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Discussion Starter #1
Hi all, I'm finally trying to step up from my Colorado 1-man pontoon to a raft, and am trying to do so on the cheap.

I've found an old ('84) Avon Adventurer with an NRS (claiming new) frame, and oars. Owner says there are a few patches, but no leaks. He is asking $1500.

I've read that the older Avon rafts are pretty solid, but this is almost 30 years old. It would mostly be for mellow floats, but I'd like to work up to some class 3 in the area. If it has been and will be well cared for, could I expect to get a few good years out of this before needing to replace the raft? What do you all think?

Thanks!
 

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New frame - $400 to $500. Oars, even cheap ones are at least $100 each. If there are 3 you are only into the rubber $700 to $800. Not bad. Adventurer is an awesome boat.

Check for baffles and the floor isn't coming apart and go for it. Hard to find anything close to that ready to row. If it is a bucket boat there is less chance of problems with the ibeam floor, but I love self bailers. Pix?
 

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I've got an '83 Avon (bucket) that I absolutely love. Military style valves, and it holds air like the day it was new. If the hypalon has been taken care of, you'll have the boat for years. Good Luck.
 

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Thanks for the input. Okay, I was just looking at the ad again, and realized it is not a self bailer, so that is my next question. I've only ever rowed self bailers, and have never been in a bucket boat. Is it still a reasonable deal? Also, aside from the floor being more sturdy, is there anything else (besides the obvious that it will need to be bailed by hand) to consider between a self bailer and a non?



 

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I used to have an Avon 16 Adventurer and wish I still had it. Great boats. Mine was from the early 1980s, but never leaked.
 

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He's asking on the upper end for a 30 y/o bucket boat and gear. Even if it is an Avon. Back in the day they were the caddy on the river. I bet it will sit for a while so you might be able to get him down a little. If you are patient you can probably find a quality used self bailer for around there or a little more. I would personally hold out for a SB for anything that price range. But if the boat is otherwise in good shape it will last you a good number of years. He looks like he's upgrading to a SB with that new NRS in the background.
 

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He's asking on the upper end for a 30 y/o bucket boat and gear. Even if it is an Avon. Back in the day they were the caddy on the river. I bet it will sit for a while so you might be able to get him down a little. If you are patient you can probably find a quality used self bailer for around there or a little more. I would personally hold out for a SB for anything that price range. But if the boat is otherwise in good shape it will last you a good number of years. He looks like he's upgrading to a SB with that new NRS in the background.
Kind of what I was thinking and I love Avon's. The discoloration of the material is not optimal and I didn't see any oars. The frame is ok.

Fishing out of a bucket boat sucks unless you have a full floor which means it is hard to bail. I would probably keep looking a bit. If you can get it for $1k or $1200 it might work out ok. Bucket boats are easier to roll and weigh less and less chance of floor failure. I have done buckets and self bailers and I am not going back to buckets.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Thanks for all the input guys! I'll see if the seller is willing to move at all. It would be a bit of a drive for me, on top of the cost. I love great forums and am glad to have joined this one. I'm in southern Wyoming, so if anyone sees or hears of a steal, please send it! I'm hoping to stay at $2000 or less.
 

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That is a very clean raft! I should have specified. I am looking for a 13-14 so I can bring the dogs or family and friends when they come to visit. There are also some easy multiday options on our section of the North Platte, so I'd need some room for gear. Thanks
 

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Yeah, I have emailed the owner of the Odyssey a few times, and may be in his area this weekend and could check it out. Most of what I've read on mountain buzz sounds like most folks aren't impressed with Odyssey or expect them to last long. Any thoughts? Thanks!
 

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Regarding the odyssey: I can't speak to its quality or longevity, as there are folks on here who have a TON more experience and knowledge than me. But I can tell you that I chatted with an odyssey owner at the put-in on the Bighorn (I'm also a fishermen who rafts to fish), and he liked his a lot. It was set up with a fishing frame, and the raft itself seemed pretty well put together from my "kick the tires" test. And I'm of the opinion that the sooner you pounce on something decent in your price range (with nothing obviously wrong with the boat), the sooner you're on the water.

Sent from my Z970 using Mountain Buzz mobile app
 

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That's true. Luckily, I still have my little 9 ft cataraft to get out for now, and can hold out for the right deal.

Seller of the Avon has not replied since I asked for a reduction in price.

I have also found a '91 Riken 14 ft for $400. No frame or oars. Seller claims no external leaks or patches, but that two of the baffles are leaking internally. He has been floating class 2-3 on the arkansas with no problems. I've asked for more details and pics. It's also much closer to me than the Avon. Any thoughts? Thanks
 

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That's true. Luckily, I still have my little 9 ft cataraft to get out for now, and can hold out for the right deal.

Seller of the Avon has not replied since I asked for a reduction in price.

I have also found a '91 Riken 14 ft for $400. No frame or oars. Seller claims no external leaks or patches, but that two of the baffles are leaking internally. He has been floating class 2-3 on the arkansas with no problems. I've asked for more details and pics. It's also much closer to me than the Avon. Any thoughts? Thanks
IMO $1400 is still too much for an Avon bucket boat. If you don't get it.....don't feel bad. You should really hold out for a self bailer. That Avon does seem to be in pretty good shape. Look at the D rings in one of those pictures. The webbing isn't frayed at all. Still it's an old boat with old valves that are a pain to work on. No doubt it will last you a long time......but you'll be wishing you got a self bailer in the long run.

If a boat is having baffle problems......I would pass on it too. You'll have to open up seams to fix it right. Not something a new boat owner should try without the aid of a professional.;)
 

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Owner of 2 80s Avons

$1400 is a bit steep for a bucket for sure. We picked up our 18 foot Bucket for around $500 and the material on it is in much better shape than the one in the photos.

That material looks odd to me. Could just be a bad photos but it looks faded and like it has a ton of roll marks from poor storage. The SB we bought recently has a few but no that many. Our fabric also has much less fading. We did replace the D-Rings as they were far worse off than those but if I were you would ask more about its history, etc. If the rings haven't been replaced since original purchase than I would get new ones which adds up. Unlike the hypalon material of the main tubes the fabric on the d-rings does not hold up well to age and UV exposure. The d-rings are pivotal as they will be holding in items upwards of $2-4k on a multiday trip.

The patch jobs look questionable to me.

The frame and setup are a bit odd for whitewater in my book.

The straps need to be retired.

Phillip
 
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