need help building custom boat
i am 16 and new to boat building. i have several boats but never have tried to make one. i was just wondering if i could make the whole boat out of just fiberglass or if it was easier to build it out of wood then glass it. i also want to put a jetski motor in it. all the help or advice i can get will be greatly apreactiated.
Welcome to the wonderful world of building your own boat!
Before you go any further, please understand that a boat is far more dangerous than an automobile. Both can injure you if a mistake is made in design or construction; the difference is that in a boat such mistakes are more often fatal! There are no "shoulders" to pull onto and wait for help, and don't bother to try to "flag down" other passing boaters - they'll just smile and "wave back". And it's usually a long swim to shore (and no, you can't borrow my "walk on water" shoes - I loaned them out several years ago and they were never returned).
Having said that, building your own boat can be one of the most rewarding challenges in life.
Probably the easiest method of fabrication IMHO is to use plywood with fiberglass over. "Stitch and tape" is a good way to go, particularly for a first timer. This technique will result in a reasonably durable boat that will, with ordinary maintenance, last for several years (which probably won't be necessary as you'll probably want to start on "another" boat in less than a year).
As to designs, there are many websites that sell plans at reasonable prices. Glen-L Boats http://www.glen-l.com/ and "Dynamite" Payson http://www.instantboats.com/ come to mind. I'm sure others that respond to your request will have others. If not just enter "small boat designs" in Google.
The Gougeon Bros-West System have a number of publications on the use of their system for plywood/fiberglass boats. And check out your local library.
The very best of luck!
Construction technique depends on a few things:
1) Target Weight
2) Size and type
GRP is relatively easy, but it's very messy for a first-timer. In addition you need to build a mould, so unless it's a complex shape or you're doing a few hulls it's not really so beneficial. There are more complex (and preferable) composites but they have much the same downfalls first-time round.
If you have experience welding then Aluminium is a very good material. it it light, strong and quite quick to build.
Generally the easiest way in, as Artemis says is wood. I strongly advise that you build a model (say 36" long) to let you get to grips with the building techniques and make sure that the hull will actually go together like you think. This is not too hard for a hard-chine powerboat, but really take your time in the design stage.
My advice is to use 3D cad throughout the whole design and build. Find an old computer and printer, load the CAD software on that too then keep it in the build shed, networked to the main design machine (this will make life a bit quicker to reference any part of the diagram). I also suggest that you model every major structural component. That way it will fit together better. If you take a lot of time over the whole project you'll get a good end result. Remember that boats are not cheap, so it is essential to do a good job.
Open Source Marine Charting - openpilot.sourceforge.net
Open Source Vessel Dynamics opendynamics.engineering.selfip.org
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