AVON SUPERPRO SELF-BAILING RAFT 18′ L x 8′ W 22″ TUBES FOOTCUPS FOR 10 PADDLERS

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Offered for sale in the ebay Buy-It-Now purchase is the raft shown in the various photos above.  It is a classic and unique whitewater raft made by Avon Marine of Great Britain in 1983 and later modified to be fully self-bailing.  Do not let the age of this raft deter you from considering this item as worthy of your purchase whether you are a private boater or a professional outfitter.  I can give an explanation for further below.


**This deal includes these items:  Avon raft as shown, a Hyside boat bag and all the attached rigging as shown.  The motor freight shipping I offer as included with the Buy-It-Now price is for 48 lower states shipping.  Alaska, Hawaii or Puerto Rico destinations are extra and don’t seem to be included in this deal. Contact me first to make arrangements for delivery and for rowing frame package price considerations.  If you are out of the USA and have interest in the purchase of this item my choice is the ebay global shipping program.

 

The specs on this raft are:  18 feet long, 8 feet wide, tube diameters are 22″ with the distance between the thwarts being 50″.   There are 3 installed lifting handles per side.  There are 20 installed foot cups for 10 active paddlers.  The boat will seat 2 to 4 more passengers with the 10 safety/self-rescue handles that are installed.  These 10 safety and self-rescue handles are made with 2″ wide webbing stitched with heavy duty marine upholstery thread to Avon floor material. 
 
I have run this raft with 16 people aboard plus:  a 6″ heavy duty air pump, 2 soft coolers, 200′ of rescue rope, patch kit, 2 throw bags and a first aid kit.  I count 23 added 1″ D’rings patches added for various items inside.  There are 8 additional 6″ D’ring patches (orange) with 2″ rings installed on the outside perimeter.  2 additional (Avon grey) 6″ D’ring patches are installed.  1 is bow installed and 1 is stern installed.  These are dedicated for safety rescue rope bags.  There are bow and stern lines provided and included as 1″ tubular webbing that are approximately 40 feet long.  I have distributed 1″ tubular webbing through all 2″ D’ring patches on the outside perimeter for a safety line.  

Both thwarts are removable by a quick-attachment-system which is different than the webbing patch and plastic buckle design employed by Avon Marine in their 1990’s designs.  There are 4 original Avon installed 10 HP motor brackets installed.  Motor brackets are handy for lake navigation but I have never used them.

The boat originally weighed 154 pounds.  It has been professionally converted in 1990 and again in 1994 to a fully self-bailing model which added another 40 pounds to the overall weight.   I used Avon raft material, heavy duty tubular webbing and marine thread crafted into top quality custom passenger foot cups, installed additional “D” rings, attached 1″ perimeter webbing and safety hand holds which bring the approximate weight to 250 pounds with the Hyside boat bag I provide.  I have purchased and used a Hyside boat bag to safely store and transport this inflatable raft over the 30 years I have owned it.  The shiny surface you see on the grey floor and around the tubes below the rub strake is polyurethane coating spray gun applied for UV protection.  It also helps to maintain the integrity of the glued edge seams on the floor.
  
I am the second owner.  The original purchase of this boat in 1983 was for one private boating trip down the Grand Canyon in 1983. A former coworker sold it to me after his single trip. The boat was then stored dry and bagged for three years or so when I bought it in around 1986 for my Grand Canyon trip in 1987. This boat has had 2 event-free trips on the Grand Canyon since its final self-bailing conversion.  It has never flipped or been wrapped in any big water situation I have subjected it to.  I have mostly rowed this boat with some paddler assistance using 10′ or 11′ oars.  This is a genuine big water Avon raft that will have a life expectancy of 50 years if it is maintained and stored properly.  I have also run this boat on several high volume California rivers.  The Kings, the Merced, the Kern both upper and lower and the Rogue River in Oregon have all been run with boat.

Delivery can be by a trucking company, arranged pickup or delivery if the buyer is within 300 miles of Sparks, Nevada. Delivery or pickup will require a current ID and legible signature for proof of delivery acceptance.  Should the buyer change their mind, have buyers remorse, or dodge the delivery service I provide directly or pay for out-of-pocket whilst causing me to expend money and effort for any attempted delivery efforts; a 20% NON-REFUNDABLE RESTOCKING FEE WILL BE APPLIED AS DAMAGES TO THE BUYERS PAYPAL ACCOUNT FOR THIS PURCHASE.

If you, the buyer, agree to make this purchase I know that you’re going to have 100% customer satisfaction with the rafting package that this item lot will deliver.  

I have rafted privately since 1981 in the US exclusively.  I have been professionally guide trained in 1983 (under 250% of Normal snow pack conditions) throughout Spring break on the South Fork of the American River.  Since 1985, I have run 8-person crew paddle boats, solo rowing frame stern mount with 4 or 6 paddler assist and center mounted rowing frame 4 or 6 paddler assist and without paddle assist on class five big water rivers in: California, Idaho, Oregon and Arizona.  This boat will handle any commercial or private boating needs you are going to have on any big water navigable river you dare to run.

A commentary about Avon riverboats…
During the 1980’s and well into the 1990’s:  Avon Scout 12′-0″ long, Avon Adventurers 14′-2″ long, Avon Pros(fessional) 16′ 0″ long and Avon Spirit 7/Superpro 2 riverboats 18′-0″, were the highest built standards of the whitewater rafting business in the world.  No whitewater raft made by any competitor listed bleow can match the rive handling and tracking quality that this raft provides.  PVC boats are erratic and will not track in the current.  This floor tracks and follows the current like the boat is on an auto pilot setting.  Nothing beats an old-school Avon raft.  Nothing.
An upstart California company, Sotar, made their rafts to compete with the Avon market.  Sotar rafts are made from PVC plastic thermal fused material.  Hyside, Campways later to become Riken, Achilles, NRS products, Maravia and Aire are all the other names who have entered or exited the riverboat market in the last 37 years.  These rafts are made from either PVC laminated, PVC thermal fused or Hypalon rubber layered materials.  Aire uses a cheap light plastic bladder inside their tubes for their construction.  Avon material made superior rafts as a result of a unique calendering process and their 2-part Bostick glue.  I used 2-part Bostick for all my repair and attachment work on this boat.  
I have owned and used over 24 different rafts made by the various manufacturers listed above. I have made emergency repairs, performed maintenance work and installed safety attachments to these rafts.  I have never seen better raft construction, glue adherence, seam bonding and material quality than was provided by Avon Marine throughout their peak sales as the rafting industry standard from the 1980’s to 1990’s.  Their 2 weaknesses were in their neoprene valve boots (cracking from over-inflation issues) and I-beam floor construction separation (as a result of high relief valve set points).
  
The I-beam floor I had constructed for this boat was not an Avon design.  It was built by Tracy Harmon Raftworks in Idaho. For a brief time in the 1990’s Tracy built entire self-bailing raft floors at his shop.  He created this bomb-proof I-beam floor design punctuated with his own made in the USA skills.  Tracy would then coat the underside of the raft with polyurethane coating layered over his floor attachment up to the lower rub strake.

I have made a high strength T-6061 aluminum pipe frame for long river expeditions or single day river usage.  This auction does not offer that frame.  It can be negotiated for as a complete package with coolers, oars and hardware depending on the willingness of the buyer to shoulder the burden for the additional shipping costs PLUS the agreed upon package costs. Frame package price varies based on the demands of the buyer for this raft.

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