To provide an alternative view, I've owned a Walker Bay RIB
for two years and have been very pleased. It handles better and is drier than my old Avon
3.11. Quality is at least as good as the Avon
- maybe a bit better (I'm not sure about Avon today but in 2001 they were turning out great boats).
It seems that the Deborah's complaint is that a glued D ring pulled off while towing. This is hardly an unheard of event. While it may have been faulty manufacture -- it could also have been because an outboard
was left on, the bridle
wasn't set up right, an odd wave, or even rainwater weight in the dinghy. It's also cheap
and easy to fix with a tube of glue from West Marine
in less time than she's spent filing complaints. My Walker Bay RIB
has a large stainless tow eye through bolted in the solid hull
. A much better tow point.
I'm also confused why a boat built in 2007 or 2008 has just seen water
. Did the dealer really have a 3 year old new boat in inventory or is this in some way used? Most manufacturers only warranty the first owner for obvious reasons. And if new, why didn't Deborah first call her dealer instead of going to Walker Bay? Maybe she did.
As to the first poster's unhappy experience, buying
dinghy made from anything but Hypalon is a mistake you only make once. It's not uncommon to see Hypalon dinghies that are well past their 10th birthday. He evidently got 2 1/2 years from PVC exposed full time to the sun. That's better than average in my experience. Hypalon is amazing stuff and the only suitable choice for full time sun exposure. I would agree that manufacturers (and almost all make PVC versions) should put a big sign on the PVC dinghies that says "Do not leave in sun".
Should Walker Bay have done more? Perhaps but in both complaints there seems to be unrealistic expectations and -- at least in Deborah's case - an aggressive litigious approach that rarely leads to a "win-win" conclusion.
I've got no relation to Walker Bay except happily owning one.