Beginner's Catamaran Design

Discussion in 'Boat Design' started by Jacoby josh, Sep 12, 2017.

  1. Jacoby josh
    Joined: Sep 2017
    Posts: 1
    Likes: 0, Points: 1
    Location: Fl

    Jacoby josh New Member

    Hello all,

    I am new to the idea of sailing and I decided to build a small catamaran of around 16 feet long. I have not found many designs online, and I have drawn up some basic pictures of what I want in a boat. I was thinking of starting off with the plans that I have, and just learning as I go. I don't have too big of a budget, but I still think that I can get out on the water.
    I was thinking of having the two pontoons on the catamaran be the full 16 feet, with a deck of 10 feet and a main width of 8 feet. I then thought of a mast height of 24 feet, a boom length of 8 feet, and pontoons in the shape of a 75-75-30 triangle, that then tapered at the front of the boat. I wanted to make my own sail, and I was thinking that nylon would be a good material. All of this information has come from various other forums on the internet with reference to this boat size. Some questions that i have include :
    1. Is a nylon sail material a good idea?
    2. What should I make the mast out of that is light and strong?
    3. Will this thing float?
    4. Is this pontoon shape viable?
    5. What's the best way to waterproof it?
    6. How should the mast be attached to the boat?
    7. Should I add a jib to the boat to catch more wind? IMG_0893.JPG IMG_0894.JPG
    8. Are there any similar designs on the internet that will be better suited for this?
    I appreciate any help that I can get, because I think I'm going to need it :)
     
  2. JSL
    Joined: Nov 2012
    Posts: 508
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    Location: Delta BC

    JSL Senior Member

    1. Is a nylon sail material a good idea? no, use dacron
    2. What should I make the mast out of that is light and strong? aluminum buy off the shelf
    3. Will this thing float? perhaps- who knows! do a weight estimate and a volume of hull estimate, & determine where it will float
    4. Is this pontoon shape viable? perhaps... but check it out. See where it will float (see 3) & oyu have enough freeboard
    5. What's the best way to waterproof it? use epoxy
    6. How should the mast be attached to the boat? on a cross beam... along with stays and shrouds
    7. Should I add a jib to the boat to catch more wind? work out your sail area ratio to displacement, wetted surface, etc. and your 'lead' for sail balance.
     
  3. upchurchmr
    Joined: Feb 2011
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    Location: Ft. Worth, Tx, USA

    upchurchmr Senior Member

    1. Dacron
    2. Carbon fiber/ epoxy - you didn't talk about the cost. If you want it cheaper use aluminum - even better, get a mast off an old Hobie 16, lots available for $200. Even cheaper - wood, but it will be heavier.
    3. Anything can float. That doesn't mean it will be worth anything.
    4. It is almost the worst shape you can make. Go look at some real boats.
    5. Waterproof? What are you making it out of? If it is aluminum it is already waterproof.
    6. Go look at a Hobie, Nacra, Prindle, Tornado ( not many available) or just Google catamaran sailboat and look at the pictures of small boats.
    7. Of course, very few catamarans don't have a jib.
    8. See #6.

    You are just asking for brutal answers with those questions. Do some research first. Do you know how to sail? I bet not. Get a book.
    Also Google catamaran sailboat plans. Don't waste your money on trying to reinvent everything yourself.

    Sailing Catamarans - Quattro 16ft twin trapeze beach catamaran http://www.sailingcatamarans.com/index.php/designs-2/46-beach-cats-and-dinghies/7-quattro-16
     
  4. Waterwitch
    Joined: Oct 2012
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    Location: North East USA

    Waterwitch Junior Member

  5. Ilan Voyager
    Joined: May 2004
    Posts: 1,086
    Likes: 62, Points: 48, Legacy Rep: 758
    Location: Cancun Mexico

    Ilan Voyager Senior Member

    It's not worth to design and build a 16 feet beach catamaran. There plenty used at a fraction of the cost of an amateur building.
    Think over this fact. Trying to reinvent and to make something already done ny thousands, rather cheap and ordinary is not worth. It's like spending hours to design and build an ordinary steel bicycle you can find for less than 100 bucks.
    Design is an art and technique; without knowledge you cannot get results.
    First learn to sail, practise a lot. Acquire knowledge both practical and theoretical.
    After that, look for an interesting project, worth of the efforts of the design, the work of building it, and the money spent on.
    In this moment you're wasting your time as you won't go anywhere, nor get any valuable result.
     
  6. kerosene
    Joined: Jul 2006
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    Location: finland

    kerosene Senior Member

    I have to reply because of my signature...

    But yeah, as unexciting as Ilan's message is, he is right.
     
  7. messabout
    Joined: Jan 2006
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    Location: Lakeland Fl USA

    messabout Senior Member

    JJ please do yourself a favor and get together with someone who has a sailboat. Any small sailboat, not just a catamaran. The idea is to sail a little bit and learn a little bit about how the boat works. Only then will you have enough knowledge to know whether you really want to be involved in sailing.

    Almost all of us here will encourage you to become a sailor. If you are serious about this you can get plenty of sound advice and help at this forum.

    You live in Florida. If you are anywhere near Lakeland, I might volunteer some time in a sailboat with you...... If and only if you are really serious. If you live farther away, do investigate the local scene to find people with sailboats. They often need a crew, and will even welcome a newbie. Bottom line here....get some experience before you start buying or building a sailboat.
     

  8. upchurchmr
    Joined: Feb 2011
    Posts: 2,514
    Likes: 45, Points: 48, Legacy Rep: 579
    Location: Ft. Worth, Tx, USA

    upchurchmr Senior Member

    The best advice you will ever get.
     
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