inflatable boats in top end

Submitted: Tuesday, Oct 15, 2002 at 00:00
ThreadID: 2156 Views:2759 Replies:10 FollowUps:5
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We are planning a trip next year to northern QLD, NT, and NW WA. We have a 4.2M Zodiac inflatable with wooden floor and are looking for advise on this type of boats suitability for these areas ( crocs ). We are a family of four ( kids 5 and 8 ) and figure a tinnie large enough for the four of us would be too big and heavy to cart around. Any experience out there?
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Reply By: John - Tuesday, Oct 15, 2002 at 00:00

Tuesday, Oct 15, 2002 at 00:00
Beter take some BIG tooth shaped patches!!!
Seriously I will also be interested about this.....A zodiac sounds like a great idea to save on space.

John
AnswerID: 7432

Reply By: paul - Tuesday, Oct 15, 2002 at 00:00

Tuesday, Oct 15, 2002 at 00:00
A friend of mine just got back from doing bamaga round to Broome through every 4WD track he could find as close to the coast as he could find. Is bitterly disappointed he did not take a tinny. I asked about whether anyone up there used inflatables or what he would think of using one. He said no-one did and might be a psychological think cause where you find big barra in the saline systems you tend to find big saltwater crocs and he reckons you just wouldn't feel as safe.
AnswerID: 7434

Reply By: flappan - Tuesday, Oct 15, 2002 at 00:00

Tuesday, Oct 15, 2002 at 00:00
I too think it may be partly in the mind. I have seen plenty of tinnies very low to the water that if the Croc felt so inclined would easily get into.

I would say, that if you are in a position to get nabbed by a croc, you would be in serious do do regardless of tinnie or zodiac.

Don't zodiac's have several air chambers.Puncture one doesn't mean she all goes down.
AnswerID: 7436

Follow Up By: Gavin - Tuesday, Oct 15, 2002 at 00:00

Tuesday, Oct 15, 2002 at 00:00
yer flappen, 3 chambers + on tube under floor to give keel shape. There's a sales pic showing a family motoring back with one side chamber deflated and everyone sitting on the other side. maybe it comes down to whether or not crocs have a go at boats!
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Reply By: John - Tuesday, Oct 15, 2002 at 00:00

Tuesday, Oct 15, 2002 at 00:00
After thinking about it for a while, wouldn't the noise of the outboard motor scare them away........and if it didn't, would being in a tinny be any different from a Zodiac?
I recon if the croc wanted to get in, the type of boat wouldn't make much difference.
In some ways maybe the Zodiac may pose more of a treat to the croc, as it looks much more bulky etc than the tinny.....
I could be wrong.....

John
AnswerID: 7450

Reply By: Member - Mal - Tuesday, Oct 15, 2002 at 00:00

Tuesday, Oct 15, 2002 at 00:00
Dear all, I have a 3.4m Zodiac which has an inflatable floor which is inflated to rock hard. Flappan, it has three major chambers, the floor and a inflatable tube to form a keel. Zodiac say it can safely be operated (limp home) with any one major chamber deflated. I would have no hesitation in using it anywhere. However in crock country I would not sit on the sides with my back to the marine lizards. I have built a seat in the rear and it comes with one up front. Mine folds down to large suitcase size. It takes 15 minutes to set up and 5 minutes to deflate and pack up. It is registered for 5 people. If I am moving around in an area I put it on the roof rack which an old bloke like me can do by myself quiet easily. The few occasions where boats have been attacked by crocks they have jumped into the boat. I think the zodiac would be more stable and if it did bite it the explosion would scare it off. Anyway thats my tuppence worth. Mal T.
AnswerID: 7451

Follow Up By: Gavin - Tuesday, Oct 15, 2002 at 00:00

Tuesday, Oct 15, 2002 at 00:00
Thanks mal, I tend to agree with you and I think I'm getting off the fence of indecission.
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Reply By: John - Tuesday, Oct 15, 2002 at 00:00

