Towing inflatable Mainship 30

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Mainship Pilot

Senior Member
Joined
Oct 18, 2023
Messages
152
Vessel Name
Eagle
Vessel Make
Mainship Pilot II, Prior vessel 43’ Bluesea
For those interested in doing this, I spent some time trying to figure out the best config that would complement my 30’ Pilot II with the 6LPA. I wanted a console style dingy but small and light enough to keep behind the boat in the slip, and tow without causing the boat to struggle or stress. The Achillies Hypalon 10’6” console inflatable with the Tohatsu 20 fit the bill as it weighs right around 300#s, but big enough for 4 of us (tightly) and a dog at Catalina Island for long weekends and local harbor cruises. I tow it with 1/2” anchor line, bridled to a bowline, then SS Shackle to a Perfection on the main tow line, run back to the 2nd wave off the stern. I tow at about 14 knots and it’s pretty steady and safe at that distance and speed, as the boat doers all the work in breaking the seas. I’ve gotten into some snotty weather towing, and towing right about 10.5-11 knots it fares pretty well in those conditions however, avoid whenever possible. I’ve done 4 round trips to the island towing each way now, and it’s been very comfortable and consistent in the ride. Engine stays at 180 degrees so no stress. Just wanted to share this as I know some others have been looking at doing this. I’ll try to upload some videos on YouTube in the next few days of towing underway
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YouTube
 
This is not a correction or a criticism. This is just a comparison.

I had a tow bridle made by Rope inc. They make tow rigs for yachts to tow center consoles. Mine is obviously sized much smaller. I'm towing a 13 ft Boston Whaler (1,000+ lbs)

Bridle: 2 x 30' (5/8" MFP Floatline)
Tow Hawser: 75' (5/8" MFP Floatline)
Tow Pendant: 10' (10mm Dyneema)

The boat needs to be towed far enough back to have no chance to crossing into that secondary wake. That can cause the towed boat to surf and roll. The tow hawser has a wichard snap shackle that connects to the thimble on the tow pendant. The tow pendant is connected with a large shackle to the towed boat.
 
Cruising at 10-11 knots while pulling a heavy dinghy may put the engine in a high stress point. I suspect at 10-11 kts the boat is pushing “the hump” but not over the hump on a clean plane yet.

I would either slow down to 8 kts or speed up to more than 12 kts to put the engine in a more comfortable spot.

David
 
David, When we had our 43' Bluesea, we cruised at 9 knots, and towed a 13' whaler with a 30 honda behind us, 2nd wave. The whaler was up on full plane, and the boat didn't know it was back there. Speed would remain the same weather we were towing or not.
 
This is not a correction or a criticism. This is just a comparison.

I had a tow bridle made by Rope inc. They make tow rigs for yachts to tow center consoles. Mine is obviously sized much smaller. I'm towing a 13 ft Boston Whaler (1,000+ lbs)

Bridle: 2 x 30' (5/8" MFP Floatline)
Tow Hawser: 75' (5/8" MFP Floatline)
Tow Pendant: 10' (10mm Dyneema)

The boat needs to be towed far enough back to have no chance to crossing into that secondary wake. That can cause the towed boat to surf and roll. The tow hawser has a wichard snap shackle that connects to the thimble on the tow pendant. The tow pendant is connected with a large shackle to the towed boat.
What speed are you towing at?
 
I cruise at around 8 kts. Top would only be 9-10 kts, but I cruise around 8 (give or take with tide). Much like anchoring, the diameter of the gear is based on the size of the boat (in this case the boat being towed). The length is somewhat fixed. The faster you go the narrower the width of the wake and the further back you need to tow.

My rig is sized length wise to be able to tow at much higher speeds. The whaler is halfway on plane doing a 'wheelie', which allows it to ride over everything. We've been in very large waves and I've never seen the bow stuff.

The whaler is self bailing with the garboard plug removed, so that is how we tow it.
 
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