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Culebra Vs Sabortooth, a frameless cataraft comparison

Why purchase a Culebra from JPW? the easy answer is the Culebra was designed and built with the help and design collaboration of our customers.  That is just the way it is at JPW.  We live vicariously through the experiences of our customers, and we truly believe that we are changing the world one life style at a time.

There are big differences between the Aire Sabertooth and the Culebra.

The Culebra was the first frameless cataraft to raise the cross tubes and the floor to make this boat a true performance giant.  True it is small, but it is Fierce. 

19 in dia. main tubes, vs. 20.5 in diameter on the saber tooth.  4 chambers.  2 main 2 cross tubes.  Cross tubes are higher.  The culebra weighs 28 lbs less, only 52 lbs.  Solid floor- Why is this an advantage?  Because the ride is much better when the boat gets pushed out of the water by wave action on the floor.  We tried the mesh floor, and decided that a solid floor was much better.  The air folks got one thing right.  Moving the cross tube up can significantly improve the boat’s performance.  Our craft started out this way because it seemed foolish to have a frameless cat with a cross tube midline that pushes water.  Yet it took some testing to eliminate the Mesh floor and realize that a solid floor gives a performance edge.  Please allow me to explain:  Most of a reversal waves energy runs under the cross thwart, and if the wave is big enough, it pushes on the solid floor right under the cockpit.  When R2 paddlers are grabbing for the top of the wave to pull them over the reversal, the center of gravity of the whole boat shifts forward.  Two paddles pulling hard are enough to lift the boat over the reversal, and the wave action on the floor produces extra lift.  In our opinion this system does more to reproduce a great ride than pointy up kick cones could ever do.  Most of the time they never have an effect unless you may be going over a waterfall.    

You can easily disassemble and Re assemble the culebra.  This way you can fly your boat with you do worldwide destinations.    You can decide which direction the handles should face, but we feel that towards the cockpit is the best.  It comes standard with foot thwarts that are solid foam blocks to lock the paddlers in place.  We removed the foot cups years ago, and are using a foam block that is more comfortable, and infinitely more adjustable. 

The last most obvious feature is that this boat does not use a zipper and bladder system.  We use inflatable boat fabric that is designed for inflatable boats, and is air tight.  Correspondingly there is much less maintenance required.  Wash the PB and J off roll it up and store it.  If you have to leave it where there are rodents, Hang it up, or place D con around the boat to keep the rodents away in the winter. 

10 year warranty, and a price of….2233.00.  For the standard culebra, and there are 8 other standard models to choose from with lots of variation in between. 

So save yourself almost 500.00 bucks and 30 lbs.  get a culebra.  You will feel the difference.  The Culebra has been around for 10 years now.  Think about getting the boat that meets the boating world’s strictest standard.  If you need a testimonial……  Read this. 

It is my humble opinion that the Aire folks are closer to a workable model than anyone else, so If you can’t get a Culebra, get an Aire Sabertooth.                                 

Culebra Grande at Hermit 18,000 cfs

in the Grand Canyon.  See how the solid floor gives you a wonderful ride. 

Whitewater in Brazil

small NRS raft frame and mesh cargo decks make this a rocking row cat.

Standard 1 man culebra with different length oars on a row frame

please read more about the culebra in this web site.

Please read more about the Culebra Grande in this web site

Please read more about all culebra rafts and get 3 D immages that you can look at closely with dimensions for design collaboration.


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