Maneuverability: catamaran or monohull with pontoons?

Discussion in 'Hydrodynamics and Aerodynamics' started by Sillouete, Mar 5, 2013.

  1. Sillouete
    Joined: Mar 2013
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    Location: United States

    Sillouete Junior Member

    Hello, first of all I apologize if this is in the wrong section of the forum.

    I am currently designing a small electric boat about 15 feet (4.6 meters). I am basing my build on three important factors: speed, stability, and maneuverability. After drafting several designs, I simplified my options to two possible choices, a catamaran and a mono-hull with pontoons. I provided a similar image of how the catamaran might look when it's finished below this paragraph. My question is, assuming similar conditions, which hull has a better turning capability, the catamaran or a monohull with pontoons?

    [​IMG]
    Here's a similar image of the catamaran hull I had in mind.

    I also thought about exploring hydrofoils, but I am not quite sure how stable or maneuverable they can be.

    Any help in the topic is greatly appreciated!
     
  2. Submarine Tom

    Submarine Tom Previous Member

    Hydros can be stable and very maneuverable but vulnerable.
     
  3. Stumble
    Joined: Oct 2008
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    Stumble Senior Member

    I am not sure what your usage profile looks like, but I think you have a different problem. To store enough batteries to make an electric boat reasonable you are going to need a lot of storage space and displacement to carry the lead. In a small size this pretty much demands a monohull.
     
  4. Sillouete
    Joined: Mar 2013
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    Sillouete Junior Member

    Thanks for the reply guys and yes, a monohull is my final choice. Now I am looking forward into adding a hydrofoil to the hull mostly to eliminate some drag in the stern.

    For a boat with dimensions ranging from 16 feet long to about 4 feet wide, do you guys recommend any certain set up that would work best with those dimensions?

    I am looking forward to placing the electric motor outboard and the final weight with the skipper would be roughly around 300 pounds (136 kgs). .
     
  5. Stumble
    Joined: Oct 2008
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    Location: New Orleans

    Stumble Senior Member

    Silouete,

    Redo your weight study. There is no way your numbers are right. Assuming a 150lbs man, asking, two 50lbs batteries,and a 30lb motor, to hit your all up weight of 300lbs would require a boat weighing no more than 20lbs.

    I don't see how this is possible.
     

  6. alan craig
    Joined: Jul 2012
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    alan craig Senior Member

    I have a small electric boat, it is a Welsford "joansa" design and just under 16' long. It weighs just 40kg, batteries weigh 27kg each (x2), home made brushless outboard weighs about 14kg and I weigh about 60kg. So that's 168kg/370lb. I can go about 4 hours at (I guess) 5 knots.By the way the boat is not suited to electric power due to battery stowage problems, but the hull shape is.
    On stability, this hull shape, like a Swampscott dory I believe, does not have enough initial stability to keep my wife happy. A 16' beach cat converted to electric would have tons of initial stability but might be slightly slower at the same power due to more wetted area. Or it might be faster due to less wavemaking.
     
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