Addison Chan, a close cruising buddy, entered a thread on Facebook, started by someone at least as irritated as I, and who also made a web page with many citations from this thread. He, too, had the same failure, which WB solved
with an entire new dinghy
, relatively quickly. However, his was still under warranty, regardless of how constructed (from the first failure to the 4th, now successful replacement, was a relatively brief period, and the original warranty period still governed. I don't have that luxury, my original dink having been purchased slightly more than 10 years before this issue arose on the 7-year old replacement; they held that the original purchase
warranty was all they'd allow..
If you'd like to participate in that thread, here's the link:
I am, however, irritated that the initial response was to deny on alteration. When I demanded an engineering reason for the failure they went to expired of age, and tried to sell me a hull
. I demanded to know why that one, given that I'd have to put on the lifting points, would not do the same; no response, other than to reiterate improper lifting as the cause.
When I documented that I had been instructed to do so by the factory, and a dealer had demonstrated and attempted to sell the St. Croix lifts, it became a free hull
But it should have been, "Yes, we've seen that on several occasions and it's an issue we've resolved by added backup/strength/I-forget-what in your new hull. However, your hull is out of warranty. As an accommodation, we'll send you a new hull, but you pay shipping
That would have been some months ago, and I'd have the swap, rather than having to find out its commonality via my Cruisers Forum post and threads like this on Facebook, and STILL not have my replacement...
From the most recent communication, it seems that there may be a translation error, as issues not on the table are discussed, and nowhere do they admit that others have had this issue without lifting, or by lifting by factory hard points, with or without engine
From: Ivan Gamez
Sent: Thursday, March 28, 2019 12:01 PM
To: 'Skip Gundlach'
Subject: RE: Minor revision... Re: Warranty question...
Hi Skip ,
Please find the answers/ confirmation below from previous mail
1.- We are offering a new hull free of charge , you will have to incur on the freight and labor to get this installed. Will need a full shipping
address move forward on this.
2.- For this replacement we will add a reinforced backing plate to prevent this on the future , but please consider that you will need to comply with WBB recommendations for lifting the boat.
3.-The deformation of the floor could have occurred due to the modification of the lifting points and with the time lead to the issue with the floor.
4.-The replacement hull it comes with the repairs
seal kit (for the transom) , reinforced backing plates
5.-As for the current
hull (damaged) you can have it destroyed/dispose once you are done with the swap .
6.- As soon as you provide the shipping address we can make the arrangements and provide you with an ETA for the new hull.
Thanks inn advance
They've not responded to my simple questions, sent March 28th:
Thanks for getting back with me.
Just to be clear/confirm my understanding:
In my replacement hull, I will not be receiving mounting or lifting hardware
, wheels, housings or spray deflectors, keel
strip (I need one of those; I have the others mentioned), bilge plug
assembly, or floor system parts
. All parts
removed from my current
hull will transfer to the new hull (other than that I donít have a keel
strip and need one) without fitment issues.
Is there any other part I may have missed in my mental inventory of what is part of the hull that I will have to transfer from my current hull? Are any of the hardware
items needed to make swaps into the new hull of various parts taken from the old hull likely to need replacement and unlikely to be easily sourced locally?
And, as I canít visualize them/it, what/where is a reinforced backing plate? Is this to address the potential for the same failure on the new hull (which the best my mind can imagine likely was a product of lifting with the transom eyes, causing the weight of the hull to be supported by hinges only)?
What is the lead time from now (or order date for shipping costs and if not supplied a keel strip) until Iíd have the new hull? Iím expecting Iíd be sending it to Offshore
Rafting (offshorerafting.com) in Sebastian FL (735 Commerce Center Drive Unit E Sebastian, FL 32958).
As a practical matter, as it seems the exterior black plastic used in the spray shields and keel strip are not UV stable (or maybe salt water
kills them?), should I buy additional spray shields (I already have a pair but didnít install them) and TWO keel strips? Or are the new ones some different plastic (I got the splash strips only Ė see prior correspondence - before as that was all that had failed at the time) which doesnít deteriorate at the same rate?
So, in summary:
What added parts will I need to make the hull complete, and what cost does that represent (keel strip is the only one I can think of currently unless you recommend having replacements
for both the keel strip and splash deflectors)?
What is the cost of shipping to Sebastian FL and how long from payment (maybe today?) until receipt?
Where are the reinforcement backing plates
and what do they do?
I have had two 'read-receipts' from folks other than Ivan, but still no response.
I, too, await clarification from KD8NPB, as there is no practical way to lift this dinghy
via the factory hard points - even if I had davits spaced that widely - without abrading the forward tube, and the floor deformation he refers to was the prior factory instruction of lift points using eye bolts in the floor system; the St. Croix padeyes have NO hull or floor distortion...