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Inflatable Dinghies - the good, the bad and the ugly?

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Old Avons could row well ( i have beaten a hard dinghy in a race). It's because of the rowlocks.

I believe it is still possible to buy just the rowlocks so it would be an interesting exercise to retrofit them on some other brands and see if there's a difference. Those rowlocks also allowed you to throw away the crap oars all inflatables come with and get a decent pair.

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Maxxon are pretty good, Old one lasted 10 years before the glue went, new one seems just as tough

We had a Aakron yachtmaster, lasted 1.5 years (in the tropics). And have seen a few others lying around in pieces. Now have a Mercury Hyperlon which is okay. AB and Achilles seem to be the two preferr

weight was a biggy for me as well.  I went for the 240TC - only 15kg for 240kg payload - wah, two kids and a wekend of supplies no problem for the next 5 years.  By that stage I'll be able to trust S1

Most inflatables, in particular RIBs bow steer badly. The cat style with pressure floors don't and actually track pretty well.

The limiting factor is then the rowlocks first and then the flimsy oars they give you.


Could you technically attach the railblaza rowlick attachment to a beefier wooden oar....or are they only good enough for the lightweight aluminium jobbies? And yes, I have a pair of the aluminium type oars, and geez they are very flimsy.

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Bought a NZ-made Aquapro about 5yrs ago. Was awful with manufacturing fault from factory - twisted tubes - which meant handles and rowlocks out of alignment relative to waterline. Made for strange handling. Give them due they took it back and ‘fixed it’ which involved unsticking stuff and repositioning it relative to waterline. I had asked for a new replacement (mine was 1 week old when I noticed the flaw) but they couldn’t because they said the whole batch they had in the factory at that time had the same issue.

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