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Old 19-02-2008, 20:42   #16
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Originally Posted by BigCat View Post
Assuming that it was weather that sunk the boat--it could have been a collision, a fire, or a structural failure. If it was weather, good luck keeping two boats /rafts / what have you together. My strategy is to avoid this situation by having a fire-resistant, strong boat with a good electrical system, multiple equal watertight compartments, and excess floatation foam vertically centered on a catamaran. This adds about $10,000 USD to a "small" (ie. not maximum accommodation and equipment) 65' catamaran, but it's money well spent, IMHO. I don't think it costs much more than fully equipping with bolt-on safety gear.
Thanks, but I was asking Wayalan.
And you don't have to assume it was weather. That is what I stated.
Thanks.
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Old 19-02-2008, 21:18   #17
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I have a question then.

If one went to the raft and had the dingy tied on to it in the type of weather that sunk your boat, would the two stay tied together for very long?
This is not a question that can be easily answered. It will depend on so many variable, including (but not limited to) the type of liferaft, the type of dinghy, how they were joined, the sea conditions, the wind conditions, etc. My gut instinct is that in extreme conditions they would probably not stay together well. I reference this against the real life case of the sinking of a classic yacht called Winston Churchill during the 1998 Sydney to Hobart: It had 2 liferafts on board and, after the yacht was abandoned and the crew boarded the rafts, they were tied together. But sometime during the night, the two liferafts parted company and I think only one raft was ever found and 3 crew died in the missing raft...

For those of you who are less than impressed with liferafts and their performance, bear in mind that this industry, like every industry is market driven. People seem to want a super-duper A1 spiffy liferaft and they want it to cost pocket change, be the size of a briefcase and as light as a 6-pack of beer, but, despite stowing it, for years at a time, exposed to the elements on the working deck of their boat, they want it to convert, in milliseconds, to an ocean-going vessel that can withstand hurricane force conditions (that sunk their $250,000+ boat), preferably without any of that annoying / expensive annual maintenance (although they will quite happily get annual service on their car or their boat engine, etc). If only it were that easy.

Bear in mind that all liferafts have been desinged, built, tested and approved to some sort of standard that has been written and agreed by some sort of government or maritime body. Most of you will be using USCG approved liferafts, I guess, and the USCG has said, at some stage, that this design of liferaft is ok... sure, I could design & build you a much, much better liferaft than that which you currently have, but it would be a little larger, a little heavier and would cost you a truckload more up front and would still need periodic service. And that, my friends, is the reality...
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Old 20-02-2008, 05:57   #18
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This is not a question that can be easily answered. It will depend on so many variable, including (but not limited to) the type of liferaft, the type of dinghy, how they were joined, the sea conditions, the wind conditions, etc. My gut instinct is that in extreme conditions they would probably not stay together well. I reference this against the real life case of the sinking of a classic yacht called Winston Churchill during the 1998 Sydney to Hobart: It had 2 liferafts on board and, after the yacht was abandoned and the crew boarded the rafts, they were tied together. But sometime during the night, the two liferafts parted company and I think only one raft was ever found and 3 crew died in the missing raft...

For those of you who are less than impressed with liferafts and their performance, bear in mind that this industry, like every industry is market driven. People seem to want a super-duper A1 spiffy liferaft and they want it to cost pocket change, be the size of a briefcase and as light as a 6-pack of beer, but, despite stowing it, for years at a time, exposed to the elements on the working deck of their boat, they want it to convert, in milliseconds, to an ocean-going vessel that can withstand hurricane force conditions (that sunk their $250,000+ boat), preferably without any of that annoying / expensive annual maintenance (although they will quite happily get annual service on their car or their boat engine, etc). If only it were that easy.

Bear in mind that all liferafts have been desinged, built, tested and approved to some sort of standard that has been written and agreed by some sort of government or maritime body. Most of you will be using USCG approved liferafts, I guess, and the USCG has said, at some stage, that this design of liferaft is ok... sure, I could design & build you a much, much better liferaft than that which you currently have, but it would be a little larger, a little heavier and would cost you a truckload more up front and would still need periodic service. And that, my friends, is the reality...
Yup. Me too.
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Old 20-02-2008, 06:46   #19
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I don't think anyone has made an unsinkable vessel - ever (and I am including liferafts as vessels) regardless of cost. So if the weather sinks the big boat and you get into the little boat, you gotta remember it might sink also (even a Weyalan extra expensive super duper A1 spiffy prototype).

However Zodiac are taking some action to make some of their products better than they were last week. Give'm a clap, even if it was their problem to begin with (or is it a case of fix the blame - then fix the problem).
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Old 20-02-2008, 09:55   #20
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Years ago RFD had a batch with a bad glue line that didn't inflate when taken in for testing, afaik they never attempted to notify the owners of the faulty ones, I was one of them. It wasn't encouraging to be told by the tester that the failure of this batch was common knowledge amongst those in the industry.
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Old 21-02-2008, 01:31   #21
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Years ago RFD had a batch with a bad glue line that didn't inflate when taken in for testing, afaik they never attempted to notify the owners of the faulty ones, I was one of them. It wasn't encouraging to be told by the tester that the failure of this batch was common knowledge amongst those in the industry.
Yes, that is rather distrubing when apparently they knew a product was faulty yet chose not to do anything about it. No excuse really (assuming the reports are factual).
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