Buying gear online is frustrating when you can’t see enough details to make an informed purchase. Youtube videos and reviews are helpful but sometimes there just aren’t enough clear shots of the important details. Our “Closer Look’ reviews attempt to bring out the details that are most important to me or missing in other reviews. Some items that are reviewed here have been provided at a discounted price in exchange for the written reviews. I will always give an honest opinion in the reviews on this site regardless of how the product was acquired.
I recently ordered a Bris 12.5′ inflatable boat. Some websites show this boat as the “Fish Hunter”. It’s one of Bris’ larger boats and it’s made with 1.2mm thickness PVC, their most durable material. I bought this boat strictly for stand-up fishing. I felt it is a safer alternative to our Smokercraft V-hull, especially for the times when the grandkids will be with us.
The boat arrived 5 days after the order was placed. It was delivered in 2 packages via Fedex. I felt the need to open it and set it up to be sure there were no damaged or missing components. It’s January now and any claims for damage or missing parts might not be honored by the time the weather is warmer here in May.
Surprisingly, my wonderful wife was just as eager to see the boat inflated as I was so we decided to make some space in our living room and set it up.
Here’s some photos along with a few comments.
A couple views of boat immediately after setting it up. It’s partially inflated, I left it overnight like that so it could “stretch out” a little before a full inflation. That step wasn’t in the instruction booklet but I figured it would be a good idea since it spent a few days in a cold climate before it was delivered.
This boat is advertised as a 6 person boat, 1600 pound capacity and it’s rated to 25 horsepower. It came with the floor system, oars and oar locks, 2 seats, a foot pump, 2 storage bags, repair kit, Certificate of Origin and an instruction booklet
The above photos show both sides of the transom. It’s a pretty stout piece of wood that is totally encased. The gussets and other tube attachment points are also pretty beefy. There is a motor mounting pad on both sides of the transom.
There is a heavy duty rub rail all around the boat’s tubes. This isn’t very visible in the other online reviews but it’s an important detail.
Here’s a shot of the aluminum floor and stiffener rail system. This is one of the selling points that caught my eye when looking at these boats. The floor system consists of 3 aluminum floor sections and wooden bow section. The floor and stiffeners are snapped in placed before the boat tubes are completely inflated…check out my comments below for more info about this.
There are 4 valves total in this boat: 2 side valves, one bow valve and a keel valve. They are basic valves that can be manually pushed in or locked open for deflation.
Here are the 2 seats provided. They slide onto their rails. You can also spot a couple of the stainless d-rings. I didn’t count how many there were but this boat has them all over. You can also see the tie-down strap and no-slip mat near the transom for a gas tank or battery..that’s a nice detail.
I really like this boat and am excited to have it. It appears to be extremely durable and I have zero concerns about putting it to use on the lakes we need to fish on.
The boat is easy to set-up and it should only get easier as time goes on.
I had a moderately frustrating time putting the floor boards in and I can tell you that the tubes need to be just slightly inflated for that step. Also, the two most rearward floorboards need to be placed together into the boat in an inverted-vee fashion and pushed down into place. This step is printed in the instruction booklet and it is the only way to get the last board in place.
The stiffeners will snap right into place if you lift the floorboard off the ground slightly with one hand.
It was a little challenging keeping the keel tube and valve correctly oriented while putting the floor in. I think this part of the set-up would go a little smoother with two people.
The foot pump provided by Bris is more than adequate to inflate and deflate. I noticed some folks are buying an electric pump..I’m fine with the foot pump so I’ll put the pump money into a few other things:
I’m going to look into finding some pressure relief valves..it would be nice to have this boat maintain it’s own maximum pressure when the temps get hot. I also think a pressure gauge would be a good thing to have.
Our plan is to set this boat up with a trolling motor in the late spring and leave it set up, ready to go, on a trailer until the fall. I don’t plan to deflate this boat at all during the summer unless we need to go somewhere and can’t tow it. A good cover or tarp will be necessary.
Overall, this boat is an excellent purchase. I can remember the days when our only choices were either an actual Zodiac boat or a thin walled raft meant for the pool or beach. I expect to get many years out of this. I will try to give some updates as time goes on.
Be sure to check out the Youtube videos featuring this boat.
This boat is available on Amazon