This post is purely for posterity and insurance purposes. It may serve, however, as a useful post for any Tinker Traveller owner who is pondering the complexity of making a cover. For the uninitiated a Tinker Traveller triples up as a sailing dinghy and as a liferaft, though I’m not entirely convinced I’ll be stepping up into it should Esper kick the bucket at sea! With this in mind we had to create a cover that allowed for the rigging to be erected and, should that horrible moment happen, be able to fix the inflatable liferaft canopy.
Because our rigging is incomplete (the mast needs some repairs) we have been unable to actually test the practicality of the cover. Also one might question why one would want to cover a hypalon dinghy, but we don’t care really. Our Tinker was in such a state of disrepair that after Liz patched it up and we added the cover, it now looks great! It may also add a couple of years to its life too.
Of course we didn’t make the cover ourselves. I say ‘of course’ not because we are incapable of making a cover for it, but because we wanted to hand the initial design headache to someone else. That someone else was Captain Eddy and his upholstery team, Metin and Halil. Props go out to these two for coming up with a superb design and well made solution.
Hoisting Our Tinker Traveller
One thing we are trying to get into the habit of doing, though not always practical when returning to the boat late at night after a skinful, is to hoist the thing out of the water. We do so amidships, with fenders on both Esper and the dinghy, using two halywards. One connects to the painter and may be hoisted by hand. The other connects to a centrally located hoop in the dinghy. This takes all the weight. Pictures speak a thousand words so here’s our solution. We have since replaced the crappy white rope with smart red and shortened the bitter ends.