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Old 13-04-2008, 19:24   #61
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Two ways of thinking...

I think there are two ways of thinking... and the question of traditional life raft vs. alternative life boat is affected.

Group 1 : I want to push the button and wait for the cavalry in the event of anything going wrong. I'll just bob in the water, wait, and hope.

Group 2 : I want to save myself and don't want to rely on others. I prefer to travel to the nearest safety on my own without calling for help.

I fall into Group 2. If I had to abandon ship and the ship was lost. I would prefer to sail my self to land and if I didn't need to, I probably would not fire off the EPIRB. I am not a big fan of authorities showing up and taking over.

Yes, there are about 15 million variables (or more) and of course I would call for help when needed.

The question is... when is help needed?

My boat is lost, I can see land, I have ability to sail, row, and motor, and my sunken boat is not a hazard to others... so do I need all the hassle or should I just sail to safety and call it a bad day.
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Old 15-04-2008, 17:39   #62
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After a weekend of thinking while kayaking in Monterey bay I concluded that as nice as the Portland Pudgy is she's just too heavy to carry on my foredeck. As I'm determined to have some kind of sailing dink it will have to be quite light but unlikely to be substantial enough to be reliable for abandon ship use unless conditions are mild and my EPIRB is at hand! The cruising-on-a-30-footer-challenges continue :-).
Thanks for all the input, it's what makes this site so valuable.
John
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Old 15-04-2008, 18:36   #63
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I think that's a good decision, Squeaks. Have you looked at the Sabot Sailing Dinghy? Used ones should be readily available in California as, at least at one time, I believe they were used by the SanDiego Yacht Club for their training fleet. It should fit fairly well on the foredeck of most 30 footers and it has decent rowing performance and excellent sailing performance. The mast is about 16 feet long, however (needed for light air in San Diego); I had mine cut in two pieces, one 8 1/2 feet and the base section 7 1/2 feet. I had an aluminium tube welded inside the top of the bottom section of the mast to be used as a sleeve for attaching (by sliding, or more accurately, twisting on) the upper section. It was a tight fit, overlapped by about a foot and held the mast firm in all wind conditions. This, of course, allowed the mast to be readily stored on board my (then) Alberg 30.

Doesn't answer the lifeboat dilemma, but they are great small sailboats that, due to the hard chines, are actually reasonably stable. You'll need to make a plywood plug to fill the dagger board trunk if you are going to tow it, from time to time.

And Sean, my electric pump is a Scoprega High Pressure unit, available at West Marine (you need high pressure for an inflatable floor). Fairly expensive, though - as I recall, just under $200.00.

Since I orignally weighed in here re: concerns about the storage issues for Squeaks on a 30 footer, I'm out of here. Good luck to those who attempt to use the Pudgy as a liferaft replacement - I too will be interested in hearing some real-life experiences/tests with them as such.

Brad
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Old 15-04-2008, 20:34   #64
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Some food for thought regarding liferafts, epirbs and rescue times. Here (EPIRB alert) there's an eye-opening account on abandoning ship. This section is particularly instructive:

Quote:
As we boarded the now upturned raft it immediately flooded with the breaking waves and once unprotected from the wind by the hull structure was prone to turn over (no sea anchors nor canopy to roll over on). Hypothermia was already gaining upon one of my crew and myself and our efforts to right and re-enter the raft drained strength. Periods spent lying on the overturned raft exposed to the wind seemed to further weaken us.
Check here: Yacht " No Komis " GREAT NEWS - Cruiserlog's Sailing Forums and Free Cruising Crewfinder - apparently a speedy SAR is not guaranteed everywhere.

Kevin
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Old 16-04-2008, 05:30   #65
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Squeaks View Post
After a weekend of thinking while kayaking in Monterey bay I concluded that as nice as the Portland Pudgy is she's just too heavy to carry on my foredeck. As I'm determined to have some kind of sailing dink it will have to be quite light but unlikely to be substantial enough to be reliable for abandon ship use unless conditions are mild and my EPIRB is at hand! The cruising-on-a-30-footer-challenges continue :-).
Thanks for all the input, it's what makes this site so valuable.
John
Just a thought on the sailing thing - what about a Sailing Kayak? - given that you seem half way their? Doesn't solve the Dink / liferaft conundrum though.......

A solid cruising Dink is somewhat down my list at the moment - and also at 30 foot a bit of thought will be required.....But I do like the idea mentioned on this thread of a Porta Bote kept on Davits and only folded up when making a passage. My quick Googles show a sailing version........
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Old 02-07-2008, 10:35   #66
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Tinker as an alternative

Lots of discussion about Pudgy but not much about Tinker.

I have owned an Etap28i and a Tinker Tramp for nearly 20 years. Fortunately I have never had to use any kind of survival option.

I mostly cruise down the coast, although we do a 24 hour crossing from UK to Netherlands once a year or so, so two long passages (for us).

Usually 2 on board, occasionally 3-4.

We have all the sailing and liferaft options for the Tinker. Sadly they have ceased the liferaft option so now you cannot buy the self inflating bits of a new Tinker.

The only time I wanted to inflate a Tinker in a real hurry and used the liferaft cannisters they didn't work for me and I got out the pump and pumped quickly. But at least I had the option. (This was because our main engine went on the blink with no wind and we needed to drive the big boat into harbour with the little boat)

Sadly I suspect that new EU regulations will mean that new Tinkers will never be sold with the liferaft option. I am having trouble finding someone to service my cannisters.

If I were going offshore, I'd probably buy two liferafts, the second in case the first one screwed up.

I have enjoyed occasional sailing on my Tinker but would like to recommend the sailing gear as suitable out on the open ocean for self rescue.
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