Originally Posted by S/V Elusive
have you ever attempted to sail an inflatable
- even if they do cost $5,000?? I just can't imagine it being any good - but, perhaps better than an inflatable
without a sail.
I have a Tinker Traveller with the sailing rig. I'm happy with how it sails
It takes a bit of effort to rig it. You inflate the boat (4 chambers), stack up 3 sections of tubing to make the mast
, step the mast
, insert the dagger board, attach the rudder
, raise the sails
-- once I get it rigged, I'm ready for a rest, not to go sailing. That could be true of any sailing dinghy, though. Once I put the rig up, I usually leave it up for several days.
I've never capsized it. I make that a goal of any boat that I use. It takes more effort than a keel
boat, but you just let the sails out if you feel it start to heel too much. If you're one of those people who likes capsizing, you can probably make it do that.
It does go upwind, but I'm not good at judging how well without instruments. If you're a racer
, I wouldn't expect you to be happy with it, but then if you're a racer
I wouldn't expect you to be happy with anything.
I've sailed it with 2 people and a few bags of stuff. You have to duck when you tack/jibe. You could fit more people if you didn't have to duck under the boom, etc. The spec says the payload is something over 500 kg.
My perception is that it rows pretty well (even without the daggerboard), though I don't have a lot of experience rowing other types of boats. People always say inflatables don't row well, so either this one is a lot better or I don't know what they are complaining about.
It goes forward just fine with an outboard
, but it does not handle well when reversing long distances. To be fair, I only noticed this yesterday when I had engine
trouble and I had to go about a quarter mile in reverse to get back to the dock
. I haven't noticed a problem reversing short distances while docking
I've never mounted the outboard
and the sailing rig at the same time, though I did use it with the outboard, daggerboard, and rudder
a few times. I much prefer the rudder to the directional thrust on the outboard, but if you use the rudder, the outboard is off-center. You have to put the tiller over a little to go straight.
I was surprised to see the price
as $5000, but I see the non-EU list price
is now 2680 UK pounds for the 12 foot boat with sailing rig. This does not include the life-raft option, which is a whole different issue.
I use it without the sailing rig a lot, but I'm still glad I can sail it. The only regret I have is that I bought the 12 foot model instead of 10 foot. It doesn't fit well on deck
on my boat, so launching/retreiving while at anchor
is a real pain. A couple feet shorter and a couple kilos lighter would be just fine with me.
The manufacturer's web site is www.tinker.co.uk