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Fire Department look for an airboat

tbaz2123

Member
I work with a water rescue team and we are purchasing an airboat for search and rescue , mainly used on rivers and shallow lakes in summer and rivers and frozen terrain in harsh Canadian winter . I personally am very new to airboats especially purchasing so im looking to get started on some info gathering for example 1 prop vs 2 , power of this engine , ability to accessorize . ill paste the spec on this boat we are considering . if anyone has any comments or suggestions id love to hear it . boat needs to be able to carry 4 rescuers , gear and be durable in a cold Canadian climate .

18 x 8′ New Demo Airboat
This supercharged twin prop Counter rotator Work Ice Airboat is equipped with:

Engine: New Camaro LSA Supercharged 556 HP – (Part #19370851GM LSA)

Drive: Heavy Duty 2:1 Gear drive counter-rotator
Prop: New front 80” Composite Right H 8-Blade warpdrive; rear is an 80″ composite Sensenich 2-blade Left H
Two Rudders: 5 ft each with s/s 3/8″ cable and drag link
Instrumentation: Advanced deluxe with Tach, oil pressure, water temp, volts, hour and lighted switches, three auxiliary 12v plug ins
Hull: TP1332 full flotation 18 x 8′ reinforced ice rated work airboat with 1/2″ UHMW Polymer bottom and 3/8″ UHMW on sidewalls, sidewall reinforcements, inner sidewall reinforcements, 11 T bar bottom, 2 locking 1 ” drain plugs, Heavy duty 3/16 reinforced Transom.10 foot long extended gunnel rear high sides ( for white water safety ).

Cooling system: Large AFCO Aluminum Rad, expansion tanks and recovery tank. Inner cooling rad.

Many other accessory features: Has aluminum storage box, lift lugs x 4, tow bollard @ front, Grassrake with floodlights, 3 hoop s/s cage with flood lights front & rear, Bow storage compartment.Battery shore charger, dual batteries with isolation switch, 3 way safety start system, under seat storage, twin up seating, Rope cleats x 4, 10 ft Sidewall Gunnel extensions ( for white water safety ) Dual 2000 GPH Bilge Pumps,
 

GB III

Member
I work with a water rescue team and we are purchasing an airboat for search and rescue , mainly used on rivers and shallow lakes in summer and rivers and frozen terrain in harsh Canadian winter . I personally am very new to airboats especially purchasing so im looking to get started on some info gathering for example 1 prop vs 2 , power of this engine , ability to accessorize . ill paste the spec on this boat we are considering . if anyone has any comments or suggestions id love to hear it . boat needs to be able to carry 4 rescuers , gear and be durable in a cold Canadian climate .

18 x 8′ New Demo Airboat
This supercharged twin prop Counter rotator Work Ice Airboat is equipped with:

Engine: New Camaro LSA Supercharged 556 HP – (Part #19370851GM LSA)

Drive: Heavy Duty 2:1 Gear drive counter-rotator
Prop: New front 80” Composite Right H 8-Blade warpdrive; rear is an 80″ composite Sensenich 2-blade Left H
Two Rudders: 5 ft each with s/s 3/8″ cable and drag link
Instrumentation: Advanced deluxe with Tach, oil pressure, water temp, volts, hour and lighted switches, three auxiliary 12v plug ins
Hull: TP1332 full flotation 18 x 8′ reinforced ice rated work airboat with 1/2″ UHMW Polymer bottom and 3/8″ UHMW on sidewalls, sidewall reinforcements, inner sidewall reinforcements, 11 T bar bottom, 2 locking 1 ” drain plugs, Heavy duty 3/16 reinforced Transom.10 foot long extended gunnel rear high sides ( for white water safety ).

Cooling system: Large AFCO Aluminum Rad, expansion tanks and recovery tank. Inner cooling rad.

Many other accessory features: Has aluminum storage box, lift lugs x 4, tow bollard @ front, Grassrake with floodlights, 3 hoop s/s cage with flood lights front & rear, Bow storage compartment.Battery shore charger, dual batteries with isolation switch, 3 way safety start system, under seat storage, twin up seating, Rope cleats x 4, 10 ft Sidewall Gunnel extensions ( for white water safety ) Dual 2000 GPH Bilge Pumps,
First off I wanna say I have zero ice or snow experience, since I live in Florida. The boat you describe sounds very heavy duty and heavy. Most say for the LS engine platform that 15 foot should be the limit for that engine platform. And after 15 foot go with a big block platform. Hopefully some of the more experienced guys on here will chime in. Good luck with the build.
 

Mossy Cypress

Well-known member
To me that boat sounds like a perfect fit for what you are wanting to use it for. From your description it doesnt sound like much sticky dry running to be had(except maybe sticking to the ice when stopping for long periods) but like GB said we live in Fl so my frigid airboat running knowledge is limited so hopefully others chime in. I have a 15ft heavy boat with 500hp-ish and with the load that you describe, my current setup would take you pretty much wherever you wanted to go(within reason) and the boat you describe has more hp than mine and has a counter rotator setup so your push "should" be even better than mine. The engine and boat builder would be VERY important if I were in the market for a boat like that. I dont know how the performance/longevity of the twin turbo engine would be in your climate. I have been on a twin turbo once and it had issues with some kind water intrusion due to a severe rain storm and became a short night quickly.
 

White Hawk

Well-known member
I believe you are in the big block range. I have a 600 HP purpose built on a 14' hull. You will want the extra motor to extend the duty cycle of the engine. My 600 Hp would be too small for the rig you are describing.
 

Mossy Cypress

Well-known member
Screenshot_20220616-140417_Chrome.jpgScreenshot_20220616-140417_Chrome.jpgThis boat definitely looks heavy but if it stayed mostly in the water or on ice I do think it would accomplish what you are trying to do. Man this inflation got these boats outrageous! More horsepower is never a bad thing but no matter how much h.p. you have, if you push the envelope you will get stuck with any powerplant. I agree more hp/purpose built for powerplant longevity.
 
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Aeon

Well-known member
not sure i would risk my life on a LSA. keep it simple, adding a dual prop and supercharger might not be the answer. Not saying the LSA is a bad motor at all. Don't forget if you are the only one that can get out there and you bust something no one can get you

if it was me... Circle H hull with big inch LSX purpose built motor. Single 4 blade JX sensinich prop with a OX box reduction. something like this.

even with the Canadian peso dropping you can build one hell of a boat for the money you are looking at spending.
 

tbaz2123

Member
Thanks for the thoughts guys , lots to consider , kind of getting pressured buy timelines to get this boat mossy cypress found. Keep the thoughts comming they are very helpful
 

Slidin Gator

Well-known member
Don't forget if you are the only one that can get out there and you bust something no one can get you

X2 on that Aeon, Since I run everything to the limit, I try not to run the baddest rig in the woods:) If you do, who is gonna come get you?

I would not recommend any super/turbo charged motor on a public safety boat application. Boost = complexity, for reliability go with displacement.
Boat needs to be able to carry 4 rescuers , gear and be durable in a cold Canadian climate .

I would suggest you are looking for TWO boats that can carry TWO rescuers each plus TWO survivors. In my mind, TWO 15-16 foot 500-600 Hp LS boats meet this need.

A loaded down 18 footer with no backup? I'm gonna have big block power, carb and HEI ignition.
 
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