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Old 07-08-2022, 14:23   #1
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Dinghy reviews?

I'm in the market for a new dinghy for our sailboat. We use a Torquedo 103
so planing and speed are just not a consideration. We use it to get to shore, never more than a few hundred yards. We're in the PNW, so Hypalon is no big deal either. We use the boat very seasonally, so an air floor rollup that can go below seems like the best choice. Never more than four people, and just occasional groceries. Our current boat is a WM RIB310, which is more than 12 years old, and is a mass of patches, although it's still in service. 10'2" is way bigger than we need. We tow it when in use, store it on deck between sails, and would like to store it below over the winter, although the RIB310 sits on deck all year. Never going to get davits.

My concerns are the robustness of the underside for coarse sand or rock landings, along with general reliability of the construction.

My short list in order of cost is:

Achilles LSI260 (or 290) 8'6" (9'6")
Highfield AM280 9'2"
Sports Boats Dolphin 8'8"
Inmar 270H-TS 9'0"

I've read enough reviews to pass on everything else, although I haven't shut the door on Zodiac, for example. The first two will cost $250 in shipping, while the latter two are free shipping (which is reason for suspicion!).
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Old 07-08-2022, 14:37   #2
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Re: Dinghy reviews?

We use the wm ru-250 roll up. We use a 3 hp outboard. For our use on the Chesapeake it’s pretty good. It rolls up and fits in our lazarette no problem. Its pvc but a slat bottom not inflatable. Cheap enough and good for our uses. Only rated for 3 people tho. I’ve been kicking around an inflatable cat because they are stowable as well. I had a rib 310 and it was a constant headache for us. Just my .02.
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Old 07-08-2022, 16:45   #3
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Re: Dinghy reviews?

I've ruled out WM, just because of the constant change of who makes them and the string of horrible reviews. The WM closest to our boat won't have anything to do with their own brand...
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Old 07-08-2022, 17:48   #4
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Re: Dinghy reviews?

Quote:
Originally Posted by jimg View Post
I'm in the market for a new dinghy for our sailboat. We use a Torquedo 103
so planing and speed are just not a consideration. We use it to get to shore, never more than a few hundred yards. We're in the PNW, so Hypalon is no big deal either. We use the boat very seasonally, so an air floor rollup that can go below seems like the best choice. Never more than four people, and just occasional groceries. Our current boat is a WM RIB310, which is more than 12 years old, and is a mass of patches, although it's still in service. 10'2" is way bigger than we need. We tow it when in use, store it on deck between sails, and would like to store it below over the winter, although the RIB310 sits on deck all year. Never going to get davits.

My concerns are the robustness of the underside for coarse sand or rock landings, along with general reliability of the construction.

My short list in order of cost is:

Achilles LSI260 (or 290) 8'6" (9'6")
Highfield AM280 9'2"
Sports Boats Dolphin 8'8"
Inmar 270H-TS 9'0"

I've read enough reviews to pass on everything else, although I haven't shut the door on Zodiac, for example. The first two will cost $250 in shipping, while the latter two are free shipping (which is reason for suspicion!).
I purchased a TrueKit 3.0M inflatable and have been very happy. It is PVC but with some sort of coating that makes it UV resistant too. It is easy to plane with 2 persons using our 6HP Tahotsu. Nice dinghy....I would buy it again.

https://truekit.net/products/true-kit-navigator
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Old 07-08-2022, 18:26   #5
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Re: Dinghy reviews?

The Highfield will be a much drier ride than the Achilles. Can’t comment on the others in your list.
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Old 07-08-2022, 20:54   #6
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Re: Dinghy reviews?

Sport Boat 8'8" Manta ray, aluminum floor, 2nd year is serving me well, good quality materials, one of the best built ones I've ever owned over the years. Use 5hp merc, stow dinghy on deck.
Good size, planes with one person and a dog, will shuttle 4 + dog ashore easily if needed.
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Old 08-08-2022, 00:56   #7
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Dinghy reviews?

I now regard small dinghies ( my latest is 2.2m down from 2.6m) as nearly throwaway commodities that will with luck give me 5 years in the sun.

My best RIb was a Selva hypalon with a ABS hull. Light and rugged like a Tubberware box. I sold it it good condition after 20 years !!!! But I donít think anyone makes an ABS hull anymore , it was indestructible

Like you I donít bother with anything that planes these days

My friend fits 3M 2Ē closed cell XPS foam board to his slatted floor dinghy. Works really well , durable , firm and cheap.
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