Williams 385/445 On Mooring
We went to the PSP Southampton boat show last weekend looking for a family RIB for journeying a little further than our little 5HP dinghy can take us and for waterskiing.
We were very quickly drawn to the Williams Jet Tenders stand - obviously, the jets are a lot safer for little ones, and the beaches around us are very sandy and difficult to approach with an outboard so the jet makes sense. Perhaps most importantly, with their engine hidden inside the boat itself they are far less ostentatious than many others, which is pretty useful in an area where anything with an engine is sneered at by yacht owners left, right and centre...
Our main problem currently is basically one of storage. We would love a 385 or 445 Turbojet but we would need to leave it out on a mooring (which is inshore on a river and protected from storms and the like) for about a month in the summer.
We have been informed that the larger Williams Dieseljet boats would be able to cope with being left out (they are apparently anti-fouled), but we would prefer the smaller ones. Would a 385 or 445 be OK for four weeks of constant usage to be left out in the water, or must they be taken in?
Thanks so much for your help.
Just heard back from someone at Williams saying they can only survive in the water for 4 days, but a friend disagrees... this is getting more confusing by the minute! Can anyone provide advice?
I dont see why it cant be moored up, plenty of other ribs i see moored and they have no antifoul. Only problem i can think of is growth and muck in the jets, the hull and material can all be cleaned.
Actually jet powered boats don't make any sense at all if you want a RIB for approaching sandy beaches. They're much heavier than outboard powered RIBS so you can't drag them up the beach and the engines don't like ingesting sand and generally they need to be flushed thru with fresh water after use. They're also bloody expensive. IMHO a RIB with outboard engine is better for all those reasons
hmm, a 50 mph megabucks jet boat to avoid looking ostentatious?
Where do you plan to use it? If coastal then 385/445 is too small in my opinion, much better to spend the same money on a larger outboard powered RIB. If safety is no 1 concern, why not fit a prop guard, various options available in metal or plastic. Any large outboard will have power tilt, so no issue approaching sandy beaches.
Jet ribs have a bad record on reliability, so if Williams say no more than 4 days on a mooring I think you'd be daft to leave it for a month (although hull antifouling isn't the issue). There are some better reliability reports lately, but they're limited, and most outboards are pretty bullet proof these days, so much better reliability option.
Finally if the yachties sneer at anything with an engine then a.) point out they have engines in their yachts, and b.) grow a thicker skin.
I completely agree with mikef and NickH. Outboard is much better for beach. To hell with what some other folks think of your choice, and anyway it's plainly obvious the williams has an engine in it. And as nick says, those boats are too small and 5m sounds better for what you want. Safety is about how you use it, not what boat you have. I have run outboards around kids skiing and stuff for 25 years and you must be very careful, but you need to with a jetboat anyway - if you put the jet near a girl with long hair the consequences don't bear thinking about and indeed the jet gives a false sense of security becuase people think "it's in neutral so it's safe", which of course it isnt because it will still scalp a long haired girl in neutral. So my point is, safety here is a state of mind not a purchasing decision
As regards mooring, you get significant gunge growing on a boat after about 10 days in the water, so a jetboat is a non starter because although you can antifoulpaint the hull (and destroy its resale value btw) you cannot paint the inside of the jet unit
And finally, and outboard rib will be cheaper length for length. And much quieter and more relaxed, and just all round nicer
Last edited by jfm; 03-10-11 at 22:59.
Thanks everyone for your replies.
I agree with what others say, stick to an out board, much less trouble, sod what others think of what you buy and use.
I wouldn't recommend leaving an un-antifouled rib (tender) in the water, I had to leave my new one in for a month and the weed growth was amazing, it took a lot of pressure washing and scrubbing to remove it, I also wouldn't like to think of the effects on the jet drive if left in the water for any length of time.
For the sort of money you will spend on a jet rib you will buy a very nice rib package with out-board motor.
FWIW I have a small rib for ship to shore use that lives on the back of my boat and a 6 mtr rib that lives along side (in the water)for when I want to go out to play locally but don't want to take the big boat.
OK - thanks for this advice.
Does anyone have any particular RIB/outboard recommendations? We are quite fond of Yamaha engines so are likely to stick with those.
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