Inflatable boats have a number of advantages in comparison with other types of boats, and these advantages are not limited by boats’ structure or materials. They are:
- compactness and light weight;
- elasticity and resilience;
- mobility and great seakeeping abilities;
- high speed and carrying capacity;
- simplicity of repair and ability to be stored at home;
- affordable price;
- they are easy to care.
Inflatable boat can be folded for comfortable storage and transportation, when folded it takes up little space.
Line of isolated compartments in the hull of inflatable boat provides higher safety while boating, that is different from rigid boats.The structure of compartments allows to keep shape and carrying capacity even when one of them is damaged. If all the compartments of inflatable boat are damaged, that is almost impossible, boat still can stay afloat as air needs time and mechanical action to escape because of slight difference in compartments’ and atmospheric pressure. That is very valuable advantage of inflatable boats.
Inflatable boats manufactured according to all technical instruction are almost impossible to sink.
It is more difficult to damage inflatable boat than rigid boat due to elasticity and durability of materials used in manufacturing of inflatable boats.
If inflatable boat capsizes when underway (none of watercrafts is fully prevented from accidents or misuse), it is easy to put it afloat again because of its light weight and only little of water gets inside the boat.
Many owners of inflatable boats wonder what the real carrying capacity of their watercrafts is.
To say the truth, carrying capacity of inflatable boat is always little higher then it is specified by manufacturer in the Operating Manual. It mostly depends on boat’s structure and air volume in floatation chamber.
Structure of inflatable boats on the one hand provides more carrying capacity in comparison with rigid boats, but on the other hand it limits passenger capacity because inflatable boards take up some space in cockpit.
It is thought that inflatable boat can carry as much as one can put inside it. Even full of water, inflatable boat can carry determined in the Operating Manual weight.You may often see the photos of inflatable motor boat carrying minicar with two people inside and the draught of the boat is only half of its diameter.
When using a motor, inflatable boat gets additional advantages such as course-keeping ability, good behavior in a seaway, small swinging radius, slight inertia of movement and high speed. Even with low and middle powered motors inflatable boats can reach high speed.
Speed of the boats with engines of 2,2kW (3 h.p.) is 10 km/h.
Speed directly depends on the load of the boat, e.g. inflatable boat with engine of 1.6 kW ( 2.2h.p.) with two passengers on board can reach 6.8 km/h but with three passengers - 6.6 km/h. With middle powered motors inflatable boats are able to perform planning.
Inflatable STORM boat with «Parsun 9.8» engine and one passenger on board gains the speed up to 27 km/h but when carrying 250 kilos it reaches only 14 km/h. Inflatable boats with engines of 14.7-22 kW (20-30 h.p.) can develop 50 km/h speed. Boat STORM with «Mercury 15» engine and one passenger on board reaches 43 km/h. While the boat races inflatable boats with engines of 36.8 kW (50 h.p.) can reach speed up to 100 km/h.