Pontoon Duck Blind Boat

Discussion in 'Boat Design' started by Josh Sorrell, Jan 1, 2023.

  1. Josh Sorrell
    Joined: Jan 2023
    Posts: 3
    Likes: 0, Points: 1
    Location: Madison, MS

    Josh Sorrell New Member

    If you Google pontoon Duck blind boat, you will find many options. All of them are built on top of the floor deck. This adds another 2 feet or so to your profile on the water as compared to a jon boat.
    This makes it much harder to camouflage.

    The stability (and the space) of pontoons would be preferred when we are tied up and hunting. My idea is basically building a simple flat bottom jon boat between 2 pontoons. Thus recessing the floor between the pontoons. This would allow the hunter to sit on the pontoon like a bench and put their feet in the jon boat. I could then build the roof of the blind off of this dimension and keep the whole thing closer to the water.

    My question is how will this effect the performance of the boat or at what depth would it effect the performance of the boat?

    I am assuming 24" pontoon logs 18' long.
    I would like a total beam of 7' to get into tighter places.

    At the center of the pontoon I would gain 12" plus the brackets that attach the pontoon deck. So roughly 18". This would keep the floor a bit above water level.

    Can I go deeper than that?
    Can I put the floor of the jon boat at the same elevation of the bottom of the pontoons?

    Of course we go through shallow water with tree stumps to get hung on, so keeping the floor off the water seems to be advantageous for this function.

    I welcome any insight in trying to work through these design issues.
     
  2. bajansailor
    Joined: Oct 2007
    Posts: 3,640
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    Location: Barbados

    bajansailor Marine Surveyor

    Welcome to the Forum Josh.

    If I understand you correctly, you are basically planning on building a trimaran using a jon boat main hull with pontoons for stabilising it?

    If this is the case (or have I got it totally wrong?), you won't need all that extra buoyancy from the pontoons (unless you are anticipating shooting large quantities of ducks?) - maybe all you need is a jon boat with some fairly small stabilising outriggers?

    Or will it remain a catamaran, with the jon boat simply functioning as the bridgedeck above the water, between the hulls?

    How much headroom will you require in the camoflage blind that will be built on top of the boat?
     
    Last edited: Jan 1, 2023
  3. Josh Sorrell
    Joined: Jan 2023
    Posts: 3
    Likes: 0, Points: 1
    Location: Madison, MS

    Josh Sorrell New Member

    I would have to build the "jon boat" that is ultimately a bridge deck above the water as you described it.

    Outriggers would be too wide and would get torn off. It will have to take a beating and be able to run over a submerged log or stump.
    The more flotation I get out of the boat will make it a shallower draft which is helpful.
    I currently run an old 70 Johnson with a hydraulic jack plate to bring the prop up higher when we're "creeping" through the swamp.
    It has a break away function where it kicks up like a tiller motor when the foot of the motor hits something.


    I expect 6.5' of headroom at the center.

    I guess what my concern is, at what point does it stop acting like a catamaran and starts acting like a wide jon boat with built in flotation on the sides.
    And what would be the advantages of disadvantages of either at speed.
     
  4. bajansailor
    Joined: Oct 2007
    Posts: 3,640
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    Location: Barbados

    bajansailor Marine Surveyor

    From a resistance point of view you ideally want it to be a catamaran, with the (jon boat?) bridgedeck out of the water.
    If the underside of the bridgedeck is in the water, then there will be more drag / resistance - I suppose it will then be like a very wide rigid hull inflatable boat, except that the inflatable tubes are replaced by aluminium cylinders.

    Will you always be running in very calm water?
    Do you have to run a long way to get to your duck hunting waterways?
    I guess that you will want to cruise reasonably quickly with the 70 hp engine that you have.
    Do you really need 6'6" of headroom in the blind if the hunters are sitting down - or do they then have to stand up to shoot?
     
  5. gonzo
    Joined: Aug 2002
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    Location: Milwaukee, WI

    gonzo Senior Member

    How many hunters do you want on the boat?
     

  6. Josh Sorrell
    Joined: Jan 2023
    Posts: 3
    Likes: 0, Points: 1
    Location: Madison, MS

    Josh Sorrell New Member

    We can run 10+ miles in big water at 15-20 mph before we get to a hunting hole.
    It's typically pretty calm water, but I still need to get home alive if a storm kicks up. I like that the pontoons are pretty tough to sink.
    If it gets rough, we will typically skirt the shore and slow it down.

    You stand up to shoot.

    Needs to hunt 4 people, maybe 5
     
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