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October 14, 2013 at 10:24 pm #804Lee Arbach TBPKeymaster
The shortest self bailing AIRE Tributary raft is the T 9.5-SB. This and the non self bailing version of the 9.5 are the two smallest boats among all of the AIRE import and U.S.-made rafts.
AIRE Tributary 9.5 SB Whitewater Raft Characteristics
This model has a strap-down thwart like the American made AIRE rafts have. All other Tributary rafts have knuckle mounted thwarts that are not really re-positionable, just removable. This two to three person model was available as a non self bailing model for many years, but AIRE introduced the bailing version about four years back to compete with Hyside’s popular little “Mini-Me”. This model has a shorter waterline and pivots a bit easier than the Mini-Me, and tends to ride over big waves rather than punching them like the Hyside. Some paddlers also consider the little Tributary more squirrelly and less predictable than the Mini-Me. Both are unique products and are not really interchangeable even if their lengths happen to be about the same. The T-9.5 SB is 9’7″ long by 5’4″ wide (the Mini-Me is 9’1″ X 5’2″). The 9.5 tube diameter is a generous 18″ like the Hyside. It has quite a lot of kick at the ends, which means the waterline is a scant six feet. The weight is 69 pounds, or 65 with the single thwart removed, and it has ten D-rings – quite a few on a raft this short.
Load Capacity for AIRE Tributary 9.5 SB Whitewater Raft
It will hold up to 750 pounds if you don’t mind drafting pretty deep, but it will work much better with far lighter loads on order of 450 to 500 pounds. These are blue like all the other Trib rafts and again, they only come with one thwart, not two like the non-bailing T9.5. There are three main air chambers plus the floor and thwart for a total of five.
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