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Old 11-06-2015, 10:45   #16
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Re: Stow or tow hard dinghy

Paul54, sounds easy enough. Since I'm new to all this, is it just connecting the dinghy sling to the halyard line and then winching up? Or is there more to it. Sorry for the newbie question.
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Old 11-06-2015, 10:58   #17
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Re: Stow or tow hard dinghy

Yeah, what they all said, especially the cover. I have a 8 foot Trinka with a peaked cover. If I had a bigger boat, I'd have a10 foot Trinka.Rows, sails and tows like a dream
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Old 11-06-2015, 11:45   #18
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Re: Stow or tow hard dinghy

Winch it up to clear the life lines, pull it over, ease it back down on the deck, remove the halyard, tie it down good. Be sure to check if the dinghy will snag your jib sheets. You can see how I carry mine in my avatar pic. If it is not tucked up against the mast on my boat my jib sheets get snagged.
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Old 11-06-2015, 12:03   #19
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Re: Stow or tow hard dinghy

I have a Pacific Seacraft 31. I tow a hard dinghy (old fiberglass Sabot). No other convenient option for less than a week type trips. Got caught in unexpected (I know, I know, but there were circumstances) gale force winds (45 knots) once for four hours. It just bobbed up and down right behind the boat in very mixed seas. I have no idea why it never presented any problem.
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Old 11-06-2015, 13:12   #20
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Re: Stow or tow hard dinghy

Your situation is exactly why they invented inflatable dinghies...small to stow below when underway, then big and fun when you get there.

The smaller your "mothership", the more towing will slow you down. 1 full knot of reduced speed is a big deal if you were only going 4 in the first place.

Yes, inflating and deflating is a huge hassle. But its less trouble than buying a new dinghy.

On my Hunter Legend 35.5, I used a spare jib halyard to haul up a zodiac cadet 210 onto the foredeck. Using halyard alone was almost impossible. So I attached a 4:1 "handybilly" to the dinghy end of the halyard. This way, I could make down the halyard, and haul up on the tackle. Using this method, I could get the zodiac over the lifelines, and swung inboard to be stowed on the bow.

Having said all this, davits are the way to go. There is no law saying the dinghy must be narrower than your stern. Custom davits might cost a bit, but IMHO you will be much happier with them.
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Old 11-06-2015, 13:21   #21
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Re: Stow or tow hard dinghy

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Originally Posted by BurningDaylight View Post
Thanks for all the replies. If I go with bringing it on deck, what's the best way? It weighs about 104lbs.
Use a block and tackle, (like described above) and it will get really easy. That's what I do and I can pull a 280 pound Boston Whaler 11 foot tender onto my foredeck by myself (not fun but not really hard) or with one other person helping (not hard at all).

I put the block and tackle between the halyard and the bow eye. I then winch it up until the dinghy is just about vertical (motor off, of course), and then get on the foredeck and use the block and tackle to get it up the rest of the way (so I can keep it from banging the side of my boat).

Then I just flip it around with the transom by the mast, tender inverted, and lower it down onto seat cushion preservers so it doesn't scratch anything and ends up pointing forward, upside down. I have a pad eye in the deck just before the anchor locker that lets me secure it so it doesn't slide forward. Then lash it down and go!

It's easier than it sounds. Just do it the first time in a slip or calm water to work out your technique and plan.
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Old 11-06-2015, 13:33   #22
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Re: Stow or tow hard dinghy

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Originally Posted by hamburking View Post
Your situation is exactly why they invented inflatable dinghies...small to stow below when underway, then big and fun when you get there.

The smaller your "mothership", the more towing will slow you down. 1 full knot of reduced speed is a big deal if you were only going 4 in the first place.

Yes, inflating and deflating is a huge hassle. But its less trouble than buying a new dinghy.

