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Old 11-06-2019, 08:10 PM   #1
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First dinghy question

We purchased our first cruising boat last winter. Until this year, this was always an inland lake boat and we have been busy getting her set up for cruising the east coast and hopefully the loop in 2021. One of our last upgrades left to do is adding a tender and a way to store/launch it. Never owned a dinghy but we are leaning towards a very lightweight 8'2" or 8'10" fiberglass RIB with a 5 or 6 hp motor that we will store on a Hurley swim platform mount. Total weight under 150#. 95% of the time it will need to carry two adults and two small (15#) dogs. Obviously, the smaller & lighter, the better, but how small becomes too small? We don't intend to anchor out a lot, maybe one or two nights over a week of travel. Recommendations on size? Is 8'2" too small? Thanks!
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Old 11-06-2019, 08:46 PM   #2
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We use a 10 foot aluminum hulled Titan RIB with an 8 hp Yamaha 2 stroke outboard. We mount it on our swim grid with a Seawise davit. It is light, large enough to use for going ashore for groceries, prawning, crabbing, and fast enough (it will plane with 2 adults and some "extra weight") to explore at some distance. I recommend the hypalon material over the PVC for resistance to UV. Total weight is about 160# for the dinghy and outboard. Formally we had a 6 hp 4 stroke and it would not plane the dinghy and we had maintenance issues with it due to E gas. Mixing the gas is not a big issue! With the Seawise, we can launch or retrieve the dinghy in about 3 minutes.
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Old 11-06-2019, 09:02 PM   #3
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Your 46 Navigator has room on the roof for a 12' or 14' RIB with a 40 or 60 hp outboard.
Anything else is far too small.

Useful dinghies are so much better than too small and too slow, as you will quickly find with an 8', or an underpowered dinghy of any size.

I carry a Caribe 12 with a Honda 40. It is the absolute biggest I can hoist on my stern davits, or I would go bigger.
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Old 11-06-2019, 09:04 PM   #4
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Get a fiberglass or aluminum ridgid tender.

In the smaller lengths, the interior room on inflatables and RIB are too small.

Plus no where to sit other than the tubes.
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Old 11-06-2019, 09:21 PM   #5
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I find it best to go either really light or as big as will fit the deck and crane. An inflatable floor Hypalon dingy with a 3hp motor is very easy to drag up the beach and to commute from anchor to shore. It’s not nearly as stable as a rigid inflatable, to slow for long distance. A 12’ rigid inflatable with 40hp is stable and great for speed and long distance, just not very easy to drag one up the beach beyond the tide line.
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Old 11-06-2019, 09:46 PM   #6
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Even at the dock, you will find there are all sorts of places to explore with the dinghy that are impractical in the big boat. And you may discover the joys of anchoring out or using moorings. So count me in the "bigger and more comfortable the better" crowd, including console/wheel/binnacle helm vs tiller.
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Old 11-06-2019, 10:15 PM   #7
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Some advice I've heard is that 4-8hp is sort of 'no man's land' for dinghy motors. If you want to plane, consider 10hp or more. If you're ok with going slow, a 2hp honda can be carried with one hand and is plenty for puttering to shore.

Then again, I agree with the posts above; go as big as you can carry, don't scrimp on size.
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Old 11-06-2019, 11:38 PM   #8
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While I too mostly agree with the general theme the others have put forward, there is another consideration IMO.
You asked about a set up that is light. What I described (as my set up) is fairly light, but for most things it does the job reasonably well. Is it is fast or as comfortable as the 14 foot, 50 hp centre console dinghy, no.
As an illustration of another consideration, in the summer of 2018 we buddy boated with good friends who have a KK 52 (overall 60 feet) a much larger vessel than ours. They have a larger dinghy, and store it up top, requiring a crane to deploy. When we went crabbing or exploring with only 3 of us, we took our dinghy because they didn't like the issues with deploying theirs and ours was in the water in about 2 minutes. There is something to be said for convenience!
As stated, with our 2 stroke 8 hp we can plane with 2 people and achieve about 14 knots SOG.
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Old 11-07-2019, 12:08 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by firehoser75 View Post
.
As an illustration of another consideration, in the summer of 2018 we buddy boated with good friends who have a KK 52 (overall 60 feet) a much larger vessel than ours. They have a larger dinghy, and store it up top, requiring a crane to deploy. When we went crabbing or exploring with only 3 of us, we took our dinghy because they didn't like the issues with deploying theirs and ours was in the water in about 2 minutes. There is something to be said for convenience!
As stated, with our 2 stroke 8 hp we can plane with 2 people and achieve about 14 knots SOG.
Davits on the back of ours and hand winches has our wide body, high sided 14ft aluminium tender with 30hp in the water in a couple of minutes.
Takes a similar amount of time to winch it back out.

