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Old 20-01-2011, 13:26   #1
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Why Are RIBs Preferred as Dinks ?

Reading many post here that seem to suggest RIBS are preferred over other inflatables?

I have used 10-12 foot inflatables both in the Gulf Islands, on large inland lakes (Great Slave) and on rivers. They seem to do well in all circumstances. Why are they viewed as not being that suitable for cruisers?

Any thoughts?
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Old 20-01-2011, 13:46   #2
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My first repsonse is that it takes less horse power to get them up on a plane. I have owned inflatable keel dinks and now have a rib. Other than above I just think it is personal preference.
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Old 20-01-2011, 13:57   #3
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The fact tht it's so hard to sink them is a plus. You can fill them with water and still stay dry up on the tubes.

They're not very good row boats though.
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Old 20-01-2011, 13:58   #4
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They are heavy, but have advantages over both hard dingies, (hard to sink), and inflatables, you get a hard floor, easier to steer, more durable, etc...
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Old 20-01-2011, 13:59   #5
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My 8.5 ft RIB was easier to get up on a plane for a faster ride. It was safier when dealing with the surf on the beach. It was more stable so that I could stand-up to lift things onto my boat. The floor was more durable which allowd me to transport heavy objects The extierior bottom was easier to clean and stay clean that a rubber bottom.

My boat was at anchor 95% of the time and my dinghy was my main source of transpertation, both to shore, visiting my neighbours, and also using as a platform for outside maintanence.

Other than the above, it was personnel choice.
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Old 20-01-2011, 14:01   #6
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You went from "preferred" to "not suitable".

To some people a RIB might be not suitable because of size and weight. And inflatables come in different configurations, some of which are never intended to plane. That is fine for some people as well. But I'm going to go with the 1st comment.

A RIB is generally a better "go fast", which can be pretty important.

I carry a go fast and a sailing dink. The sailing dink is my favorite, but it gets less use because the go fast..... goes fast. It's also a better fit at the dingy dock and generally all around better suited transport.
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Old 20-01-2011, 14:26   #7
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They are heavy, but have advantages over both hard dingies, (hard to sink), and inflatables, you get a hard floor, easier to steer, more durable, etc...
Any inflatable I have owned or been in had a hard floor. It seems most answers point at easier to get up on plane.
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Old 20-01-2011, 14:45   #8
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A RIB will survive dragging over stones, rocks and coral.
In many anchorages the only option when getting ashore is to pull the dingy over these sharp and abrasive surfaces.
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Old 20-01-2011, 15:07   #9
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A RIB will survive dragging over stones, rocks and coral.
In many anchorages the only option when getting ashore is to pull the dingy over these sharp and abrasive surfaces.
This makes some sense. Most of the surfaces the inflatables I had do well with stones, rocks and sand, however, not sure how they would do with coral.

I wonder how much of an issue this is though? Some of the rivers I have been on are pretty wild, with numerous class III and IV rapids. We can get bounced around pretty good, and never had a problem with abrasion... yet.
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Old 20-01-2011, 15:11   #10
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What they said . plus...

they are easier to stand up in as the floor isnt constantly moving underfoot. It makes getting the mother in law in and out easier. (although that can be a point for later discusssion hehe)

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Old 20-01-2011, 15:58   #11
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This makes some sense. Most of the surfaces the inflatables I had do well with stones, rocks and sand, however, not sure how they would do with coral.

I wonder how much of an issue this is though? Some of the rivers I have been on are pretty wild, with numerous class III and IV rapids. We can get bounced around pretty good, and never had a problem with abrasion... yet.
I went on a week trip rafting down the Franklin river in Australia a few years ago and I agree the inflatable rafts certainly manage well, but most of the rocks are worn smooth by the water flow and with many contacts the weight is still largely supported by the water The rocks on a beach can be much sharper and in tidal areas the dingy may need to dragged a considerable distance. The fiberglass of the keel of my RIB has been worn away several mm after a few years use, no inflatable floor would survive similar abrasion.
That does not mean inflatables cannot be used by cruising yachts, many boats have not got the space to carry a RIB. They manage by carrying the dingy over rocks. This usually means there must be 2 people and/or no outboard. The other option is to only land the dingy on sand or mud or where there is a pier. Or anchor the dingy and wade ashore. If you have the space to carry a RIB on a cruising boat these problems are minimized.
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Old 20-01-2011, 16:17   #12
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Isn't that what the wheels are for?
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Old 21-01-2011, 17:58   #13
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Isn't that what the wheels are for?
Like these ? How many times have said 'thank you', ' thank you'
when the tide has gone out .
One person can easily wheel the RIB back into the water.
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Old 21-01-2011, 18:23   #14
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I've owned seven inflatables at this point. Two were soft, five have been RIBs. Plain and simple, a RIB is a better boat. It outperforms a soft boat, it is less finicky than a soft boat, and in the long run it's going to be more reliable than a soft boat. There are certainly downsides: it weighs more, it usually costs more, and you can't roll it up and stuff it into a lazarette. For the cruising sailor, however, who is far more reliant on a good dink than a weekender or a daysailor would be, those disadvantages are outweighed by having a better boat.
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Old 21-01-2011, 18:46   #15
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Try dragging a soft bottomed dinghy onto a beach like this one and the next job will be repairing a puncture or worse.
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