40 ft fibreglass boat build

Discussion in 'Fiberglass and Composite Boat Building' started by gages, Sep 3, 2021.

  1. gages
    Joined: Jun 2008
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    Location: australia

    gages Junior Member

    To my surprise I have the opportunity to take ownership of a 40 ft mono hull fibreglass mould to make my own yacht .
    It’s a well known design from NZ and the business went flop here in Australia, the owner has to be out of his property and needs to offload the moulds in a hurry , his loss my gain I suppose



    I have over 20 years fibreglass experience but never actually built a yacht this big !! Always kayaks in my business and repairs etc .

    maybe some of you can help me answer these questions I have about the process

    1. can this be done outside under suitable cover as at 40plus feet I don’t have a shed big enough but I do have the outdoor space

    2. Will I be saving $$$ by doing this all by my self over buying and refitting another boat ?

    3. I’ll be hand laying this up , can it be done in smaller sections rather than huge big areas at once ?

    4. Any one point me in the direction of a blog or any information where I can read watch a build process ?

    5.am I mad to take on such a project??? , any advice , always been a dream to sail oceans and the chance to build my own over a few years with all new parts seems like a good idea but I would love to hear some advice from you more experienced people ?

    thanks
     
  2. kapnD
    Joined: Jan 2003
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    Location: hawaii, usa

    kapnD Senior Member

    Laying up a 40’ hull by hand is a real challenge! Sure, it can be done, but I would advise a resin gun at least, and a well trained crew.
    All material must be pre cut, labeled, and stacked in order of use.
    Think I’d gelcoat and skin one day, and layup the next, best if layup is continuous.
    What type of resin and fabrics will you use?
     
  3. gages
    Joined: Jun 2008
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    Location: australia

    gages Junior Member

    I’m the sole worker for n this project.


    I’m going to be using vinyl ester resin and I’d like to incorporate Kevlar in the build process

    there is an approved layup schedule with the mould but I haven’t been fully through it yet ..

    just seeing if I’m mad or not !!
     
  4. bajansailor
    Joined: Oct 2007
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    Location: Barbados

    bajansailor Marine Surveyor

    Yes - but how cold does it get where you are in Oz?

    An emphatic NO!
    It will probably cost you a lot more.

    I am sure that there are many yachts for sale in Australia that are in need of a good re-fit, and hence have relatively low asking prices - have a trawl around the brokerage websites and see what comes up.
     
  5. gages
    Joined: Jun 2008
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    Location: australia

    gages Junior Member

    I’ve done the checking out not much around in the size I’d like
     
  6. gages
    Joined: Jun 2008
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    Location: australia

    gages Junior Member

    Days are ok to do glass work

    10/15 k for a half decent hull at the 40 foot mark , lots of 30 ft boats but I’d like a little more size
     
  7. wet feet
    Joined: Nov 2004
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    Location: East Anglia,England

    wet feet Senior Member

    Walk away from the project.It will take longer to complete a boat of this size than you would ever believe and cost many times more than you can imagine.If you live long enough to complete it,it will be worth less than the cost of materials and hardware.If you doubt me,just sit down with a piece of paper and list all the parts you have to get hold of and what they are likely to cost.Look at the total and then see what you could buy for the same amount-it might be a surprise.Don't forget to include crane hire as the deck moulding will need to be turned over and eventually lifted on to the hull.Some fairly comprehensive scaffolding will also be handy while you are fitting out and a decent amount of machinery for cutting wood and making brackets will come in handy.

    I could easily get hold of about 15 sets of unwanted boat moulds for the cost of hauling them away.The owners have concluded that there is no market for the boats and the cost of refurbishment is considerable.They are usually glad to have somebody relieve them of the headache of finding storage space and paying rent for it.The disposal costs also get passed on.In your case,it would be saving the guy a transport fee.If the boat in question has been the object of your dreams for a long time and this could be the only chance to own a dream vessel,maybe consider it but only after honestly assessing whether your family would support you in an endeavour lasting many years.I know a few daydreamers who wound up divorced,broke and boatless because they pushed their vision and their families in a direction that they had little interest in following.I hope I'm not shattering too many fond notions,but better before committing to a huge project than in the middle of it.
     
    bajansailor likes this.
  8. Mr Efficiency
    Joined: Oct 2010
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    Mr Efficiency Senior Member

    You are a fair chance of qualifying for a civilian bravery award if you proceed, the biggest problem I see ( apart from the economics of it) is that of interlaminar adhesion because it will be a very protracted lay-up.
     
    waikikin likes this.
  9. ondarvr
    Joined: Dec 2005
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    Location: Monroe WA

    ondarvr Senior Member

    As others have said, it will cost you far more to build one than to buy one in usable condition. If you love the design it may be possible for a boat builder in the area to build it for you. If you don't love the design then you can look for something else.

