High Density Plastic River Boat

Discussion in 'Boat Design' started by smalljawkilla, Nov 23, 2009.

  1. smalljawkilla
    Joined: Nov 2009
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    smalljawkilla New Member

    First let me say this is an awesome site!:)

    Myself and many in my circle of friends are diehard fans of the old Coleman Crawdad.....I think like 1998 and older.

    The problem is they don't produce them anymore. We got in a conversation about how great it would be to buy the mold, which I'm sure that

    A - they wouldn't sell it

    B - if they did, it would be outrageous

    We then shifted to building our own.

    I was hoping you folks may be able to shed a somewhat general light on what kind of expense we are looking at?

    We would want to build it similar, not exact of course....Just need someone to build the mold, then someone to inject them I guess?

    We could handle all the tubing and framework ourselves....

    What do you guys think?
     
  2. Chris Ostlind

    Chris Ostlind Previous Member

    With all the changes in the small boat industry since the onset of the current recession, it looks like that style of boat has been sold off to Pelican International as the Intruder Jonboat.

    http://www.directboats.com/20in12jonbo.html

    Pelican could be producing their own version of the design as an original, but it looks awfully similar.

    http://www.pelicansport.com/index.php?language=en&category=fishingboat&nauticalboat=fishingboat

    This boat is either rotomolded, or it is thermoformed. Rotomolding is the most expensive production tooling of the two, but it can be used for many more parts than can a thermoforming tool. The least expensive way into the business would be with a thermoformed boat, if it can be done to satisfactory strength requirements.

    A production rotomold tool will set you back about $2500 per linear foot, give or take, and that does not account for prototypes, design fees, a high temp prototype epoxy tool to test the final design, etc.

    Thermoforming will also get you for the design work, the tool cutting and a whole slew of prototypes until you get it ready to produce as a final boat.

    Then, of course, you need a marketing budget that will allow you to get the boat out in front of all the potential buyers, be they individuals, or retail companies.

    Cha-Ching.
     
  3. smalljawkilla
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    smalljawkilla New Member

    Yeah, Pelican makes a "new" crawdad.....twice as heavy as it is double hull ram-x....

    I'm talking about the older style, single hull, aluminum frame.....

    If you type "coleman crawdad" in google images, it is the first one that comes up.
     
  4. Chris Ostlind

    Chris Ostlind Previous Member

    Well, it would seem that you'd want to ask yourself why the first boat went away, even though it was backed by a very big time company, and the heavier version is now being produced by someone else.
     
  5. smalljawkilla
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    smalljawkilla New Member

    I'm sure the process would be the same I guess on either one...
     
  6. smalljawkilla
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    smalljawkilla New Member

    I've fished in both....the old one puts the new one to shame. I think it was like everything else...."let's make it better"....and by doing so, IMO, and many others, they have ruined it.

    This is the kind of boat that you want to be able to slide down a riverbank to put in, and pull it back up the bank to take out....weight is a factor. Double hull equals double weight.
     
  7. Chris Ostlind

    Chris Ostlind Previous Member

    It could also mean double+ durability. Not a small consideration for a regular guy on a fairly modest income.

    Like anything in boat design you have to give something, in order to get something. Engineers say, "there's no free lunch", but it's all the same. You need to carefully describe the design needs in order to decide just what materials and engineered properties are needed.

    Aluminum, wood cored laminate, plastic rotomold, dual wall plastic rotomold, thermoformed parts later joined, etc. One needs to carefully balance all the needs in order to arrive at a truly great final decision as to chosen materials.
     
  8. portacruise
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    portacruise Senior Member

    What do you like about the crawdad that can't be done better by other designs? IMHO there are many more efficient, lightweight options that can be paddled, pedaled, rowed or motored and are quiet unlike the noisy aluminum.
    http://www.northforkoutdoors.com/ There are also 1 and 2 man "bass buster" boats hard and soft of various sorts of comparable or lower price and higher quality. I do a little fishing also from time to time.

    Porta



     
  9. PAR
    Joined: Nov 2003
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    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    I'm reasonably convinced the older version was vacuum formed not rotto molded. I had one back in the mid 80's and it was light and one of the quietest fishing boats you could ask for. They tended to pull their fasteners along the aluminum framing, were easily damaged or distorted and UV made them ugly pretty quickly, but they were light and quiet.
     
  10. troy2000
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    troy2000 Senior Member

    I looked at a bunch of pictures, and it seems to be a very practical boat for its intended purposes.

    But instead of trying to reproduce a production hull using production methods and materials, why wouldn't you and your buddies just get together with a pile of 1/4" plywood and some stick lumber, and build some boats along the same lines?

    You could probably also do a stitch and glue version.....
     
  11. portacruise
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    portacruise Senior Member

    Heres another hard hull possibility that is cheap, comfortable, very stable and can be powered several ways. If you need more room, get 2, and maybe still be lighter than the crawdad.

    Porta

     

  12. portacruise
    Joined: Jun 2009
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    portacruise Senior Member

    Oops: http://www.cabelas.com/p-0065154320909a.shtml

     
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