Cruisers Forum
 


Join CruisersForum Today

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Rate Thread Display Modes
Old 11-01-2019, 15:36   #76
Registered User

Join Date: Oct 2015
Location: Beaufort, NC
Posts: 13
Re: Porta-bote haters: what's not to like?

A few months back I went cruising with some friends on their 41ft boat. They have a Portia-Boat and like it. I have always had inflatables. While we were at a dock two us carried it off the boat to try and fix it. The transom folds and the rubber had dried out and split over time. We spent the better part of an afternoon cleaning, drying and applying some glue. It didn't work and the owners decided to replace it. In fairness they say it was some 7 years old. I think a replacement was somewhere in the neighborhood of $1500 give or take a few hundred. This is less than a typical rubber dinghy. Far less than one made with Hypalon. Inflatables with hard bottoms (RIBS) are far more than that but have far greater capabilities if you have the right motor. For my money i like an inflatable but as I said my friends bought another one. I think this is their 3rd one.
__________________

Happ is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-01-2019, 17:35   #77
Ike
Registered User
 
Ike's Avatar

Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Pacific Northwest, USA
Boat: FL12 12 ft rowboat, 8 foot sailing dink, 18 foot SeaRay I/O
Posts: 205
Re: Porta-bote haters: what's not to like?

I have never owned or used a PortaBote, but I spent many years dealing with Sandy Kaye. He was a PITA. The reason they are so sensitive about customers exceeding the HP rating is the Coast Guard (me) gave them hell about doing that very thing. I was the one at the USCG who had to deal with them. For years Sandy Kaye, who is a man, (Maybe his daughter is also named Sandy. I never spoke with her.) tried to get the Coast Guard to allow them to put a bigger HP rating on their boats than the boats qualified for. He wanted to do it solely for marketing purposes. He even told me that. We never granted exemptions (allow someone to do other than the regulations allowed) for HP ratings. It wasn't just Sandy Kaye who wanted to do this, but most boat manufacturers said Ok when told no. He badgered us for years with phone calls and letters and complaints to higher level people. Fortunately (for me) I retired in 2004 and didn't have to deal with him anymore.

Also those boats are required to have level flotation. That is, when swamped they float relatively level but full of water. If they sink then that should be reported to the Coast Guard. However many people confuse swamping, the boat fills with water, and sinking, the boat goes underwater (like the Titanic)

As far as the boats go, it strikes me they are like VW Beetles, you love them or hate them. Doesn't seem to be a middle ground.
__________________

__________________
Ike
"Dont tell me I can't, tell me how I can"
Ike is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-01-2019, 18:00   #78
Registered User

Join Date: May 2011
Location: Malaysia
Boat: 27' Randell sailboat, sloop
Posts: 4
Send a message via Skype™ to murianne
Re: Porta-bote haters: what's not to like?

Here is why I will NEVER consider owning one again.
In the first year the aluminium rivets failed. So I replaced them with stainless steel as they failed.
When the makers plate fell off in 17m of water I thought.."oh well, onward, onward."
Until year 7.
That is when the folding mechanism failed.
So I contacted the manufacturer as there was a 10 year warranty.
"Have you got the ID / Maker plate?"

And after a lot of nonsense, brouhaha and angst I decided to NEVER .....well, you can guess the rest.

And now with a Walker Bay I'm as happy as can be!!
murianne is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-01-2019, 18:12   #79
Senior Cruiser
 
hpeer's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: Philadelphia
Boat: Murray 33-Chouette & Pape Steelmaid-44-Safara-both steel cutters
Posts: 4,742
Re: Porta-bote haters: what's not to like?

When you say the “folding mechanism failed” was that the fold in the transom that developed a crack or something else?