.
I didn't find deflating and inflating an issue. That's what electric inflators are for. Just takes a small inverter to run it.
Here is the one I use on my islander
Stansport Electric Air Pump - Walmart.com
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Old 11-06-2015, 14:21   #23
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Re: Stow or tow hard dinghy

We sail the area you are considering and had Weaver Davits. Gave up on them because when the boat heeled the dink drags in the water. So we gave up the Weavers and now just tow. Storms are fairly easy to avoid and predict. Be where you need to be by 3pm and get ready for a T storms that are brief but windy. No problems in 2 years of towing on trips of over 30 days.
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Old 11-06-2015, 16:25   #24
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Re: Stow or tow hard dinghy

We cruise the west coast of Florida & normally tow our dinghy. We've got an 11' Avon with an inflatable floor & a 10' Bauer sailing dinghy. Both tow well & we have not had a problem with towing either of them in storms which we regularly get caught in in the summer. However. usually remove the motor when we're towing. We got caught in a storm once with our previous 8' Avon & it picked up & windmilled behind the boat ending up upside down. If I'd left the motor on it would have sucked. I rig a bridle at the boat & a bridle at the Avon but not at the Bauer. I always use floating line & always run an extra safety line.
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Old 11-06-2015, 16:40   #25
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Re: Stow or tow hard dinghy

Thanks everyone. I'm gonna try the lifting to the for deck for the main part of heading to the keys and then also the towing for short trips and see how each works. Good to know a lot of people tow. As for an inflatable, had one. It was nice but I worried about puncturing it on rocks, or while loading it, as well as uv degrading. I feel more comfortable with the hard dinghy for long term use.
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Old 11-06-2015, 17:32   #26
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Re: Stow or tow hard dinghy

The "LBB" , LITTLE B****rd Boat is 8' on a 32' sloop.

Needs to go back on deck sometime soon. I could take some pictures of the carnage..,.. I mean process.
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Old 11-06-2015, 18:33   #27
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Re: Stow or tow hard dinghy

Pics would be great. Just want to make sure I'm using the right line and not breaking anything
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Old 11-06-2015, 18:59   #28
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Re: Stow or tow hard dinghy

We have two dinghy's. A roll up for the times we head offshore (in our book, Bermuda is offshore). The second dinghy is a 10' Trinka. Anywhere between CT and Canada, we tow. The Trinka is incredibly well behaved when towed from the upper eye (flat and happy, if we use the lower eye it drags terribly) it self bails and basically behaves itself very nicely. It doesn't slow us down at all. For comparison sake, the slime that used to build up on the bottom of the boat after 3 or 4 weeks (VC Offshore) would slow us by 3/4 of a knot under power, towing the dinghy has no impact...
We have been in some snotty weather with the Trinka back there and we have never had an issue.
Sure, stow it on deck if you don't use the space for anything else. We fly an asymmetric spinnaker and a code zero but not if the dinghy is up there!
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Old 11-06-2015, 19:03   #29
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Re: Stow or tow hard dinghy

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Having had a 9' hard dinghy land in the cockpit I would never tow one at sea. Even my inflatable gets packed up and stowed if the trip is more than a couple of miles.

Get a tender that suits the mothership.
Fully agree with Sestina - it can be flung at the cockpit and wipe out the helm/helmsperson. If it takes the backstay out then you may dismast as well. even if not flung it will likely be swamped in short order and then become an irretrievable sea anchor (from the stern in a following sea - storm boards in, and knife to the painter on the double - been there, done that)!
My boat is not much bigger than your Cal, and has light weight davits where I sometimes carry a twin hull FG dinghy. Twin hulls allow for a very short boat without sacrificing load carrying capacity. I still carry an inflatable downstairs in case it gets really big on the way and I need to cut the hard dinghy away from its davits and ditch it.
Invert and securely lash onto the foredeck by all means, but only if it doesn't compromise your forward access, hand holds, ground tackle etc.
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Old 11-06-2015, 19:50   #30
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Re: Stow or tow hard dinghy

I had a 10' Pelican which is almost an identical design but a foot longer. To put it on davits I made a strong back - basically a 2x4 with eye bolts that attached to my davits which were soaced 6 feet apart and used cargo straps near the bow and stern over the 10 foot strong back and cinched it in place.

Duringing Hurricane Katrina that same boat was full of water on a painter at anchor behind the mothership. One band came through and picked the boat up full of water and turtled it. Would not have wanted to be towing it at the time.

The 8 foot walker bay, also on a painter and full of water, was picked up by the same band, the painter snapped and it flew away into the neighborhood north of the bayou I was anchored in. I actually found it the next day tied to a tree by the water in someone's backyard!

So becareful towing these lightweight plastic dinghies. They can turn into kites!


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