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Old 09-26-2014, 02:29 PM   #1
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850lb Tender On 1200NM Trip (100-150NM offshore)

I’m planning to take my boat to FL for the winter and debating regarding my tender. I know that we’ll definitely get good use of it down in FL, but the puzzle is whether I should bring it by boat or trailer it.

The tender sits on hydraulic SeaLeft Cradle version (single arm).

During the delivery trip down the coast, which will be around 1200NM, I’m planning to make an offshore jump from somewhere around Charleston or Hilton Head to St. Marrys or Jacksonville, 150-200NM leg.

I have concerns for either approach. If taking by boat I’m concern about getting caught in rough seas, unexpectedly. This might put me in trouble having roughly 1000LB tender “jumping” on the lift. Obviously, I always have it properly secured and in addition, I have special custom made brackets to keep the top of the cradle even more secure (besides all 6 straps). But, most of you know that when things get rough, big boats become a cork and many (what we thought) secured items all of a sudden don’t seem so secure anymore.

I don’t think I need the tender during the delivery trip, so the obvious option is to take it to FL on a trailer. Even though this sounds like an easiest solution, I’m very concerned taking the Center Consol RIB on a 1200-1300 miles road trip. I just think that it’s so easy to have some debris fly into the tender and puncture a whole in the tubes.

This is one of those, as people say, “pick your poison”.

I’m sure that a lot of “snowbirds” and/or long range cruisers are dealing with this all the time. I’d love to hear some good advice and opinions
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Old 09-26-2014, 03:12 PM   #2
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I would bring it with you on the boat. I can't tell what type or model your boat is but it looks like one that can travel beyond hull speed. If you do an offshore leg just check your weather real well and go for it. Charleston to St. Mary's is not a long haul. I also would not worry too much about damage to the RIB on a trailer.
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Old 09-26-2014, 04:08 PM   #3
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I'd take it on the boat. If I was uncomfortable doing that, I'd figure out why and upgrade to get comfortable. At some point you'll find yourself in rough conditions with it, so might as well work it out now. I'll toss in that there are sure a lot of good places along the way to go exploring in a tender.
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Old 09-26-2014, 05:08 PM   #4
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Agreed with taking on the boat particularly if planning to anchor on the trip. Sounds like it is well strapped down. We'd feel stranded without ours. Sounds like a good trip coming up for you.
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Old 09-26-2014, 05:18 PM   #5
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I think you're fretting over nothing either way. If by boat watch weather as any prudent Captain should. By trailer, we've trailered ours from Detroit to Key West for 10 years and never had an issue.

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Old 09-27-2014, 05:36 AM   #6
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If you are that worried , remove the engine and junk and it will be far lighter.

Really worried , let the air out and lash it in the cockpit.
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Old 09-27-2014, 06:52 AM   #7
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I'd take it on the boat. If I was uncomfortable doing that, I'd figure out why and upgrade to get comfortable. At some point you'll find yourself in rough conditions with it, so might as well work it out now. I'll toss in that there are sure a lot of good places along the way to go exploring in a tender.
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Old 09-28-2014, 05:57 AM   #8
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Charleston or Hilton Head to St. Marrys or Jacksonville, 150-200NM leg.

A 200 mile run is not 200 miles offshore , most folks will stay as close inshore on this leg going South to avoid the Stream currents.

Your davits should be fine, if installed properly and are robust enough.
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Old 09-29-2014, 12:10 PM   #9
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I would bring it with you on the boat. I can't tell what type or model your boat is but it looks like one that can travel beyond hull speed. If you do an offshore leg just check your weather real well and go for it. Charleston to St. Mary's is not a long haul. I also would not worry too much about damage to the RIB on a trailer.
I have planning hull, but on the long trips I mostly travel at displacement speed of 8-9kts. The leg from SC to FL is around 150-200NM, which would take me somewhere around 17-20hrs.

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I'd take it on the boat. If I was uncomfortable doing that, I'd figure out why and upgrade to get comfortable. At some point you'll find yourself in rough conditions with it, so might as well work it out now. I'll toss in that there are sure a lot of good places along the way to go exploring in a tender.
I guess I should clarify that my SeaLift davits setup has been on the boat for almost 10yrs. I’ve been in different conditions, but the worst one (with this tender on the lift) was 7-8’ers constant chop (extremely close together) where the anchor was in water with every wave. This trip demonstrated some limitations and raised a need for improvement. After that experience I’ve installed customized brackets securing the cradle to the transom of the big boat (you can see them in the bottom pic in my original post).

I’ve travelled over thousand NM, but haven’t encountered the same conditions, since I installed the brackets. The improvement of the customized support is huge, but I didn’t have a chance to experience really rough water.

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Charleston or Hilton Head to St. Marrys or Jacksonville, 150-200NM leg.

A 200 mile run is not 200 miles offshore , most folks will stay as close inshore on this leg going South to avoid the Stream currents...
At this point I’m not 100% sure what my point A and point B point will be, but I know it’s within 150-200NM leg. Good point on Gulf Stream. I’ll be looking in to it in more details in order to come up with safest approach.
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Old 09-02-2016, 12:00 AM   #10
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I've been thinking about getting a Sealift. What size is your boat? What does it feel like having that weight on the swim-step? I have a Carver C34 which is probably as small a boat as you would want with a tender on the swim-step. I stay in the San Francisco bay and delta so I'm not too worried about big seas although the bay can get 8-10' chop maybe more.

