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Old 28-01-2019, 21:55   #106
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Re: A dinghy as a lifeboat

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Originally Posted by Don C L View Post
Well, my interest was piqued, and I found this:
Looks like a poor choice as a life raft and as practical dinghy. Lousy at everything IMO, and difficult to store and launch.

I guess we just have a different idea of what makes a good dinghy and potential rescue craft. Give me a Highfield with a 40hp any day over the Pudgy.

Question: Why would anyone in their right mind pay the same amout of money ($2,995) for a Pudgy, when they can purchase a brand new Highfield CL 340 for the same price? Even our HydroForce 11 ft aluminum floor dinghy at $599 brand new would be a better choice than the Pudgy which comes in at five times the cost.

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Old 28-01-2019, 21:55   #107
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Re: A dinghy as a lifeboat

Here is the quintessential final statement on life rafts.

https://youtu.be/CfNYQ97c7Lk

To me it says it all.
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Old 28-01-2019, 22:27   #108
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Re: A dinghy as a lifeboat

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And good luck to you trying to launch your Pudgy in 20ft waves and 60 knot winds. I’d love to see that being done.

Looks like a jetski is the right answer then, I have been in those conditions on one of course fuel might be a problem depending on distance.
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Old 28-01-2019, 22:30   #109
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Re: A dinghy as a lifeboat

I must agree with Kenomac, the Pudgy seems to be the worst of both worlds.

I am no big fan of RIB boats, but having driven FRBs quite a lot, in my opinion, as long as the gasoline would hold out, the RIB would be a reasonable safe option in heavy weather. If the occupants are dressed in survival suits of course.

The problem with RIBs is that they are fairly easily overturned by wind in conjunction with sea if hit from the side. There have been several incidents with commercial RIBs in this way.
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Old 29-01-2019, 04:14   #110
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Re: A dinghy as a lifeboat

I'm amazed at how the illusion of safety can be as comforting as an actual chance of survival.
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Old 29-01-2019, 04:41   #111
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Re: A dinghy as a lifeboat

It’s a cool thing but it cannot meet the SOLAS standards for a life raft. If you are forced to abandon your vessel in heavy seas a real life raft has water ballast pockets for stabilizing, boarding device for inwater access, self deployment hydrostatic device, onboard rations and flairs, high vision colors with radar reflecting materials, flashing strobe, and the four person is for sure equipped with a larger interior space. This idea that your going to use you small outboard or sail this craft hundreds of miles to effect self rescue if not very bright. Get a real offshore SOLAS raft, have it maintained, own a EPIRB and sail knowing if something happens to your vessel your backup is not a plastic skiff that cannot even meet the standards to be classified as a life raft.
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Old 29-01-2019, 04:50   #112
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Re: A dinghy as a lifeboat

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Originally Posted by MartinR View Post
. . . the RIB would be a reasonable safe option in heavy weather. . . .

. . . The problem with RIBs is that they are fairly easily overturned by wind in conjunction with sea if hit from the side. There have been several incidents with commercial RIBs in this way.

I think these two statements contradict each other. Actually the second, correct statement is a bit of an understatement -- even large RIBs can be easily pitchpoled in big sea conditions.



The bigger the RIB, the bigger the weather you can manage in it, but even a 20 foot RIB is going to be hopeless in a real storm with breaking waves.


Another important thing is that once you run out of fuel, you're dead. So what's your endurance? Couple of hours? Can you be sure that you'll be rescued that quickly?



A RIB would probably be fine in coastal situations where you can be pretty sure never to end up in a real storm. A big RIB would be actually the best lifeboat of all if you are not far from the shore and in reasonable weather -- just motor into a harbor; no need to even pop the EPIRB. But offshore and on long passages, fuggedaboutit.


I can't comment on the Portland Pudgy as I've never seen one in real life. Whether it's any good or not would depend on stability. Stability is really the number one most important quality of any liferaft/lifeboat. It's kind of hard for me to imagine that if it's got enough ballast to have really good stability, how it could be a decent dinghy, but I'm just speculating.




