Hi James. I just purchased a Winslow 6 man offshore raft. My 18 year old one was still in good shape a few years ago, but they won't recertify it again. Fortunately, I have never had occasion to use the old one, so can't comment on it's efficacy. The new one is in a soft valise and is lighter weight (still 70lbs) and a smaller package than the old one. I keep it in the port deck locker except when I am on a passage, in which case I lash it to the aft cabin top. I chose not to have a permanently mounted hard case because I like the decks clear of obstructions when I'm not at sea. The new one will give me a bit more room in the locker for extra fuel.
It would be nice to see them in action (at a boat show?), see how hard it is to get aboard, etc. Without that in-person look, I just chose what appeared to be a well equipped, stable looking raft. I also have a well equipped ditch bag with extra EPIRB, VHF, flares, hand-pump desalinator, food, etc. My sat phone and InReach will go into it in a pelican case.
Currently St Michaels, MD