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Old 05-19-2016, 11:55 AM   #1
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Portable Boats

One of the disadvantages of a travel trailer vs. a motorhome is the inability to tow something, like a boat for example. We camp around a lot of lakes here in Oregon and I always wish I had a small fishing boat to get out on the water.

I saw an ad for a motorhome a while back that mentioned there was a Porta-Bote attached to the side. I had never heard of a Porta-Boat and investigated. As it turns out, it's exactly that - a portable, fold-down boat. Their website is at https://www.porta-bote.com

Seems like a pretty cool solution. I'm wondering if anyone in this august community has had any experience with these odd little boats. Do they work as advertised? Is it possible to attach one to the side of a 25' AS trailer? Are they easily managed by two people?

Thanks,
John
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Old 05-19-2016, 12:09 PM   #2
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Not a Porta-Bote. I do have an Oru Kayak that folds up small enough to fit in the back of my Honda Fit hatchback toad. The hull is all one piece and folks up like origami, hence the name. They don't make a two-person model.
http://www.orukayak.com/

Before that I used a Sea Eagle inflatable kayak. Sea Eagle makes several models including two- and three-person boats in different styles. Most roll up to fit in a bag the size of a large backpack or duffle bag.
https://www.seaeagle.com/
If you go this route, avoid the entry-level "Sport" models. They are more stable upside down than right-side up, and that's the way they'll float with no one in them. All of their other models have solved that problem. Their Stealth Stalker 10 is a decent— but not exceptional— boat for fishing.
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Old 05-19-2016, 12:23 PM   #3
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Thanks for your input Pro. I have a kayak but I much prefer fishing from a boat. Plus a boat is more accommodative of two people. I received a sales kit from Porta-Bote and I'm becoming pretty sold. I could easily put it on the roof rack of my TV, but I do like the idea of attaching it to the side of the trailer.

John
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Old 05-19-2016, 12:32 PM   #4
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We have a 12' porta bote that we carry on top of our truck which has a snugtop equipped with yakima racks. Works great. We usually assemble it in the campground and haul it to the water in the bed of the truck. I wouldn't recommend the 14', too heavy.
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Old 05-19-2016, 12:38 PM   #5
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Thanks for the input Scott. Do you have a motor or just use oars?

I'm interested in the 10' boat. Do you think that it would be comfortable for two? Do you have any extras, such as back saver seats?

John
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Old 05-19-2016, 12:48 PM   #6
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I use an electric trolling motor, and take the oars with me just in case. There are times I wish I had a outboard motor. We have had up to 4 people fishing in our boat. I think you will be happy with the 10 footer. I purchased swivel seats from walmart which clamp on to the porta bote benches. Helped a lot for comfort.
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Old 05-19-2016, 12:58 PM   #7
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Great idea on the swivel seats, probably much cheaper than direct from Porta-Bote.

I did a global search for Porta-Bote on Craigslist and found some great prices. I think I will go the used route as these appear to be pretty durable.

Thanks,
John
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Old 05-19-2016, 01:05 PM   #8
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I purchased mine on craigslist from a guy less than a mile from my home. It was like brand new and half the price of retail. I felt pretty good about that. If I remember correctly, the seats I purchased at walmart were about $25 each.
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Old 05-19-2016, 01:35 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John&Vicki View Post
. Do they work as advertised? Is it possible to attach one to the side of a 25' AS trailer? Are they easily managed by two people?

Thanks,
John
Yes to do they work, yes to ads that brag about 4 inches thick folded however they neglect to mention all the stuff it can carry or attaches to hull has to be stored someplace. bench seats and wood transom made a big pile, add motor, gas can, fishing equipment, bimini top( yes they make one for it) Oars, anchor, comfortaboe seat, required safety equipment, wheels to haul, you get the idea.
Owned one for 10 yrs, best dingy for doing things on the water, it can get up on plane with one person and a cooler with a 3 hp motor.
Takes some getting used to the flexing bottom when moving around in it.
Protect it from the sun as like all plastic it will get brittle, use 303 protectant a couple times a year. Weak point seems to be in the transom plastic scored to fold but makes it very thin and it is the first thing to split, duct tape will fix but might be better to put duct tape on before it splits and keep the sun off.
Would I recommend YES, if you have time to setup and space to store. Mine was 10 foot and two could fish in calm water. It was so stable I could throw my castnet while standing in it.
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Old 05-19-2016, 03:07 PM   #10
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I do not want anything like that attached to the side of my Airstream. I just do not think there is enough support for a fairly heavy object that bounces and vibrates,
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Old 05-19-2016, 04:09 PM   #11
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Aluminum...to match the AS....been doing it awhile.

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Old 05-19-2016, 05:38 PM   #12
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What does a 10' aluminum boat weigh?

Thanks,
John
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Old 05-19-2016, 06:36 PM   #13
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Not a Porta-Bote. I do have an Oru Kayak that folds up small enough to fit in the back of my Honda Fit hatchback toad. The hull is all one piece and folks up like origami, hence the name. They don't make a two-person model.
http://www.orukayak.com/
I just read a great article on those. Super interesting. So many times we would like to be on the water and what an easy way to get there.

They are proud of their prices though.......but then again, so is Airstream!
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Old 05-19-2016, 06:40 PM   #14
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I looked at the port-a-bote but I also looked at fishing kayaks. The port-a-bote is a simple, foldable boat. For fishing, I think it's very limited in what is "stock" on the boat. Can you add stuff? Sure. Can you add a gas motor? Yes. But what I wanted was something that I can carry on my TV and pull the AS but was more than just sides and a bottom.

Jackson Kayaks makes the Big Tuna. We went to the local dealership and we liked all the storage that it has. We got a cart to get down to the water, can stow the wheels in the rear storage area. There's storage in the bottom, can be converted to a live well and can be raised, lowered or even removed. There are numerous mounting points for rod holders, depth finders and other things. There are bungee straps along the side and bow for your paddles and rods.

It fits on top of the AS just fine, but it did take me a while to figure out the best way to load and unload it. After several times on lakes and rivers in Florida I am very pleased with the purchase. It's pretty stable and some have added trolling and gas motors to them. I may add an electric motor.

Go to youtube.com and search on Jackson big tuna for a number of demos or you can go to their site: http://jacksonkayak.com/blog/kayak/big-tuna/

Here's a pic from the Internet, I don't have any of the two of us, no way to take the picture. The other pictures is our TV with kayak and AS attached. There's one of me on the Hillsborough River in Florida, no front seat installed.



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