Small foam cored glass boat construction

Discussion in 'Fiberglass and Composite Boat Building' started by icoulddothat, May 16, 2012.

  1. icoulddothat
    Joined: May 2012
    Posts: 5
    Likes: 0, Points: 0, Legacy Rep: 10
    Location: Ireland

    icoulddothat Junior Member

    Hi everyone,

    I'm very new to using fiber glass so please excuse my ignorance but I'm planning on stacking up rigid foam board (used for housing insulation) and carving/shaving/sculpting a small 3/4 person sized boat out of it and then glassing it using fiber glass cloth using solarez resin. I was planning on using the cloth because it seems easier for my first attempt at this and the solarez resin doesn't require a harder so again seems easier. I've seen examples online of people using this method to make surfboards.

    Again please excuse the ignorance just wondering if this plan is doable or mad.

    thanks

    Donal
     
  2. tunnels

    tunnels Previous Member

    totally mad and doable !! with the luck of the Irish on your side you could make it work !! can but try !! good luck and find a 4 leafed clover to put under the glass just for luck !! !!:p
     
  3. midnitmike
    Joined: Apr 2012
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    Location: Haines and Juneau

    midnitmike Senior Member

    Donal,
    It can be done, but you might not be happy with the results. We use a lot of foam panel construction around here for fish holds, decks, and even small skiffs. I can't think of a single one where the light weight foam you've chosen has held up for more then a few years at best. Eventually the foam delaminates from the fiberglass skin, and you're left with a soft spongy mess.

    Now change your design parameters a bit and you might have something worthwhile. If you swap out the 1 1/2 lb foam for something a little more substantial say 5 lb foam, and the cloth to 1708 biaxle you can build a tough little boat that will last for years.

    Do a little more investigation on your project...I'm sure it will pay dividends.

    Mike
     
  4. icoulddothat
    Joined: May 2012
    Posts: 5
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    Location: Ireland

    icoulddothat Junior Member

    .......

    Thanks for the advice, I've had a look around and it I can't find a supplier who sells 1708 biaxle in Ireland (or Europe) and it would be crazy expensive to ship it from the US. I'm planning on using 900gsm cloth as it's the heaviest I can find in Ireland or the UK also half the fun of the project is the build so If i have to touch it up or do it again in a few years no harm.
     
  5. rwatson
    Joined: Aug 2007
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    Location: Tasmania,Australia

    rwatson Senior Member

    Youre building a modern dugout !

    Try laying foam sheets over a frame - getting a fair hull shape by carving it is a mugs game.
     
  6. icoulddothat
    Joined: May 2012
    Posts: 5
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    Location: Ireland

    icoulddothat Junior Member

    Modern Dugout

    Exactly a modern dugout, I'm working on a 1/8 scale version of it at the moment I'll post some pictures when it starts to resemble a boat.
     
  7. icoulddothat
    Joined: May 2012
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    Location: Ireland

    icoulddothat Junior Member

    .....

    Ok so my scale kind of went out the window, it shouldnt be as stumpy looking but this is the general idea. I'm planning to fiberglass it later tonight.
     

    Attached Files:


  8. rwatson
    Joined: Aug 2007
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    Location: Tasmania,Australia

    rwatson Senior Member

    If you multiply the problems you had getting this 'low res' model created to ^8, thats how much work you have for the full size model.

    Do yourself a favour - get one of the full size sheets of foam, cover one side of the sheet with glass and (I presume) epoxy. You will get a very useful 'board' that you can cut and bend and join to other sheets for boatbuilding.

    This is the best way to build the boat that you want - and you wont have hours of shaping and dust making because the glassed smooth side will be the outside of your boat.
     
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