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Old 05-22-2012
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Question Final Dinghy Choice - does this make sense?

So... I've read all the threads I can find and understand there is no right answer here but some input to my decision logic would be much appreciated.

Parent Boat: Bristol 38.8
Use: Extended coastal cruising inc Caribbean and perhaps Newfoundland
Requirement: Basic tender but capable of supporting snorkeling and perhaps Scuba diving
Pax: Normally 2, max 4
OB: 3.5HP

Remaining options:
Porta-bote 10' 8" with ladder
Achilles LSI-260

Here is my logic (not in particular order of importance):

Parameter_________Porta-bote______________Achilles____________Winner

Length:___________10' 8"____________________8' 6"_____________A
Listed capacity:____3________________________4 _______________A
Weight:___________67lb (w/o seats ladder etc.)_66lb all up________A
Max motor wt:_____56lb______________________66lb____________ _Draw
OB protected?______No (hull damage potential)___Yes______________A
Cost:_____________$2,359 (w req accessories)__$2,046 all up______A
Deck assay/infl?____Possible__________________Possible_______ ___Draw
Towing?___________Questionable______________Possib le__________A
Diving etc?________Possible (with acc ladder)____Easy_____________A
Packed size:_______V small and easily stored____Moderately large___PB
Rowable?_________Yes______________________Barely__ __________PB
Sailable?_________Yes ($849)_________________No______________PB
General robustness________________________________________ ___PB?
Stability during boarding_______________________________________A?
Confidence in company / warranty etc.__________________________A

Looks like the Achilles is winning this one pretty easily for me (despite Porta-bote's ads of sinking inflatables :-)

Is my logic remotely sound?
Am I missing anything important?
Can you do tables in this thing?.......

Thanks a lot
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Old 05-22-2012
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Re: Final Dinghy Choice - does this make sense?

Look at the "Kaboat". I'm getting the big black one. Affordable, stowable, stable, cool looking. Paddle able. I love those things. Just google Kaboat.
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Old 05-22-2012
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Re: Final Dinghy Choice - does this make sense?

Your logic seems very sound to me as well as the earlier statement, "There is no right answer". What tipped the scales for me to choose the RIB was the carrying capacity (laundry, bicycles, groceries) and stability,- my wife's desire to step on the edge of the dinghy for boarding. My response to her was, "you must be right" and we bought the Carribe, but I see great advantages in other choices too.

I do like some of the features of that Kaboat,- weight, stability, capacity. I'll make a note to look at one in use. As of yet I have not seen one on the water.
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Last edited by CaptainForce; 05-22-2012 at 12:15 PM. Reason: post #2 response
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Old 05-22-2012
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Re: Final Dinghy Choice - does this make sense?

Kaboats are great if you want a 12' -14' long boat with the payload of an 8' boat.
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Re: Final Dinghy Choice - does this make sense?

Graham, why Achilles?
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Re: Final Dinghy Choice - does this make sense?

Quote:
Originally Posted by bljones View Post
Graham, why Achilles?
Low weight for capacity
Good material
Reasonable price

I am definitely open to equivalent options for a 4pax lightweight as my research was not comprehensive.
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Re: Final Dinghy Choice - does this make sense?

Graham,
If I may, take a look at Mercury inflatables.

Mercury 270, Air Floor 8' 10", Gray PVC, 2012

Defender is a great place to compare the specs on all of the big dinghy manufacturers.
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Re: Final Dinghy Choice - does this make sense?

Quote:
Originally Posted by bljones View Post
Graham,
If I may, take a look at Mercury inflatables.

Mercury 270, Air Floor 8' 10", Gray PVC, 2012

Defender is a great place to compare the specs on all of the big dinghy manufacturers.
This has a lower capacity presumably due to the softer floor. Perhaps a more equivalent model is this one:

Mercury 270, Air Floor 8' 4", White Hypalon, 2012

Very similar spec (EDIT although 20lb heavier...) and still a good bit cheaper. Thanks for that.
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Last edited by GrahamO; 05-22-2012 at 01:08 PM.
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Re: Final Dinghy Choice - does this make sense?

Quote:
Originally Posted by bljones View Post
Kaboats are great if you want a 12' -14' long boat with the payload of an 8' boat.
I've only seen one, and looked at them one line. Never driven one. I liked the one I saw, it was the big 16 foot " special forces model" in black. It had four people in it, and they were zooming across the bay with an 8 horse. The guy said he loved it for cuising because it fit nicely in a bag and put together quick. Useless if you use davits. Works well as a kayak and a little engine pushes it along pretty good. I don't know much about it's pay load. I love the price! Cheap enough to buy and keep in the bag for a back up if I don't like the way it handles chop on a plane. How else can you have a 16 foot skiff while crusing on a modest size sail boat?
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Re: Final Dinghy Choice - does this make sense?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Capt.aaron View Post
I've only seen one, and looked at them one line. Never driven one. I liked the one I saw, it was the big 16 foot " special forces model" in black. It had four people in it, and they were zooming across the bay with an 8 horse. The guy said he loved it for cuising because it fit nicely in a bag and put together quick. Useless if you use davits. Works well as a kayak and a little engine pushes it along pretty good. I don't know much about it's pay load. I love the price! Cheap enough to buy and keep in the bag for a back up if I don't like the way it handles chop on a plane. How else can you have a 16 foot skiff while crusing on a modest size sail boat?
You have a very interesting concept of a kayak

This is a Kayak......


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