Cruisers Forum
 


Join CruisersForum Today

Reply
 
Thread Tools Rate Thread Display Modes
Old 30-05-2012, 12:59   #1
Lt.
Registered User

Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Wasilla AK
Posts: 181
A Dingy as a Lifeboat/Life Raft

Does anyone do this(using their dingy as a life raft)? Is it suggested? I mean, I'm thinking of you get a good RIB, then you can double its usefullness and have it as a lifeboat. Here's my list of reasons I think it could work, or be better than a raft: You can self rescue and work your way to shore sailing if you put up a sail, you can motor around to get more attention when someone is nearbye, you spend less money buying and equipping both from the start. So, comments?
__________________

__________________
Lt. is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 30-05-2012, 13:56   #2
Senior Cruiser

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: between the devil and the deep blue sea
Boat: a sailing boat
Posts: 17,314
Re: A dingy as a lifeboat/life raft

But when the shore is very far away then you may be better off sitting in the protection of the liferaft and pushing that bloody EPIRB button (hoping it works)...

b.
__________________

__________________
barnakiel is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 30-05-2012, 18:50   #3
Registered User
 
RainDog's Avatar

Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Varies
Boat: Pacific Seacraft 34 #142
Posts: 1,183
Re: A dingy as a lifeboat/life raft

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lt. View Post
Does anyone do this(using their dingy as a life raft)? Is it suggested?
At least two popular cruising authors take this route. You can read more about their reasoning here:

Seamanship

and here:

Cost Conscious Cruiser: Champagne Cruising on a Beer Budget - Lin Pardey, Larry Pardey - Google Books
RainDog is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 30-05-2012, 19:20   #4
Senior Cruiser
 
Ocean Girl's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: In transit ( Texas to wherever the wind blows us)
Boat: Pacific Seacraft a Crealock 34
Posts: 4,115
Images: 2
Re: A dingy as a lifeboat/life raft

Of the... Four vessels that I personally know that have sunk offshore over the last twenty years. Three used their dinghy as the liferaft. 1 had a liferaft and dinghy but liferaft was too unstable, they moved to the overturned dinghy- long story, sad story.
I'm not saying don't get a liferaft, I'm just saying a dinghy can be a useful safety equipment.
Cheers,
Ocean Girl
__________________
Mrs. Rain Dog~Ocean Girl
https://raindogps34.wordpress.com
Ocean Girl is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 30-05-2012, 19:34   #5
Senior Cruiser

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: between the devil and the deep blue sea
Boat: a sailing boat
Posts: 17,314
Re: A dingy as a lifeboat/life raft

Yes it can, but so much depends on where one is sailing.

b.
__________________
barnakiel is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 30-05-2012, 19:34   #6
Senior Cruiser
 
mikereed100's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Santa Barbara
Boat: 46' custom cat
Posts: 1,573
Images: 2
Re: A dingy as a lifeboat/life raft

After spending a bit of time in a liferaft, Steve Callahan became convinced that there is a better way.
EQUIPPED TO SURVIVE (tm) - Steven Callahan Bio
The "Clam" looks like a brilliant idea, but unfortunately is no longer in production, although it shouldnt be too hard to fit hypalon tubes and a cover to a hard dinghy for a home brew specimen.


__________________
Mike

www.sailblogs.com/member/rumdoxy

Come to the dark side. We have cookies.
mikereed100 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 30-05-2012, 19:53   #7
Registered User
 
simonmd's Avatar

Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: Sant Carles, S Spain
Boat: 30ft Catalac 900 "Rubessa"
Posts: 876
Re: A dingy as a lifeboat/life raft

I find your attitude to your own life surprising. A half decent liferaft can be had for 400, why not have both?

A few simple facts, a liferaft is,

1. Highly visable, usualy in a bright colour and anyone seeing one will either report it or go to it to investigate. A tender is usualy grey or similar and is much lower in the water. Hard to spot at sea.

2. A liferaft is ready to go. Release the strap, pull the cord and it's there for you. A tender is more likely to be straped to the deck, on davits etc. and most cruisers will have the outboard mounted seperately on a rail etc. If you NEED to abondon ship, have you got time to release it and then faf about getting the motor mounted as your own vessel goes down?

3. A decent liferaft will have some sort of survival pack on board, with rations, water, even flares. We all keep those in our tender dont we?

