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Go Back   SailNet Community > On Board > Gear & Maintenance > Inflatable tender for 30' sailboat
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Thread: Inflatable tender for 30' sailboat Reply to Thread
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Topic Review (Newest First)
02-06-2013 10:41 AM
CalypsoP35
Re: Inflatable tender for 30' sailboat

Quote:
Originally Posted by Alex W View Post
Keeping it in the water all the time is pretty hard on the dinghy. Why not put it on the dock (with a rack that holds it vertical) when you don't have it in use? Otherwise you'll probably be hauled it out every couple of months to clean it anyway. If you aren't using it regularly (weekly?) the dinghy will last much much longer if you keep it deflated and put away when not in use. I bet a PVC dinghy will last only a few years if kept out in the sun, but go for decades if mostly kept rolled up and only inflated when it use. It takes me about 5 minutes to unpack and inflate my 7'7" Zodiac Zoom.
I keep my dinghy in the water all season long early May 'till end of October. we botom paint it with inflatable rubberized bottom paint. We never haul it out to clean it during the season. We're in the Northeast so we don't have the sun that you have to deal with in the southern climates. I had a West Marine (Zodiac) PVC dinghy with a plywood floor for ten years. I just replaced it this winter. I go to my boat usually at least a couple times a week, there is no way I want to be hauling out my dinghy everytime I go to my boat. If I didn't use it as frequently then maybe. Everybody's situation is different. You really can't generalize.

My new dinghy is a PVC. If I can get 10 yrs out of a PVC dinghy with the hard use I give it, I'm happy to replace it every 10 yrs with a purchase price of about half of what a hypalon costs.

If you're considering two sizes, I would go with the larger. As was mentioned, if the if there is any wave action there's a good chance you'll catch a lot of spray, so the bigger the better. Also, while most of the time there might only be two people how often do you have load more people and supplies? If you have access to a dock where you can load up, then it's not a problem. If you get a hard floor (plywood or aluminum, breaking it down and setting it up will take more than a few minutes. However, I like having a hard floor, (old one was plywood, new is aluminum) because you don't have to worry about leaks in the air floor. The advantage of an air floor is that it's lighter and probably easier to set up and breakdown.
02-06-2013 08:53 AM
blutoyz
Re: Inflatable tender for 30' sailboat

Quote:
Originally Posted by wopalx View Post
My wife's arse got majorly wet this Christmas when we were cruising, "we need a dinghy with a hard floor that i can step on & that has an outboard that actually works" was her wording. She isn't much of a sailer...

My response "Okay darling I'll sort something out that can take us 2 adults and the 3 kids. Maybe even be able to do a little fishing as well".

A month later the new dinghy arrived .... okay so maybe I took her instructions a tad literally

Pics of the old (sans outboard) and the new.

The new one obviously wont be put on the deck, which isn't an issue.

Go big or go home I guess
02-06-2013 12:11 AM
fallard
Re: Inflatable tender for 30' sailboat

For many years I had a 9' Avon hypalon roll-up dinghy. The floor was pvc slats joined by rubber hinges like a roll-top desk tambour door. It was a real floor! The thwart seat and oars were the only removable parts. You literally rolled it out and inflated the two large chambers and the inflatable keel. I used it for 15 years seasonally in New England before I got a larger hard-bottomed dinghy (that's another story). The roll-up still holds air after 19 years.

We started with a 6 hp motor, but downsized to a 4 hp, which was easier to ship and unship. The motor was clamped on a bracket attached to the stern pulpit when underway. The 110 lb. dinghy--sans motor--was hauled up on the foredeck, deflated, and rolled up if we were traveling any distance over 10 nm. It helps to have an electric pump, but it isn't necessary. After a few years of horsing the dinghy over the lifelines, we decided it was easier to hoist it up using the main halyard.

The trouble with the roll-up was that is was a wet boat, having a low freeboard. We also had to be careful landing and launching on the beach. We added removable wheels back when they were called Davis "Wheel-Aweigh". We were getting older and this allowed us to pull it up the beach and not worry about sharp shells--and you do need to worry about them! We used this system for many years and it worked well.

Over the years we've had inflatable, hard bottom inflatable, and hard dinghies (Dyer Dhow). For your size boat, an inflatable that you can stow--preferably deflated--on the foredeck is what we'd recommend. An inflatable is much more stable that other types, but you have to protect it from shells when you beach it. You really need a motor, but a small one (2-4 hp) is all you need. If you intend to keep it for a long time, spend a few more bucks for hypalon and store it in its duffel out of the sun when you are not using it.
02-05-2013 11:22 PM
wopalx
Re: Inflatable tender for 30' sailboat

My wife's arse got majorly wet this Christmas when we were cruising, "we need a dinghy with a hard floor that i can step on & that has an outboard that actually works" was her wording. She isn't much of a sailer...

