As usual, the dinghy
discussion is a hot topic.
I am continually disapointed in the lack of thought that modern designers put into integrating yachts/cruising boats with the inevitable and essential dinghy
. Any good cruising boat/ sailyacht design should have a space specifically dedicated for a practical tender
, it is a very high priority item.
I very much like the cat dinghy that appears in the second post. Obviously a dinghy design has to compromise between many very conflicting reqirements but the cat there seems to one of many good solutions.
As far as rigid versus deflatable goes; it forces you to rely on a motor
, they are un-rowable. Motors on tenders seem like an extremely expensive and complicated (read prone to failure) way to propell a tiny boat, something that, provided it has a decent design, can always easily be done by muscle power. I cannot count the number of times i have rowed all the way back to my boat and someone who got into their dinghy at the same time is still furiously yanking the starter cord and cursing at their engine
at the dock
... Not to mention that dinghy outboards is the absolute #1 list on hot things to steal, pretty much every port in the world.
The only real advantage of the inflatable
is stowability, but i can't help but notice that people rarely stow their fully deflatable dinghies, and of course the RIB
cannot be fully collapsed.
As for the protection of topsides; there are these things called fenders that stay on the yacht, which mean you do not have to go around in what is to all intents and purposes a fender
shaped aquatic bumper car.
Also another quaint old thing that is worth looking into is called 'seamanship' and 'boat handling skills'; if your rigid dinghy is damaging the yacht, "you're doing it wrong", as they say.
I have started on a design for a catamaran
dinghy which is nesting; one hull
is slightly smaller so it fits right inside the other hull
. $$ can make me finish the design . This can be a good solution for excellent stability, decent performance and not much space taken when on board.
I have also made a 3.6 M utilitarian pram meant for decent rowing and you can get this design for almost free
from this site;
Bateau.com - boat plans online since 1993
If you read the site you will find the free plans section.
It is made with 6 and 9 mM plywood
It could me made into a two piece nesting dinghy quite easily. It weighs 38 kg finished, depending of course on the specific marine plywood
This version got rigid wooden oarlocks in the interests of economy but with proper bronze oarlocks it is better.