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Old 06-05-2013, 11:55 AM   #1
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Best Inflatable for a Dinghy?

I've been looking around at different inflatables.

The most reasonable priced ones seem to have wood bottoms with inflatable keels.

Do these hold up?

Is one in the 10' range OK to use with a 2.5hp engine?

Any suggestions?

Thanks
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Old 06-05-2013, 12:02 PM   #2
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Depends on your needs. I have had an all inflatable and an RIB with a 4hp Yamaha 4 stroke, and greatly prefer the RIB. We used to beach the boat regularly, and worry about the rock and shells puncturing the inflatable floor. Also, the RIB is easier to plane, and fish from.

A 2.5 will get you there, but I prefer a bit more HP due to current and wind.
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Old 06-05-2013, 12:09 PM   #3
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I really want something lightweight.

I'm not concerned about speed, just components that are easy to handle and can ride on the swimplatform.

So, stay away from an inflatable keel then?
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Old 06-05-2013, 12:23 PM   #4
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I would. There are RIBS out there that weigh under 150 lbs:

</title> <script src="http://www.google.com/jsapi"></script> <script> google.load("jquery", "1.4.0"); </script> <script src="http://www.zodiacmarineusa.com/js/jquery.corners.js"></script> <script type="text/javascript" src="http://www.zodiacmarineusa

or under 100 lbs:
WEST MARINE Compact RIB 310 at West Marine
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Old 06-05-2013, 12:23 PM   #5
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It is kinda like the big boat. What is it's mission??? If it is just a toy then get whatever you want. If it becomes more of a tool...ie your ability to get to and from land for necessities, then you may want a more robust dingy with speed. 5mph to go mileS gets old VERY quickly when you have other stuff to do...I mean cruising is hard work!!!!.... I can tell you, non-RIB dinghies seem to flop around a lot. There is no real stiffness in the structure. So when you are in choppy water, the whole boat seems to flop around...not the greatest feeling. You can't go wrong with a RIB although transporting it can become another issue.
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Old 06-05-2013, 12:38 PM   #6
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It's to be used to go back and forth to the beach, dinner and other assorted activities when we're on the hook.

Want to use without davits, just lash it to the swimplatform.

I'm seriously considering the Lehr 2.5 because of economy and it uses the same propane bottles as a grill. Less items to cart along.
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Old 06-05-2013, 12:42 PM   #7
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These all weight 92lbs & up. I was hoping for something no more than 65lbs so the admiral could possibly handle it if necessary.

What about a slat floor model? Are they stable?
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Old 06-05-2013, 12:53 PM   #8
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Make things easy on yourself- the West Marine RIB, a set of Weaver Davits, and a pivoting engine mount so you don't have to remove the outboard when storing the dinghy on the swimstep. Understood that you don't desire to use davits, but it's good peace of mind when you know that the dinghy is secured and safe vice having to worry about the securing lines.

Or, get one of these:

Builders of First Class Boat Davits - Pioneers of Transom Davit Technology


Another option:

davits, davit, the greatest davit system for inflatable boats


Don't make the mistake of going too light/cheap and having to repurchase later.....
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Old 06-05-2013, 12:56 PM   #9
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The swimplatform is being worked on while we speak.

Guess now is the time to get them installed
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Old 06-05-2013, 01:02 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by Pau Hana View Post
Make things easy on yourself- the West Marine RIB, a set of Weaver Davits, and a pivoting engine mount so you don't have to remove the outboard when storing the dinghy on the swimstep. Understood that you don't desire to use davits, but it's good peace of mind when you know that the dinghy is secured and safe vice having to worry about the securing lines.

Or, get one of these:

Builders of First Class Boat Davits - Pioneers of Transom Davit Technology

Another option:

davits, davit, the greatest davit system for inflatable boats

Don't make the mistake of going too light/cheap and having to repurchase later.....
Damn, that just defeated my cheap way out scenario...

:'(

What do you think about the pivot davits on the second link?

