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Old 08-02-2013, 15:26   #1
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Life raft inspection

Hello,
when I bought my boat it had an AVON, 6 Person Liferaft in an Container.
The paper work shows: Date of Manufacture 30.Nov.1987
Last inspection 08.Nov.1992

What are my changes of it passing inspection now?

Thanks for your help.
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Old 09-02-2013, 12:32   #2
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Re: Life raft inspection

Unlikely, but possible. It is well past the normal or usual service life but if the raft was welded, not glued, it might still be serviceable. Personally, I would find a nice flat clean space, spread out a tarp, and open it up. Then try inflating it with a vaccum cleaner or air pump, slowly, to see if it holds air. If it does, by all means take it to a repack station (after carefully folding it back up) and give it a shot.

Of course, you might want to consider whether you want to trust your life to a 25 year old life raft regardless of whether it passes tests or not.
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Old 09-02-2013, 13:16   #3
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Re: Life raft inspection

It is an old one and servicing is NOT cheap. Why not buy a new one?

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Old 09-02-2013, 13:29   #4
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Re: Life raft inspection

We had an Avon coastline of 1988 vintage until last year and it passed the annual inspection every other year. Sold it cheaply on e bay with the buyer in full knowledge of its age which he was quite happy with.

However, yours is going to contain some very old flares torch batteries and a compressed gas cylinder, you might want to treat it with care when moving it. Either way I wouldn't want it on board until it has been inspected or condemned.

Worst case is you now have a bright orange and black kids paddling pool.

Still don't understand why you guys have to pay so much for new ones, our replacement cost $850 for a 4 man offshore in the UK.

Pete
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Old 31-03-2013, 19:02   #5
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Re: Life raft inspection

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pete7 View Post
We had an Avon coastline of 1988 vintage until last year and it passed the annual inspection every other year. Sold it cheaply on e bay with the buyer in full knowledge of its age which he was quite happy with.

However, yours is going to contain some very old flares torch batteries and a compressed gas cylinder, you might want to treat it with care when moving it. Either way I wouldn't want it on board until it has been inspected or condemned.

Worst case is you now have a bright orange and black kids paddling pool.

Still don't understand why you guys have to pay so much for new ones, our replacement cost $850 for a 4 man offshore in the UK.

Pete
I certainly agree on the costs. It drives us to keep them too long and self-repack.

I have an AVON 8-person of about the same vintage. It has spent the last 10 years in port or in my basement. I opened it last week in the living room and eventually moved onto a tarp. Other than stinky mold, it pumped up hard and has held for almost 10-days now. I have scrubbed the mold off with water and bleach and treated it with Concrodium. It just smells like rubber now. I welcome any advice on an anti-fungal treatment that won't put the raft at risk. Flares were old but no sign of problems. The emergency bag was a time capsule. The batteries all turned to the consistnecy of wet talcome powder. The 'fishing kit' listed on the case did not exist. Med supplies were laughable. The paddles were home-made from a dowel and a piece of crappy plywood. The hand pump was crushed almost to useless. About a gallon of water pouches look OK. Most important, the gas bottle appears as new with no trace of rust. It will get weighed.

I was surprised that the raft was not plastic vacuum bagged and that a number of vulnerable packed items were also not bagged.

I will replace the IC dome lights and power with modern stuff. New flares and launcher gun. I wll add a Cuban reel and lures. I have collected tiny dive lights with LI batteries and a waterproof solar rechargable. I bought collapsable paddles from Cabelas. I also added a signaling mirror, compass, wistle.

What is clear is that the ditch bag on your boat is far more important than the stuff in the lifeboat. Also clear is that the professional packing stations don't expect to be around to account for their failures. If you pay to have it packed, include the cost of being there to see it and to assist in the re-pack. Otherwise, take dice along to roll on deck. You have no idea what is in the box.
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Old 31-03-2013, 19:08   #6
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Re: Life raft inspection

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pete7 View Post
Still don't understand why you guys have to pay so much for new ones, our replacement cost $850 for a 4 man offshore in the UK.

Pete
Perhaps it is the cost of liability insurance from all the rampant lawsuits in the states?
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Old 31-03-2013, 19:51   #7
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Re: Life raft inspection

Life Raft Self-Service

there is a much longer, similar thread on this on CF.

The moderator might re-direct.
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