Floating duck house

Discussion in 'Boatbuilding' started by Wilber256, Feb 2, 2018.

  1. Wilber256
    Joined: Feb 2018
    Posts: 14
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    Location: Northeast MS.

    Wilber256 Junior Member

    Hello everyone,
    Thanks for allowing me in your group. First, I know nothing about boats except they are expensive and fun to ride. But I felt like this is the place for help/suggest/recommend ideas.

    I have a project that I hope someone with their knowledge of buoyancy can help.
    I am building a floating duck house for our ducks to have a safer place to sleep and a safer place to lay and sit on their eggs.

    I plan on a 4ft x 8 ft treated plywood platform Sitting on two 40 in. X 48. in. Plastic pallets joined together to make a 40 in. X 8 ft. Base
    The pallets have top and bottom just like wooden ones do. I have made a 3 in thin wall PVC 6ft x 2ft rectangle to fit in/under the plastic pallets to float the thing.

    First I have two questions.
    1. How much weight can the 3 in. thin wall 6ft x 2ft PVC pipe float?
    2. Same question but with 20 psi of air inside?
    I have made arrangements for a port to add air, but thin wall (sewer & drain) is not designed for pressure but I believe it will hold 20-30 psi.

    I tested it with 30 psi but had had two leaks from bad sealing on two 90 ells.
    Very, very difficult to clean and glue inside the pallet, can't get to the side against the pallet.
    I can take photos of the semi construction if need be.
    Thanks so much for your help!
     
  2. fallguy
    Joined: Dec 2016
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    Location: usa

    fallguy Senior Member

    Skip the compressed air. You need to design for regular air. You want to kill the poor beasts for a leak?

    Plastic pallets?

    Why wouldn’t you start with something that floats like wood?

    Not a fan of the plan because you are not designing for failure. Floating the thing on logs would be safer.
     
  3. Wilber256
    Joined: Feb 2018
    Posts: 14
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    Location: Northeast MS.

    Wilber256 Junior Member

    Fallguy,
    Thanks for the reply. I have build one on wooden pallets with all the swimming noodles packed under it that would fit.
    The pallets and plywood I used were treated with a gallon on Thompson water seal prior to launch.

    The wood eventually waterlogged and the noodles did too, I have rung water out of them like a rag. They eventually saturate with water and allow it to barely float.
    When a duck would get on to eat the thing would sink enough that water would be under and around the ducks feet.
    Even worse the water would saturate their bedding making it so the ducks quit using it.

    This is why I am going to try the plastic and pvc pipes. Any suggestions on other cheap way to build one?
    I am a disabled senior surviving on a small limited income and can't afford to invest very much.
    Thanks
    wilber256
     
  4. fallguy
    Joined: Dec 2016
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    Location: usa

    fallguy Senior Member

    Thompsons water seal just made them heavier. It didn’t keep water out.

    Skip styrofoam.

    Barrels would be best.
     
  5. Wilber256
    Joined: Feb 2018
    Posts: 14
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    Location: Northeast MS.

    Wilber256 Junior Member

    Thanks Fallguy,

    The fish will nibble at the styro. until it's all gone, I have had them eat anything that I put under the first one that they could get there mouth on. I have several plastic 15 gal barrels, problem being is the thing has to be low enough for the little ducklings to get on when mom does. They can't jump out of the water. I suppose I could fill the barrels with water and submerge them so to be low enough, but as the ducks grow the lower the platform goes. I also have a recessed inlet in the ponds edge to pull the house in to dock it to collect eggs check on ducks inside their house and replace old soiled bedding. Water is only 12-15 in. Deep when the pond is at full level. Done this way in case Grandchildren fall in it's not to deep. I have started to fence around it but I work 5min. And rest 30 min. I need to post some pics so you can see what's going on.
     
  6. Blueknarr
    Joined: Aug 2017
    Posts: 127
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    Location: Colorado

    Blueknarr Senior Member

    I would use one gallon paint cans. Most paint contractors have a plentiful supply for free. Each bairly floats eight pounds with no safety factor. Calculating as five each should float at comfortable height. Concentrating flotation at one end of platform would allow the other end to droop closer to the water. A very generous dollop of construction adhesion should hold them in place for your purpose. No kids nessicary if installed open end down. Easy to refill with air when pulled to shore.
     
  7. Wilber256
    Joined: Feb 2018
    Posts: 14
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    Location: Northeast MS.

    Wilber256 Junior Member

    Thanks Bluekarr, I don't quite follow what you are saying. are you saying to glue paint cans without lids bottom side up to the plywood so that the open end faces down? Then somehow add air to the paint cans to reach the level needed? I wonder how long metal paint cans will last under water?
     
  8. Blueknarr
    Joined: Aug 2017
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    Location: Colorado

    Blueknarr Senior Member

     
  9. fallguy
    Joined: Dec 2016
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    Location: usa

    fallguy Senior Member

    Use the plastic barrels. Fill em half full or so. Glue the platform to the top of them with outdoor adhesive polyurethane in a tube. Lay the plywood down and glue the barrels to it and let sit for a few days. Then flip and build the houses and make a ramp that goes down into the water a bit with some treated ply say a footbwide. If it gets too slippery for the little quackers; you can put galvanized hardware cloth on it right off.
     
  10. Wilber256
    Joined: Feb 2018
    Posts: 14
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    Location: Northeast MS.

    Wilber256 Junior Member

    Got it Blueknarr, Thanks, what do you think about leaving the lids on and sealing the top with silicon? That way there is nothing but air inside.
     
  11. Wilber256
    Joined: Feb 2018
    Posts: 14
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    Location: Northeast MS.

    Wilber256 Junior Member

    Thanks Fallguy, Only problem is there is only 52 in. X 98 in. in the dock area so the ladder going into the water will make it too wide. Also the dock/pit area has a up and down gate that will allow me to feed my catfish in it and drop the gate while they are feeding and take a dip net, supper. Tomorrow I will take a couple of pics of duck dock and the floor layout of the new house. I really should have made it narrower than 48 in. But that saved a rip and my old aching back. As is it will have 4 rooms with 6in. porch on either side.
     
  12. Blueknarr
    Joined: Aug 2017
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    Location: Colorado

    Blueknarr Senior Member

     
  13. Wilber256
    Joined: Feb 2018
    Posts: 14
    Likes: 0, Points: 1
    Location: Northeast MS.

    Wilber256 Junior Member

    Blueknarr, you don't think they would hold more air and greater lift than unsealed? I wonder how many I would need? 4ft x 8 ft plywood with houses on top topped off with another 4x8 plywood. All plywood is 3/8"
     
  14. rwatson
    Joined: Aug 2007
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    Location: Tasmania,Australia

    rwatson Senior Member

    Just skipped through the thread here, but I think I see the problems.

    May I suggest as a free, non-degradable, duck and fish safe solution, PET fruit juice or soft drink containers with the lids screwed on.

    Keep them together with fishnet, tacked under the wooden pallets.

    Each 1 litre bottle displaces 1 kilo of water, so 500 bottles would support half a ton.

    You could take it to the extreme like this guy.

     
    jorgepease likes this.

  15. Blueknarr
    Joined: Aug 2017
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    Location: Colorado

    Blueknarr Senior Member

     
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