Inflatable Dinghies

TimfromMersea

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Does anyone have any experience of either the Honda, or Compass Mail Order, 2.7 meter air deck inflatable dinghies - the ones with the air bottom and the inflatable V keel. I'm thinking of upgrading our inflatable, as our 5 year old Ukrainian made 'Adventure' brand dinghy is looking a bit sad now.

The problem with the Eastern Bloc stuff always seems to be the basic materials rather than the workmanship, and the stainless steel isn't. The fabric seems OK, but the rowlocks broke and the rowlock pivots siezed solid long ago, and the slatted floor is a nuisance to assemble each time, stow away etc.

Before I spend what to me is quite a considerable sum, it would be good to hear from Forum members if they can recommend any particular dinghy. The attraction of the Honda one is the air V hull, the air floor, and the diameter of the tubes, which will make it much more stable and give it a higher load carrying capacity. But everything else from Compass has been good value so it would be interesting to see how they compare.

Any information welcome! And does anyone want a Ukrainian dinghy.........

A friend at the Club always says 'buy cheap and you buy twice'. I know what he means now.
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Twister_Ken

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Terry Pratchett

"The reason the rich were so rich, Vimes reasoned, was because they managed to spend less money.

Take boots, for example. He earned thirty-eight dollars a month plus allowances. A really good pair of leather boots cost fifty dollars. But an affordable pair of boots, which were sort of OK for a season or two and then leaked like hell when the cardboard gave out, cost about ten dollars. Those were the kind of boots Vimes always bought, and wore until the soles were so thin that he could tell where he was in the city on a foggy night by the feel of the cobbles.

But the thing was that good boots lasted for years and years. A man who could afford fifty dollars had a pair of boots that'd still be keeping his feet dry in ten years' time, while a poor man who could only afford cheap boots would have spent a hundred dollars on boots in the same time and would still have wet feet.

This was the Captain Samuel Vimes "Boots" theory of socioeconomic unfairness."
 

cardinal_mark

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Hi

I have an Honwave (with the inflatable V floor) that I'm seriously thinking of selling. Its 2 seasons old and has been used no more than half a dozen times. We now have a dog that wont even jump off the boat to the pontoon so the dinghy is likely to see even less action!! So, rather than just let it rot in the garage we thought we'd sell it.

If you're interested, drop me a PM.

Cheers

Mark
 

SlowlyButSurely

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Re: Terry Pratchett

20 years ago I paid £150 for a secondhand Avon which was at least 10 years old (probably more like 15) when I bought it.

This dinghy is still going strong today and not showing any sign of giving up. So I can confirm the theory.
 

gjbentley

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I have a Compass Mail Order, 2.7 metre air deck inflatable dinghy.

Like most inflatable dinghies (and everthing else thesedays) they are made in China then sold under household brand names. Quality of build and material seems okay to me.

But once sold, do not expect a high level of customer support from Compass. Being a mailorder company I find they like to keep at a distance from their customers referring you to the manufacturer.

The 2.7 metre size and inflatable floor really is appreicated when making a beach landing, or leaving your anchorage for the shore with a less than a calm sea and four persons on board. You feel safe.

One odd thing is the Halkey inflator valves. If your pump goes down the tube do not expect a replacement with the right fitting to be easily found.

But I must admit I curse its weight when I lift it out of the cockpit locker. Just about possible for one person to handle.

Not a dinghy for just exploring the marina. Too big and more effort than it is worth to inflate for an hour of fun.
 

Dalliance

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We had a Quicksilver dinghy with our last boat and I can sympathise with your problem getting it out of the locker. In the end I fitted a caribiner at the foot of the mainsheet block so that we could easily release the sheet from the traveller and use the boom and sheet to lift the dinghy out of the locker. This had the additional benefit that the dinghy could be swung over the side still attached to the boom and inflated whilst hanging vertically so it didn't take up the whole cockpit. Doing it this way meant that my wife could launch the dinghy single-handed if necessary.
 

Phoenix of Hamble

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I've got a 2.7m Plastimo with a slatted floor, and a 2.8m Yamaha with a solid floor and inflatable keel.... both too big and heavy to easily lift out of the locker, and then get over the guard wire without worrying about damaging either the wire or the tenders.... we'll sell them both soon, and buy a small one, and sacrifice the easy trips to the beach for ease of getting it out of the locker....

Mind you, I also have a 4hp Evinrude 2 stroke that weighs a bloody ton too.... must be a sucker!

PS.... Halkey valves... adaptors readily available now.... try ibs... just bought one myself....
 

landlockedpirate

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I had the 3.2m Honda V floor. Excellent dinghy which out-performed my old solid floor and rib zodiacs. My brother has a 1 year old 2.7m (also for sale) which planes with a 4hp and 1 person aboard. Happily takes 4 people as well.

My 1 observation is that they are heavy. If lugging it about deflated is a major issue you may find lighter ones out there.
 

Ocean Hound

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Just acquired a new s/hand boat that came with a 6 man Avon dinghy that looked totally knackered when folded up and was expecting to write off, but when pumped up it is as strong as an ox and good for another 5years at least, so go for the quality.
 

Haven't-a-Clue

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Hi, there, I've got the Honwave airfloor V deck but I think it,s the next size up (3.2) and as a runabout (it was my 1st ever boat) I think it can't be beaten for feeling safe in. Bounced off a few things and still as good as ever, it's certainly VERY buoyant! Fitted with a Honda 8 hp 4-stoke, it had no trouble reacing 18 kts with 1 on board and 14 with 2 (GPS verified) and with the trim set properly, will get on the plane at 8 kts 1 up. A bit heavy (but do-able) for one, easy for 2 to lift. I'd happily recommend one especially if you can get one at a discount, or good secondhand.
 

silver-fox

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I recently bought the Honda 2.7 with the airfloor and a Honda 2.4 HP engine.

I am really delighted with it. Its dry in a slop, unlike its Avon predecessor, feels safe, can hold 4 easily despite being rated for 2 adults plus child.

If I remember right the weight is around 35kgs so its pretty much as heavy as I would care to lift around a boat.

I haven't had it long enough to judge durability. I decided not to worry about this too much as we are about to go off and be liveaboards and it seems having your dinghy nicked is very probable.

In conclusion - so far so good.
 

Chris_Robb

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There are 2 main types of construction material - Hypalon and Plastic PVC? Hypolon is very resistant to ultra violet where as the plastic ones rot readily in comparison.

Then there is the contruction , how it was put together. I had a cheap eastern european Hypalon - not very well made. I now have a 1991 Avon Redstart - Hypalon and looks like new.

I think its much like the Boots story above!
 
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