Inflatable Amphibian Has Practical Applications - 12/10/2008

What our four fishing friends aground on Chandeleur Island needed was “Sealegs” -- an inflatable boat design that has been made in New Zealand for the last six years or so. They have found their way all over the world and are practical for many applications, particularly in areas where there is a huge tide drop. They are being marketed for recreational, commercial and rescue work and we can think of a number of times when we would have been glad to have had “Sealegs” as our tender.

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Called “Sealegs” and made in New Zealand this clever amphibian has lots of practical applications.

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Sealegs is designed to be launched from a beach or hard mud and is said to go as fast as 10 kph on land.

Sealegs amphibious boats can be driven in and out of the water on their own retractable, motorized wheels. The patented system consists of motorized, retractable and steerable wheels which are fitted onto specially designed Sealegs amphibious boats. These powerful motorized wheels give the user variable speeds of 0-10 kph (forward and reverse) powered by an onboard 16-hp Honda-driven hydraulic system.

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If you have a house in Stiltsville, Miami or in the Bay Islands, Sealegs would come in handy.

The Sealegs system allows the boat to be driven from a storage location, down a boat ramp or beach and into the water - all with the occupants staying in the boat and remaining dry and safe. Once in the water, the Sealegs wheels are easily retracted into the "UP" position. The boat is then driven and used as normal at speeds up to 35 knots. When approaching land, the Sealegs wheels are lowered into the "DOWN" position whilst still in the water.

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If you live in Blue Hill, ME, Truro, Nova Scotia, in Alaska, or on Mont Saint-Michel, Normandy
you could put Sealegs to good use every day.

Sealegs currently produces two models of boat – 6.1 metre Rib (rigid inflatable model for the leisure market) and a 6.1 metre D-Tube (aluminum hull aimed at industrial and fishing markets). Fabrication of the hull is subcontracted out and the boats are assembled on site at the Sealegs facility in New Zealand.

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The way this megayacht is riding in the water she looks as if she could use some sealegs herself.

In 2005, Sealegs broke the record for the fastest crossing of the English Channel in an amphibious vehicle, making the England to France trip in just 43 minutes and 12 seconds.

For more information, visit the Sealegs website --