Tuesday, Oct 15, 2002 at 00:00
Ok this is starting to interest me more and more.
I am totally unfimilar with the different Zodiac's.......
Gavin, how much does your boat pack up to.....you mentioned it had a wooden floor...... How do you pump them up?.......
Can it be done with the exhaust, like a bull bag?.......
What is a good size motor to run, bearing in mind I don't want to go sking behind it......
How much do they cost.....the boats that is.

cheers
John
AnswerID: 7469

Follow Up By: Gavin - Wednesday, Oct 16, 2002 at 00:00

Wednesday, Oct 16, 2002 at 00:00
john, you can check them out in details at the zodiac site (easy to find on search engine), but here's the guts of what you're asking. Similar to the surf rescue boats you see around, The type john has is called a fast roller with the inflatable floor, packs up a bit smaller than mine (touring) because doesn't have floor boards. touring is heavier but takes up to 40 hp motor, we use a lightwieght 30 hp (48KG) at home and it flies but looking at maybe a 10-15hp to travel with. Johns fastroller would be ideal for travel with say 8-10hp, at a guess his would be about 50kG. Total boat wieght of a 4.2m touring is 83kG, sack is 1.44m x .68m x .35min. + wooden floor sections that lock together with aluminium frame. mine takes around a lazy 25min to set up ready to go (mostly putting floor in), pumping is with foot pump, electric pumps available but not really needed as the pressure is only 3 to 4 psi. had ours a couple of years since new, heaps of fishing with kids and hooks the only hole was from a flathead spike, took a while to notice as very slow leak at 3-4 psi, bit of elec tape patched it for a couple of weeks until I dabbed some glue in the hole, easy repair.
Cost new anywhere from $2000 for smaller light wieght to $5000 for 4.2 m touring. I'm in tassie so not much market second hand, but is on mainland.
turned into a novel but hope it helps.
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FollowupID: 3423

Follow Up By: Gavin - Wednesday, Oct 16, 2002 at 00:00

Wednesday, Oct 16, 2002 at 00:00
sorry, I referred to johns fastroller should be Mal
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FollowupID: 3424

Follow Up By: Member - Mal - Thursday, Oct 17, 2002 at 00:00

Thursday, Oct 17, 2002 at 00:00
John, my boat weighs 34kg so i can lift it with one hand (just). I have a 15HP which really pushes it along and it weighs 32 kg. I also have a 3.5HP and an electric motor which is great for trolling and bird watching etc. It is so quiet you dont know it is running. Have fun. Mal T.
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FollowupID: 3449

Reply By: Member - Nigel - Tuesday, Oct 15, 2002 at 00:00

Tuesday, Oct 15, 2002 at 00:00
A croc will only have a go if it's 99% sure of success. Only stories I've heard of are when people have their feet hanging in the water, or people on Kayak's (which are the size of a croc) getting attacked by a croc defending it's territory (thinks the kayak is another croc). If your fully inside a boat esp with an outboard the crocs will just watch you go past from a safe distance.
AnswerID: 7470

Reply By: John - Wednesday, Oct 16, 2002 at 00:00

Wednesday, Oct 16, 2002 at 00:00
Thanks for the reply Gavin,
I will look into this a bit further this week. It sounds like a great idea to me.
Will be heading up to the cape next year and I wasn't keen to cart a tinny ontop of the Camping trailer, But the Zodiac idea sounds great.

Cheers
John
AnswerID: 7476

Reply By: Mikef_Patrol - Wednesday, Oct 16, 2002 at 00:00

Wednesday, Oct 16, 2002 at 00:00
Hi all

We have a 3.4m Quicksiler/15hp Mercury we bought last december. Loads of fun, about 20 mins to assemble. Weight is about 56kg (all up) for the boat and 34kg for the motor. Fold down nice and small compared to a tinny. Cost was $2100 for the Inflatable and $2100 for the Mercury.

MikeF
AnswerID: 7477

Reply By: royce - Thursday, Oct 17, 2002 at 00:00

Thursday, Oct 17, 2002 at 00:00
I think the animal behaviour answer to the danger is whether the crocs think you are food and worth a 'go'. If you look too big to handle, they shouldn't consider you a target. If you hang tasty bits over the side... LUNCH. It is always a risk. cheers Royce
AnswerID: 7557

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