My response "Okay darling I'll sort something out that can take us 2 adults and the 3 kids. Maybe even be able to do a little fishing as well".

A month later the new dinghy arrived .... okay so maybe I took her instructions a tad literally

Pics of the old (sans outboard) and the new.

The new one obviously wont be put on the deck, which isn't an issue.
02-05-2013 09:40 PM
chef2sail
Re: Inflatable tender for 30' sailboat

Quote:
Originally Posted by Capt-T View Post
Those of you with the Garhauer motor lift... is this easy to store when not in use? I'm assuming there must me some type of mounting hardware on the transom with a collapsable davit arm that stores when not in use. Is this correct? If so, does the arm completely remove from the mounting hardware? or just fold up in place? or something else... pics earn you bonus points!!
I dont have a picture as its rarely set up. I have the Garhauer radar pole with detachable engine hoist. On the pole are two permanent ring clamps about 2 feet apart with slots on the side of the clamps for a verticle pin,

The detachable hoists 2 arms with the verticle pins at the ends of them, unfold like accordian till reaching the 2 feet length and slide down into the slots and are locked in by a pin ring, The arms are then attached to the bar with a 6:1 purchase with a carniner on the end

Open link and click on the bottom radar pole picture to enlarge, Detachable hoist stores in a small bag about the size of a 3 foot piece of 2X4

Garhauer Marine Hardware -5537120
02-05-2013 09:05 PM
Rhys05
Re: Inflatable tender for 30' sailboat

Quote:
Originally Posted by bljones View Post
A kayak is great to paddle, but hard to get into from a swim ladder and has little load capacity with two aboard.
True. I guess it really depends on what you need the tender for, if you need to go get groceries and transport lots of stuff a long distance, you need the dinghy type with a motor, whereas if you (like us) just want to be able to paddle in to the beach/island/whatever from the anchored boat to hang out, then the kayak will work fine. It also probably helps that the transom on our boat is pretty low.
02-05-2013 09:01 PM
bljones
Re: Inflatable tender for 30' sailboat

A kayak is great to paddle, but hard to get into from a swim ladder and has little load capacity with two aboard.
02-05-2013 08:05 PM
4arch
Re: Inflatable tender for 30' sailboat

We faced the same question a couple of years ago and ended up going with a West Marine RU-3 slat floor. It's 8'-6" and that has worked out to be a good size for the two of us and for our 30' boat. We can inflate it on top of the companionway hatch and store it on top of the foredeck upside down. It's light enough to launch easily from the deck and when we're finished with it we can roll it up into the size of a large duffel bag and throw it in the quarter berth. With the slat floor it doesn't track well under power and doesn't row well at all, but the ability to store it so compactly below decks usually makes that a reasonable compromise. If we had a larger boat we probably would have gone a little larger and with the high pressure air floor but we didn't want the tender to be unmanageable. Capacity wise, the 8'-6" would be tight with 3 adults even though it's rated for that capacity but it's fine for 2.
02-05-2013 03:27 PM
Rhys05
Re: Inflatable tender for 30' sailboat

Are you set on needing a motor for your dinghy? I'm considering something like this inflatable kayak for our 26' boat. Cheap, light, no motor to worry about, etc.

Amazon.com: Sea Eagle SE370 Inflatable Kayak with Pro Package: Sports & Outdoors Amazon.com: Sea Eagle SE370 Inflatable Kayak with Pro Package: Sports & Outdoors


02-05-2013 03:21 PM
Alex W
Re: Inflatable tender for 30' sailboat

Keeping it in the water all the time is pretty hard on the dinghy. Why not put it on the dock (with a rack that holds it vertical) when you don't have it in use? Otherwise you'll probably be hauled it out every couple of months to clean it anyway. If you aren't using it regularly (weekly?) the dinghy will last much much longer if you keep it deflated and put away when not in use. I bet a PVC dinghy will last only a few years if kept out in the sun, but go for decades if mostly kept rolled up and only inflated when it use. It takes me about 5 minutes to unpack and inflate my 7'7" Zodiac Zoom.

You can get an 8'6" Zodiac Zoom from Defender for less money than the Saturn that you are looking at. If you aren't in a rush it'll be even cheaper when they have their big spring sale (usually in April?). The Zoom is imported by Zodiac from China and made from PVC, so not comparable to their higher end boats, but it is probably at least as good as the Saturn and the company has wider representation so parts and warranty issues should be easier. The Saturn is also a PVC boat.

7'7" is plenty for two people and not much gear in my experience, 8'6" should be more than enough.
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