Just Say "No" to Inflatable Dinghies

Take one look at a typical dinghy dock and you’ll see inflatables with outboard motors have won the popularity debate. But we use a hard Dyer Dhow dinghy with oars and a sail and wouldn’t have it any other way.
Author:
Publish date:
DINGHYMaine

Why we chose a Dyer Dinghy over an outboard motor

Take one look at a typical dinghy dock and you’ll see inflatables with outboard motors have won the popularity debate. But we use a hard Dyer Dhow dinghy with oars and a sail and wouldn’t have it any other way.

I concede, there are disadvantages. Sometimes it is hard rowing against the wind, or you might not want to row at all, especially knowing that a powerful motor could get you there. As for launching, putting a hard dinghy over the side in a strong wind can get hairy.

 Whether rowing or sailing the benefits of an engine-free dinghy are many

Whether rowing or sailing the benefits of an engine-free dinghy are many

But here are the pros: we carry no potentially dangerous gasoline. We don’t have to do annual outboard maintenance. We make no noise. We get exercise. Our dinghy doesn’t fall apart in the sun. Our dinghy doesn’t mind getting scratched on rocky beaches. And she sits very well overturned in front of the mast and provides a spray and rain cover for the open hatch below.

The Dyer is a good dinghy because it is light and rows well. We row with good long pine oars, which are amazingly useful, especially if you’re used to struggling with the little toy oars that come with most inflatables. Best of all, in the right conditions, we can put up the little sail and actually go as fast as a motorized dinghy, using just a fraction of the effort.

Photos by Sebastian Smith

Related

Before-and-after-1_silo

Know How: Cleaning Stainless

Without a doubt, the best way to “clean” stainless steel parts is to have them electropolished. Electropolishing is an electrochemical process that cleans the stainless and removes any surface iron particles, leaving a shiny and far more rust-resistant surface. The downsides of ...read more

catstory

Cruising: Sailing With a Young Family

The dark is alive when you are surrounded by water. Black is tinted blue and silver, and sky meets surf with electricity and the lapping sounds of silence. Inside our 36ft catamaran, moored off Cooper Island in the BVI, the raw nature outside, just now settling down from a late ...read more

IslandPacket349

Boat Review: Island Packet 349

After years of quiescence in the wake of the Great Recession, iconic Island Packet is back with its new 349, a re-boot of the old Estero that not only looks great, but takes the Island Packet style of sailing performance to a new level. Design & Construction First among the many ...read more

190219NEEL51

Video Tour: Neel 51 Trimaran

At this past fall’s Annapolis Boat Show, SAIL magazine had a chance to corner Neel Trimarans founder Eric Bruneel and have him give us a tour of the accommodations aboard the new Neel 51, winner of the “Multihull over 50ft” category in the 2019 Best Boats contest. For a complete ...read more

IMG_0173

Electronic “Flares” for Cruisers

The United States Coast Guard requires that all boats operating in coastal waters or on the high seas carry a selection of visual distress signals. Almost invariably, such signals include the pyrotechnic type, either handheld or fired from a flare pistol, but surely there are ...read more

M2-HOOK-TOP-AND-CHAIN-1

Gear: M2 Chain Hook from Mantus

Stay Hooked Chain hooks on anchor snubber lines tend to fall off when you least want them to. Not so this latest example from Mantus. The M2 Chain Hook is secured to the chain by a simple elastic strap, so it won’t come off when the snubber loosens. Made from corrosion-resistant ...read more