You think we can still use the swimplatform for boarding?
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Old 06-05-2013, 01:41 PM   #11
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I like them as an alternative to glueing Weaver pads: however, the full Weaver ARC system for a RIB doesn't put stress on the tube.
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Old 06-05-2013, 01:44 PM   #12
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I like them as an alternative to glueing Weaver pads: however, the full Weaver ARC system for a RIB doesn't put stress on the tube.
Thanks.

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Old 06-05-2013, 02:06 PM   #13
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If you don't get a RIB, get one with a wood or aluminum floor. The slatted floors don't give a good ride IMO, you'll feel every ripple in the water.
I had a wood floor "Boat US" hypalon dinghy that lasted 14 years and it rode and handled pretty good. But it weighed 90 something lbs.
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Old 06-05-2013, 02:15 PM   #14
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If you don't get a RIB, get one with a wood or aluminum floor. The slatted floors don't give a good ride IMO, you'll feel every ripple in the water.
I had a wood floor "Boat US" hypalon dinghy that lasted 14 years and it rode and handled pretty good. But it weighed 90 something lbs.
Every solid wood floor I've seen so far has an inflatable keel.
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Old 06-05-2013, 03:08 PM   #15
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I've had an Avon inflatable with plywood floor and inflatable keel for 25 years of medium use....sure they don't ride as nice a some RHIBs...bt with a less than 5 hp motor...it won't matter.

As far as durable...shells, rock and barnacles/oysters aren't the problem. I've never punctured a tube...just a few rips in the bottom where it caught a nail head dragging t's full weight up onto a dock.

If you are careful in the least bit...an all inflatable should last as long as the stitching which becomes the first really big issue with the older models like mine.
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Old 06-05-2013, 03:30 PM   #16
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I've had an Avon inflatable with plywood floor and inflatable keel for 25 years of medium use....sure they don't ride as nice a some RHIBs...bt with a less than 5 hp motor...it won't matter.

As far as durable...shells, rock and barnacles/oysters aren't the problem. I've never punctured a tube...just a few rips in the bottom where it caught a nail head dragging t's full weight up onto a dock.

If you are careful in the least bit...an all inflatable should last as long as the stitching which becomes the first really big issue with the older models like mine.
I'm getting more confused as ever.

I wanted to buy a 2011 leftover with a wood floor and inflated keel. The price is good, haven't checked shipping yet, and it has a full warranty.

It's a Zodiac which I believe is a quality brand, right?
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Old 06-05-2013, 03:33 PM   #17
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I've had an Avon inflatable with plywood floor and inflatable keel for 25 years of medium use....sure they don't ride as nice a some RHIBs...bt with a less than 5 hp motor...it won't matter.
You're the third person I've heard say the exact same thing in the last two weeks. Hypolon must be the material of choice as it seems far more long lasting than the PVC fabric.

Do you partially deflate yours between long periods of non use?
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Old 06-05-2013, 03:39 PM   #18
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I have a hypalon Achilles 9.6 ft inflatable - LEX96. It's got the 4-piece wood floor and inflatable keel. Its empty weight is 74 lbs. I've got a 27lb Honda 4-stroke 2HP outboard on it, so the whole package weighs in at 101 lbs.

The boat is slow (5 mph) but lightweight. With 15.5 inch tubes instead of 17 in tubes, it's a bit wetter ride than I'd like. It's very easy to manage. I just tip it up on the swim step and lash it to the aft rail.

It's fine for traveling short distances boat-to-boat or boat-to dock/shore, but not for long trips in rough water. I'm shopping now for a 3 meter/10.5 ft RIB for that role with a 15HP 2-stroke OB. The RIB would require davits.
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Old 06-05-2013, 03:42 PM   #19
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So it appears that hypalon is far superior to PVC?
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Old 06-05-2013, 03:43 PM   #20
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So it appears that hypalon is far superior to PVC?
I see the Lex-96 is $1499.
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