New build...but what is going to sell

Discussion in 'Projects & Proposals' started by Landlubber, Jul 22, 2011.

  1. Landlubber
    Joined: Jun 2007
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    Landlubber Senior Member

    Hi fellas,

    I have been asked to advise on a new build project for a Chinese yard. I have worked with them before, and find them very honest and sincere about their work. Well equipped and experienced people.

    Specifically, they want to build steel hulls with alloy superstructure, under 80 feet.

    For the life of me, I cannot see any designs that would be marketable currently in this sort of spec area......and would like your help if you can think of any production type design that we could build.
    Previously we have been making alloy plate boats to 8.5 metres and steel commercial boats, many of them, so the expertise and general construction knowledge is there, we just need to find a specific market to target.

    Any thoughts would be appreciated, maybe your own build/design could be incorporated to become a commercial design. Ta, John
     
  2. edik
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    edik Junior Member

    Are we talking sailboats or powerboats?
     
  3. Tad
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    Tad Boat Designer

    I've got lots of ideas, but like you I like to get paid for them.....:D

    Honestly when (as a designer) I am faced with such a question I create 8-10 profile/arrangement sketches each expressing different styles and market demographics (domestic/export, export to where/who?).....You run these by the principals involved and see which elicit a response......then you do the market research in each of these types, find out who the competition is, what their price point is, what do they get right and wrong, how can you do it better....then commission some study models or artist renderings and try to sell them.......

    Throw in words like green, sustainable, efficient.....can't go wrong......;)
     
  4. Landlubber
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    Landlubber Senior Member

    Powerboats.

    Yes Tad, understand all that, it seems to me from here in Brisbane, reading and observing what is going on both here and overseas, tat basically NOTHING is selling, unless it is either very cheap or the specific purchaser has just retired from the public service with a wad of pay, wants either a motorhome or a boat to live on.......but who is going to purchase a steel hulled live aboard if it is about the same price as a plastic fantastic.

    ....I seem to feel that there is NO market for what the yard wishes to produce...therefore we have to open our eyes to other propositions for production.....maybe motorhome chassis.....they are already making semi trailer trailers.
     
  5. Brian@BNE
    Joined: Jan 2010
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    Brian@BNE Senior Member

    For powerboats the time is nigh when fuel efficiency will become king, and high l/b ratio designs will become popular. There isn't much available, new or used, that I can see.

    Something like Tad's PL56 built to sailaway stage would interest me.
     
  6. masalai
    Joined: Oct 2007
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    Location: cruising, Australia

    masalai masalai

    Hi Landie,
    Some of the boat-sales people I have chatted with seem to feel that live-aboard efficient powered cats around the 40ft + mark appear all that is generating enquiries... I saw a new displacement design from the pen of Robin Chamberlin belting south across the bay at 15 knots with no drama into the southerly of a week ago (heading for Redlands Bay area by the course) as I was rounding the southern tip of Bribie...

    80 ft is well out of my league and interest... The Number of 50ft plus + "plastic-fantastic" / oceanic-ploughs seen in various marina, permanently parked, is a quite sad waste of space/money...
     
  7. eyschulman
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    eyschulman Senior Member

    Brian is right about the fuel issue. But timing is everything. Too early may not sell too late and every builder and designer will change gears overnight. Ips nd Zues seem to be driving the new power boat market. I am not sure how far that will go but for the present it allows for a selling point to induce the purchase of expenive new boats in an overcrowded market.
     
  8. Tad
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    Tad Boat Designer

    I believe you are correct, without an existing (brand loyal) community of buyers (those moving up or down or to more modern) yacht building is probably a dead end.....at least in the monster engined snow plows that have been produced in untold numbers.......so you start developing your own community of buyers (innovate a new user group, very tough) or look elsewhere......

    The growth and possibilities are in commercial/government vessels...of all kinds......more law enforcement and military, more fire boats (pushed by insurance industry), more efficient people movers (ferries of all kinds), more environmental cleanup and protection, more offshore energy development (wind/tidal power). One of the big areas coming is small freight handling....road transport is getting more expensive and slower with traffic congestion, many major cities are situated on the water, in Amsterdam a company is carrying small containers on hybrid electric vessels.......
     
