"Okay, it's been two years since I purchased my SD430, the 14 foot inflatable boat. The first year I had it, I worried because I didn't have a trailer and couldn't afford one. I was worried that once I got to put it in the water I'd have problems and the warranty would be expired or something. At this price, I expected lesser quality inflatable boat than a actually got. After opening and inflating the boat, I folded it back up and put it in the basement while I saved some more $$$. I got my trailer at the beginning of last summer (the following year) and had the boat in the water for fishing or just running about just about every weekend last year.
I have a used 25 hp Mercury outboard with an unknown number of hours in case you're interested. I must say that the inflatable boat handles quite well. It's my first boat so I admit that I don't have anything to compare it with but it's quite comfortable and it feels safe to me. I use two igloo coolers at seats, one mounted at the stern to the right side and the other (about 2 feet) closer to the bow on the left side. With a couple of rod holders mounted to the transom, I'm in the water. Actually I just ordered your seat frame so I'll be using that with a basic seat at the stern this year.
True Story: I was running hard, throttle wide open, back from my fishing spot my brother-in-law in the front of the boat so I didn't see a 3 foot long stick that appears to have been stuck vertically in the mud at the bottom of the water. I'd seen it on the way out but not on the way back in. I guess someone put it there to mark something. It resembled a ferring strip with a rectangular profile and no point. My brother-in-law tried to yell but it was too late. I hit that stick head-on and heard (and felt) it loud and clear, "BAMM". The boat felt like it hit a rock from where I was sitting. I just KNEW that I had torn the boat from front to back along the bottom. When I pulled the boat out of the water I looked at the bottom and saw absolutely nothing!!! After it dried there was actually a mark about 5 feet long (looked like faded white chalk because the stick was painted white) where the stick hit the bottom but no tear, not even a dimple. AWESOME!
I also must tell you that I'm impressed with how robust this inflatable boat is. It seems that most manufacturers offer 18 inch tubes on a boat this size where the sd430 has 20's...lovely! It did raise the bow rather extremely upon taking off but I grabbed a couple of those lifters advertised on your accessories page and that was the end of that. It now barely lifts the bow when taking off at all. I'm anxious to see how the new seating feels but it's February and I have a couple of months to go before I put it back in the water. Engine needs tune up too. I'll send pics after I get the seating installed and coolers repositioned. I also plan to grab a canopy this year.
LOTS AND LOTS OF FUN!!! THANKS! This was a great deal! I only wish you had the tunnel speed boats at the time I purchased as I would have gotten that instead. It really looks hot and if the quality is comparable to the sd430, it'd be well worth it. Does it come in an 18 or 20? If so, I think they'd sell well. I'd get one!"