Happy to do 20nm trips to the mainland and back and stay dry doing it.
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Old 11-07-2019, 12:17 AM   #10
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If you watch the Tony Fleming series on Venture, you will observe his Fleming 65 carries two dinghies. One a larger one and the other a smaller one, much of the time the smaller one is used much for the same reasons firehoser75 mentioned in the above post. I will post two videos.

The first video shows Gone with the Wynns trading in their larger spiffier dinghy for a smaller Highfield: [skip along in this video, latter in it they tell you why they are swapping out a bigger and better for smaller and maybe better. Jump to the 7 minute mark to hear their thinking]

https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_c...&v=2fsUdO4iYDI

Bigger really isn't always better. And some don't like using cranes. In your mind you see blue skies and calm water as you use the crane to hoist the dinghy. But imagine not calm water and a pushy wind with your dinghy moving around while you hoist it.

This next short video illustrates a manual Sea Wise davit system, this is the one I have. There is also an electric Sea Wise system. Many prefer this system, you will notice the motor comes up when the dinghy is cranked up, you don't have to strong arm anything. And the dinghy is on clips and is easy to snap in and out of when boarding and leaving the dinghy at the swim grid.

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Old 11-07-2019, 06:08 AM   #11
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I think having dink with big motor is not needed at all.


A 10' with a 4-6 hp is much easier to get on/off the boat and will get you there with way less hassle.


Why do you need go like a bat out of hell in a dink?


Oh and your wallet will be happier
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Old 11-07-2019, 06:27 AM   #12
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The classic Yacht Tender is the Grumman Aluminum 8ft 6 dink.

They are about 75 lbs so can simply be hauled aboard.

Rowing positions for 2 , or a 4HP outboard works well.Will carry 4 folks in modest chop.

If the bride has trouble starting an outboard , a trolling motor and battery will keep her from feeling like she is trapped on board.

The sailing model sails well but is much harder to find.

They are superb dinks so not cheap , even 30+ years old.
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Old 11-07-2019, 06:46 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Woodstock View Post
Never owned a dinghy but we are leaning towards a very lightweight 8'2" or 8'10" fiberglass RIB with a 5 or 6 hp motor that we will store on a Hurley swim platform mount. Total weight under 150#. 95% of the time it will need to carry two adults and two small (15#) dogs. Obviously, the smaller & lighter, the better, but how small becomes too small? We don't intend to anchor out a lot, maybe one or two nights over a week of travel. Recommendations on size? Is 8'2" too small? Thanks!

I'd think it would take you about 3 trips to learn 8' is really tiny. If you'll do a stern mount, I'd start by considering the longest dink length that will fit within the size of your beam at the transom... maybe just a tad shorter than that so you don't bounce it off piles and so forth too often...

Two people, 2 dogs, and "stuff" will take up lots of space inside a small boat.

Then once you measure that transom width, folks can advise better about horsepower... but the dinghy maker will have added recommendations about minimums and maximums. A davit system that lets you leave the motor attached all the time will be a time- (and back-) saver.

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Old 11-07-2019, 06:55 AM   #14
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Lightbulb

Those of you that have transom or stern mounted dinks explain the following please


visibility when backing into a slip

Pay more for a dock due to added length


Following seas

Sitting in cockpit looking aft



Getting on/off boat


How about simply how it looks
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Old 11-07-2019, 06:56 AM   #15
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Cruising the East coast and eventually the great loop the bigger the better.
Davits allow easy on and off and you will eventually really appreciate the added capacity, room, speed and range for those areas.
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Old 11-07-2019, 06:58 AM   #16
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2 people and 2 small dogs or just the usual cruising dink...A 3.10 is the minimum I would get.


