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Welcome to RIBs ONLY

This blog is devoted to the Rigid Inflatable Boat (RIB). Why RIBs?

PASSION FOR RIBs

I’ve always been fascinated by the Rigid Inflatable Boat (RIB). Their form, style, lay-out, toughness, seaworthiness and sportive way of navigating are the unquestionable advantages you’ll rarely find combined in another type of boat.

TYPE OF RIBs

This type of boat is also known as the 4 x 4 of the sea. Rescue services, military, police, port staff often use RIBs because of their excellent behavior, seaworthiness and solidity. Other RIBs are fitted for pleasure, fishing and racing. A RIB is indeed a very special type of motorboat. Know what to look for when buying a RIB.

SOCIAL MEDIA

RIBs ONLY has a Facebook group. Become a member of this great RIB community: it’s free and you get to meet great passionates!

WHAT’s A RIB

A RIB has a solid V-hull, inflatable tubes in a U -form and an engine on the stern. Basicly that’s it. All the rest are variations.

Gemini RIB
Gemini RIB showing the basics components of a RIB (the T-top is optional).

And that’s what it makes RIBs so interesting. They come in all sizes and widths. Some have engines with only a few horsepower, others have multiple engines and many, many horsepower.

RIBs are being built for many different purposes:

  • Family outings
  • Speed
  • Ultimate luxury
  • Weekenders and such
  • Racing
  • Work beast
  • Rescue
  • Military – tactical

Each an every purpose has certain requirements as far as the hull is concerned. Many people that go out to buy a RIB look mostly at the lay-out but it is the hull that’s the most important criterium together with the balance of the RIB. True RIBbers will tell you all about the hull and the behaviour of the RIB in all kinds of seas. It’s good to do some research your self. That’s where RIBs ONLY comes in. There is a lot of knowledge here and in our Facebook group. Pop your questions, we’ll be glad to help you. RIBs are our passion.

BUDGET

Remember that everything in the nautical world is quite pricy. Ofcourse, just like cars, there is one for every budget. Well built RIBs last for decades if maintained good. And a RIB does need some maintenance, especially if the sea is your navigating area. Salt water is unpardonable. Spraying your RIB and rinsing the engine with fresh water are standard jobs. See the purchase of a RIB as an investment. If you ever sell the RIB, its general state is a real price boost. So do not be too stingy with your budget.

Good maintenance, is the long life of a RIB.

ENGINE

Reliability is key when you’re thinking about buying an engine. There are settled brands that offer out- and inboard engines, petrol and diesel. I could write an entire article about the pros and cons of both type of engines. Some RIBbers prefer more than 1 engine. This mainly depends on the purpose and the weight of the RIB. And again, talk to RIBbers about this. Most of them have years and years of experience when it comes to the engines and brand.

RIBs ONLY

Below you can read some history of RIBsONLY.com: the reasons to be and how it evolved.

FROM FORUM TO BLOG

RIBs Only started as a forum way back in 2008. Why? Well I got a lot of questions on RIBs and wanted to have a sort of dbase that I could fill with information like dealer websites, types of RIBs, RIB brands and videos. I chose forum software to realize my goal. In these days, Facebook wasn’t all that popular yet (2004) and I doubted the relevance of a Facebook group then, considering my target group. It was said that Facebook is for the youngsters.

It was a hell of a job to maintain the forum (I had another running as well). Videos went offline, brands stopped building RIBs, new models arrived and others were terminated … It was a true nightmare. Nevertheless I kept it up and running ’till the last day of April 2017. I admit that the last years, I didn’t had the time to keep it up to date anymore. Members signed off and I needed to take action. Should I stop with RIBs ONLY or should I change course?

RIBs ONLY BLOG

I decided to go on with RIBsONLY.com. I believed that by taking another approach I still could make it work. I did some research on blog software. I was familiar with Joomla but I wasn’t satisfied with the way it worked. It just took too much time to get things done. Drupal and other CMS software couldn’t convince me. Finally I came across WordPress and that was exactly what I needed. I got a boost and the blog was a fact.

VIDEOs ARE KEY

My goal is to promote RIBbing and share information with as many people as possible. I understand the need for owner groups that are brand bound. It could be fun but the group stays in the small circle. RIBs ONLY is about the passion for the RIB and everything that has to do with it.
I believe that videos are a good way to achieve this goal. For those who are looking to buy a RIB, I want RIBs ONLY to be their premier source of information. As is often the case, videos can tell a lot more then just texts. So RIB videos are key.

CHALLENGE: SELECTING VIDEOs

videowall

There are a million RIB videos out there, literally millions. From very, very good videos made by pro’s to uncle Buck’s 15 second video taken with an outdated smartphone with a view that’s all over the place. And that’s the problem. Many of the videos are very low quality and do not provide information at all. I had to find a system to select good videos. I turned to YouTube as my main source for content. I invested a lot of time searching for good sources. The rest was up to YouTube. But make no mistake, selecting videos remains the most time consuming aspect.

SCOPE

I want to offer as much information as possible about RIBs. If you think there are a handfull of brands, well think again. I already gathered 170+ brands here on RIBsONLY.com. Sometimes there is a discussion about a certain model if it truly is a Rigid Infatable Boat. You know, some producers offer inflatable tubes of foam-filled tubes. And there are even catamaran-like RIBs. The more I digged in, the more fascinated I got. It boosted my passion more and more.

So, this said, welcome to the great world of RIBs ONLY!

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About the author

Karel Overlaet is a family man, Business Development Manager, creator of bingel (European market leading e-learning platform), owner of Medianaut, chairman Varen voor Autisme vzw (npo), nautical journalist and photographer, passionate about RIBs. karel@medianaut.be – Berchem – Belgium
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