steel hull repair

Discussion in 'Metal Boat Building' started by minstrel, Aug 10, 2004.

  1. minstrel
    Joined: Aug 2004
    Posts: 2
    Likes: 0, Points: 0, Legacy Rep: 10
    Location: essex

    minstrel New Member

    steel hull house boat restoration

    i have a 100 year old ,80 foot steel hull houseboat on a high mud berth. she has a rusty hull and a number of holes below the water line. she floods to a inside depth below deck of about 5 foot 1 hour each high tide. so only the upper deck is now habitable. the main deck is concrete and about 40 years ago the owner put a concrete bilge in to stop her from moving in the mud berth. question; can i repair her from the inside, tank her out just to keep the water out.she will never need to float from the mud. either steel plates the ribs are fine or a concrete render with a mesh and waterproof membrane.. thanks .. steve
  2. Dutch Peter
    Joined: Aug 2004
    Posts: 645
    Likes: 7, Points: 28, Legacy Rep: 66
    Location: The Netherlands

    Dutch Peter Senior Member


    Repairs can be made from inside. Depends a bit on the location. Are the holes in the side or bottom shell? You could try welding doubler plates. Personally, I consider concrete as a temporarily repair.


  3. Sandy McKerrow
    Joined: Aug 2004
    Posts: 5
    Likes: 0, Points: 0, Legacy Rep: 10
    Location: Teesside (UK)

    Sandy McKerrow Junior Member

    Are you sure the hull is steel? More likely to be rivetted wrought iron construction if your estimate of age is right
  4. MikeJohns
    Joined: Aug 2004
    Posts: 3,192
    Likes: 208, Points: 63, Legacy Rep: 2054
    Location: Australia

    MikeJohns Senior Member

    I've seen a few rustly old hulks rejuvinated by attaching a mesh and chicken wire over the outsides and plastering it with sand/cement/pozzilan. This can be done over a rotten structure that could not otherwise be repaired with a good strong lasting result. With a rapid set additive to the plaster mix this can be done between tides. Trouble is you have to be able to access the outside of the hull. Sounds like yours is probably sunk in the mud.

    You didn't say whether you were in salt or fresh water in your tidal zone.

    You can tell whether its iron or steel simply by the colour of the sparks from an angle or bench grinder. If its steel and you have good enough surrounding plating, it would be easy to repair by anyone with a welder . Some old irons are hard to weld successfully .

  5. bud1000

    bud1000 Guest

    if the steel is weldable.......and i would doubt it considering the age you quote...... you will need a good qualified welder to do this work..... rusty metal is a horror to weld and repair..... and the tradesman you hire will be cursing your very existance every minute of the job......grins
Forum posts represent the experience, opinion, and view of individual users. Boat Design Net does not necessarily endorse nor share the view of each individual post.
When making potentially dangerous or financial decisions, always employ and consult appropriate professionals. Your circumstances or experience may be different.