Re: [Amel] Dinghies

Kent Robertson

Thank you Anne and John.  You've had quite an experience with your dinks, eh?  I like your thoughts, just hope I can still find 2 stroke engines in the Caribbean next winter.
Steady as ye go.

--- On Fri, 8/13/10, Anne and John Hollamby <annejohnholl@...> wrote:

From: Anne and John Hollamby <annejohnholl@...>
Subject: [Amel] Dinghies
To: amelyachtowners@...
Date: Friday, August 13, 2010, 12:55 PM


Living on board for the past twenty plus years we have owned seven different dinghies. The first one was stolen complete with a 15HP motor at an small offshore island in Venezuela. This taught us that dinghies should always be lifted or locked on overnight and that without a spare one has a big problem. Even a cheap plastic one would save the need to head for somewhere to get a new one.
The second was an AB 2.8 RIB made in Venezuela which had a GRP floor and hull.It was very heavy and water found its way into the space below the floor.We were towing it around an atoll when it was bitten by a shark swimming inverted and this laid back a flap of hypalon the size of my hand .This flap was still attached to the GRP hull and Anne stitched it roughly in place and then used a number of patches to make it airtight. We had it repaired properly when we got to Papatee and the technician said that this was not uncommon! Moral, it must have three air chambers.
We bought a 3.1 mtr Southern Pacific aluminium RIB in NZ which was very light but slammed a lot in a chop.If I had the choice again I would have bought an Aquapro which is also Alloy but heavier. The SP RIB lasted ten years until I overstressed it whilst moving a yacht with a broken engine. Some of the seems started to leak including the bulkheads. It was repaired expensively in Mallorca but still leaked. I had a spare 2.6 NZ dink which had been in the lazarette for eight years and had only been used once. When inflated the seems were leaking in so many places that I scrapped it. Moral, hopefully all new dinks now have eletronically welded seams as glue has a limited life.
Our next, two years ago was a Hon Wav 3.2 with an airfloor type hull. It was very very hard to inflate the hull to the required pressure and then it started leaking through tiny pin holed caused perhaps by sea urchins.It was fairly light but was lost in a severe squall last September together with an ancient but perfect 5 HP Yamaha 2 stroke.
The next was a 3.0 Honwav with Alloy floor boards. It is much heavier but rides well with my 15 HP Mercury.
I had to get a lighter engine as getting the 15 on and off in a chop was hard. I could not get a 2 stroke in Malta and had to settle for a 4 stroke 4HP which I hate as it is so much heavier than the 2 stroke.
My conclusions after all this is that the best dink for a SM2K would be not more than 3 and probably only 2.8mtrs with an alloy hull. I would not buy another 4 stroke as spares are a problem and they are so heavy. I would have a 15 HP and a 5HP, the big one for longish trips and the 5 for local use.

Best wishes from Croatia, Anne and John, Bali Hai, SM2K 319

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