The Nordik dinghy from Costco

A no-brainer dinghy decision

the old west marine red dinghy The old West Marine red Hypalon dinghy in 2004

I was really tired of messing with the old red Hypalon dinghy. The bottom leaked, it was very heavy, and the black knobs on the side marked up the side of Reality Check like crazy. We'd tried to repair the bottom years before with some rubberized and expensive inflatable bottom paint. That sort of worked one season, but the bottom was too far gone. We could use the dinghy but you were definitely going to get your feet wet!

One day in 2008 I saw the Nordik dinghy at our local Costco - at $699 and 9'7" this was a GREAT buy! We needed a dinghy that was over 9 feet for two important reasons:

  1. Our Nissan 5HP outboard was heavy - an inflatable had to be big enough to handle the outboard without sinking the dinghy
  2. We need to transport our bikes on and off the boat
the new Nordik AD300 dinghy in 2008 The new Nordik AD300 dinghy - 2008
the Nordik dinghy on the foredeck The Nordik dinghy on the fordeck for a Catalina trip in 2011

A great buy in a dinghy

This Nordik air deck dinghy is fantastic! It came with a huge dinghy storage bag. Handling it is a breeze for the two of us. It weighs about 80 pounds - we walk the dinghy in the bag onto the boat from the dock and inflate it on the foredeck for a Catalina trip. When we're at our destination (Avalon!) we just pick the dinghy up and throw it over the side.

What NOT to do with a dinghy

The Nordik is PVC and I was well aware that this material in a dinghy wasn't as tough at Hypalon. But at the Costco price it's worth it, besides after years of misusing the old dinghy I wasn't going to make these mistakes again:

  • leaving the dinghy in the water when not in use is NOT good. Amazing how quick barnacles form when left in the ocean
  • leaving the dinghy in the sun without a cover
  • cleaning the dinghy bottom with ANYTHING other than plain old dish detergent as recommended in the instructions
the dinghy on the boat in 2011 The dinghy on a trip

Towing the dinghy, lifting the dinghy

A couple of nifty accessories for the dinghy -

  • C-Level Dinghy Towing Bridle (
  • C-Level Universal Dinghy lift
    • This works great for lifting the dinghy from the water onto the foredeck. The instructions were a bit mystifying the first time but after that a piece of cake.

Storing the dinghy

I never take the air deck out of the dinghy. When we're done with it for the season it gets a bath, air dried, deflated, rolled up and put in the bag. I've stored the dinghy down below in the back berth, but it's easier to just take it home when we're not using it. Love that dinghy.

The Nordik AD 300 Dinghy manuals

The Nordik label sold through Costco is the SilverMarine Nemo AD300

Nordik AD 300 Dinghy Owners manual

Silver Marine AD 300 Dinghy Data Sheet

The Nordik dinghy sold through Costco doesn't come with a cover, got mine for $100 at


Universal M25 Diesel

Heat Exchanger

Engine Compartment Insulation / Soundproofing

Anchor Locker





Bimini for the Boat



Edson Pedestal Controls