Here's a good article: https://www.morganscloud.com/2009/09/19/portland-pudgy/
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Old 29-01-2019, 05:24   #113
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Re: A dinghy as a lifeboat

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It’s a cool thing but it cannot meet the SOLAS standards for a life raft. If you are forced to abandon your vessel in heavy seas a real life raft has water ballast pockets for stabilizing, boarding device for inwater access, self deployment hydrostatic device, onboard rations and flairs, high vision colors with radar reflecting materials, flashing strobe, and the four person is for sure equipped with a larger interior space. This idea that your going to use you small outboard or sail this craft hundreds of miles to effect self rescue if not very bright. Get a real offshore SOLAS raft, have it maintained, own a EPIRB and sail knowing if something happens to your vessel your backup is not a plastic skiff that cannot even meet the standards to be classified as a life raft.
Some here seem to think that all their boating calamities will happen in fine weather, close to shore and they'll save themselves by simply zooming to the local pub in their RIB, or survive in an expensive converted plastic barrel which is all a Pudgy is. People that actually go offshore in places that aren't tropical paradises and pay attention to reality see the problems with these ideas.
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Old 29-01-2019, 05:41   #114
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Re: A dinghy as a lifeboat

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Originally Posted by quackedo View Post
Here is the quintessential final statement on life rafts.

https://youtu.be/CfNYQ97c7Lk

To me it says it all.
The video is blocked.
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Old 29-01-2019, 05:52   #115
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Re: A dinghy as a lifeboat

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I think these two statements contradict each other. Actually the second, correct statement is a bit of an understatement -- even large RIBs can be easily pitchpoled in big sea conditions.
Yes, they do contradict each other The thing is that I am in a very split mind about RIBs. I have experience with FRBs. For these the requirement is 4 hours endurance at 20 knots, so at slow speed, you could probably head into the seas for 24 hours.
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Old 29-01-2019, 06:27   #116
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Re: A dinghy as a lifeboat

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Yes, they do contradict each other The thing is that I am in a very split mind about RIBs. I have experience with FRBs. For these the requirement is 4 hours endurance at 20 knots, so at slow speed, you could probably head into the seas for 24 hours.
Sounds like a good plan if you can be assured it never blows over 20 or the seas you head into are coming from a place of refuge or if...………….. My personal plans for survival include a lessening of the ifs.
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Old 29-01-2019, 11:31   #117
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Re: A dinghy as a lifeboat

A dinghy is not a life raft - to quote Captain Bonds from the US NAval Academy - you only want to get into a life raft when you have to step UP to it.

Also USCG requires an inspection every 3 years by a certified inspection/repacking facility. I have a Revere 8 person Ocean life raft in a cannister - (for sale by the way) and its inspection repacking cost is about $800.
Expensive yes ...until you have to use it.
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Old 29-01-2019, 11:55   #118
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Re: A dinghy as a lifeboat

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A dinghy is not a life raft - to quote Captain Bonds from the US NAval Academy - you only want to get into a life raft when you have to step UP to it.

Also USCG requires an inspection every 3 years by a certified inspection/repacking facility. I have a Revere 8 person Ocean life raft in a cannister - (for sale by the way) and its inspection repacking cost is about $800.
Expensive yes ...until you have to use it.
The inspection depends on use, a new raft for a fishing vessel usually gets the first two years and then annually after that, that's for SOLAS. My four person RFD with SOLAS inspection runs $600 and $400 if I have it equipped for just coastal. I have to say I'm absolutely amazed at the pushback on the use of liferafts and this bizarre idea of using a dinghy for lifesaving. I can only assume that some have no practical idea what it can be like out there preferring instead to believe rumor or rely on the Fastnet experience that happened forty years ago. I certainly understand not wanting the expense for something they may never use but that doesn't negate the facts. If you can't afford proper equipment then risk your life or don't go.
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Old 29-01-2019, 13:41   #119
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Re: A dinghy as a lifeboat

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. . . . I have to say I'm absolutely amazed at the pushback on the use of liferafts and this bizarre idea of using a dinghy for lifesaving.
You are absolutely amazed that everyone does not believe exactly as you do? Oh no!

Based on a previous CF poll liferaft vs lifeboat preferences run 2:1.

It’s not a bizarre idea, it’s an old idea. Funny how old ideas (like sailing) tend to come around again from time to time

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I can only assume that some have no practical idea what it can be like out there preferring instead to believe rumor or rely on the Fastnet experience that happened forty years ago.
I see, anybody that disagrees with you either:
A. Does not have sufficient experience (in your opinion) which disqualifies them from having an opinion.
B. Is so gullible that they will believe anything they read in the internet over the advice you have to give here (whoops, this is part of the internet so they have to believe you).
C. Is relying on outdated info.

But how are the experiences of Fastnet’79 different from now? EPIRBs wouldn’t have made a significant difference; outsiders knew there were problems and came to help. 15+ people still died. The biggest lesson of Fastnet, which everyone here seems to get, is don’t get into a liferaft until the boat sinks out from under you.

Ignoring Fastnet, what’s different from 40-50yr ago?
1. Life rafts may be slightly more durable now.
2. You can press a button on any number of electronic devices and if they work someone in civilization will be informed you have a problem and will likely send help. Given the costs most people will not be able to afford more than one of the devices.
3. There are a number of electronic devices that can signal other vessels so equipped and passing close by. These are more affordable.

