14 December 2010

inflatable frenzy - v-ii

I've got a habit of buying and selling stuff,
probably from the 14+ years of having the kayak shop up in Ventura.
Now our backyard looks like a swap meet, bikes, boats, motors, car parts...
so what I do is post a couple things on there at a price high enough to let go of stuff.
Sometimes I come up and sometimes break even.
Having fun with a cool toy(s) makes it all worth it in the end.

Well this summer I got caught up in an inflatable boat frenzy.
As you'll see, it got a little out of control, just a little.
We were able to put the yard to good use without freaking out our landlord!
I need to post this just to remember how crazy it got.

It all started with this thing...

avon 3.10

This is an Avon 3.10 rover.
It's a great boat, made out of Hypalon which is a rubber coated fabric,
the best material for durability and sun.
The Avon brand also uses a really heavy duty air valve.
(The wood floors aren't installed in this picture)
My family had this model when I was younger,
so when it appeared on craigslist I snatched it up cheap.

I also ended up finding a really clean Suzuki 9.9hp two stroke,
(they were relabeled Cabrea for a while)
and me and the kids had a blast tearing around San Diego Bay.
We quickly realized the boat was kinda small and it would be fun to have two...

So, I picked up this roach of a boat for super cheap.
Zodiac Green Roach

The boat was a Zodiac and was a hunk of crap,
both in its condition and just the way Zodiacs are built.
I talked Luke/Pigpen into taking this thing out one early evening with the kids,
and holy shit was it a toad - leaked water, couldn't hold a plane,
engine would flip up, and these tweaker wheels...

tweaker wheels

Someone rigged up these wheels and they constantly flopped down, ridiculous.
It was actually a good idea just poorly executed with gate latches on the bottom.
Luke was a trooper though,
I didn't know he had never been in a little boat with an outboard before.
Ask him about crossing the channel in front of the ferry with the spotlight.

The Roach purchase was worth it as it came with a good running Nissan 8hp outboard, tank,
a pump, and box of boat junk - anchor, repair kit, life jackets,
and one of those red utility trailers making it alot easier to launch.

8hp nissan

That little trailer came in real handy,
because one night, about 10pm someone posted an achilles inflatable for super cheap.
(One thing you DON'T do when selling on craigslist is post after 9pm,
unless it is overpriced or you don't really want to sell it.)
The guy had put a phone number on there and after a couple texts, an almost midnight deal,
our backyard was a little boat shop.

achilles beater

For $60 this thing was a great deal.
When I got it, it had black tar splotches all over it,
the reason why it was so cheap.
Boat workers use dinghys to paint the hulls in the water,
and this one definitely had some overspray/spills.
Achilles use a PVC material and a really cheesy air valve,
but this was a way better 2nd boat then the Green Roach,
so we offed the Zodiac and kept all the extra stuff.

Of course while it was posted on CL,
this thing showed up...

Patten Inflatable

A Marine from Oceanside was selling this at almost the exact time I posted the Zodiac.
This is a RIB - rigid inflatable bottom, instead of the roll-up soft-bottoms with inflatable keel.
They had been out of my price range up until now.
I had never heard of Patten, but found out that they make military inflatables,
really heavy duty and they had a really cool Bravo air valve.

This was my goal in doing this inflatable flipping,
as the RIB's were usually a little out of my budget.
These little boats are so bitchin,
they just plow through swells and it is so fun to surf on ship's wakes,
they are almost impossible to flip so you just do crazy stuff.

So then I tried to sell everything to keep the RIB and get a bigger motor,
but it totally backfired.
Instead of selling, people just wanted to swap stuff.
We ended up trading the 8hp Nissan for a really clean 9.9hp Nissan,
and did a 3-way trade on an old bike for a 15 hp Johnson, perfect for the RIB.

outboard crazy

And to top it off, instead of selling the AVON,
I ended up trading it for the next size up!

Avon 3.40 couch

This Avon 3.40 was immaculate for a mid-80's boat,
just needed a new valve seal.
The guy just wanted a smaller boat for camping,
and since we could use the extra space, perfect swap!
It also came with a non-opped pink slip which was great.
The other boats were either seriously delinquent or had no DMV papers.
(only motorized boats need CF numbers)

At this point I realized things were a little out of control.
The $$ was relatively low, it was just the amount of stuff in such a short time.
Fortunately the beater Achilles sold by itself which cleaned up the yard.
I didn't mind having 3 outboards in such good shape.

Fast forward a couple months...
School starts... daylight not-savings time starts...rain...we all get colds...excuses excuses.
After school started we used the boats one time, okay maybe twice.
It's a typical seasonal use I guess, but it's still a drag.
Another bummer was watching the RIB get weathered in the sun and rain.
The drawback of the rigid is they don't roll-up for storage.
Yacht owners leave them out but it's the sure way to ruin them.

So to free up some cash and some yard space, I posted the RIB on CL,
and it was quickly snapped up...
but not after a fun day that really made it all worth it.

The buyer wanted to see it out on the water, and I gave him the option of 2 engines,
so it was the perfect excuse to get us out there in both boats.
I'll admit it was a bit sad losing the RIB especially after watching the video,
but like I hinted earlier there is a price that makes it easier!
(Ok now on the hunt for a bigger one, cheap of course!)

These inflatables are a great way to get the kids close to the water.
Fortunately we still have the roll-up AVON and we kept the 15hp so we can still get out.

Thanks for tuning in...


had to edit this in.
This was the view from the other side...

Thanks Pig!


No comments:

Post a Comment