houseboat pontoon design

Discussion in 'Boat Design' started by livinlife, Jan 10, 2010.

  1. livinlife
    Joined: Jan 2010
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    Location: gold coast

    livinlife Junior Member

    we are thinking of building our own houseboat.... to be honest we no nothing about boat building... i'm a coach builder so fabrication and fit out is not a problem... where would i get some plans on pontoons and any other info anyone wants to give?????
     
  2. Narwhale
    Joined: Nov 2009
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    Location: Houston, Tx

    Narwhale New Member

    Why don't you post a picture of what you want to build to get this started?
     
  3. matt H.
    Joined: Jan 2010
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    Location: lake elsinore

    matt H. Junior Member

    I was thinking how cool it would be to have a trailer that floated and powered its self .
    It would less complicate mechanical drive duties of a coach and boat combo

    objective
    one could camp on land and have a house boat all in one trailer
    axles could be mounted on a small locking lift

    a fold down back door doubles as a deck,
    something like the toy haulers have only buoyant .
    so you have a toy storage / and when the toys are out
    changed into a open lounge or bed room

    something of a reverse nature of an awning
    for a all round deck / awning when camping
    it could be a sliding hinge of sorts ,
    it could lock to the exterior walls for travel
    possibly aid in the crafts buoyancy and over all equilibrium

    maybe even reinvent the pop outs to mount floats that fold out from the roof

    some type of out board motor scheme just for ease of storage for when your camping
    or
    one out board in mid front of the craft and one positioned to the mid back for bow thrust forward and reverse.
    articulate
    one steering wheel centered around another steering wheel (Like a target )
    infinite deg. steering rotation on both fore / aft motors



    and of course utilize the top of the craft
    as a deck with a simple mechanical fold up rail
     
  4. PAR
    Joined: Nov 2003
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    Location: Eustis, FL

    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    Typically when you attempt to make things do more then what they normally do, you end up with something that does neither very well. The Amphibicar is a good example of this. It's not a very good boat nor a very good car, but it does sort of act like both.

    Houseboats, by their nature are not very good boats and I've designed a few that are better then the average. Making a amphibihouse is fraught with difficulties, that the best engineers and NA's would spend lots of nights scratching their heads over. As for a novice to design something like this, well good luck and don't take family and loved ones on the sea trials.

    The usual issues with this sort of endeavor is the moving stuff that gets immersed. You'll notice on real boats there's actually very little that actually moves, hinges, etc. on a boat other then the drive system. There's a good reason for this, corrosion. It's very difficult to engineer moving pieces, with any level of tolerance to be occasional immersed and not have issues. Sealing up penetrations is another major problem. Things that can just hang in space on a trailer have to be sealed up. This makes suspension systems pretty interesting to say the least.

    Could it be done? Sure it can, but it might be a hell of a sight cheaper to launch a houseboat off a trailer, putter around where ever you like then load her back up on the trailer and take her home. It's not like using and keeping a trailer boat is especially difficult or troublesome. Naturally big boats have trailer limitations, but these limitations would still exist, even if the boat had a trailer built in or was amphibious.

    Here's two of my houseboat designs. The first is 50' on deck the second is 33'

    [​IMG]
     

    Attached Files:

  5. livinlife
    Joined: Jan 2010
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    Location: gold coast

    livinlife Junior Member

    might just stick with a houseboat..... will post pic of what we want to build....
     
  6. matt H.
    Joined: Jan 2010
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    Location: lake elsinore

    matt H. Junior Member

    house boat / camper trailer
    tongue and wheels / huge pontoon
    is simply more
    redneck-house-boat.jpg
    Just kidding
    needs a wing on the back and place for some pretty flowers
    and turn the front lawn couch into a roof top couch
    loud home stereo/bad taste in music to accompany
    tact and oar maybe knot

    ok assuming with out the *** :) summing

    trailer redesign, load bearing roof top with roof top amenities,axle height adjustment
    obliviously not sea worthy but with few manufacturing refinements ,
    putting around a lake could work simply quite functionally
    with minimal engineering capabilities pushed
     
