Towing a RIB?

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AlanH
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Towing a RIB?

Postby AlanH » Mon Mar 20, 2017 11:29 am

We have a 9.5' Caribe with a 9.9 HP two cycle Yamaha. We have never towed it (or any other Dinghy). We will be traveling to the Abacos in May and thought there may be times where it make sense to tow it rather than using the davits. Any thoughts on towing versus using the davits?

If we do tow it, any advice would be welcome. I understand we would need to rig a bridle, would we use a shackle of some sort or just rig a loop in the line? How far behind should we tow the dinghy at 78 knots? How far at 13? Tow with the motor on or off?

Any and all advice is welcome.

Thanks,
Alan
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thinwater
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Re: Towing a RIB?

Postby thinwater » Mon Mar 20, 2017 2:00 pm

Why?

If you are concerned about security, trice it up tight (cris-cross lines underneath). This will make it VERY secure.

No, there are no circumstances where towing is safer unless the boat is far too large for the davits.

http://sail-delmarva.blogspot.com/2012/07/hang-em-high.html

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Re: Towing a RIB?

Postby deising » Mon Mar 20, 2017 2:34 pm

Alan,

I will offer my two cents:

1. Some will disagree after much experience towing dinghies, but I do not recommend it.
2. The key is to develop a good system to hoist and secure the dinghy on the davits so that you can do it with a minimum of time and fuss. The harder it is to do, the more likely you are to take the shortcut of towing.
3. I will admit to towing our 9.5 ft Achilles with the 9.9 HP 4-stroke attached for up to 10 miles in very calm conditions. I did that partly to be lazy and partly to see how the dinghy would tow astern of the PDQ. For that one-time experiment, I simply had one painter from the centerline eye bolt to a stern cleat. It rode fine in calm conditions at 7 kts with the engine tilted up.
4. I have seen large vessels (100+ feet) towing 24-foot fishing boats at 20 kts or more on a very long line. I would not wish to try towing my dinghy above 7 kts, but surely it can be done, although at much greater risk to capsize, I would think.

Perhaps others who favor towing can chime in with practical advice for you.
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Re: Towing a RIB?

Postby duetto » Mon Mar 20, 2017 4:06 pm

we tow our dinghy occasionally if we're moving the boat from a day anchorage to an overnite anchorage. when we do this we cleat to midship and tow it alongside next to exhaust. it tows nicely there and keeps the painter away from the props. we never tow if a) seas are rough or b) we're doing over 7 knots.
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Re: Towing a RIB?

Postby Ortolan » Mon Mar 20, 2017 5:06 pm

Alan,

After 4 months this winter in the Bahamas, using our dinghy every single day, I know what you mean about the chore of continuously hauling & launching. However, I agree with the others about - just do it. We have towed it just once all winter - 3 miles at 6 knots. At low speeds/short distances, I wouldn't worry about a bridle - just your normal 20'+ FLOATING painter. At faster speeds, you can find lots of suggestions on-line of where on which wave your dinghy should ride on, etc.

There are a dozen+ reasons not to tow AND not to leave in the water at night either.

Enjoy!
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Re: Towing a RIB?

Postby thinwater » Mon Mar 20, 2017 5:43 pm

Yes, make it easy.

One of the first hings I did was upgrade the tackle to 6:1 with a cam cleat, such as might be used for a sailing dinghy mainsheet. A child can lift it.
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Re: Towing a RIB?

Postby AlanH » Mon Mar 20, 2017 6:00 pm

Thank you all for the responses and ideas. I think we will plan on hoisting the dinghy with the davits and skip towing altogether.
AlanH
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