How to learn boat design

Discussion in 'Education' started by Malibrodic, Dec 17, 2019.

  1. Malibrodic
    Joined: Dec 2019
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    Location: Croatia

    Malibrodic New Member

    Hi,

    After some reading it is time to make first post.
    First I want to say something about me. I have Bachelor degree in mechanical engineering and my plan is to finish Masters degree in mechanical engineering. I have a lot of experience with small wooden and plastic boats (I live by the sea whole life). I have started sailing but that experience is modest right now.
    Over the last few years I am more and more interested in boat design and construction. On our university we have Naval architecture course but they only teach boat design on large ships.


    My question is: Is it possible to learn fundamentals of small boat design and sail boats on this forum?
    Is it better to research here and scribble around by yourself or to pay some online course?
    Of course after getting some basic knowledge plan is to get a job and learn in practice.



    If I am posting spam thread please can you point me in the right direction.
    (Sorry for bad English)
     
  2. bajansailor
    Joined: Oct 2007
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    Location: Barbados

    bajansailor Marine Surveyor

  3. BlueBell
    Joined: May 2017
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    Location: Victoria BC Canada

    BlueBell Ahhhhh...

    Mailbrodic,

    Welcome to the forum.

    I have a mechanical engineering background.
    What rate do you want to learn at?
    There is a lot of poor information out there.

    Why do you want to learn?
    Do you want to design a boat?
    Do you want to build a boat?
    Or perhaps it's an academic exercise .

    We can help you more if we know why and what you are after.

    Cheers
     
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  4. Ike
    Joined: Apr 2006
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    Location: Washington

    Ike Senior Member

    Buy Principles of Yacht Design by Lars Larsson and Rolf Eliasson. It isn't cheap but it's about as thorough a text as there is.
    and of course there is the old standby, Elements of Yacht Design by Norman L Skene (also just called Skene's) It is a bit dated but the basic principles are there.
    I took the Westlawn course (I didn't finish it) but what I did do was really excellent. There are a lot of well know designers who took this course. see http://www.westlawn.edu/who/success.asp

    Lloyds Maritime Academy has a a distance learning course in Naval Architecture. It covers the fundamentals of Naval Architecture. It deals mostly with ships, but the basics are the same. Certificate in Naval Architecture http://www.lloydsmaritimeacademy.com/event/naval-architecture-distance-learning-course Not cheap. EU members get a discount.
     
  5. JotM
    Joined: Jan 2009
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    Location: Leiden, the Netherlands

    JotM Junior Member

    Dear Malibrodic,

    There is a course in sailing yacht design (30 EC's) at the Mechanical, Maritime and Materials Engineering (3ME) faculty of TU Delft.
    Sailing Yachts https://www.tudelft.nl/3me/onderwijs/minoren-en-keuzevakken/sailing-yachts/

    As a European student you might even be able to take this course as part of a minor within your own curriculum. Worth asking around at your university I would say.
    Oh. The information states that at the moment the course is taught in Dutch. Just get in contact with the university to see what the possibilities are. They use Larsson's and Fossati's books, so that shouldn't be a problem.

    Practical: I expect the period to register for a minor in the 2020-2021 year to be in May 2020. (As it was this year) But do check Thematic minor overview https://www.tudelft.nl/en/education/programmes/minor/thematic-minor-overview/

    Grtz Jaap
     
    Last edited: Dec 18, 2019
  6. gonzo
    Joined: Aug 2002
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    Location: Milwaukee, WI

    gonzo Senior Member

    I think that your best course of action is to go boating before getting too much into theory and design. There is no substitute for hands-on experience. Most of the flaws on design, is that the designer does not understand what the design is supposed to do for the end user.
     
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  7. TANSL
    Joined: Sep 2011
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    Location: Spain

    TANSL Senior Member

    I fully understand why you say, you have your theoretical limitations that you intend to fill in with the practice, but that, fortunately, is not possible. At what stage of "boating" do you learn to calculate volumes, center of buoyancy, and hundreds of other topics necessary to design a boat? Many boat designers, or naval architects, have obtained their graduation and have worked on the design or construction of ships with very little, or no experience in boating. I do not say that it is not good to have that experience but I believe that theoretical knowledge, some of which we will endorse with practice, is the beginning.
    I would never ask Lewis Hamilton, with undoubted experience in "carting", to design a formula 1 car (and still nobody has asked for it).
    As one person who had not practically sailed anything said: "Those who fall in love with practice without science are like a sailor who steers his ship without a compass, and who never can be certain whither he is going."~ Leonardo da Vinci ~
     
    Last edited: Dec 18, 2019
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  8. Ad Hoc
    Joined: Oct 2008
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    Location: Japan

    Ad Hoc Naval Architect

    Welcome to the forum.