As to roof mount...most cruisers seem to agree that the easier it is to launch in ANY conditions, the more use it will get.


As for speed....it's true that 90% of the time you will be using it in no wake areas or very short runs if it is only a "dink". But the rest of the time you may REALLY want or need that speed so...a planing dink is always in my fleet. Then like many cruisers you DO want to use it to explore so non planing dinks really limit you.
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Old 11-07-2019, 07:06 AM   #17
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Those of you that have transom or stern mounted dinks explain the following please


visibility when backing into a slip Not a problem on my or other boats

Pay more for a dock due to added length Usually I dont pay extra...many marinas don't care if in the water and inside the slip.


Following seas Never been an issue and mine is pretty low with my new arrangement but yes large seas I would have brought it aboard.

Sitting in cockpit looking aft Not an issue on some boats and others and some mounts you titlt it a bit to look over it.





Getting on/off boat Many boats it isn't an issue at all,others it's only a slight inconvenience.


How about simply how it looks Who says many boats look nice with or without a dink?


And speed? Coming from a fast trawler owner.......


..........................
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Old 11-07-2019, 07:10 AM   #18
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Those of you that have transom or stern mounted dinks explain the following please


visibility when backing into a slip

Pay more for a dock due to added length


Following seas

Sitting in cockpit looking aft



Getting on/off boat


How about simply how it looks


visibility when backing into a slip
- No problems at all

Pay more for a dock due to added length
- does not extend passed swim step, no issues

Following seas
- Dinghy higher than swim step, no issues

Sitting in cockpit looking aft
- not a problem but dinghy also deployed when using boat

Getting on/off boat
- easy by transom door aft, side steps , dinghy does not block path whether on or off the boat.
Hope this helps...
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Old 11-07-2019, 07:22 AM   #19
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I would rather have the momentary inconvenience of craning the dinghy on and off the boat deck in exchange for the hours of pleasure using it to have fun and explore far and wide. If it is so rough as to be dangerous to launch it, you ain't going anywhere in the dink anyway. Once anchored or moored, we let it trail behind the big boat. If the next stop wasn't far, we'd just tow it there.

We often thought of the big boat (in our case a Hatteras 56MY) as kind of like the 747 they used to transport the space shuttle on. The really fun craft was the little one. When we sold the big boat, we kept the Whaler 130 Sport, which now resides at our little dock behind the house and still gets used all the time.

I like having the swim platform clear for convenience and safety. We chartered a GB 49 MY once that had transom mounted davits system, and didn't particularly like it, but it did get the dinghy up and away from the water.

This coming week starting Saturday will be an interesting dinghy experience. We are helping friends bring a new-to-them 44 Gulfstar that has both a boat deck crane and a hydraulic swim platform for the 11-12 foot AB console dink. Best of both worlds. Hope we get a chance to use it.
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Old 11-07-2019, 07:23 AM   #20
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Quote:
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visibility when backing into a slip

Pay more for a dock due to added length

Following seas

Sitting in cockpit looking aft

Getting on/off boat

How about simply how it looks

You forgot two: It obscures the boat name and hailing port. Not unfixable. Coming down off plane causes some backwash. Manageable.

Backing into a slip isn't an issue; we do that (everything) from the flybridge (only helm station) and our visibility is great.

Yep, it adds a few feet to OAL. Cost of doing business, as we don't like our other option (bow mounted).

Following seas aren't great, but we're mostly inland, we can choose our time to go offshore -- or usually anywhere -- for a while), so it hasn't become an issue.

Dink (except for the outboard) is below our line of sight from cockpit seating; no significant obstruction.

Our davit system is a cantilevered mount, so there's about 18" between the mother-ship transom and the dinghy tubes. Walkable, but we do have to pay enough attention so we don't trip over the davit mounts.

Can't say it looks great, but it doesn't look horrible (to us) and the launch/recovery system is very fast and easy. In our case, as long as we have sufficient clear space to our port side.

You probably couldn't make it out in our avatar, but much of our davit system comes off relatively easily (and is off, in the avatar) so we have no significant obstructions when we're fishing...

-Chris
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