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Old 18 January 2009, 15:29   #1
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Babies and RIBS...do they go together?

My daughter will be 6+ months old this summer and we'd really like to get back out on our Zar Well Deck as a family asap, however, we're not sure if this is perhaps a bit too young for her to be hooning around the Solent?

Has anyone got any experience of taking babies out on RIBS and if so what sort of safety equipment do you recommend?
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Old 18 January 2009, 15:51   #2
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Now this is only my own opinion.
I would never take a baby out on any boat specially not an open boat.
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Old 18 January 2009, 15:53   #3
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In my opinion they are not a great combo! The challenges are:

1. Keeping them warm. Even with a toddler this is hard enough. Not sure which Zar model you have but if it has good shelter might be better. If you do go out keep aware that s/he will be colder than you - so keep checking, and have a plan for getting ashore and warm ASAP (might be easier in the solent).

2. Shock mitigation and weak neck muscles. I wouldn't take a baby out until they could support their own head and preferably sit up properly by themselves, unless I could be absolutely sure there would be no jarring e.g. flat calm and displacement speeds. Probably similar to going in a seat on the back of a bike.

3. Seating and lifejackets etc... Some people here have suggested putting kids in car seats. With babies that is probably the only practical solution - but no life jacket is going to work properly inside a car seat. So you need some sort of plan... ...to be honest if s/he ends up in the water chances will be very low anyway, so I do support the idea of car seat to make the chance of that happening very small.

4. Engine / wind noise / boredom depending on the child... and how you keep them happy. If he/she screams is that going to ruin a day our (or force you to turn back). On a more positive note my son will fall asleep (at age 4) with the white noise from the engine.

Genuine ribbing and babies don't mix well - but pottering round the harbour might be OK so long as its thought out and you can be flexible enough to change plans/adapt if not happy.
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Old 18 January 2009, 16:26   #4
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http://www.lifejackets.co.uk/Baby_li...for_babies.htm

We plan to take our newest, and a 4 year old, out this spring. You can source life jackets from either the above or Plastimo -
http://www.marinemegastore.com/categ...-SAFLIF004.htm

We are only going to go for a poddle around the harbour because as others have said it could go wrong.

However if the day is good, a little trip - at slow speed - will be fun


Andy
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Old 18 January 2009, 16:37   #5
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We took our youngest daughter out at 6 months, however it was a glorious day, sheltered sea loch in favourable conditions. She was in a baby car seat so her head was cushioned.

Trip was only 15 minutes and was effectively a taxi service to a secluded beach at a minimum rate of knots. Wouldn't even think about anything longer, as sea conditions can change rapidly. Must admit my wife was happier when we were back at the pier.
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Old 18 January 2009, 16:52   #6
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Wow, thanks for the prompt responses. NB: I was joking about "hooning around the solent". A pootle will be far more likely.

At 6+months she'll definitely be supporting her own head/sitting up but valid point on neck jarring etc as that can happen to any of us. But as I said, not planning on jumping any waves or doing what you call "genuine ribbing", Polwart.

Have looked online at lifejackets and they certainly make them for as young as 3 months!

Had been thinking whether I could have her strapped to me in a babybjorn/sling with lifejacket on too as that would support her head more but then not sure if that's considered more dangerous if I were to go in too? (although that's unlikely at low speeds...not happened yet anyway?!)
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Old 18 January 2009, 17:11   #7
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Quote:
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But as I said, not planning on jumping any waves or doing what you call "genuine ribbing", Polwart.
yes but bear in mind that even on a flat calm day in the solent - a ship's wake will be significant bouncing.
Quote:
Had been thinking whether I could have her strapped to me in a babybjorn/sling with lifejacket on too as that would support her head more but then not sure if that's considered more dangerous if I were to go in too? (although that's unlikely at low speeds...not happened yet anyway?!)
I think the baby would be safest in a secure seat in one spot rather than strapped to a person who moves about and has the risk of slipping or tripping overboard. Then when you decide to move child in and out etc there is a definite decision to make that "manouvre" with the increased risk...

I am also not sure how a baby on your front would affect your angle of flotation if you did go in, nor if it might impede the firing process...
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Old 18 January 2009, 17:50   #8
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I am also not sure how a baby on your front would affect your angle of flotation if you did go in, nor if it might impede the firing process...
I don't thinkit would impede the firing process at all. It'd just off and hurt the baby! so any type of self inflating jacket is out. imho.

I don't go much for kids on ribs but if you have to do it then I would think the smoothest, sheltered water you'd get would be fareham creek, I think theres a slipway there near Fairweathers.

I
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Old 19 January 2009, 03:20   #9
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I started to take my son out at about 18 months and opted fort he car seat option.

Oscar

I don't think I would take out a 6month old regardless of the weather.
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Old 19 January 2009, 03:20   #10
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I guess taking a baby on rib is ok..BUT what happens if anything goes wrong?
Engine failure means hanging around for long periods of time,
Getting wet? not so good i would have thought,
ETC.
Well IMHO leave the baby with sitters and go have a blast, you probably deserve some time out..
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