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View Poll Results: Do you have a liferaft?
YES - For mostly bluewater sailing 11 22.92%
YES - For mostly coastal sailing 10 20.83%
NO - For mostly bluewater sailing 3 6.25%
NO - For mostly coastal sailing 19 39.58%
Considering gettting one 5 10.42%
Voters: 48. You may not vote on this poll

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  #31  
Old 07-19-2013
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Re: How Many Have a Liferaft?

It could be a serious mistake to think a RIB or hard dinghy could serve as a liferaft. A real raft has a canopy to shield you from the sun, packed-in accessories:
Equipment Pack Includes:
• 2 USCG approved red hand flares
• 1 USCG approved parachute rocket
• Foot pump
• Rescue whistle
• Signal mirror
• Repair kit
• First aid kit
• Emergency drinking water
• 2 wooden paddles
• Seasick bags
• Bailer
• Fishing kit
• Seasick tablets
• Rescue Quoit / Unwinding unit
• Water-tight flashlight
• Sea anchor
• Instruction handbook
• Sponge
• Extra flashlight batteries and bulbs
• Tin opener, ballast "feet" to keep it from being capsized. Along with a good ditch bag, all you would need to do would be to launch, grab ditch bag and get your butt into it. This would take no more than about 1 minute. If 1000 miles from land, having dedicated means of survival is a no-brainer. Sheet happens. It happens especially when you are unprepared.
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  #32  
Old 07-19-2013
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Re: How Many Have a Liferaft?

Would be interested in comments of voyagers, blue water crowd and long hop coastal folks.
We have a boat which was designed with life raft locker just aft of cockpit in a step to sugar scoop. There is ALWAYS a Winslow in it and a ditch bag. I have had the floor boards floating in two boats. One a one off built for a OSTAR and very well maintained. The other a Hinckley pilot. I have never deployed a raft in anger and hope it never occurs. Those who choose to not have an inspected maintained raft can only hope Darwinian principles do not apply to them. Both events occurred in a coastal environment. On both occasions by the time help got to us if we didn't figure it out we would be swimming. "Nuff said
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  #33  
Old 07-19-2013
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Re: How Many Have a Liferaft?

Quote:
Originally Posted by MedSailor View Post
Hmmm.... no spot for "Portland Pudgy" on your survey. Yup, it's a liferaft, and it beats any of the (hopefully) inflatable options.
Portland Pudgy is probably in a separate category from usual hard dinghies. They are designed to serve as liferafts ... even with canopy etc.
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  #34  
Old 07-19-2013
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Re: How Many Have a Liferaft?

Believe there was a Practical Sailor about the pudgy or it may have been a Blue Water. Don't remember. Investigated this at some length at one time. Delightful design but expensive. Has sailing kit and easy to use electric motor or row. Beautifully made and available in colors including hi viz. Having said all that personally think in has no place as a life raft. Concerns are capsize, boarding, weight, ease of deployment and space unless you are single handed. Reasonable to have as a dinghy but if so would still have a dedicated raft. Belt and suspenders. Don't believe it counts as a raft for the racing crowd but haven't formally checked.
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  #35  
Old 07-19-2013
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Re: How Many Have a Liferaft?

So this is an honest question with maybe just a bit of devils advocate added in. I've been asked more than once since you don't carry a life-raft what would you do in the case of a catastrophic emergency. So my question to the life-raft toting crowd, do you carry a life-raft for your life-raft? What if it pops, or fails, or wont inflate. It seems moronic not to have a life raft for your life-raft considering its not more than a little scrap of rubber that you more than likely have never seen and cant inspect. It seems like a huge leap of faith to me, like jumping out of a plane with a chute you haven't packed yourself. I guess we come to two separate groups, the self reliant kind and the entitled kind that think the rest of the world is standing by to cater to their every whim. Yachting is a game, unlike the commercial boating you don't have to be out there you do it for fun. Again I'm not against having a bail out security platform. Its all about maintaining your boat and being a competent sailor if you are going to choose to venture beyond the bay. We have lots of boats sink here every year, they hit very well charted rocks, we have boats catch on fire, careless or drunken boaters, boats hit islands, not sure how that happens but I can guess the auto pilot is involved. Its a big ocean out there kids what ever you choose please be prudent and safe
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  #36  
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Re: How Many Have a Liferaft?

