quality boats,will cut the fabric differently---the seam joints will overlap,a minimum of 1",in every direction,then an interior seam tape is applied,followed by an exterior seam tape,BEFORE any drings,rubstrakes,handles,etc.,are added over that joint---much more labor/glue intensive,and therefore drives the price up,substanially!!every manufacturer,who handmakes inflatables(yes,i know of the PVC/urethane "superior" boats that are machine welded,but they need exterior seam tape/interior bladders/or sprayed on coatings,since those welded joints bleed air ,naturally),has found out the hard way,in the real world,that stepping away from this construction,to save money,has dire consequences on seam failures,down the road.even 30 yo Udisco's(stopped being made in 1985),made in taiwan,used the same good overlap construction(just dont ask what the rubber was made of;another story for the campfire......),are still haunting the rivers of USA,today.this PVC boat,from china(?),hid its CRITICAL tube "butt-joint",with only an interior seam tape(with no exterior seam tape),behind the stiff perimeter rubstake,hence doomed to fail.the previous owner had a 1' seam split,that tore thru the rubstake(its not designed to be a seam tape,afterall),and i thought it was suffering a tube baffle leak,as well;turned out the CRITICAL tube "butt joint",was coming apart,underneath the opposite side rubstrake---we stopped the leak by pressing on the rubstrake!they make the last "low cost" leader,STAR INFLATABLES,look great!!!i also see that theres many folks who praise them,and are totally happy with the "bargain" they got(it seems its a real hit or miss on quality control,on the day it was made);i see them differently;if i can get folks not to throw them away when a problem appears,and you find out how worthless your "warranty" is,they will provide a lifetime of work for your local raft repair shop!personally,i have no faith in these lasting in the baking,desert sunshine where i boat,year in and out,and i know when(not if),the s/b floors have a problem,no one will pay to have them repaired,thus fulfilling the circle of life,with the "wal-marting" of whitewater gear destined to be thrown away,and keeping those factories humming!!now,i totally understand,that 99% of all the "buzzers",are only interested in "everyday low prices",as ive read the postings here for years,w/o considering the actual costs short and long term(whether it be wages/work conditions,enviromental/water issues,etc.),but im trying to reach that 1%,that will think twice before buying gear.yes,i know you can "save" $25,the local taxes and shipping,by buying your china-made drybox,from your kayaking pal in Idaho,but im the one who'll support my local mom/pop welding shop,and question if there wasn't unemployed welders in Idaho(or anywhere),who would make a high quality product,feed their families,pay federal/state/local taxes,care about their water/outdoor quality etc.,who would better be served with your hard won dollars.i sit in with my customers,hear their needs,explain the options(including perhaps the fact that they dont need a self-bailer,for their basic lake/class 1-3 boating needs(pointing the cost of repair,when major damage occurs;the fact that selfbailers didnt exist until mid 80's(gee,how did people raft before?);the fact theres still tons of bucket boats sucessfully running the grand to this day;how easy its to convert a bucket boat,w/a trashed floor to a modern cataraft style,etc.,as just some of the topics i'll cover in detail),including having gear rebuilt by their local craftsman,instead of running to the big-box "low price" arena,and its endless treadmill of throwaway products,"cheap" imported food(just try to find where its produced,on its label,not who distributes it(thats always a USA address)---you think theyre actually supporting the american farmer?buts thats another topic for the campfire.....),low wages,bad work conditions,etc.BUT I DIGRESS----HERES MY JETI MIND TRICK/MEN IN BLACK MOMENT---when i put up this s/b for sale here,disregard everything ive said about them;theyre great boats!!!!!
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Old 02-12-2009   #10
 
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btt......that's got to be one the best.... one paragragh post's ....I've ever had the pleasure to read on the Buzz.......I hope others take the time to read and take note of your glorious words of wisdom!!! HERE HERE.......WELL SAID!!!
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