Engineer with No Boat Design Experience

Discussion in 'Multihulls' started by Patrick345, Feb 18, 2018.

  1. Patrick345
    Joined: Feb 2018
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    Location: Massachusetts

    Patrick345 New Member

    Hello!

    I am a mechanical engineer who has spent most of my career in the healthcare industry. I'm interested in learning about boat design, specifically catamarans, and I would love to hear what books people recommend. It seems like Principles of Yacht Design by Lars Larssen et al. and Understanding Boat Design by Ted Brewer are great places to start, but I have heard that they make assumptions that are incorrect for multihulls. Any thoughts on this?

    Other than books, have you found anything helpful? (Besides this forum of course).

    I would like to make a hobby out of designing a boat and daydreaming that I will build her "one day". My initial thoughts were to revisit my stress analysis and computational fluid dynamics textbooks, but I would guess there is a better starting point.

    Thank you very much for any guidance you wish to share!

    Best,

    Patrick
     
  2. Ad Hoc
    Joined: Oct 2008
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    Ad Hoc Naval Architect

    Hi patrick

    Welcome to the forum.

    What in particular would you like to know/learn about catamarans. Are you more interested in related subjects alone...such as stress analysis, or hydrodynamics...or...more holicatsally, in terms of the whole design as one, rather than any individual subject per se.
     
  3. Patrick345
    Joined: Feb 2018
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    Location: Massachusetts

    Patrick345 New Member

    Hello Ad Hoc and thank you for your response!

    At this point, I think a holistic survey of catamaran design would be a good starting point and then I can drill deeper into certain areas. My main questions at the moment are: 1) once the outermost layer is defined, how are the inner portions of the boat constructed? (I have a decent idea of fluids and stress but almost no concept of architecture 2) what are the ratios/functions/metrics/shapes that people find critical?

    I could be so new to this topic that my answer isn't very helpful. If so, I apologize.

    Thanks,

    Patrick
     
  4. Ad Hoc
    Joined: Oct 2008
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    Ad Hoc Naval Architect

    Patrick

    Ok..i see where you are at. In that case, forget a catamaran and all those bits for now, you need to understand how a boat is designed, what are the procedures and methods used and how they link and relate to each other. No point focusing on the strength of the doors handle, if there is no door or boat the begin with!

    So, i'd recommend you read Teach Yourself Naval Architecture by Brain Baxter:
    https://www.amazon.co.uk/Naval-Architecture-Teach-Yourself-Baxter/dp/0340056673

    There is an update version of this now. Some website even offer free pdf download?

    Also i'd recommend Introduction to Naval Architecture, by E.Tupper.
    https://www.amazon.com/Introduction-Naval-Architecture-Fifth-Tupper/dp/0080982379

    Both these books address the basics of how all the elements of a boat are put together. Once you have understood and grasped the concepts required, the rest is just research on the topic at hand. Since one doesn't need to learn how to design a catamaran, one needs to learn how to design a boat. Once this is known, one has the tools/skill set to then forge on to design catamaran or trimaran or anything else, by being methodological and logical.
     
  5. Richard Woods
    Joined: Jun 2006
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    Richard Woods Woods Designs

    Ad Hoc is a very experienced multihull naval architect so always pay attention to what he says

    Rolf's PYD book is the new "bible" for yacht design. Most of the multihull books are written by authors with either limited experience or with commercial bias. try Chris Whites book for a good starter, although it is dated and the author conclusion for the ideal cruising boat is not what most consider the norm

    You would probably also find it extremely useful to sail as many catamarans as possible. In part to see how others solve problems, in part to see what aspects you yourself want.
    Sailing Catamarans - It's Not Rocket Science http://sailingcatamarans.com/index.php/faqs/15-general-questions/80-rocket-science

    Richard Woods of Woods Designs
    www.sailingcatamarans.com
     
  6. Patrick345
    Joined: Feb 2018
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    Patrick345 New Member

    I was able to find a 1976 copy of Teach Yourself Naval Architecture in decent shape, so that's very exciting. I also took a look at Chris White's The Cruising Multihull and I may buy that in the future.

    Ad Hoc, have you read "Basic Ship Theory" by E.C. Tupper and K.J. Rawson? I'm confused as to the difference between this text and "Introduction to Naval Architecture". Is one more comprehensive than the other and therefore only one is necessary or do they cover different subject areas?

    Thanks, Patrick
     
  7. Ad Hoc
    Joined: Oct 2008
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    Ad Hoc Naval Architect

    Oh goodie. It is very simple and straight fwd..nothing over the top..but a very good intro to what basic tools you'll need to know when designing a boat.

    Yes I have and i still have both on my bookshelf.
    Intro...is...more of an 'easy' read and has the concepts dumbed down and explained in a little more depth.
    Basic...is assuming a higher level of understanding and is more succinct. It was our first book to buy at Uni.

    It is why i suggested Intro...as it goes into a bit more depth on an easier level of understanding than Basic.
     

  8. Patrick345
    Joined: Feb 2018
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    Location: Massachusetts

    Patrick345 New Member

    Thank you very much. This has been very helpful and I’m very excited to start learning!
     
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