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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2016
    Posts
    140

    Question Talk to me about inflatable tenders

    Considering getting a 'budget' inflatable tender for occasional use on the river (lunch trips to the pub or visiting friends near the marina). We don't have the luxury of davits or much storage space so it'll need to be something I can easily haul up and strap onto the foredeck (or deflate and put in the hold). For ease of storage and use I am considering an electric outboard - I read a few stories about them being completely useless, is that really the case? I remember years ago I had one on a GRP mirror dinghy and I think it did OK - was only on a lake though.

    So something like this - https://www.marinesuperstore.com/ten...tweight-tender

    or maybe this - https://www.marinesuperstore.com/ten...ender-twin-air

    Going for > 2.5m for stability and ability to carry 3 if we need too, is this over the top?

    With a 68lb electric motor.

    Am I completely wasting my time or would it suffice for a little fun now and then? Any major preference over slatted vs air floor?
    Viking 295 - Life's too Short
    www.viking295.blogspot.com

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2001
    Location
    Oxfordshire
    Posts
    4,194

    Default Re: Talk to me about inflatable tenders

    I'm sure the electric motor is up to the job, but for the me the hassle of charging the battery and stowing it on the floor of a small inflatable would outweigh the advantages. A small 2hp outboard would have an integral fuel tank and is relatively hassle free.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Location
    Sussex
    Posts
    4,236

    Default Re: Talk to me about inflatable tenders

    Quote Originally Posted by Chris_d View Post
    I'm sure the electric motor is up to the job, but for the me the hassle of charging the battery and stowing it on the floor of a small inflatable would outweigh the advantages. A small 2hp outboard would have an integral fuel tank and is relatively hassle free.
    Yeah - get an old Seagull, difficult to destroy and always a conversation piece. Excellent when coping with weed.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Wilts
    Posts
    10

    Default Re: Talk to me about inflatable tenders

    I also recommend getting an inflatable floor as these work much better than the slats.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2015
    Posts
    510

    Default Re: Talk to me about inflatable tenders

    yup, forget about slats, air floor all the way, will fold smaller too.

    3.5hp outboard will do the job if you can find one or a 2 hp. plenty around.

    Electric is a nice idea but the reality is often very different unless you can find a Tesla supercharger station anywhere..

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Posts
    8,305

    Default Re: Talk to me about inflatable tenders

    Get an Excel Ventura 260 lightweight, inflatable flat floor and reasonable price, very light too. It's easily the best at doing what you want!

    Forget Electric unless you have lots of £££'s for a torqeedo!! A cheap Mercury/Mariner 2.5-3.3 two stroke is amazingly light and available used for £250.

    Thats as good as it gets....

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2016
    Posts
    140

    Default Re: Talk to me about inflatable tenders

    Hmm, thanks for the ideas, sounds like petrol is really preferred then! I already hold petrol on the boat so that's not an issue - it is where to store the engine that bothers me. I can't just chuck it in the hold like I can an electric one.

    Inflatable 'air deck' floor seems to be the way forward, Excel looks good too, I hadn't come across that one before.
    Viking 295 - Life's too Short
    www.viking295.blogspot.com

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    London
    Posts
    448

    Default Re: Talk to me about inflatable tenders

    Generally I would said avoid the cheaper PVC versions and try to go with the hypalon ones. That said if you don't mind the cheap and cheerful approach, Costco are selling these at the moment for £499 brand new - https://www.costco.co.uk/Sports-Spas...Boat/p/2000551

    On the outboard front have you considered gas outboards? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zHJ0VE9gKac

    CJL

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2018
    Posts
    176

    Default Re: Talk to me about inflatable tenders

    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Grubb View Post
    Going for > 2.5m for stability and ability to carry 3 if we need too, is this over the top?
    Three of us, adults, used a 2.4m dinghy last year and I thought it was a little small.

    In a similar situation to you, I am looking for 2.75 at the moment myself.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Nov 2001
    Location
    Medway
    Posts
    19,661

    Default Are you sitting comfortably .Then we will begin..

    have walk round any marina or boat yard and take look at the sheer number of mouldering deflated bags of air hanging from davits (which the marina delight in charging you for) and after the initial enthusiasm has worn off,remain unused.
    They also get in way when squeezing into that last tight space last thing at night and can cause problems with the boat behind in the lock.
    Apart from the odd weirdo , ask any boater cursed with davits just how many times last year he clambered in the wobbly rubber nightmare to attach the outboard(dont ask about it dragging the evil stinky thing out of its locker),starting it up or conking out half way back on your return journey.
    Aha you say,no davits will pack away and inflate when needed.Suggest after doing you back in when dragging from car to boat and the space it takes up in cabin or cockpit, it might get used twice.
    Thinking about that little journey from boat to pub on nice summer evenings, you could walk quicker and not be worrying in dinghy has been nicked while you were in pub either !
    Just buying for the kids.. start to worrying now.
    Save your money.
    Last edited by oldgit; 14-03-19 at 08:21.

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