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Old 16-06-2013, 16:41   #46
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Re: Dinghy - Hard or Soft?

We once had an apple and oranges regatta in Tonga, folks raced their sailing tenders. There were several solid dinghies, plus a portabote and an English inflatable fitted with a sail. The portabote did better than we expected, coming middle of the fleet most of the time. Great fun!
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Old 16-06-2013, 16:48   #47
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Re: Dinghy - Hard or Soft?

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Originally Posted by Lin Pardey View Post
One special delight we have from more than 40 years of voyaging with a solid sailing dinghy, keeping in touch with the now grown up folks we taught to sail in various anchorages around the world. I can't count the times we've sailed past a cruising boat with kids on it, started chatting and soon were sharing either Rinky Dink (the 6'8" Arthur dinghy we had on Seraffyn) or Cheeky, (the Hess designed Fatty Knees we still have on Taleisin) with these lovely youngsters. A special memory was the day one of their mothers rowed over and asked to take the dinghy sailing (she offered a plate of fresh baked cookies as a bribe) Her reason - a chance to get away sailing completely on her own for a few hours, just for the peace and quiet.
One extra reason we will like hard dinghies, much easier to make sure your bottom and feet stay dry. But if we'd had the desire and funds to cruise on a boat with sufficent room, might have been nice to carry one of each.



My new dink.
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Old 16-06-2013, 16:51   #48
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Re: Dinghy - Hard or Soft?

I love it. Never buy a deflatable again. Twin rowing stations with proper 7' oars and someone can still handle the tiller. I got a Lehr propane outboard fot it too, for those long slogs or when we're feeling lazy.




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Old 16-06-2013, 17:12   #49
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Re: Dinghy - Hard or Soft?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lin Pardey View Post
We once had an apple and oranges regatta in Tonga, folks raced their sailing tenders. There were several solid dinghies, plus a portabote and an English inflatable fitted with a sail. The portabote did better than we expected, coming middle of the fleet most of the time. Great fun!
Thanks Lin, the portabote's rinky-dink lateen rig is definitely a toy when it comes to sailing, but it's sure a lot more fun in an anchorage than motoring around .
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Old 16-06-2013, 17:16   #50
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Re: Dinghy - Hard or Soft?

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We have always had a hard dink, for one real reason. ... Not haveing a powerd dink save us from haveing to register it and pay taxs and lic for haveing power. ...
I think the same way you do concerning dinghies.

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Old 16-06-2013, 17:21   #51
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Re: Dinghy - Hard or Soft?

The last boat I crewed on, we had to carry a pump for the inflatable everywhere. Tried to patch some leaks but stuck like glue to grease.
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Old 16-06-2013, 18:03   #52
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Hard........

Just built Danny Greene's Chameleon nesting dinghy. Great boat. Rows, sails, and motors with the best.. Nests down to 5' 4".

Not for everyone but its was a good solution for us......
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Old 16-06-2013, 21:29   #53
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Re: Dinghy - Hard or Soft?

L and L Pardey here. I knew this would be a good forum, I felt it in my bones. Thanks for the decades of sharing your lives with the world. Its made a great difference. I remember reading one of your earlier books about when to go cruising. You said,"go now". I heard you, but thought better. Decided to build a boat that was too far out of my reach and postponed going. I spent many years sailing, but held off the big move. Now time has had its way and I don't think there's a big move in me. I'm grateful for whats left and will happily carry two dinghy's, one I'm building, 9'6" Sailing Nutshell, and a roll up inflatable with an outboard. They'll fit on a 38' cutter. (I know the 38 is still too big, but I;m down from 50). So if your planing on getting out there but have reservations and think you need the biggest and best, let me offer some sage advice once offered me,,,,go now!
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Old 17-06-2013, 08:20   #54
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Re: Dinghy - Hard or Soft?

I'm sure a lot of people with inflatables don't really appreciate how important being able to row is to a lot of us.

This was emphasized to me when I used to take my dinghy out for exercise, and would kick the motor up and row it a couple of miles every morning. I finally had to take the engine off when I went out, because at least two or three people would come up every time and ask me if I needed a tow.

It's nice to know that if the motor bites the dust, you are going to get back, sooner or later.
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Old 17-06-2013, 08:51   #55
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Re: Dinghy - Hard or Soft?

Another point is your activities. I can't really go with a hard dinghy that is set up for rowing because I couldn't fit a big enough one anywhere. I surf and a 9' board on a rowing dinghy would be a cluster unless it was a big dinghy. Then there are beach landings. It's nice to be able to go as fast as the waves and not get swamped on your way to town.
So for us it's a 10' inflatable with a 9.9. I can lift the motor up onto the boat, the dinghy fits on the foredeck, we can lift the whole thing on a halyard at night, and it will plane well with the 3 of us and the dog and a few groceries. On a LONG passage I will deflate it and stow it below. On overnights, we just stow it on deck and lift the bow with a halyard so we can walk around it.
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Old 18-06-2013, 05:21   #56
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Re: Dinghy - Hard or Soft?

For me I like to row and this means a hard dinghy, I currently have a fairly large volume stitch and tape plywood dinghy of my own design but I do have an outboard, an air cooled Sears Gamefisher, made by Tanaka in Japan, it a whopping 1.2 hp and weighs just 12lbs. I have a floatation collar around the gunwhale made out of 3 1/2" pool noodles in a sleeve made out of Top Gun fabric with a bolt rope to attach it to the boat, which also protects the mothership. Its not perfect as it ended up heavier than I would like at about 95lbs, about the same as a Fatty Knees, plus the oars and motor. The collar and nylatron sacrificial keel added weight but the ability to drag it on concrete and additional floatation high up were the compromise.

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Old 18-06-2013, 05:29   #57
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Re: Dinghy - Hard or Soft?

Up here in the land of 10000 lakes there are lots of 12ft aluminum fishing boats, I have one which I bought for $150 years ago and keep chained up on the beach and use it to ferry people and stuff to the boat when daysailing, it gets left on the mooring. Ive recently been thinking that one could cut one of these down to maybe 9ft, glass in a plywood transom and have a reasonably light, cheap and very tough tender.

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Old 18-06-2013, 11:39   #58
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Re: Dinghy - Hard or Soft?

I like it hard...

Sorry, had to go there.

We currently have a KL Industries Water Tender dinghy. It was cheap, and it is really stable.

Here is a post I just wrote on our blog about it.

Interestingly, it was entitled, "why I love our dinghy and would never buy a Walker Bay." [sorry to all you WB owners out there]

We fit 2 adults, 1 child, and 2 very large dogs in this dinghy, it takes the weight like a champ, and is very stable.

I have to say though, the dinghy we want-- when we decide to spend the money-- is a Portland Pudgey. You can get a sail kit for it, and with the canopy kit it is a USCG certified life raft. Not cheap, but when you add up the cost of a dink AND a life raft, it's very comparable. (not to mention that you don't have that anxiety over "will it actually inflate!!!")

Our dock neighbor has one, and it is a tough-looking piece of kit. He will put 4 adults on it, and the gunwales are thick enough for adults to perch on. The thing is a tank. In a good way.

Good luck!

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Old 18-06-2013, 12:20   #59
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Re: Dinghy - Hard or Soft?

Hard Catamaran is the way to go.
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