Barrel Rafting

Discussion in 'Boat Design' started by U.S.S. Guppy, Feb 10, 2007.

  1. U.S.S. Guppy
    Joined: Feb 2007
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    Location: Goodridge, Minnesota

    U.S.S. Guppy Kainz Racing #K2

    Hey,
    Last year me and a friend made a raft out of some old wooden fence posts and three 55 gallon barrels and named it the U.S.S. Minnow. This year we plan on making a new raft (unfortunately the U.S.S. Minnow burned in our CRP fire) this new raft is goin to be 14' or so by 7' or 8' using 4 or 6, 55 gallon barrels as pontoons. I need help finding out how to figure out the buoancy of the barrels and an idea on how or what i should make the deck out of. Any info on what i should do is needed.
    Thanx
    Cptn. Kainz
     
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  2. Quicksilver
    Joined: Dec 2006
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    Location: Cooperstown, NY

    Quicksilver Junior Member

    As I havent used my physics classes in years I'll try to explain this, but dont shoot me if I'm wrong :)

    a 55gallon drum should be able to stay buoyant up to 485 pounds roughly (1 gallon of water =8.3lbs), including the weight of the drum. Not to say you want to get anywhere near that weight, but hopefully that gives you a rough estimate.

    I would think you could use 2x4's to build the raft, like a deck on a house. The big thing here is calculating the total weight of the craft, with 6 barrels, the total weight of the raft shouldnt exceed 1200 pounds(including you your friends, supplies oars, beer and women) if you want it high out of the water. It could hold 2700 pounds but you be just barely floating.

    I guess a lot of this depends on how much those barrels weigh. You should look up dock building it's kind of what your doing. I would assume if you dont put a motor on it, you dont have to follow many rules. I could be wrong.
     
  3. U.S.S. Guppy
    Joined: Feb 2007
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    Location: Goodridge, Minnesota

    U.S.S. Guppy Kainz Racing #K2

    Quicksilver
    Thank you. The only problem i had with building it with wood was that the deck would get horribly heavy. But nevertheless it we will proceed. The other thing was that we needed a idea on how to attach the barrels to the platform. What is the Formula that u used for finding out the buoancy of the barrels?
     
  4. Quicksilver
    Joined: Dec 2006
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    Location: Cooperstown, NY

    Quicksilver Junior Member

    So since 1 gallon = 8.3lbs, and your barrels are 55gallons that means that it can hold up a max of 485lbs before sinking which is the weight of water that could occupy the volume of the barrel. 8.3x55

    Then its simple multiplication of the barrels.
    well if the barrels weighed 25lbs each and the deck weighed even 1000lbs you'd still have a maximum of 1500lbs to use after that(again not that youd want 1500lbs more). You almost want it heavy so it's more stable. I dont think the wood is a bad idea and I cant really think of anything nearly as cheap.
    Also I think you can use galvanized steel straps to attach the barrels.
     
  5. Poida
    Joined: Apr 2006
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    Location: Australia

    Poida Senior Member

    G'day Quicksilver, my calculator must be up the creek because when I multiply 8.3 X 55 I get 456.5 lbs. Don't forget youy also have to take off the weight of the drum + what you have calculated is having the drum fully submerged, so I would halve that weight.

    Regards
    Poida
     
  6. Quicksilver
    Joined: Dec 2006
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    Location: Cooperstown, NY

    Quicksilver Junior Member

    well fine I do have an ancient computer, it's a l'il slow sometimes. The other issue, maybe it's because I literally just woke up, but I was thinking, total weight including drums minus the buoyancy. I see your point though, he could have 100lb drums which would kind of make a difference. Honestly I hardly ever see wooden barrels, so I dont really have a clue what they weigh. I believe were tlaking the same numbers, besides my miss calculation, I just figured with the immense carry capacity of a drum, it wouldnt really make much of a difference until you knew roughly how much the deck would weigh.
     
  7. U.S.S. Guppy
    Joined: Feb 2007
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    Location: Goodridge, Minnesota

    U.S.S. Guppy Kainz Racing #K2

    Thanks. I will be usuing plastic barrels bec. they weigh less thus i can carry more wieght on my deck.
     
  8. mordacil
    Joined: Apr 2007
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    Location: Macon, GA

    mordacil Junior Member

    where do you find plastic barrels?
     
  9. U.S.S. Guppy
    Joined: Feb 2007
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    Location: Goodridge, Minnesota

    U.S.S. Guppy Kainz Racing #K2

    i bought mine from the arctic cat plant that is here in northern minnesota so idk where u would be able to find some. maybe a food plant or somthing.
     
  10. openboater
    Joined: Mar 2007
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    Location: central NYS

    openboater Junior Member

    look in the yellow pages under barrels or drums. we have a couple of wholeslers here in syracuse.

    Food grade plastic for dock floats, open top steel for burning barrel.

    that reminds me, time to replace the burning barrel.
     
  11. djwkd
    Joined: Jul 2006
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    Location: Newcastle-Upon-Tyne

    djwkd Senior Member

    could you post a pic of your original raft guppy????
     
  12. tadclown
    Joined: May 2007
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    Location: saint cloud

    tadclown New Member

    water logged boards

    having problems with wood soaking up water? try water proofing them, exterior sealer and and then a coat or two of exterior varnish should keep out the water and keep down the weight.
     

  13. nero
    Joined: Aug 2003
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    Location: Marseille, France / Illinois, US

    nero Senior Member

    Frame your deck with 1 by 8 or 1 by 10 inch stock. This is lighter for the strength. Keep your decking thickness as thin as possible. Add a pannel of 1/4 inch luan to the bottom side of the deck assembly. Use PU adhesive caulk and screws (predrill) to assemble with.

    Doing the above should end up with a lighter deck structure (holds more beer) If you weight a length of your building materials, then you could calculate the weight or the design.
     
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