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Old 17-01-2011, 10:10   #16
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If you let your dinghy get dingy, it's not as likely to get stolen.

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Old 17-01-2011, 16:10   #17
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If I cannot handle it on off deck then it is too big. But in more protected waters only the size of your engine is the limit.


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Old 18-01-2011, 18:21   #18
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How big? Light enough (including motor/anchor/fuel etc) for one person to lift on board/drag up the beach and high sided enough to keep most of the ocean on the outside. Roomy enough for one trip with the usual crew and small enough to fit in a convenient spot without tripping over it all the time. In northern Australia I might also add: croc proof! They just love inflatables... which have to be hauled up or alongside every night.
Who on earth tows dinghies? It's just asking for trouble! In monohulls as well as multis...
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Old 19-01-2011, 08:36   #19
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To me the ideal dingy would be a three piece nesting dingy. With the the two end pieces nesting in a long middle piece. The middle piece would possibly have a center board and a mast step. For normal dingy use only the two end pieces would be used with oars or a small outboard. If you want to go exploring where the drought of your yacht would limit you, the put the middle piece in and use a bigger out board or a sail. The design should allow you to lower the dingy into the water piece by piece so that the weight should not be an issue.

Any idea if anyone makes such a dingy?
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Old 20-01-2011, 15:01   #20
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Cant say as I've ever seen one that breaks into 3rds but I like the idea. At the moment I have an 8 foot hard dink made of fibreglass that's in the process of being rebuilt. The transom rotted out, and I should have it finished again shortly. I've had it out in 6 foot short pitch swells and its interesting to say the least. My second dinghy came with the other boat, and its an old 8 foot inflatable. Problem with it is the transom also rotted out. I've removed the old one, and made up a new one from marine ply. I expect I'll install it and bed it with 5200, that "never let go of anything ever" wonder goop. The second problem with that one is that the tubes appear to leak air out of the valves. I'm not yet sure what can be done about that, the maker is long since gone bust. I'll tinker with it after the transom is fixed but at this stage, I'm thinking 10 foot or perhaps 11 would be nice. I was pricing out 10foot inflatables at the Toronto boat show, most of them with ply wood floors appear to be in the range of $1100 plus 13% HST. There is a fellow at the club who owns a 10 or 12 foot nesting dinghy, and I may make a copy of it. I like the idea of a hard dink more than an inflatable for some reason. I also want the ability to sail the dink, so a center board and mast set would be required. If I build one it'll either be the nesting punt or a 12 dory. Either one will fit on my fore deck.

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Old 20-01-2011, 15:19   #21
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After our adventure last week, my wife wants a dinghy with a center console - or at least a normal helm and throttle. Not sure what the smallest size is, but we intend to cruise on a minimum of a 38' Cat.

What happened to make her want this is that last week we were on a Sunsail 384 Cat and I made her dinghy captain for the day and coming back to shore I got on the boat and had her stay in the dinghy so we could put it on the Davits. She was aimed straight at the stern of the boat right about dead center and she somehow slipped, falling back and twisting the throtlle, causing the dinghy to pop a wheelie and go forward into the boat. Fortunately the wheelie caused it to hit the bottom of the transom (not sure that's the correct term - the section between the two hulls) and I put my foot on it to hold it steady. She managed to shut it off after trying unsuccessfully to get it in neutral or reduce throttle.

After that she started saying we'd need a dinghy with a center console when we start to live aboard

It's a really good thing that it popped the wheelie though since she would have gone right under the cat if it hadn't and while the dinghy would fit, it would just barely fit so she probably would have been knocked in the head.

She was a little mad though since I did laugh - I just couldn't help it, it was funny and I could see she was ok the whole time, just shaken up.

That didn't stop me from making putting her at the helm when we pulled off the mooring ball though - gotta get right back on the horse if you fall off Everytime I try to get her to do more and more..
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Old 21-01-2011, 07:50   #22
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Has anyone had any experience with the hard tube RIBS . I found one pretty darn cheap but not sure about the weight of them ?
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Old 21-01-2011, 12:38   #23
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I believe as posted above, if you can't handle getting it on deck by yourself, no winches etc., it's too big and heavy.

Have a 10' deflatable that came with the boat that's easy enough to hook the jib halyard by hand, when iy clears the rail, can grab the dink with one hand while holding the halyard. I just use the deflatabke to work on the boat so if teak oil or paint gets on it no big deal.

Have a real dinghy, a hard one for cruising that's 10' that I can hoist up on deck if needed, but it goes in the davit's. But that's a personal preference like everything else in life..
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Old 08-08-2011, 18:40   #24
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What to do? I have a Catalina 42 and need a dink to get my wife and I to shore in addition to our 2, 100 lb dogs. I like the weight capacity of a inflatable, but have no doubt the dogs would lance the tube with their nails and sink us. I am looking at a 12 foot Livingston to sit on the foredeck and use a halyard to lift it on and off when needed. Thoughts anyone?

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Old 08-08-2011, 19:08   #25
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I would be really surprised if your dogs could pierce I hyplon inflatable. I built a dan Greene nesting 2 piece dik las winter. I love it. Dan played around with some 3 piece designs but I think Thayer is too complicated. The chameleon is awesome. It rows stores goes together easy. My outboard is rotting as rowing it is efficient. Payload is probably 500 lbs. A little tight with 100 lb dogs and 2 people. But it has 3 water tight compartments.
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Old 08-08-2011, 19:58   #26
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Re: When Is Your Dinghy Too Big ?

Originally Posted by chadlaroche View Post
Currently have a 7.5' livingston cat type dinghy /3.5 merc. Its nice.... in smooth water but wet and just feels unsafe in any real chop. How big is too big? I draft almost 6' and the dink is my way of getting around and actually having fun . Does anybody tow a considerable size dink behind or even a smaller boston whaler type ? Say 12-14 ft or so ? Im heading to carib and am aware of dinghy theft but the dink seems pretty important item to be comfortable on
I tow a Boston Whaler 11.5 SS. There is also a 9' tender by Whaler, though I've only seen it with console steering once and it looked kinda shoehorned in there. Whaler's tow great. I also have a 10.5 AB aluminum RIB on stern davits. The Whaler is much nicer when taking the family to the islands for a few weeks. Really expands your beach cruising range. I use an anchor buddy system for the Whaler so I dont have to worry about hauling it up or down beaches or grinding on it's keel. It works great, people ask me about it everywhere we go...
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Old 08-08-2011, 20:35   #27
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Re: When Is Your Dinghy Too Big ?

Yeah Seashine, I agree
Short enough, narrow enough to be out of the way. Off the sidedecks, out of the way on the foredeck. Light enough to be managed by one. I have a Walker Bay now that fills the bill on all three counts but just got a freebie Sabot that I am going to experiment with to build a nester... cut it in half, glass in some ply bulkheads.

In one of Donald Street's books Bruce Bingham illustrated a dingy with a removeable transom placed over the companion way. Looked like a good idea. I also like the idea of hand holds screwed to the hull that would do double duty as skids for hauling up the beach.
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Old 18-08-2011, 07:27   #28
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Re: When Is Your Dinghy Too Big ?

when it has divits for your sailboat
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Old 18-08-2011, 07:31   #29
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Re: When Is Your Dinghy Too Big ?

You dink is too big when it's bigger than mine.

(I have a 10' Caribe RIB with a 15hp four stroke.)
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Old 18-08-2011, 07:53   #30
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Re: When Is Your Dinghy Too Big ?

Just as a side note, most insurance policys these days won't cover a dinghy lost while being towed.
Any dinghy is too big when you're not in it and too small when you are.
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