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Old 09-02-2016, 05:37 AM   #11
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8 to 10 foot chop in the Bay?! Never ever. It might feel that way sometimes, due to swiftness and steepness, but very seldom gets beyond 2' actual height.

Give Carver a call and consult with them about what would work on your boat.
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Old 09-02-2016, 05:47 AM   #12
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Most davits will die with the added weight of a comber breaking on to the dink.

Watch the weather !
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Old 09-02-2016, 06:10 AM   #13
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I would take it on the boat as well but you are looking for potential options and we have also moved a few larger inflatables from the Miami area to Long Island NY by trailer over the years.
So trailering is an option with a good trailer and some shrink wrap over the boat or even just the fwd section. We have trailered with inflatables fully inflated that had over 9' beams and also with them deflated and covered securely - either way worked well.
On one of the inflatables we deflated tie tubes and had the marina in Florida load it into the back of a 24' Rider box truck rental where we chocked and strapped it in for the 1,350 mile truck trip back home. If your deflated beam allows then the inside the truck option becomes a possibility. That one way truck rental was quite cheap but the truck was gas powered and used a pile of gas at about 10 mpg.
Good luck with whatever you choose
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Old 09-02-2016, 06:54 AM   #14
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I'd take it on the boat. If I was uncomfortable doing that, I'd figure out why and upgrade to get comfortable. At some point you'll find yourself in rough conditions with it, so might as well work it out now. I'll toss in that there are sure a lot of good places along the way to go exploring in a tender.
+2. If you can't carry your tender without worry you need to change your setup. You will be in rough water sooner or later and you don't need a weakpoint like that.
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Old 09-02-2016, 07:24 AM   #15
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+2. If you can't carry your tender without worry you need to change your setup. You will be in rough water sooner or later and you don't need a weakpoint like that.
.....but to get it to Florida....just for one trip, you could either wait for that weather window for one offshore jaunt or stay inside.

But heck...you might encounter worse weather on the Chesapeake, Albemarle, Pamlico, Neuse, and some of the sounds than you might encounter on a planned 20 hr offshore trip.

Plus....on most boats, if you slow well below 10 knots, the motion usually is more extreme, but not necessarily violent to make the dingy jump....it might just have to be tied down well. Now if the mechanism can't take excessive rolling....then heck it needs some form of help in general.
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Old 09-02-2016, 08:57 AM   #16
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The biggest danger to a dinghy off shore is being pooped by a big wave and having the weight and mass of the water crash down on the dinghy. I don't see that happening as you are going off shore in near coastal waters and with good weather windows you should not encounter extreme conditions. Looking at your vessel and the dinghy mounts I would take keep the dinghy with me.
Regardless, have a great trip.

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Old 09-02-2016, 04:58 PM   #17
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8 to 10 foot chop in the Bay?! Never ever. It might feel that way sometimes, due to swiftness and steepness, but very seldom gets beyond 2' actual height.

Give Carver a call and consult with them about what would work on your boat.
You have obviously never been on the S.F. bay on a bad day.
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Old 09-02-2016, 07:34 PM   #18
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You have obviously never been on the S.F. bay on a bad day.
Eagerly awaiting response. Standing by.
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Old 09-03-2016, 02:02 PM   #19
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+2. If you can't carry your tender without worry you need to change your setup. You will be in rough water sooner or later and you don't need a weakpoint like that.
The sea-lift mounts on the transom below the swim-step. It is a heavy duty setup. I like the way it slips the tender into a cradle then lifts it well above the swim-step. I'm not concerned about dragging in following seas. I'm concerned with the added weight so far back on a 35' boat and how it will affect the handling of the boat. I'd like to hear about how the 35-40' semi displacement hulls do with the weight. I'm sure the trawlers have no problem. I don't need a trawler because I'm staying on the bay and delta. Although I would love to own a Selene or Nordhavn but I need to save for a couple more years. In the meantime I stay in the delta.

Thanks
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Old 09-03-2016, 02:33 PM   #20
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The sea-lift mounts on the transom below the swim-step. It is a heavy duty setup. I like the way it slips the tender into a cradle then lifts it well above the swim-step. I'm not concerned about dragging in following seas. I'm concerned with the added weight so far back on a 35' boat and how it will affect the handling of the boat. I'd like to hear about how the 35-40' semi displacement hulls do with the weight. I'm sure the trawlers have no problem. I don't need a trawler because I'm staying on the bay and delta. Although I would love to own a Selene or Nordhavn but I need to save for a couple more years. In the meantime I stay in the delta.

Thanks
Most 35-40' semi-displacement boats do poorly with additional wait on the transom or swim platform. Now, I'm going to suggest a way for you to check your boat. Get some weight of any sort you want. Anything from fertilizer to barbells. A bladder or something you could fill with water would be great. Put it back there and see how it does. When we started adding equipment on our loop boat, we put weight in the spot we were considering and tested first.

A Carver C34 only weighs 16,500 pounds dry. With twin gas engines it planes quickly. With other engines not so much. It really isn't semi-displacement, it's a planing hull and planes with the twin Mercruisers or Volvo I/O's. 825 pounds would be 5% addition to the boat weight all on the transom. I would think too much. Maybe 200 lbs would be ok. Only way to tell for sure on your boat is to do some tests. 25 gallons of water will tell you about 200 or double the water and find out about 400 lbs.

Don't guess-Test. Don't even use someone else's boat experience unless they have everything identical, which is not commonly found.
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