    Even if it took you 10 years to find a used boat of this size you would be on the water sooner than building a 40 footer by yourself on a tight budget.

    VE resin would be OK but not really needed, Kevlar would be a waste of money.
     
  10. bajansailor
    Joined: Oct 2007
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    Location: Barbados

    bajansailor Marine Surveyor

    To summarise, if you want to go boating, assess what your full budget estimation is for building this boat (ie the estimated amount, and then double it, or even triple it) and use this amount to purchase a nice boat that is ready to go.

    If you prefer boatbuilding to boating, then build yourself a boat - but be prepared for it to be very frustrating, as well as a lot of hard work and expense.
     
  11. kapnD
    Joined: Jan 2003
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    Location: hawaii, usa

    kapnD Senior Member

    The qualities of VE over polyester resin make it a no brainer for me. Never a worry about blisters, incredibly strong, and far less costly than epoxy, but only slightly more cost than polyester.
    Kevlar is likely wasted effort and expense, unless the boat has known high wear areas where it would be beneficial.
    Logistics of such a large project are bound to be costly, even access for hand layup is a huge problem, as the boats half beam width is much longer than a human arm, and close access is paramount to producing a good product.
    Splitting the mold down the keel would allow the work to be done in more manageable segments.
     
  12. fallguy
    Joined: Dec 2016
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    fallguy Senior Member

    Time budget 5 years under cover for one man. Probably 5000 hours is rock bottom workboat finishes. No cover is probably 7 years. So hard to deal with weather.

    Dollar budget lots of depends, but it is gonna cost well over 100k usd.

    Working alone on something so massive is going to be a lonely, dofficult affair. If you could add a helper or three; it would be far easier.

    There is usually one day a week where I really need a helper.

    Female mould will get wet in a hurry if you get rain.

    If you had a building and help and 50% free time; it'd be a lot more achievable..
     
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  13. KeithO
    Joined: Jul 2019
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    Location: Michigan

    KeithO Senior Member

    There are 2 books to recommend regarding one-off boatbuilding.

    George Buehler - backyard boat building
    Glen L - Fiberglass Boat building for Amateurs
    People have followed both of these authors and successfully built boats at home.

    You will need a shed, there is no way to get around it. There are gothic arch sheds that can be built like a greenhouse and are very inexpensive compared to the project. But you will need the project out of the weather for sure and some sort of temperature and humidity for laying up composites.

    I wont go into problems with getting your shed permitted, today this is one of the biggest challenges to doing anything except watching TV indoors... So be sure it is allowed in your neighborhood, or else move before you start it and pick your new property for the fact that your local govt does not interfere with you....

    If you really want to do it, you can. Of course most people will fail so to make it requires the grit to muscle through all the difficulties and plan things out in a sensible manner. From a work space, material, climate and state of the project point of view.
     

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  14. KeithO
    Joined: Jul 2019
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    Location: Michigan

    KeithO Senior Member

    Here ia a youtube video on building the gothic arch type shed/greenhouse
     

  15. Rumars
    Joined: Mar 2013
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    Rumars Senior Member

    1. Yes, if you have a stable weather window for laminating.
    2. That depends entirely on the local conditions and comparing apples to apples.
    3. Yes, you move around the hull laminating individual pieces of glass until the mold is covered, then you start over with the next layer. Just stay into the recommended resin bonding window and you will be fine.
    4. What aspects are you interested in exactly?
    5. Building and sailing are two different dreams, you can't sail while building. Don't confuse making a hull and deck with ending up with a usable boat. If you have a good mold the actual laminating might take a week, the fitout is way longer and more costly.
     
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