  7. livinlife
    Joined: Jan 2010
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    Location: gold coast

    livinlife Junior Member

    here is a pic of what we want to build. maybe 40' long... not sure on how wide... is is important to have weight evenly placed????

    mick
     

    Attached Files:

  8. rasorinc
    Joined: Nov 2007
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    Location: OREGON

    rasorinc Senior Member

    Instead of using pontoons you could easily build a trailerable (8'-6") wide beam houseboat hull using a catamaran hull as it is easy to calculate the weight of a house boat, I know you could get a 32' to 36' long hull (2 hulls ) with a flat deck on which to build off yet would give you a substantial sea kindly boat. Centainly not a rough ocean boat but much better than a flat bottom houseboat. You do not want to topload it but using lighter materials with fuel load and water load and engines down low, in the sponsons it shoud handle fine. Just an idea for you. A catamaran hull really gives you a very stable and strong platform. I don't know where you live but most states will give you a yearly permit to to up to 11' wide loads with out a pilot car so that gives you a wide range of launching points depending on the state. You can get permits from adjacent states also though they may restrict you to centain hours and days and routes to get where you want to go. I'm building a 32' catamarian with a 10' beam and it will be trailable.

    Here are some ideas for you. http://www.boatdesign.net/gallery/showphoto.php?photo=191
     
  9. Boilermaker
    Joined: Jan 2010
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    Location: Ford, Wa, USA

    Boilermaker New Member

  10. SamSam
    Joined: Feb 2005
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    Location: Coastal Georgia

    SamSam Senior Member

  11. livinlife
    Joined: Jan 2010
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    Location: gold coast

    livinlife Junior Member

    Thanks Rasorinc we live on the east coast of australia and plan to try living on our boat so it isn't important for us to trailer it. The idea of using a catamaran hull is great, how much did you know about making your catamaran before you started and how hard/long/expensive was it to build?? I guess we are weighing up between buying or starting from scratch. Is there a difference between a catamaran hull and standard houseboat pontoons in terms of balance and weight :?:
     
  12. rasorinc
    Joined: Nov 2007
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    Location: OREGON

    rasorinc Senior Member

    Go to the Glen L boat design site and under boat plans look up under outboards Bearcat Cuddy. http://www.google.com/search?source...lz=1T4GGLR_enUS202US205&q=glen L boat designs
    This is the boat I am building lengthened to 32' Then go to customer pictures and look up Wildcat. it is a smaller cat but shows how they are built same type of frames, and shows all aspects of the build. Glen L has been around since the 1950s and many boats built in AU. Good people there at Glen L. Bearcat can be made with an 11' beam. A catamaran hull is far differeny then pontoons. Look up houseboats on the site to see differances.
    Depending on what you want the catamaran sponsons ( pontoons ) will have to sized correctly if building a much larger hull but the basic structural designing will be very similiar. I will have about $ 5,500.00 US in materials for the hull and cabin in my build. Look over the site and get back to us and you can always PM me. There are many sites for much larger hulls on the web. Even larger houseboats can have a cat hull designed for them. These hulls are true open water hulls not flat bottom river boat hulls. Stan PS many people on this site have built ocean going cats, both power and sail. The larger the boat the more $$$$. You can buy study plans of the bearcat or houseboats for $ 15.00 US from Glen L.
    Much larger cats here http://www.crosswatercats.com/index.html
     
  13. kayaker50
    Joined: Aug 2009
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    Location: Raleigh, N.C.

    kayaker50 Junior Member

    PAR, where can I get more info on your houseboat designs? I tried googling reccilli yacht designs to no avail. Thanks, Chip.
     
  14. ancient kayaker
    Joined: Aug 2006
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    Location: Alliston, Ontario, Canada

    ancient kayaker aka Terry Haines

    Where you planning to use it: lake, river or coast?
     

  15. PAR
    Joined: Nov 2003
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    Location: Eustis, FL

    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    Kayaker50, click on my name and drop me an email.
     
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