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Old 06-05-2014, 15:23   #16
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Re: Porta-boat folding dingy

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I replaced the middle seat with an inflatable fender--a big one. With that I can do the initial spreading of the hull with a small electric air pump. The fender remains in place as a very comfortable seat. I also have a co2 cannister which allows me to inflate almost instantly yielding a better-than-no-lifeboat-at-all lifeboat. Once inflated the boats assembly can be completed in the water if it's a really quick emergency. I made wooden seats and an emergency transom which are flat enough to live in the folded boat. We just got a bigger big-boat though and the bote can remain assembled upside down on the foredeck. I'll use the co2 cannister for on board selzer-maker I think!
That's an interesting idea. I have inflatable fenders. I'll have to give it a try. Thanks .
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Old 06-05-2014, 15:26   #17
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Re: Porta-boat folding dingy

cruising friends gave me their last inflatable back in the 90's and bought a portabote. they've had one ever since. current one is a 10 footer with a 3hp yamaha on it. but it also rows really well, as i discovered one day.
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Old 07-05-2014, 20:24   #18
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Re: Porta-boat folding dingy

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The video is hilarious, but you all do realize (don't you?) that the guy is doing it completely wrong. If you follow the instructions that are provided for assembling the boat, it is very quick and easy, and you will not end up folded up into the boat!
Of course he's doing it wrong. It wouldn't be funny if he did it right. I belly-laugh ever time I see the thing snap him like a giant bug in a Venus fly trap.
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Old 07-05-2014, 20:56   #19
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Re: Porta-boat folding dingy

You need to play it forward to swallow him then reverse it to see it spit him back out. Obviously, I have too much time right now. But it makes me laugh every time too!
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Old 14-05-2014, 21:16   #20
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Re: Porta-boat folding dingy

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Here's a video of an interesting little folding boat. I've started cutting wood for the 9 foot version. Not as rugged as a Portebote.
The Fliptail folding dinghy
HopCar,

How is the construction of your fliptail going? Which length are you building? Are you keeping track of your hours invested? Blogging about the build? Thanks!
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Old 14-05-2014, 22:28   #21
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Re: Porta-boat folding dingy

Hi Avid, thanks for asking about my Fliptail construction. I'm building the 9 foot version.

Progress is slow as I'm trying to finish another boat at the same time.
The plans call for 25 strips of wood 5mm x 24mm x 3800mm (~13 feet) that will form the hoops.

I'm cutting about 60 strips 8 feet long and I'll scarf them together. I'm working with cypress that is 1-1/2" thick. I've ripped it into small boards that are 24mm thick X 1-1/2" wide.

Now I'm ripping those small boards into the 5mm X 24mm x 8 foot strips. I've got about twenty of the sixty strips I'm shooting for.

I still have all of my fingers but I wouldn't bet on keeping them until all sixty strips are cut.

Cypress wasn't my first choice but it is easy for me to get and not too expensive.

I'm not keeping track of the hours or months for that matter.

I'm not a blogger but maybe when I get really into the build I'll start a thread here about it if anyone is interested.

This is the boat I'm trying to finish. It's a Glen-L 14 foot skiff. It will either be named Lumpy or Close Enough.
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Old 15-05-2014, 01:58   #22
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Re: Porta-boat folding dingy

FWIW, perhaps little, I think foldboats are way more uncomfortable to enter after skin diving than inflatables are, and even those may be boob crushers. If the waters where this dinghy would be used are too cold for skin diving, then it might be just the ticket. We've had some friends with them. I must say, though, that compared to "normal" hard dinghies, and nesting dinghies, I think the latter would be easier for me (just only one person) to live with. What bothers me about them has already been mentioned here, they seem "floppy" rather than "firm"; somehow the rigidity lends more of a sense of competence.

Ann
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Old 15-05-2014, 06:37   #23
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Re: Porta-boat folding dingy

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boob crushers

LOL, after years of reading this forum, this just nearly sent me to the floor I was laughing so hard -- sorry Anne, I have this view of you as a very proper lady ;D

Seriously, about the folding dinghy ... We have friends with one and rode in it several times last summer in Grenada. FWIW, these are my observations: First, they definitely feel more tippy when they are out of balance and it will make your heart jump for a moment. Second, because of the design you have to enter & exit them from the side -- this can be very problematic at a crowded dinghy dock. And, third our friend's would only accommodate three people max -- so if you plan on having guests it could get complicated, maybe they come bigger (I don't know).