Mine has the crack in the transom. I’ve slowed the leak to acceptable proportions with buytel tape. Next time I have it out of the water and dried out well I’m going to remove the tape and try sealing it better with liquid electrical tape, see if I can stop the leak completly.
hpeer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-01-2019, 18:15   #80
Registered User
 
Mike OReilly's Avatar

Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Good question
Boat: Rafiki 37
Posts: 5,541
Re: Porta-bote haters: what's not to like?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ike View Post
I have never owned or used a PortaBote, but I spent many years dealing with Sandy Kaye. He was a PITA. The reason they are so sensitive about customers exceeding the HP rating is the Coast Guard (me) gave them hell about doing that very thing. I was the one at the USCG who had to deal with them. For years Sandy Kaye, who is a man, (Maybe his daughter is also named Sandy. I never spoke with her.) tried to get the Coast Guard to allow them to put a bigger HP rating on their boats than the boats qualified for. He wanted to do it solely for marketing purposes. He even told me that. We never granted exemptions (allow someone to do other than the regulations allowed) for HP ratings. It wasn't just Sandy Kaye who wanted to do this, but most boat manufacturers said Ok when told no. He badgered us for years with phone calls and letters and complaints to higher level people. Fortunately (for me) I retired in 2004 and didn't have to deal with him anymore. ...
Thats interesting Ike. I didn’t realize the USCG managed regulations for how large an engine a given boat can carry. Without getting into too much detail, how was this done?

And so … do you know why Portabote then lists their OB specs on weight, not HP? They’ve done this as long as I’ve been aware of these boats, which now goes back going on 15 years.
__________________
Why go fast, when you can go slow.
BLOG: www.helplink.com/CLAFC
Mike OReilly is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 11-01-2019, 18:53   #81
Registered User
 
Delfin's Avatar

Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Anacortes, WA
Boat: 55' Romsdal
Posts: 1,767
Re: Porta-bote haters: what's not to like?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ike View Post
I have never owned or used a PortaBote, but I spent many years dealing with Sandy Kaye. He was a PITA. The reason they are so sensitive about customers exceeding the HP rating is the Coast Guard (me) gave them hell about doing that very thing. I was the one at the USCG who had to deal with them. For years Sandy Kaye, who is a man, (Maybe his daughter is also named Sandy. I never spoke with her.) tried to get the Coast Guard to allow them to put a bigger HP rating on their boats than the boats qualified for. He wanted to do it solely for marketing purposes. He even told me that. We never granted exemptions (allow someone to do other than the regulations allowed) for HP ratings. It wasn't just Sandy Kaye who wanted to do this, but most boat manufacturers said Ok when told no. He badgered us for years with phone calls and letters and complaints to higher level people. Fortunately (for me) I retired in 2004 and didn't have to deal with him anymore.

Also those boats are required to have level flotation. That is, when swamped they float relatively level but full of water. If they sink then that should be reported to the Coast Guard. However many people confuse swamping, the boat fills with water, and sinking, the boat goes underwater (like the Titanic)

As far as the boats go, it strikes me they are like VW Beetles, you love them or hate them. Doesn't seem to be a middle ground.
Great info, thanks. When people report PBs sinking, one of two things are true. Either it didn't sink (thank you CG) or if it did, the owner ignored the weight limitations for the motor.

I haven't had cause to call PB for the 30 years I've owned one, but the fact they are, ummm, difficult to deal with is unsurprising. Their website is pathetic and would be more appropriate for one selling Vego-matics, and any site that requires you to request a price list rather than simply publishing it has no clue about customer service.

That aside, the boats are great and do what they are designed to do, which is to be easily stored, and indestructible. We use ours as a lightweight tender to take the dogs ashore without worrying about rocks or barnacles.
Delfin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-01-2019, 20:01   #82
Registered User

Join Date: Jan 2017
Posts: 8,919
Re: Porta-bote haters: what's not to like?

I got the impression the hull / folding bits are all made of polyethylene?

Or is it polypropylene?

In either case I'd think would take some proper experienced plastic welding, or very specialized treatment+adhesive for owner repairs to extend their lifespan once critical bits started failing.
john61ct is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 11-01-2019, 20:47   #83
Registered User
 
Jammer's Avatar

Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Minneapolis area
Boat: Morgan 250, 25'
Posts: 841
Re: Porta-bote haters: what's not to like?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike OReilly View Post
Thats interesting Ike. I didnít realize the USCG managed regulations for how large an engine a given boat can carry. Without getting into too much detail, how was this done?


