Barge/carolina skiff bottom, on a ocean going sailing vessel...is it practical?

Discussion in 'Boat Design' started by CaptJamesOBX, Jul 30, 2019.

  1. CaptJamesOBX
    Joined: Jul 2019
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    CaptJamesOBX Junior Member

    I will look into them..thats probably a good analogy..I know they were sloppy, I wonder if it was narrow beam that added to or caused the majority of that Ill check it out.
     
  2. Mr Efficiency
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    Mr Efficiency Senior Member

    Those boats were not overly beamy, but beam means resistance.
     
  3. bajansailor
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    bajansailor Marine Surveyor

    If it is a choice between a catamaran shaped hull form, or a barge, then it is a no-brainer - the cat should be the choice.
    You are worried about the dog having to negotiate different levels, but cats usually have the cockpit and bridgedeck cabin on one level, so no worries there. Or does the dog have to be able to get access down into the hulls as well?
    In fact, it would probably be a lot easier, cheaper and quicker in the long run to simply purchase a Prout cat and re-fit it to suit your intended cruising instead of building your barge - and the Prout cat will be much more seaworthy. A barge shaped hull say 40' x 16' is going to have a lot of form drag - sure it will sail down wind but any course closer to the wind than a beam reach is not going to be much fun (and probably not very viable either - bricks don't go to windward very well).
     
  4. CaptJamesOBX
    Joined: Jul 2019
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    CaptJamesOBX Junior Member

    I know there are some major downsides to that hull shape, but ever hullshape is a compromise of some sort. It would only be sailed downwind, any other time it would be under power. The original goal was to build a houseboat that could cruise the ICW under power, then I though, why not add some sails so it can cross the Atlantic with the trade winds...the interior space of the barge hull shape is what I like, Just being wide open inside, being able to walk from one side to the other without going up and down.I can build the hull and topsides for 10k using juniper and glass. And I dont have that much, but I can spend a little a month and have it done in a couple months. I wouldnt be able to afford a cat hull, and dont like the small nacelles. I could build bigger nacells, and make a cat hull I suppose, but Id like to think this idea thru completely before I give up on it. It would be just so easy and cheap and roomy. And just a great platform to live on and cruise slowly coastal, with just a couple hops across the ocean to get to some different continents. At which point, just cruise coastal again, mostly under power.
     
  5. bajansailor
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    bajansailor Marine Surveyor

    "then I thought, why not add some sails so it can cross the Atlantic with the trade winds..."

    One slight problem here is that the you are already on the down wind side of the Atlantic trade winds - and if you are thinking of sailing from North Carolina to Europe, perhaps via Bermuda and the Azores, the winds are anything but trades in terms of reliability.
    Even if you shipped the barge to the Canaries, the winds should be mostly behind you the whole way to the Caribbean, but there is still a possibility of head winds on this route.

    "I can build the hull and topsides for 10k using juniper and glass"

    Building a 40' x 16' barge shaped hull for US$ 10,000? That sounds VERY optimistic.
    What about the additional cost of the two inboard diesel engines, the rig and sails, and all of the outfit equipment?
    By the time you add up estimated costs for all these I am sure you will find that it will be a lot more than the cost of buying a second hand cat that is in sail away condition. And the cat will be a heck of a lot more seaworthy than your barge.

    "And just a great platform to live on and cruise slowly coastal, with just a couple hops across the ocean to get to some different continents"

    When you were towing barges across the oceans, did you not ever experience head winds or gales?
    I have been in a Force 10 / 11 storm in the North Atlantic which was no fun at all. And even trying to make headway to windward in the tropics in boisterous tradewind conditions (Force 6 / 7 apparent wind) is hard work even for a vessel that can sail well, never mind something that is shaped like a brick (albeit with scow shaped ends perhaps).
     
  6. CaptJamesOBX
    Joined: Jul 2019
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    CaptJamesOBX Junior Member

    Excuse me , Wind on the transom, whatever it may be called, wherever you are. Westerlies going to Europe, trades coming back etc etc..
    I said hull only, not engines and so on, of course thats going to cost more.But just the hull, juniper and glass 10k, no problem. A second hand cat is still a cat , and I dont care for them for the reasons I stated a couple times before.
    Ive experienced all kinds of storms, once we went thru two typhoons off the coast of Japan, or they went through us, took two weeks to get clear, that was lousy, in any boat. In a boat like I am describing I think running a drogue off the bow would be your only recourse, which would be the same storm plan for alot of vessels. you cant have calm weather always, the wind cant always blow the direction you want, and you can always change course to suit the conditions, or use power during those times..as Im not commercial, I dont need to be anywhere in particular at any time.
     
  7. KJL38
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    KJL38 Junior Member

  8. CaptJamesOBX
    Joined: Jul 2019
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    CaptJamesOBX Junior Member

    So I just came home from my boat building buddy's house, said it would be horrible, run too much air under the hull, and be terrible for offshore. He said just build the houseboat with a barge bottom, and if I want to cross oceans, wait till the dog passes and get another bluewater boat (I had a Alberg 35 which was perfect for me, too small for the dog) I can still run down the Caribbean and cross over to south america in the barge houseboat. Or run the coast of Mexico to get there. He also said, and I agree, building a cat hull is like building two boats then something to attach them together, way to much work. And I dont like cats that are out there now, so Ill stick with a coastal boat and buy a bluewater to sit in the shop and slowly get refit for when Im ready to go. Ill run a 6-71 natural , have a keel to protect the prop. and a keel hung rudder. I have looked at that blog about the sailing houseboat...and yes they havent built it yet. The owner says he has spend years developing it, fancy software and a panel of experts to come up with the design, but they dont have plans for sale yet, and I wouldnt want to be the first one to build one.
     
  9. gonzo
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    gonzo Senior Member

    A box can survive a hurricane. However, most boats sink not because of the hull shape, but due to a structural failure or water getting in through openings and swamping it. Barges have been towed across oceans for a very long time; even in rough weather. However, they usually have watertight hatches. Houseboats have tall superstructures that will likely break and let water in to swamp it during a storm.
     

  10. JosephT
    Joined: Jun 2009
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    JosephT Senior Member

    Regardless of your boat, be very careful on your choice of destinations. There are bandits along the Central & South American coast that will rob and/or kill you for your boat & anything on it. Stick with sailing the Caribbean and choose your ports wisely. Pirates/banids do exist today and they are using clever tools to track and ambush naive sailors. Bookmark the link below & read up on the US State Department & other country travel security bulletins & reports.

    CSSN - Caribbean Safety and Security Net - Crimes Against Yachts https://safetyandsecuritynet.org/
     
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