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I certainly understand not wanting the expense for something they may never use but that doesn't negate the facts. If you can't afford proper equipment then risk your life or don't go.

And in you last sentence you finally get the the crux of the matter: risk assessment and cost-benefit evaluation but even there couch the issue as if anyone going a different route than yours is doing something improper.

The odds of the boat sinking are much lower than someone on the boat having a heart attack. Do you carry an AED ( $500 or so)? How about the requisite drugs to keep someone going after the AED does it’s thing? Have you even considered this issue?

I don’t have a problem with folks that choose to carry a liferaft and all the related accoutrements and if I was traveling on their boats it would be very mildly comforting. But I think that assumption that a liferaft is de rigueur skews people’s risk assessment.

On my boat there plain ole ain’t room for a liferaft. There’s not even really room for an inflatable dinghy but until I get around to building a folding dinghy to suit I have to carry it anyway. That leaves me with working to make the boat unsinkable which is everyone’s best option in the long run.
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Old 29-01-2019, 14:37   #120
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Re: A dinghy as a lifeboat

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Originally Posted by Adelie View Post
You are absolutely amazed that everyone does not believe exactly as you do? Oh no!

Based on a previous CF poll liferaft vs lifeboat preferences run 2:1.

It’s not a bizarre idea, it’s an old idea. Funny how old ideas (like sailing) tend to come around again from time to time


I see, anybody that disagrees with you either:
A. Does not have sufficient experience (in your opinion) which disqualifies them from having an opinion.
B. Is so gullible that they will believe anything they read in the internet over the advice you have to give here (whoops, this is part of the internet so they have to believe you).
C. Is relying on outdated info.

But how are the experiences of Fastnet’79 different from now? EPIRBs wouldn’t have made a significant difference; outsiders knew there were problems and came to help. 15+ people still died. The biggest lesson of Fastnet, which everyone here seems to get, is don’t get into a liferaft until the boat sinks out from under you.

Ignoring Fastnet, what’s different from 40-50yr ago?
1. Life rafts May be slightly more durable now.
2. You can press a button on any number of electronic devices and if they work someone in civilization will be informed you have a problem and will likely send help. Given the costs most people will not be able to afford more than one of the devices.
3. There are a number of electronic devices that can signal other vessels so equipped and passing close by. These are more affordable.




And in you last sentence you finally get the the crux of the matter: risk assessment and cost-benefit evaluation but even there couch the issue as if anyone going a different route than yours is doing something improper.

The odds of the boat sinking are much lower than someone on the boat having a heart attack. Do you carry an AED ( $500 or so)? How about the requisite drugs to keep someone going after the AED does it’s thing? Have you even considered this issue?

I don’t have a problem with folks that choose to carry a liferaft and all the related accoutrements and if I was traveling on their boats it would be very mildly comforting. But I think that assumption that a liferaft is de rigueur skews people’s risk assessment.

On my boat there plain ole ain’t room for a liferaft. There’s not even really room for an inflatable dinghy but until I get around to building a folding dinghy to suit I have to carry it anyway. That leaves me with working to make the boat unsinkable which is everyone’s best option in the long run.
As I've said numerous times in this thread I want you all to do as you see fit, it is after all your opinion. My opinion is you're wrong, don't like it tough that's why there's an ignore button. A CF poll is meaningless as many seem to be poorly informed, in my opinion.
As you appear poorly informed I'll help, lifesaving equipment like rafts are vastly improved from 1979, both in design and construction, in numerous maritime organizations around the world's opinion. You are correct that during Fastnet lives could have been saved if more had stayed with the boat, I'm wondering where you got the idea I implied otherwise. EPIRBS were available in 1979, that some chose not to carry them is most unfortunate. Your foolishness about expecting someone else to hop over and rescue you hardly deserves a response but if you want place your life in the hands of luck that's fine, I think it's neither realistic nor particularly well thought out, in my opinion. I have a 28 foot Cape Dory and I have plenty of room for my four person SOLAS raft and my dinghy I don't know what you have but I'm assuming it's smaller. After you do the calculations on providing sufficient flotation to make a ballasted sailboat unsinkable tell me where you're going to sleep or make coffee or use the head. Compartmentalization would help but few if any boats are built with that and converting would cost more than a raft and take valuable space as well as possibly make staying on the boat unpleasantly inconvenient. I'm sorry that you've decided that my desire to not see anyone die at sea as some sort of indictment or as some slight against you personally but so be it. At the risk of sounding pompous I suspect I've spent significantly more time at sea than you in places I doubt you're interested in going and seen a lot that you will never see. If you think you know better that's great confidence is usually a good thing, except when it's misplaced. The preceding has been in it's entirety my opinion and in no way is intended to influence anyone to do anything outside of what they believe is best for them. Happy sailing!
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