New and determined

Discussion in 'Boat Design' started by pcausey, Sep 3, 2012.

  1. JosephT
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    JosephT Senior Member

    Evacuating a family by way of sea in hurricane season doesn't make much sense in my opinion. For anyone other than a seasoned yachtsman during hurricane season this brings more risk. You may not have an option in many coastal cities as the local, state & federal authorities will very likely advise you to evacuate via land routes.

    FYI there is a good reason most vacationers avoid the Gulf/Caribbean coasts during hurricane season for a good reason...too many storms. You're better off heading to locations with higher elevation.

    Programming some higher elevation land destinations into your van's GPS would probably be more cost effective and safe. You won't get sea sick either.

    If you insist on such a plan, as Gonzo points out get a good size vessle ready to go. As noted for survival reasons it should be stocked & ready to hit the high seas at a moment's notice. Maintaining such a sea-based evacuation, in hurricane season...could turn out to be both costly & risky. Even off-season it's raises more questions than it answers.
     
  2. pcausey
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    pcausey Junior Member

    I don't plan on leaving my 4x4 on deck but rather having a fold down ramp like an amphibious vehicle which will allow me to drive in and keep the center of gravity as low as possible. And yes it would make perfect sense to keep everything on board the vessel if I lived next to it but I don't and water is only one possibility of escape route. I need to float 10k pounds as compactly as possible.
     
  3. JosephT
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    JosephT Senior Member

    A smaller, compact vessel will give you a rougher ride with a lot of pitstops. To make it to the Caribbean non-stop you'll need a larger vessel with better range. FYI there are charter services (cargo vessels, yachts...various sizes & requirements) in many ports. Houston, TX & New Orleans, LA has many of them. If you're sea-bound and determined, they are probably your best bet. A lot cheaper too than a one-off evacation boat.
     
  4. pcausey
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    pcausey Junior Member

    I have seen some coast guard cruisers come up for auction recently and sell at very reasonable prices, perhaps one of those could be modified for my use.
     
  5. JosephT
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    JosephT Senior Member

    One of the best places to find used boats of various sizes is yachtworld.com. Have a look and be sure to examine the cargo vessel capacities. Smaller vessels will very likely not have the ability to stow vehicles below decks. You'll likely need a cargo vessel with a minimum deck capacity. The vehicle can be stored in a shipping container to protect it from the elements. If you're planning a one-off trip there is no question a charter vessel will be much lower cost. Good luck.
     
  6. WestVanHan
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    WestVanHan Not a Senior Member

    For carrying capacity-Gonzo touched on it-and price to build would have to be a barge/scow.

    Many people carry cars and smaller vans onboard in Europe,and they are not all that big. But for ocean going..
     
  7. pcausey
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    pcausey Junior Member

    For now I'm going to carry though with my homework which will undoubtedly take a month or more with my busy schedule. I really do like the idea of a charter however one might not be so easy to find and even if I did the owner might not so easily go through with what I'd be willing to go through for my families sake. I fear a charters owners allegiance would only extend to a predetermined price. Perhaps nothing I'm thinking of is feasible at all but it will make an interesting learning experience.
     
  8. Petros
    Joined: Oct 2007
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    Petros Senior Member

    You might consider a different approach, rather than a vessel large enough to take your family and the van, how about making the van float?

    I presume you have all your emergency supplies on the van already, so no need to stock a boat too. If you could make a pontoon boat that you can trailer behind your van, than you would not need to store it remotely from your residence. Having it at your residence would allow you to keep it safe from theft or vandalism, and allow you to maintain and test it locally on any body of water. I am thinking something that looks like a large pontoon boat on its own wheels that you tow with your van. When you get to the water to "deploy" the pontoon boat, spread them out far enough to allow the van to be driven onto it, and than the rear wheels can power a simple drive system so the pontoons do not have to have its own engine (less cost, less maintenance, less risk of an engine out stranding you). The engine in the van powers the vessel. I would not think it would be too costly to make such a craft if you are good at scrounging materials, and are cleaver enough to bring it all together so it works as planned.

    Although it would not be good for long distance travel in open oceans, with careful design and good balance (self righting built into the design), it would not be particularly dangerous to use during an emergency either. You are not talking about living aboard long term like a cruising yacht, but just get to a destination and than have your van for land travel. Particularly since it is not intended for recreational use in the interim. With something you can tow behind the van you also would not have to get to the location where you stored the vessel, you can take it with you overland north, east, south or west. It would give you MUCH more flexibility on where you can go in an emergency, what if you found getting to the stored location was blocked by road damage or the authorities? If you were towing it you can simply take a detour and launch at an alternate location.

    Something like this but designed to carry your van.

    [​IMG]
     
  9. gonzo
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    gonzo Senior Member

    He is talking about hurricane conditions. Few vessels can survive them, and then only with expert handling. A converted car or truck has a nil survival possibility. Have you been at sea even on a gale? The Gulf is particularly rough because of the cross wave pattern. The seas are confused and break randomly.
     
  10. JosephT
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    JosephT Senior Member

    Agreed. Hurricane season evac to see with a 4x4...all but a death wish without a serious ship. Even military ships dodge storm systems like this, which can remain along a coast for days.

    All humans are better served by evaucating to higher, dry land. :idea:
     

  11. FranklinRatliff

    FranklinRatliff Previous Member

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