4. A liferaft will give you protection from the elliments, either the cold or the sun, etc.

Those are just four reasons off the top of my head and i'm sure there must be more. The pic above does show an alternative but you'd still have to set it up in a potentially rough sea and that would be tricky or damn right dangerous at best.

If you only ever go 1 mile off shore then I can understand the question but even then, the sight of land can be false security. It's all too easy to be carried away from shore in a sailing dink, VERY east to get one flipped over and a tender with an outboard (assuming youd had time to salvage it from your sinking mothership) can break down or run out of gas fighting a current resulting in the same effect.

So, launch liferaft, then see if you can release dingy safely. Then, once away from what ever disaster has befallen you, the option of using both is there, the dingy for locomotion and the raft for shelter and visability. There was a film I saw recently based on a true story, where a family was sunk by hitting some whales in the Pacific. They managed to get both free and used the sailing dink as a 'tug' to tow them into the shipping lanes while they sheltered from the weather in the raft. They were eventually picked up by a passing cargo ship.

My own opinion is that if youre planning on doing any kind of decent sailing and cant afford to get a liferaft, then you cant afford to go sailing, period.
__________________
Previous owner of a 1994 Catalac 900, now sadly SOLD
simonmd is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 30-05-2012, 20:03   #8
Registered User
 
cat man do's Avatar

Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Brisbane Australia [until the boats launched]
Boat: 50ft powercat, light,long and low powered
Posts: 4,409
Images: 36
Re: A dingy as a lifeboat/life raft

Quote:
Originally Posted by simonmd View Post
I find your attitude to your own life surprising. A half decent liferaft can be had for 400, why not have both?

A few simple facts, a liferaft is,
<snip>

My own opinion is that if youre planning on doing any kind of decent sailing and cant afford to get a liferaft, then you cant afford to go sailing, period.
What he said^^

A fair dinkum cruisers dinghy gets used as a taxi, a truck, a fishing platform, a garbage scow, an exploration vehicle and a waterborn toy.

In other words, it gets used and abused

I would prefer if the day arose to step up into something that is purpose built for survival, squeeky clean and new.
__________________
"Money can't buy you happiness but it can buy you a yacht large enough to pull up right alongside it"...............David Lee Roth
Long Distance Motorboat Cruising It Is Possible on a Small Budget
cat man do is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 30-05-2012, 20:10   #9
Senior Cruiser
 
maxingout's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Fort Pierce, Phoenix
Boat: Privilege 39 Catamaran, Exit Only
Posts: 2,606
Re: A dingy as a lifeboat/life raft

If you are coastal cruising, a large dingy could double as a life raft, but in a big storm, it might not do as well as a life raft.

If you are sailing offshore, I would favor the liferaft as a survival tool.

A dingy in coastal cruising may be better for self-rescue.

A life raft is better offshore. Self-rescue is unlikely on a twenty-one day sail to French Polynesia.
__________________
Dave -Sailing Vessel Exit Only

http://SailingUNI.com
http://maxingout.com
http://PositiveThinkingSailor.com
maxingout is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 30-05-2012, 20:22   #10
Lt.
Registered User

Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Wasilla AK
Posts: 181
Also, I don't plan on pocketing the money from I don't spend on a raft, I plan on sinking (not literally) that money into the dinghy, a RIB, so that I get a better overall dingy. I also plan on getting a dingy that sails decent enough and can be equipped with some essential survival gear full time and ill also put together an. S.O.L. kit, just in case I have a spare moment or two before climbing UP into the dingy/lifeboat.
__________________
Lt. is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 30-05-2012, 22:01   #11
Moderator Emeritus
 
Ex-Calif's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: May 2007
Location: Singapore
Boat: Maxi 77 - Relax Lah!
Posts: 11,514
Images: 4
Quote:
Originally Posted by mikereed100
After spending a bit of time in a liferaft, Steve Callahan became convinced that there is a better way.
EQUIPPED TO SURVIVE (tm) - Steven Callahan Bio
The "Clam" looks like a brilliant idea, but unfortunately is no longer in production, although it shouldnt be too hard to fit hypalon tubes and a cover to a hard dinghy for a home brew specimen.
What about a purpose built hybrid?