It is my understanding that the USCG does not in fact regulate how large an engine a given boat can carry.


The USCG does however require manufacturers of certain boats to affix a rating plate that specifies a maximum recommended horsepower, calculated according to a formula and table set by regulation. The full formula is available here.


The horsepower recommendation is determined by multiplying the transom width by the boat length, both in feet, then looking the result up in a table. Lower ratings apply for flat-bottomed, hard-chine boats (such as the Porta-bote).


Federal law does not require owners to follow the maximum horsepower rating, but some states do.
Jammer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-01-2019, 20:54   #84
Registered User
 
Jammer's Avatar

Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Minneapolis area
Boat: Morgan 250, 25'
Posts: 841
Re: Porta-bote haters: what's not to like?

I believe it is polypropylene, which is notoriously difficult to repair. It can be welded, with difficulty. I've done it (but not on boats) with mixed results. It is very easy to end up thinning out the plastic when trying to weld it, unless you have a scrap piece or something else to use for filler. There are some specialized and very expensive adhesives that will work on it.
Jammer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-01-2019, 23:59   #85
Registered User
 
Mike OReilly's Avatar

Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Good question
Boat: Rafiki 37
Posts: 5,541
Re: Porta-bote haters: what's not to like?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jammer View Post
It is my understanding that the USCG does not in fact regulate how large an engine a given boat can carry.

The USCG does however require manufacturers of certain boats to affix a rating plate that specifies a maximum recommended horsepower, calculated according to a formula and table set by regulation. The full formula is available here. ...
Thanks Jammer, I learn something new every day .

Sooooo, my 10í portabote, which has a transom width of 5í would get a score of 50, which means a 15 hp engine. But b/c it is flat bottom it goes down one notch to 10 hp.

That seems like way more engine that I would want on this dinghy. I can already plane with my 3.5 hp. A 10 hp would get me airborne (just before the disaster ).

Maybe thatís why PB does their own rating, using weight instead of hpÖ?
__________________
Why go fast, when you can go slow.
BLOG: www.helplink.com/CLAFC
Mike OReilly is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 12-01-2019, 06:21   #86
Registered User

Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 29
Re: Porta-bote haters: what's not to like?

They're like ipads, they have a sort of cult following. Nothing wrong with them per se, but if you actually live on a boat in varied waters like me, a full time live aboard since 2011, then I can assure you that the way to go is a decent sized inflatable RIB like a carribe and a 15 hp Yamaha 2 stroke.

Rowing and Folding boats are great for the "Man Bun and Beards" out there, but you'll come across restrictions like bad weather erupting whilst you're ashore, strong wind and tide plus waves that you didn't anticipate.
I've had the rowing, sculling, sailing tenders and found that it was idealism rather than practicality.
Onwards and upwards me hearties 😀
PirateBarnabus is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-01-2019, 08:28   #87
Registered User

Join Date: Aug 2016
Location: Becalmed in the Med
Boat: Prout Snowgoose 35
Posts: 777
Re: Porta-bote haters: what's not to like?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Beersmith View Post
I bought a brand new 10' Porta Bote for $2,000 on sale. Whoever said that is comparable to a good RIB price is not correct, find me a brand new quality RIB for $2000, I'm not sure one exists.

I have a 38' Cutter with a staysail boom, a 10' RIB would only fit on the bow deflated. The Porta Bote fits easily on the sides of the boat, so there is a distinct advantage to stowing it without having to invest in davits.
I said it.

A Portabote 8 is £2,089 the 10 is £2,138. They weigh 31kg and 36kg respectively excluding the transom and seats. And have a capacity of 202kg and 265kg.

8' is around 2.4/2.5 meters and 10' around 3m.

A 3D Tender aluminium rib in 2.5m length is £1,420 in PVC and £1,866 in Hypalon. Weight is 25kg (total) with a max load of 350kg.