Robyn
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Old 15-05-2014, 07:18   #24
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Re: Porta-boat folding dingy

I'll leave the issue of mammary gland interference to those better qualified , but with regard to the tippiness of portobotes, they're not -- at least not if they're used appropriately. You can't think of them as an inflatable. They could tip if you stand on the gunwale, for example, but so would most hard dingies. And while they do flex, they aren't any more tippy than any other solid dingies of the same size. You do have to get used to that flexing feeling though.

We exit our 10-footer from the bow and stern. Never a problem there. We can carry four people in ours if we're motoring, although only two when rowing (which we do most of the time). Again, I guess it's a question of getting used to how they feel. We come at it from a canoeing/kayaking background, so that probably helps.

And Ann, getting in and out of from the water is similar to canoe entries. You've got to brace across the seat when alone, or have some else brace the opposite side. You can also get a special entry ladder for the bote, although I've never tried that.

These botes are definitely a compromise choice. I wouldn't recommend them for everyone, but for some circumstances, they work really well.
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Old 15-05-2014, 07:22   #25
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Re: Porta-boat folding dingy

We have a 10 foot porta on davits on our Mono and a 12 footer on the cats davits. The porta is by far the best dinghy decision we have made. Unlike the previous poster I enter it from the bow, from the stern, or the side. I can enter it in full dive gear from the side and Im no lightweight. It will ship a gallon or two of water when you enter from the water but is perfectly capable as a dive boat. It handles chop well and is at least as dry as any inflatable of similar size. They are extremely tough and shrug off damage from sharp objects unlike most inflatables. They don't come with a drain plug, we added 1. We use a 6hp Yamaha on the 12 footer and that moves the boat very well with up to 4 aboard.
It will plane with 2 aboard. Another downside, the boat can be swamped or flooded by rain or waves at the dock if left unattended with the motor on. I have rigged a small auto bilge pump and a motorcycle 12 volt battery with solar panel to address that issue. The only other dinghy we have been interested in is the portland pudgy but is too heavy and not big enough for our intended use.
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Old 15-05-2014, 07:58   #26
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Re: Porta-boat folding dingy

Yes they come bigger we have a 14 foot. Great for fishing with kids no worry of hooks sinking the bote.
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Old 15-05-2014, 08:02   #27
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Re: Porta-boat folding dingy

Thanks for this thread. We are currently focusing on RVing and I have looked into a porta bote since it can be attached to the side of the RV. I can't imagine camping on lake shores and not taking advantage of a good opportunity to get a little boating in.
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Old 15-05-2014, 08:09   #28
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Re: Porta-boat folding dingy

Just to clarify, the owners of the folding dinghy we were in insisted had to be entered/exited from the side -- so I just assumed that was SOPs. Also, we never did tip over it just seemed tippy to me, could be just the flexing I was feeling.

Robyn
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Old 15-05-2014, 08:21   #29
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Re: Porta-boat folding dingy

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Just to clarify, the owners of the folding dinghy we were in insisted had to be entered/exited from the side -- so I just assumed that was SOPs. Also, we never did tip over it just seemed tippy to me, could be just the flexing I was feeling.
It's a good point to make Robyn. They do feel different than what most people are used to. They are neither an inflatable nor a hard dingy. I would say they have most of the benefits of both, but they come with a few negatives as well. Like everything on a small cruising boat, these botes are a compromise. But for our needs (so far), this has been the best dink I've ever owned.
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Old 15-05-2014, 20:12   #30
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Re: Porta-boat folding dingy

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I'm not a blogger but maybe when I get really into the build I'll start a thread here about it if anyone is interested.
HopCar,

Why don't you start a new thread when you are ready to start building. I would be very interested in hearing how it goes. Have you seen the pictures of the clear skin build? What are the other wood options besides Cypress? Please continue to keep all your fingers! Looking forward to continuing updates.
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