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Thread: 12-14' Mini Airboat w/ Rotax 582

  1. #1

    Default 12-14' Mini Airboat w/ Rotax 582

    I've heard there are two or three 12'-14' mini's running around Alaska with Rotax 582's on them. Have some pics of one a friend saw while caribou hunting last year but didn't get any hull numbers or identifyers. I'm looking for anyone that owns or has used this set-up to see how they pulled, what they could haul, and to see if anyone did any thrust tests with their set-ups. I just sold the 582 on my 12' boat and trying to determine how much more HP I need vs want before I install the new engine and begin the redrive process. As always, thanks in advance.
    "He should have been packing a more powerful gun...you have to be a very good shot or very lucky to stop a brown bear with a .357 Magnum." - Rick Sinnott, Alaska Department of Fish and Game biologist after a double attack by a grizzly.

  2. #2

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    I made two trips up the Maclaren River in a buddies 12 foot airboat running the 582 Rotax. It was just us two fellas both of which are on the lighter side compared to the average american adult male. We both had light camping gear for a week. The boat would do okay until we would come round a bend in the river and hit a strong headwind. With the combination of sliding around the corner and the strong headwind we would occasionally get knocked off of step and my buddy would head for shallow water to get the lift needed to get back up on step again. It was not much for performance that is for sure. But as long as we packed light, we did okay.

  3. #3
    Member avidflyer's Avatar
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    A couple guys are making redrive kits for the yamaha RX1 engine and seem to be loving them in the planes. you can also get a 670 to put in it if you want to stay light weight and they are running around 93 HP.

  4. #4

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    Thanks avid flyer - I've seen the redrives, been following their progress on Facebook and various flyer forums. I have an RX1 in my yard I bought specifically for this project. I'm still kicking around the idea of adding a turbo to get more than 130HP out of the engine and possibly doing a belt drive system but need to do some research on the harmonic's and vibration. I've found two builds that went this route that had 225HP and 250HP and it worked well but there was some vibration. I'm thinking the right harmonic damper may resolve the issue but to date, no-one's tried one to my knowledge. I don't think the Rotax C-gearbox assembly's will handle that much HP. The others might, I hear they are rated for 180HP.
    "He should have been packing a more powerful gun...you have to be a very good shot or very lucky to stop a brown bear with a .357 Magnum." - Rick Sinnott, Alaska Department of Fish and Game biologist after a double attack by a grizzly.

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    Member f0zzy2's Avatar
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    I believe I seen you down there mountain joe across from fish creek. I came down river then turned back up stream and went into fish creek. We had a camp about 5 miles out in the Tundra. That was a very cool looking lil boat, looked like you sat tandem like in a cub.

  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by f0zzy2 View Post
    I believe I seen you down there mountain joe across from fish creek. I came down river then turned back up stream and went into fish creek. We had a camp about 5 miles out in the Tundra. That was a very cool looking lil boat, looked like you sat tandem like in a cub.
    Perhaps. This has been quite a few years ago now and I can no longer remember if we seen any other boats or not.

  7. #7
    Member f0zzy2's Avatar
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    I miss understood, This was last year I seen the mini airboat.

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    Mike Kuntz with Mike's Welding from Sterling built one and I rode it in last year. Same report as above, didn't feel like much power and he constantly headed to the edge to get back up on step. Might give him a call for more info, he is one heck of a master craftsman!

  9. #9

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    Thanks, I'll give Mike a call. Boy, my memory must be fading - I think I drove by his little airboat 50 times going back and forth fishing!
    "He should have been packing a more powerful gun...you have to be a very good shot or very lucky to stop a brown bear with a .357 Magnum." - Rick Sinnott, Alaska Department of Fish and Game biologist after a double attack by a grizzly.

  10. #10
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    I am down here in Utah, but I built a small 12' airboat with a 583 Rotax on it. Being liquid cooled it had a few more ponies than the 582... I sold the boat and it has since had a 670 put on it, but is in the process of being tuned so I don't know how it is going to work. When it had the 583 it ran great. That powerband made all the difference though. I think polymer would be a must up there? I didn't have any on mine here... It would increase the weight, but the slide would make up the difference...

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