have this saying about the "ideal man" --
He doesn't smoke
He doesn't drink
He doesn't chase women
And doesn't exist.
The same absolutely is true of tenders. The ideal tender
* A RIB
* At least 14' long with massive tubes
* 75 hp
* weighs under 100 pounds
* folds up to fit in a locker
Since that's impossible, every tender
is a massive compromise.
And everyone will have his own view of the right compromises to make.
For me, folding up compact turned out to be an absolutely essential quality because of the many big drawbacks of carrying a large tender in davits
on rough, long ocean passages.
So that was the end of the Avon
340 wheel-steered 25hp RIB I used to have.
I traded it in on an Avon 310 Lite RIB with folding transom, with 8hp 4 stroke
tiller steered motor
Compared to the old one, it is far less seaworthy
and far less comfortable for long distances. Will plane, but not with more than 2 people on board. Not really seaworthy
enough for open sea, unlike the previous one. I used the old dinghy for crossing the Solent on a regular basis -- several miles over fairly open water
. And even for short trips around the Solent from port to port. We used it for actual "dinghy cruises" -- a day up the Wareham River; a day up the Dart estuary, exploring rivers of North Brittany, and other wonderful adventures. A proper little motor boat, she was.
But the new one is vastly easier to handle -- I can get it on deck
and fold it up single
handed. Very easy to inflate/deflate fold up/deploy. Its lightness is wonderful -- can be carried up onto beaches unlike the old one. Uses something like 1/10 of the fuel
So it's a big compromise but a reasonable compromise for my specific purposes. Every cruiser will have his own, and possibly very different set of requirements.