View Full Version : Life Raft for 300?

13-02-09, 14:58
Apologies if this is well-known, but I saw in Marinestore at Titchmarsh today that they are selling ex-hire valise liferafts for 300 for a 4-man coast/offshore which might be a good buy for someone dithering about getting one. They seemed to be Plastimo.

13-02-09, 15:39
Did you see how much service left on them?

The service would be around 150 quid, which would make it 450 quid.

A new 4 man can be had for 499 quid....

Athene V30
13-02-09, 15:53
A new 4 man can be had for 499 quid....

[/ QUOTE ]

What spec do you get for that? Is it suitable for 'off soundings' sailing or more a 'summer cruise' cross channel type?

13-02-09, 17:41
Peter, I will start a separate debate.

the Seago Offshore that I have can be equipped with supplementary kit that brings it up to ISAF standard.

Would I want to spend 73 days in one? No.

Is it good enough for North Sea use in my cruising area? Yes

I would trade it in for a full blown ISAF Ocean when I go. In the meantime, its fit for purpose.

13-02-09, 17:57
They are being sold a "recently serviced"

14-02-09, 08:54
The fact that they are sold as recently serviced should make them a good deal.
In my view a liferaft is there to meet your psychological needs for safety rather than something you expect to have to use. It means when you are being really pounded by the weather and you expect your boat to fall apart any minute - which it generally doesn't do - you have options. That said I've looked at the wind and waves a few times and said to myself 'I wouldn't want to be in a liferaft in that', of course I didn't really want to be in it in my boat either.

My first crewed crossing of the Atlantic I was the navigator and had the whole forepeak to myself on a Southerly 115. The Southerly is very slab sided and each time you hit a wave the sides flex. To keep myself from flying all over the forepeak when I was asleep I braced my feet against the sides of the boat so felt every flex. Coming off each watch I would just check the liferaft was ok in case GRP fatigue set in that night and we needed Plan B- the liferaft.

So the real answer to your question Kermudjon is that it is a good deal if it is sufficient to give you comfort when things are going wrong.

[I have a very strong belief system that beyond soundings liferafts should be carried internally not externally. I know a lot of people who have lost a liferaft from wave action - I don't know anyone personally that has ever used one. The only argument against this is of course in case of fire in the cabin and you can't get to the liferaft, but if it is lost over the side you can't get to it either.]

15-02-09, 15:41
thanks for the reply - I already have a valise from 8 yrs ago (reserviced this year) but as a liferaft is one of those rather expensive things we feel we ought to have but can't always quite justify, like EPIRBs, I thought there might be someone who feels they should have one and would be prepared to buy one for 300 but not at 500 +.

I tend to agree about keeping a raft internally, though I have not had your ocean experience. My raft is close at hand in the cockpit-locker and SWMBO & I both reckon we can lift it out if needed.

15-02-09, 18:54
There's no reason I can see to pay a premium on this liferaft - it's pre-owned even if not "used." Offer 50% on new - 250 would be my bid. Max.

Beforehand, check with a servicer that it's a make that can be serviced at a reasonable price. Have a chat with Seaweather on 01322 275513. If it's too old to service at the next service interval, you've just paid, even at 250, more than 50% the cost of a new one that should last you 10 years with regular care.

Seaweather might even put you on the road to a better deal...