Quote:
Originally Posted by barefootnavigator View Post
So this is an honest question with maybe just a bit of devils advocate added in. I've been asked more than once since you don't carry a life-raft what would you do in the case of a catastrophic emergency. So my question to the life-raft toting crowd, do you carry a life-raft for your life-raft? What if it pops, or fails, or wont inflate.
I'm trying to understand your line of thinking ... but maybe I've missed some of the conversation in this thread ... are you saying that the lifeboat is just a whimisical part of boating? It is a measure of last resort. People leave their boats behind to watch them sink underneath their feet. Just like someone would prefer to be on a healthy liner ship than to jump onto a 25 foot dinghy ... it is typically the only option. Sure, people sometimes sink because of their own negligence ... and sometimes it's not their fault ... but what does the reason why they are in distress have to do with 1) whether or not they should have a liferaft and 2)whether or not they are branded as entitled idiots. At that point, it doesn't matter ... it's just about choosing to live - or not.
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  #37  
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Re: How Many Have a Liferaft?

I think you have to read the whole thread, I have stated that a lifeboat is a great option, just not necessarily an inflatable life raft. Some people are ok with financing a 200k boat and adding another 50k on their credit card to have a big fancy boat that they cant afford. For the rest of us in the real world we have to work with what we have access to. The bottom line is that you cant buy safety. Here is a sad tale with a happy ending, he made the mistake of letting a stranger do maintenance on his boat and it almost cost him his life. He still has and sails his boat but would he if he had a life-raft on board?
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I work in the marine industry and judging from the state of the 1200 boats in my marina I would venture to guess that 80 plus percent of them are un safe and unfit to leave their docks. That means 80% of those boats need life rafts so save the owner who cant afford to maintain his boat, rather than purchase a smaller affordable boat they just take their chances.
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Re: How Many Have a Liferaft?

I see. I've towed my 10' hard dinghy (I have one) around but it's quite a drag (no pun intended). At 35' it would take up a lot of room on the foredeck.

If had to use it as a lifeboat, I could also see myself talking myself out of taking it along for short- to mid-length sails. It's just in the way. Also my 10' dinghy really only holds three adults at most. Any more and it's fairly unstable. My inflatable life raft is for 9-13 people ... a typical scenario being three adult couples (6 adults) and at least four children.

So, the assumption is that people jump ship faster and don't try to solve the problem if they have a liferaft? I tell you, after restoring this boat for the last four years, I am going to use my own body to stop a leak if I have to before abandoning.
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  #39  
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Re: How Many Have a Liferaft?

Quote:
Originally Posted by barefootnavigator View Post
I guess we come to two separate groups, the self reliant kind and the entitled kind that think the rest of the world is standing by to cater to their every whim.
I'll bet Steve Callahan, to name just one, would be amused to hear he's of the "entitled kind", by virtue of having been one of "the life raft-toting crowd"... :-)
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Old 07-19-2013
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Re: How Many Have a Liferaft?

Towing a dingy sucks, I have a rubber ducky and it more than likely slows me down more than half a knot. There is no perfect solution and as usual this topic seems to be way off base. Here is a personal sort of example of the worst of the worst. A good friend of mine lost his boat last summer, in my opinion he is one of the most qualified sailors in the region with tens of thousands of off shore miles under his belt. His boat was just over 50' in perfect maintenance, he had a life raft, epirb, gps, ais, radar, chart plotter... he knows these waters like the back of his hand. When he his the reef his boat went done in less than 3 minutes. His exact words were I didn't have time to do anything, I could have never gotten to by deck mounted life raft, it all happened so fast. He was trailing his dingy and it saved his life. **** happens out there, at the beginning of this whole thread I suggested a rigid dingy and now here we are. If I could afford a life raft I would get it but the truth is it is the very last item on my list. I live aboard and own my boat, no insurance policy can replace it or my personal possessions. My boat is my lifeboat and no its not unsinkable. I have rebuilt it completely and have all to tools on board to fix anything, I have touched every inch of the boat in and out and can fix any inch of it blindfolded. I also purchased what in my humble opinion is one of the safest boats ever designed and built. Because I refuse to finance my options were limited so my boat is small. I feel ten times safer fighting a gale on a lee shore on my boat than I do riding in a car to the corner market. I recently read that statistically more people are killed per capita by shark attack than by sinking boats. I maintain my boat to the highest mechanical standard known to man, I am a prudent and cautious sailor, it that enough? NO its never enough, all I know is I'm free to sail anytime anywhere in the world and both myself and my boat are up to the task. I would never consider adding a life-raft before adding a watertight bulkhead, or a better dingy, or a second dingy like an inflatable kayak. And like you say there is nothing more efficient than a scared man with a bucket.
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