New Ballistic RIBS dive boat

Behind the console, four jockey seats mean divers can travel out and back in more comfort and safety Behind the console, four jockey seats mean divers can travel out and back in more comfort and safety

UK RIB builder Ballistic RIBS has developed a RIB specifically aimed at the diving market, which is a new sector for these high quality boats writes Dag Pike.

The 7.8m dive RIB has a 2.5m beam, allowing plenty of space for divers and their equipment. Its deep vee hull creates excellent sea-keeping and handling in choppy waves, and the unique reverse scalloped hull chines deflect spray creating what is claimed to be one of the driest RIB rides on the market. The low mounted Hypalon tubes add good stability, both at speed and at anchor which is ideal for diving operations.

The central double steering console is designed to ensure plenty of room to walk past each side, as well as giving the driver a clear all-round view of the water for collecting divers.  The throttle is mounted on top of the console thus avoiding any risk of being accidentally knocked by people in bulky diving gear brushing past.

Behind the console, four jockey seats mean divers can travel out and back in more comfort and safety, and do not have to perch on the tubes. A stainless-steel tank rack for six cylinders sits at the stern and a variety of custom options are available for more tanks or alternative seating. Additional seating in the bow section creates space for briefings, getting kitted up and rolling into the water. Below all the seats there is ample storage capacity for fins, masks and spare kit.

The Ballistic 7.8m comes fitted as standard with a double stainless-steel A-frame holding the navigation lights, VHF aerial and with two extremely bright flood lights for use on night diving. Mounted on the console are the steering compass, Yamaha digital engine gauge, Garmin EchoMAP, and a Garmin 100i VHF radio.  A detachable stainless-steel boarding ladder makes climbing back aboard with diving gear much easier.

Powered by a Yamaha four-stroke 300hp outboard the RIB will reach 50 knots and an alternative power installation is twin 200hp outboards. The fuel tank holds 225 litres to allow an extended range.

Ballistic Sales Director, Tom Sanderson commented, “We’ve always offered flexible layouts and equipment for our commercial boats, so creating a specific dive model is an exciting new stage in Ballistic’s development.”

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