Imagine a hard dink with "rolled ip" tubes on the gunnels. I like a hard dink over rib anyway. Added to that over liferaft or rib is that you can fill under seats and bow with foam, creating an "unsinkable" dink.

Hard dinks are less stable, not a problem for a dialy driver but not desireable in a liferaft.

The ditch bag would be bigger, say duffel sized, that has all the survival gear and includes fiberglass poles and awning (bright orange)- awning snaps onto coping all around boat. Maybe the dink has a small sail and riggable mast. Maybe a sea anchor to hold dinghy head to swells if one gets out in a storm...

Whatever method/canister that is used to inflate a lliferaft is also built into the dink. The dink would best be stored on davits, engine stored in dink when not in use. Weight on davits needs to be considered though.

Anyway.. Brainstorming here.

Declare abandon ship, dump ditch bag in dinghy, tie off dinghy if time permits, (very quick release knot recommended), board dinghy, pull the inflation lanyard and inflate the tubes for stability. Board the boat and start squaring things away for some time waiting for rescue.

Of the horror stories of liferafts the scariest is the tubes being pierced or seams simply giving up. Read 68 days at sea (?) for a truly scary time at sea.

The hard dink is a back up for the tubes failing, the floatation material a back up for swamping or holing the hard dink.

I think a purpose built unit, could incorporate the best of both worlds. However the liferaft folks wouldn't build it for fear of liability. The dink folks won't build it for fear of being called a liferaft and being held to a higher standard.

Hmmm... That means make it oneself...
__________________
Relax Lah! is For Sale <--- Click
Click--> Custom CF Google Search or CF Rules
You're gonna need a bigger boat... - Martin Brody
Ex-Calif is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 31-05-2012, 00:01   #12
Registered User

Join Date: May 2007
Location: New Zealand
Boat: Trismus 37
Posts: 760
Re: A dingy as a lifeboat/life raft

1 hard plastic dinghy is the walkerbay, that has a tube option, get hypalon tubes tho if you consider using it in the South pacific, PVC starts to get sunburnt in under the first year. A cover similar to that shown on Mikes post would not be too hard to make. The walker bay is set up for a mast, rudder, CB, outboard, etc. I think the sails would be more use than the OB, if travelling away from land tho. A good dink, not a user friendly co. to deal with though if your pvc tubes crap out.
__________________
Steve Pope is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 31-05-2012, 00:45   #13
Moderator Emeritus
 
Ex-Calif's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: May 2007
Location: Singapore
Boat: Maxi 77 - Relax Lah!
Posts: 11,514
Images: 4
Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Pope
1 hard plastic dinghy is the walkerbay, that has a tube option, get hypalon tubes tho if you consider using it in the South pacific, PVC starts to get sunburnt in under the first year. A cover similar to that shown on Mikes post would not be too hard to make. The walker bay is set up for a mast, rudder, CB, outboard, etc. I think the sails would be more use than the OB, if travelling away from land tho. A good dink, not a user friendly co. to deal with though if your pvc tubes crap out.
Just saw the other liferaft thread recommendation on the Portland Pudgy. Looks about 90% there...
__________________
Relax Lah! is For Sale <--- Click
Click--> Custom CF Google Search or CF Rules
You're gonna need a bigger boat... - Martin Brody
Ex-Calif is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 31-05-2012, 00:47   #14
Lt.
Registered User

Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Wasilla AK
Posts: 181
I thought so too about the pudgy, but I decided to make a thread devoted to liferaft/dingy crossover suggestions.
__________________
Lt. is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 31-05-2012, 00:55   #15
Registered User
 
cat man do's Avatar

Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Brisbane Australia [until the boats launched]
Boat: 50ft powercat, light,long and low powered
Posts: 4,409
Images: 36
Re: A dingy as a lifeboat/life raft

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ex-Calif View Post
Just saw the other liferaft thread recommendation on the Portland Pudgy. Looks about 90% there...
Did you see the price?
Cost of a decent hard dinghy and 3 or 4 dedicated liferafts
__________________

__________________
"Money can't buy you happiness but it can buy you a yacht large enough to pull up right alongside it"...............David Lee Roth
Long Distance Motorboat Cruising It Is Possible on a Small Budget
cat man do is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off




Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 12:29.


Google+
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Social Knowledge Networks
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.

ShowCase vBulletin Plugins by Drive Thru Online, Inc.