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Old 10-08-2022, 11:22   #1
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RIB stowage on long passage

On previous week+ passages I have carried a roll-up dinghy stowed below. Now, I have a Highfield 260 RIB that will be stowed on the foredeck.

For those who have sailed multi-week passages,

1. Do you deflate the RIB?

2. How do you protect the RIB tubes from chafe on the non-skid?
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Old 10-08-2022, 11:27   #2
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RIB stowage on long passage

On my last boat I used to deflate a couple of fenders (just a little) and rest the upside down tender on these fenders. Stopped the chaffing. I also didnít need to deflate the tender as there was enough room.
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Old 10-08-2022, 11:30   #3
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Re: RIB stowage on long passage

I deflate the tubes and lash it upside down on the cabin top. My view is if it is lashed down securely enough to go to sea, then it should not be moving about and causing chafe. On my boat, the bigger issue is how to protect the hatch, vent and handhold on the cabin top from the dinghy.
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Old 10-08-2022, 11:56   #4
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Re: RIB stowage on long passage

As Jordanbigel said if it's lashed down properly there will be minimal movement. I don't deflate my dinghy when I lash to foredeck. Additionally, I would suggest you invest in dinghy chaps. They will prevent chafe when lashed down, when in use, and also help preserve the tubes from UV damage.
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Old 11-08-2022, 16:08   #5
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Re: RIB stowage on long passage

We deflate the inflatable sections of the dinghy. We bought a 12. v. pump to inflate, and deflate it, so it gets sucked out pretty thoroughly. We tuck the "skin", under the aluminum floor. We tie it to the base of the baby stay, with both painters tucked underneath, and run a strap from two U bolts that are through-bolted to the deck for the purpose, over the top of it, so that it cannot move (hence no chafe). On a long passage, we do check for tightness every morning, and also after rain, in case it might have come a bit loose. Tighten as needed. No harm has come from this, but, we did place patches on the stern, where chafe might have otherwise occurred. When we made the dinghy chaps for it, I put chafe patches on them, too. (We have added stern cleats to our dinghy, and the stern lines can also chafe in tidal areas.)

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Old 12-08-2022, 07:08   #6
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Re: RIB stowage on long passage

I used webbing and ratchets to make sure that thing wouldnt move even a milimeter. Having said that, there was one place where deck fittings might have caused a problem but a cheapo West Marine throwable cushion did the trick. Never deflated it.
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Old 12-08-2022, 07:56   #7
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Re: RIB stowage on long passage

You have to be careful with deflating. The rigid hull pushing down against the deck of the big boat can crease the fabric. it really is best to put some partially deflated fenders under it to avoid pinch points, as has already been mentioned.

As for chafe, if the rib is moving enough to chafe, it is moving too much and needs to be tied down more securely.

Although there can be issues with deflating, lowering the rib's hull--even by a few inches--can really help visibility and/or access to the foredceck and make it worth the trouble. If visibility/access isn't an issue on your boat, I would not deflate.
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Old 22-08-2022, 04:56   #8
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Re: RIB stowage on long passage

As mentioned, the RIB must be secured inflated or not. On my boat this means strapping it inverted to padeyes (where the jacklines attach) on the foredeck using a cambuckle strap, then cross-tying its transom securely to the mast step (might use small turnbuckles there). If going where I might encounter boarding green water I use the painter to further secure the RIB’s bow forward to the stem of the sailboat. If going where I would need unimpeded access to the foredeck to set a pole, for example, the RIB rides deflated. It might also be better not to have a large buoyant object strapped there if the seas do come aboard as that might facilitate breaking it free. The greatest downside to carrying it there is that it blocks the fwd hatch from being opened. In the newer EU vessels, those hatches are meant as escape hatches.
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Old 22-08-2022, 07:44   #9
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Re: RIB stowage on long passage

Great info everyone and thank you.

Dinghy chaps are on the list but finding someone to make them in my lifetime is a challenge. Will make them myself when time allows.

For now, I'm going to start with stainless steel ratchet straps (I have aluminum toe rail) and cheap throw cushions.
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Old 22-08-2022, 07:54   #10
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Re: RIB stowage on long passage

When mounted upside down (and I would prefer to keep it inflated) you can use a standard dinghy cover (not custom chaps) to lay over top (bottom when upside down) and buy one that is big enough to come down fully over tubes. Put straps over that and you should be good for added UV protection.


When in normal use chaps are a godsend. Our 2010 Caribe has had chaps nearly since inception and it is still going very strong.
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