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Thread: Avon rafts?

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    Member Hayduke's Avatar
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    Default Avon rafts?

    My dad has an opportunity to pick up a 15' avon in OR. It apparently has a frame. I am guessing it was made in the mid 90's. His friend said he would sell it for $1700. Good deal? I don't know what the boat is made of or if it is a self bailer. Supposedly in like new condition. Opinions?

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    webmaster Michael Strahan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hayduke View Post
    My dad has an opportunity to pick up a 15' avon in OR. It apparently has a frame. I am guessing it was made in the mid 90's. His friend said he would sell it for $1700. Good deal? I don't know what the boat is made of or if it is a self bailer. Supposedly in like new condition. Opinions?
    In terms of quality, there's nothing wrong with Avon. I prefer some of the newer fabrics, but if this boat is in good shape it should be fine. I assume with this price that you're talking frame and accessories too? Or do you still have to rig it? You can easily burn a grand on rigging...

    Mike
    LOST CREEK COMPANY: Specializing in Alaska hunt consultation and planning for do-it-yourself hunts, fully outfitted hunts, and guided hunts.
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    Member Hayduke's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Strahan View Post
    In terms of quality, there's nothing wrong with Avon. I prefer some of the newer fabrics, but if this boat is in good shape it should be fine. I assume with this price that you're talking frame and accessories too? Or do you still have to rig it? You can easily burn a grand on rigging...

    Mike
    Full frame with a floor. Sounds like I just need some oars and pfds..... Does the need list ever end?

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    webmaster Michael Strahan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hayduke View Post
    Full frame with a floor. Sounds like I just need some oars and pfds..... Does the need list ever end?
    Okay the floor sorta scares me. Some time ago folks were putting plywood floors in their non bailers. Not so good when itcomes to floor abrasion...
    LOST CREEK COMPANY: Specializing in Alaska hunt consultation and planning for do-it-yourself hunts, fully outfitted hunts, and guided hunts.
    CLICK HERE to send me a private message.
    Web Address: http://alaskaoutdoorssupersite.com/hunt-planner/
    Mob: 1 (907) 229-4501
    "Dream big, and dare to fail." -Norman Vaughan
    "I have climbed my mountain, but I must still live my life." - Tenzig Norgay

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    Member scott_rn's Avatar
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    Brian,

    There are also used sotars on their website you could have your dad bring up if he's still going to be driving from souther oregon. You may spend a little more, but you'd probably get a lot more bang for your buck.

    My list will probably never end.

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    Member scott_rn's Avatar
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    Mike,

    Out of curiosity, what's the difference between putting plywood in a raft like that and the zodiac's tha have removable hard floors?

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    webmaster Michael Strahan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by scott_rn View Post
    Mike,

    Out of curiosity, what's the difference between putting plywood in a raft like that and the zodiac's tha have removable hard floors?
    Zodiac-style sportboats are designed for deeper water and power applications where you need the rigidity if a hard floor and can get away with it because the risk of impacting the riverbed is minimal. Rafts, on the other hand, run in shallow, sometimes fast-moving water where an impact on the riverbed happens often. Put a hard floor in a raft and you stand a chance of impact damage to your floor fabric. You also get abrasion along the gussets where the floor fabric attaches to the tubes.

    Mike
    LOST CREEK COMPANY: Specializing in Alaska hunt consultation and planning for do-it-yourself hunts, fully outfitted hunts, and guided hunts.
    CLICK HERE to send me a private message.
    Web Address: http://alaskaoutdoorssupersite.com/hunt-planner/
    Mob: 1 (907) 229-4501
    "Dream big, and dare to fail." -Norman Vaughan
    "I have climbed my mountain, but I must still live my life." - Tenzig Norgay

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    Member Hayduke's Avatar
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    Mike,
    I was wondering about the floor as well. The guy is a friend of my dads and the raft was a part of a short lived guiding business. Sounds like the boat hasn't seen much water. I think we can also get a better price. I am trying to find out more info and maybe get some pictures sent to me.

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    Default Older Avons

    I am a big fan of Avons. They are tough boats that are built to last. One of the big drawbacks of the older ones is weight when you are considering fly out trips. The boat itself will last you a long time if it is in good shape. Michale is 100% right about the drop in floor as it can be tough on the fabric and shorten the life of the boat. I am also betting that it is a bucket boat as well.

    Take a look around Alaska and I will bet that you can find a good deal on a raft without bringing one up from the lower 48 and still stay in that price range or so (used).

    Accessories cost. Oar shafts and blades and clips=$500+ Frame=(NRS) $500 and up. Straps $8+ times 10-12 or more! Suspended floor, cargo nets= $150ish.

    A good outfit is an investment that pays you back over years of good use.


    Good luck on your search!

    Walt
    Gulkana River Raft Rentals
    www.gulkanaraftrental.com

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    Not knocking Avon boats, but to me $1700 sounds like a few $100 too much if it's not self bailing. Not a really great bargain even if it is. I paid less for a local 14' self bailing Aire with straps, frame and oarshafts (no blades though).

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hayduke View Post
    My dad has an opportunity to pick up a 15' avon in OR. It apparently has a frame. I am guessing it was made in the mid 90's. His friend said he would sell it for $1700. Good deal? I don't know what the boat is made of or if it is a self bailer. Supposedly in like new condition. Opinions?
    Just simply way too little on details... I'd say AVON Expedition 15' model is likely the boat if it's a double-ender, and by the mid '90s much of the industry had already made the shift to predominantly self-bailer floors.

    Frames in the 90's had already moved toward component fittings and pipe (particularly up here in Alaska). That said, break-down component type frames are not all that important to an outfitter in a place like Oregon - even today. Cascade frame is a reasonable possibility.

    More specifics and pictures would be worth a lot here in determining if it's a good buy. I've run Avon sportboats all my life, and have nice ones currently in my sportboat rentals. Much of my apprentice guiding years throughout the '80s and first couple years into '90s was primarily using double-ender AVON rafts all over the State of Alaska on rivers or diversity, demands, and all conditions. Avon makes an exceptional boat, and one of nearly unmatched longevity --- like 30-40 years life expectancy. In my repair facility, it is commonplace to have Avon's from the 70's-80's that are actually in better shape (more serviceable and worth saving) than so much of this new made in China stuff is after a couple seasons.

    A 15' AVON new with self-bailing floor will run you $5.5K! Good frames will go $500-$800!! So this used boat at $1700 could be a very fair-minded deal!!!

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    Member Hayduke's Avatar
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    Brian thanks for your reply. The fellow who owns the boat isn't available so I have to wait to have my questions answered. It is a component frame as my dad described as "a bunch of pipes and stuff".

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    More than welcome... If I may be of any more help, feel free to drop me a line or PM.

    Some good pictures of raft and frame with more info will really be good to have. Of course it won't tell all... in other words she might have a few leaks, valves hissing, and some quirks --- yet that's buying just about any new or used boat nowadays. LOL

  14. #14

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    In my most humble opinion - If SOTAR had not been born, I would still be running AVON rafts.
    Goo

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