  9. Landlubber
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    Landlubber Senior Member

    "One of the big areas coming is small freight handling...."....YES, agree, I have seen a few opportunities in the Pacific already where small freighters are needed, I went into the figures of crew manning etc, and today it is simply not worth the expense unfortunately..when I was running my own boat, we had to have 14 people on board to operate in Aus waters, only 4 in International....what a load of crap.

    Mas, you are right, I have seen a few lightweight designs that are exceptional, Peter Brady does a very nice job, I am trying to have his boats done now, but it takes time with China to do anything, so have to be patient.
     
  10. yipster
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    yipster designer

    not build yet i stil like my rough ladybird motorsailor ideas, no 80 but still to big to sell like hotdogs
     
  11. masalai
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    masalai masalai

    PNG, Solomon Islands and Vanuatu may have opportunities for "island freight" but a business model needs to be developed so that the product of the coconut is value added into coconut oil for pharmaceutical and health-food markets... Many may know of the DME process,
    http://www.kokonutpacific.com.au/index.php
    http://www.africanpacific.com/
    - but this needs to be expanded to the next level... so that island trade is more viable... Basically develop a business plan for the boats you wish to sell into... an Ausaid project?
     
  12. Landlubber
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    Landlubber Senior Member

    ....Mas, getting involved with any government at any level is NOT me.......


    .....OK for socialist money suckers that want to live off other people, I just want to live my own life and try to feed my family...not interested in getting rich at the cost of others.
     
  13. Landlubber
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    Landlubber Senior Member

    Maybe there is an opportunity to make alloy smaller craft, such as landing barges, but again, even though the waters between island are usually calm, we have to build to ocean going specs....and there lies the problem, survey etc etc etc.
     
  14. masalai
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    masalai masalai

    Chinese interests have acquired several beef/copra/cocoa leased estates (bought the freehold improvements = planted trees, fences, buildings and other inclusions) in Santo and may be interested in value-adding some of the production... and expanding this market potential...

    The beef produced are of excellent quality... But I know how to improve the value of the harvest from the coconut trees, sequester carbon, add poultry and pigs and manage the cocoa harvest... 40 to 100 ft barges are very useful for transporting livestock (beef & pigs) to abattoirs, and later, pallet loads of live-poultry... Expansion to Malekula, Oba, Maewo, Pentecost etc... Norsup estate, used to be owned by PRV, may be an example for acquisition...
     

  15. Landlubber
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    Landlubber Senior Member

    ...emmm, Mas , my wife is Fijian, so I have spent many years flopping about under rag in those waters, as you too know very well, manyana...the curse of all white people wishing to have the locals work.

    ...and then of course is the reason (desire) to do so.....

    The Fisherman and The Investment Banker


    The American investment banker was at the pier of a small coastal Mexican village when a small boat with just one fisherman docked. Inside the small boat were several large yellow fin tuna. The American complimented the Mexican on the quality of his fish and asked how long it took to catch them.
    The fisherman replied, only a little while.
    The American then asked why didn't he stay out longer and catch more fish?
    The Mexican said he had enough to support his family's immediate needs.
    The American then asked, "but what do you do with the rest of your time?"
    The Mexican fisherman said, "I sleep late, fish a little, play with my children, take siesta with my wife, Maria, stroll into the village each evening where I sip wine and play guitar with my amigos, I have a full and busy life."
    The American scoffed, "I am a Harvard MBA and could help you. You should spend more time fishing and with the proceeds, buy a bigger boat with the proceeds from the bigger boat you could buy several boats, eventually you would have a fleet of fishing boats. Instead of selling your catch to a middleman you would sell directly to the processor, eventually opening your own cannery. You would control the product, processing and distribution. You would need to leave this small coastal fishing village and move to Mexico City, then LA and eventually NYC where you will run your expanding enterprise."
    The Mexican fisherman asked, "But, how long will this all take?"
    To which the American replied, "15-20 years." "But what then?"
    The American laughed and said that's the best part. "When the time is right you would announce an IPO and sell your company stock to the public and become very rich, you would make millions."
    "Millions.. Then what?"
    The American said, "Then you would retire. Move to a small coastal fishing village where you would sleep late, fish a little, play with your kids, take siesta with your wife, stroll to the village in the evenings where you could sip wine and play your guitar with your amigos."
     
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