Boat Hull model materials

Discussion in 'Boat Design' started by KristyP, Jan 14, 2013.

  1. KristyP
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    KristyP New Member

    Hi, I'm a high school teacher in Brisbane Australia and I'm currently rewriting an assignment based around hull design. What I'm after is possible materials that are cheap and easy for high school students to manipulate to create a hull that is of their design. Currently we use a florists foam which is expensive and makes an incredible mess. The materials needs to be waterproof, because part of their assignment is testing their hull. Thanks so much for your help :) Kristy
     
  2. Landlubber
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    Landlubber Senior Member

    Surfboard foam is what we use, it is called polyureathane foam.
     
  3. michael pierzga
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    michael pierzga Senior Member

    Hmmm...foam is nice.

    After that a softwood with straight grain. Bass wood is often used. Cedar is good.

    Best to visit a model shop or lumberyard to see what local woods you have that are easy to work with .
     
  4. waikikin
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    waikikin Senior Member

    Jelutong is a timber used for models & pattern making, nice to shape, no idea of the cost & lots of years since I've used it. Jeff.
     
  5. Formshifter
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    Formshifter Senior Designer

    Try paper and resin works very fine

    they can actually get a boat from unrolled forms or better to say developable hull shape's and then glue it together, after glueing just apply resin or any other sealant and you can even fil the body with a foam
     
  6. midnitmike
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    midnitmike Senior Member

    While each of these ideas have merit I can't help but think of the mess they might generate when multiplied by the number of students. Perfoming a quick Google search on the subject brought up a number of options that might be better more suitable for the task.

    Small boats can be built from tin foil or milk cartons. Larger versions can be created using cardboard and duct tape. I found numerous U-Tube videos where the cardboard variety were then used in "races" in the local swimming pool adding to the potential learning possibilities.

    MM
     
  7. michael pierzga
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    michael pierzga Senior Member

    Hell...In an Amsterdam coffe shop I once saw a model canal barge made out of rolled joints.

    Perfect for HIGH school students..........................
     
  8. Formshifter
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    Formshifter Senior Designer

    duhhh ;-)
     
  9. michael pierzga
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    michael pierzga Senior Member

    And after the HIGH school students closely studied the joint barge, give each student a 25kg block of ice and a blow torch, them let them torch carve hulls from the ice block ?

    If they get the bow and stern mixed up, just give them a new block.
     
  10. midnitmike
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    midnitmike Senior Member

    You're no help at all this morning...lol.

    MM
     
  11. philSweet
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    philSweet Senior Member

    Kristy, can you tell us a little more about the project? Does the design phase involve any pattern making, or just sketching? How long do they have to construct the hull? Working in teams or solo? How big a model? Micheal's idea of ice carving has been used. So has carving blocks of soap. Wax works well, it is fairly expensive but can be reused over and over. You can even use thick jello. Shaping plaster is fairly quick and you can both add and subtract material, but rather messy.

    If you gave them gypsum wallboard and built the model up out of a few flat pieces and faired it with hot mud (15 minute mud), you could get a decent canoe body. Appendages would need to be applied separately.

    If you discover a nonmessy way to build a boat, please let us know.:p

    It would be nice for the kid's sake if there was some permanent tangible result of the project, so I don't really like the jello or soap ideas as much. Conventional casting where a wax mold is made from a carved plug and then a hull is produced from the mold is a very valuable technique to learn. Perhaps it puts too much emphasis on the technique and not enough on the creative side. But it does show kids that creativity is often rather constrained in the real world.
     
  12. alan white
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    alan white Senior Member

    Boat hulls are shaped within two groups or types. You may have seen how many boat hulls are actually made up from a few flat pieces (panels) similar to an unpeeled banana and others are rounded (in three dimensions).
    You would find it very easy to build the panel type. You would be building true boat shapes since the process is well recognized as an efficient way to make a hull.
    In that case, cardboard will work fine. Actually, this provides a different kind of challenge to the model builder. He or she will have to curve cardboard panels around sectional "molds" positioned at intervals along the length of the hull. Whether or not you yourself provide these sections is up to you. There are certainly enough plans out there that could be found that would already be the right scale to use directly without enlargement.
     
  13. michael pierzga
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    michael pierzga Senior Member

    I think some kinda foam is the best choice. Foam needs no tools. Easy to throw out if things get loopsided.

    A wood halfmodel needs a band saw, chisel, rasp, sand paper and a good workbench vise to hold it while you shape. A full woodmodel is even more complex.


    If this is a wood shop class, then go for it. If not some other material is called for.

    Hmmm.... stiff Paper and woodglue, cold molding over a stiff wire frame will work if the students are crafty

    Hmmm....Strip planked with shish kebab sticks might work.

    WINE CORKS !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    http://[​IMG]
     
  14. philSweet
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    philSweet Senior Member

    Paper mache and coat hangers. Good enough for king Tut's sarcophagus and Faberge eggs. And there was a commercial paper boat industry in the US that made canoes.

    from wiki - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Papier-mâché

    Paper boats

    One common item made in the 19th century in America was the paper canoe, most famously made by Waters & Sons of Troy, New York. The invention of the continuous sheet paper machine allows paper sheets to be made of any length, and this made an ideal material for building a seamless boat hull. The paper of the time was significantly stretchier than modern paper, especially when damp, and this was used to good effect in the manufacture of paper boats. A layer of thick, dampened paper was placed over a hull mold and tacked down at the edges. A layer of glue was added, allowed to dry, and sanded down. Additional layers of paper and glue could be added to achieve the desired thickness, and cloth could be added as well to provide additional strength and stiffness. The final product was trimmed, reinforced with wooden strips at the keel and gunwales to provide stiffness, and waterproofed. Paper racing shells were highly competitive during the late 19th century. Few examples of paper boats survived. One of the best known paper boats was the canoe, the "Maria Theresa," used by Nathaniel Holmes Bishop to travel from New York to Florida in 1874–1875. An account of his travels was published in the book "Voyage of the Paper Canoe."[6][7]



    ... And how big do the potatos get down there. The red river variety in North Dakota get plenty big to carve models out of.
     

  15. Formshifter
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    Formshifter Senior Designer

    paper it is
     
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