    The first question is, do you wish to learn about "small" boats as a hobby, an interest?
    or
    Do you wish to learn about "small" boats to become your job/career in the future?
     
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  9. Malibrodic
    Joined: Dec 2019
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    Location: Croatia

    Malibrodic New Member

    First of all I want to say thank you on your welcome. I haven't expected so many answers.

    To answer some question:

    I want to learn because to me it seems that boats have some perfect balance of knowledge needed to design it, knowledge needed to construct it, and artistic elements. When you are designing boats you have to respect natural laws but you can give every boat little bit of personal touch.I have some natural interests in engineering, problem solving and working with hands, so combining that with alluring sea seams logical(maybe late but worth a try). Also it is one heck of a feeling when you finish yearly maintenance of a boat and it goes in the see again. That first ride with effortless sliding is magical. Moreover, when you know that all this is due to the hours invested and invested, it is indescribable.

    Yes

    Yes, but I don't see that in the next 5 years. First because university and second because of needed experience.

    It is flattering thought to think about "small" boats as job/career but my goal is to start as hobby because I need to see how well I can do . To have this kind of work as job/career I think there is a lot more to consider (market, is this needed, how much people are willing to pay,...) on which I can answer only when I gain experience.

    Others who suggested various courses thanks you, I will investigate them to see which suits me.

    It seems to me that most painless path would be to take some online course because that way I can work at my own pace(mostly because of university load) and after obtaining some theoretical knowledge, try to gain practical knowledge. I think that you can't be a good engineer if you don't know both sides of a coin.
     
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  10. BlueBell
    Joined: May 2017
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    Location: Victoria BC Canada

    BlueBell Ahhhhh...

    Excellent response.
    Go sailing if you can.
    Power boating, kayaking, rowing, canoeing, ice boating, whatever,
    just get out there and don't drown.
     
  11. Ad Hoc
    Joined: Oct 2008
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    Location: Japan

    Ad Hoc Naval Architect

    You are over thinking this.
    If you wish this to be more than a hobby, then there is no reason to pursue this for a career/job. And as with any job..just apply!

    I used the "quotes" around the "small" craft aspect only because it may help with a subtle distinction. If you learn naval architecture, and it ends up big ship naval architecture, it does not mean you can not design "small" boats. Quite the opposite. Since "Big" boat design many factors that are common to big and small design remain common to both disciplines. For example: structures, hydrodynamics, naval architecture theory. The only difference being it is about BIG boats not SMALL boats. There are of course differences, such as sailing theory will be taught when designing container ships!, but, you can easily learn those on the job from the start, as you would any other job. Do not see this as an obstacle. The only obstacle, is in your thinking...
     
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  12. bajansailor
    Joined: Oct 2007
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    Location: Barbados

    bajansailor Marine Surveyor

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  13. Malibrodic
    Joined: Dec 2019
    Posts: 4
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    Location: Croatia

    Malibrodic New Member

    Happy New Year everyone,

    We went sailing for few days in period from my last post. I definitely need to invest in some quality equipment.

    Yeah, I have problem overthinking in general. Trying to minimize that.
    I don't understand your second sentence, did you mean: then there is no reason NOT to pursue this for a career/job.

    I have already read it, it is very informative. Thanks you


    I know that I am already boring you all with questions but I am interested to hear what lifestyle naval architects have. Not like money but in work/life balance. Of course that is a lot of different kind of jobs and it can't be fully answered. For example do you have 9 to 5 job, can you work long distance, do you have to be in boatyard everyday or you just sit in office in front of computer,...
     
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  14. gonzo
    Joined: Aug 2002
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    Location: Milwaukee, WI

    gonzo Senior Member

    You are not boring anyone. In fact, your attitude is refreshing. Many newbies refuse to accept any advice that does not support their preconceived ideas. I have worked building, operating, inspecting and everything possible on boats most of my life. At 61 I am still loving it and have no plans to ever retire. However, I got into it because of the attraction to the job and not for the money.
     
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  15. TANSL
    Joined: Sep 2011
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    Location: Spain

    TANSL Senior Member

    I would like to remember here, so that the issue does not lead to things that are not asked, that the OP is "interested to hear what lifestyle naval architects have", not in the lifestyles of the many other professionals related to ships.
     
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