The 3.1m version is £1,789 in PVC and £2,455 in Hypalon (so loses out there). It weighs 34kg (total) and can carry 500kg.

The RibEye TL240 costs £1,195 weighs 29kg and can carry 270kg. The 310 version is £1,575, weighs in a fair bit more at 43kg () and can carry 540kg.

It could be that Portabote being an import to the EU makes it more expensive, but then Heighfield are cheaper (the UL240 is £1,500, and 25kg), and AB much more expensive (the 310 is a massive £3,300)
mikedefieslife is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-01-2019, 10:56   #88
Registered User
 
Mike OReilly's Avatar

Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Good question
Boat: Rafiki 37
Posts: 5,541
Re: Porta-bote haters: what's not to like?

Interesting price difference Mike. They are definitely cheaper here in North America ó even in Canada. And thatís going by full retail price, which I suspect few people pay.

Any way you slice it, portabotes, or indeed all decent dinghies, are not cheap. PB seems to be in the same ballpark as quality inflatables. But another factor to consider is longevity.

My sense is that PBís last considerably longer while in use than even quality inflatables. And/or they need to be babied far less. Some people will find this valuable, other not so. But amortized over the typical life of these dinghies, Iíd say itís hard to beat something like a portabote. Same would go for something like a Walkerbay. These things last a long time.

My personal anecdote: My 10í bote must be 15 years old now. I paid less than $2k for the full kit, including the sail rig. Despite the rough life it has had, itís still going strong. This has been one of the cheapest and best things Iíve ever bought for my boats, based on this amortized cost.

BTW, I donít claim PBís are the BEST dinghy for everyone. Like most things on a cruising boat, they are a compromise. They excel in some areas, and in others they suck, just like all dinghies. The challenge for each of us is to maximized the excelling given our own particular needs.
__________________
Why go fast, when you can go slow.
BLOG: www.helplink.com/CLAFC
Mike OReilly is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 12-01-2019, 12:55   #89
Registered User
 
Jammer's Avatar

Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Minneapolis area
Boat: Morgan 250, 25'
Posts: 841
Re: Porta-bote haters: what's not to like?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike OReilly View Post
That seems like way more engine that I would want on this dinghy. I can already plane with my 3.5 hp. A 10 hp would get me airborne (just before the disaster ).

Maybe thatís why PB does their own rating, using weight instead of hpÖ?

::shrug:: The ratings have not changed in a very long time, and are, I believe, based on a voluntary industry program run by the Boat Manufacturer's Association or something like that in the 1960s.


There are some boat designs with a deep V bow that transitions to a flat planing stern, a skeg, and high freeboard that can reasonably accept the full rated horsepower and beyond. Jet outboards, which provide half the propulsion per horsepower, also bump up against the limit in many cases.
Jammer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-01-2019, 13:00   #90
Moderator
 
JPA Cate's Avatar

Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: aboard, cruising in Australia
Boat: Sayer 46' Solent rig sloop
Posts: 14,682
Re: Porta-bote haters: what's not to like?

I think the reason PB list the hull weight separately from the weight of the other bits, is so that people can consider how heavy that part is to move around, as you must move it all in one slab, so to speak.

Just try and get a RIB sales rep to measure the boat dis-inflated! Ha! dream on!

Ann
__________________

__________________
Who scorns the calm has forgotten the storm.
JPA Cate is online now   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
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


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
For Sale: Porta-Bote Sail Rig captain465 Classifieds Archive 6 04-06-2010 07:56
Want To Buy: Porta-bote onwater Classifieds Archive 2 26-05-2010 13:25
Want To Buy: Looking for a 10' Porta-Bote sjbax Classifieds Archive 5 24-01-2010 19:31
For Sale: 12' Porta-Bote 888 Classifieds Archive 8 22-10-2009 15:29



Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 16:32.


Google+
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Social Knowledge Networks
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.

ShowCase vBulletin Plugins by Drive Thru Online, Inc.