Welding the skin to the frames demystified

Discussion in 'Metal Boat Building' started by M&M Ovenden, Aug 31, 2008.

  1. Brent Swain
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    Brent Swain Member

    Welding skin to frames

    Yes, if you build a boat using much thinner, flimsier plate , it will weigh less. I'm not into flimsey boats that can't take a bit of hidden corrosion sneaking up on them. There is a Saugeen witch in Coombs that is so corroded out it has been abandoned. She would have been OK had she had 3/16th plate.
    Compared to the Gazelle, my 40 footer is huge inside, and can easily outsail a Gazelle. Overall length is no indication of the size of a boat when you compare a hull with little topside flare with one with the extreme flare of a gazelle. My 36 is far roomier than a gazelle and outsails a Gazelle by a wide margin. One of my 36 footers left Cabo at the same time as a Gazelle , covered 1006 miles in the first 6 days , broke the top third of her mast off and still beat the Gazelle to Hawaii by many days.
    The full length keel on a witch doesn't need much in the way of floors. The length of the keel being the full length of the hull , and its shallowness take care of that. The shorter the keels the more transverse support they need, The flooring in a witch would be grossly inadequate for a short keel, or twin keels.
    Origami structural takes advantage of curves for stiffness. There is little such curve in decks, so more stiffners are needed there. The origami method of putting the stiffners on before installing the deck panels is a huge advance from putting the stiffners in first , then forcing the decks onto them. It even works for framed boats.
    The tabs I need to put an interior amount to about two dozen weighing about ten pounds and taking about an hour to install. Seems a lot more logical than spending months building an elaborate framework to accomplish the same result.
    Again , the only way you can make your point is to distort the facts.
    Brent
     
  2. welder/fitter
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    welder/fitter Senior Member

    That was one of the dilemnas I faced in considering the construction of an "origamiboat" (aesthetics aside). The majority of the members of that group supported using 10gauge sheet over 3/16". I believe that Brent supported this view, correct me if I'm wrong. While I supported the view of using 10ga. above the waterline, I felt that 3/16" would be preferable at & below the waterline. I figured that it would take as much time to weld the 3/16" and 10ga. plates together, without warpage, and attempt to pull them into shape, as it would take to make frames, when building in the traditional manner. My consideration was in contemplating the 40 footer. As I recall, Jim's Saugeen Witch, now in Coombs, was in pretty sad shape when he bought it, due to neglect.

    As the Saugeen Witch & Brent's 36 footer have approx. the same beam, I would think that the interior volumes would be close. With Peter's boat being longer, the only way that the swain could herald more volume would be if it were more full-bellied?

    Anecdotal comments, such as of two boats sailing vic-maui are of no value, as Brent knows. Anyone whom pays even the slightest attention to long-distance offshore racing knows that in a given race, one boat may out-distance another, only to lose to that same boat a year, or two, or four, later. As has been proven by many people, many times - including Colvin himself - The Saugeen Witch is a well-designed boat. Having considered the Gazelle at one time - big sister to the SW - my only concerns were freeboard & headroom, as designed.

    One must remember, however, that Colvin sailed each of these two of his designs extensively, whereas, Brent owns & sails a 31 foot version of his design, not the 36" or 40". Having read the posts on the other site, regarding this comparison, it is easy to see that Peter simply wished to defend the boat that he has chosen to build. As Peter should know, Brent slags the boats of most competitor designers, how could he expect his not to be included?

    Sad to think that the only way for a designer to promote his boats is to denigrate the design and/or build methodology of others.
     
  3. Brent Swain
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    Brent Swain Member

    I posted a long response , but it got disappeared . I'll try again tomorrow.
    Brent
     
  4. welder/fitter
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    welder/fitter Senior Member

    I stand corrected. The 10ga. was the choice for the 26 footer, not the 36 or 40 footers. Abject apologies for that.
     
  5. Brent Swain
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    Brent Swain Member

    Welding skin to frames

    Most of my responses here are in response to being slagged . I have the right to defend myself and my designs using the same tactics that are being used against me, period. I know some would like to fight me with both my hands tied behind my back, but that is not going to happen. Policially correct? For me but not for you? Not a chance.
    The only reason I used ten guage on the 26 was because the boat was too small for 3/16th. I was never much interested in steel, as long as I bought Colvin's ******** line that it had to be ten guage. He even uses ten guage for the keel, even on 40 footers, where any additional weight is simply ballast. My clients use 3/16th for the hull, 1/4 for the keel sides and 1/2 inch for the keel bottom and leading edge of the fin keeler, for everything over 30 ft.
    Jim's boat is a good example of the long range liabilities of ten guage. Very little forgiveness if the paint should fail.
    Compare the interior space on Jim's Saugeen witch with that of the 36 in the same yard . No comparison.
    When I first saw Ganleys 30 ft Snowbird design in Auckland in 1973, using 3/16th and far less framing, I became instantly interested in steel .
    With such low freeboard , the interior in a saugeen witch is best described as a crawl space, with not enough height under the side deck to sit upright.
    The flare makes the boat tender, unable to carry a good press of sail and much smaller inside, about as roomy as my 26 footer. Without a wheelhouse, the stern lines rise too much for floorspace aft. Thus, like boats of her era, a huge amount of longitudinal space is wasted on cockpit and lazarette. I've seen 42 footers of that era with 14 feet of cockpit and lazarette, leaving roughly the same distance from the front of the cockpit to the bow as my 36 footer.
    My 36 is about 7 ft from the back of the wheelhouse to the transom.
    My 31 has suited my needs so well for the last 25 years that I have had no reason to build myself a 36. I wouldn't go to all that trouble for anyone's entertainment. Those who would spend a lot more time building and a lot less time sailing. So don't flatter yourself. Your demands on my time are not being paid for.
    I prefer to be an example of how keeping things simple can allow one to cruise 11 months a year for decades and work only one month a year. Just don't become a slave to others' expectations. They'll make a slave out of you.
    A Saugeen witch doesn't have a hope in hell of ever catching one of my 36 footers under sail, as long as she is well sailed and clean. When the Saugeen witch owner sees the transom of the 36 dissappearing over the horizon, will saying " It's just an anecdote" console him? Only if he is self delusional.
    Brent
     
  6. welder/fitter
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    welder/fitter Senior Member

    When I was considering the building of a Gazelle, a number of years ago, I do not recall Colvin suggesting 10ga. at, or below, the waterline, I believe that 3/16" was the thickness he spoke of. Having considered so many designs over the years, however, the details do tend to blur.

    As with myself, as with Evan Shaler, as with others, Brent has brought his disagreement with Peter Wiley from one site to another, not in the spirit of continuing discussion, but to belittle. Unless a reader actually goes to the origamiboats group & reads the referred-to threads, one can not make an accurate assessment of the comments made by Brent. While he may be the guru of the origamiboats group, he is just another designer on these forums.

    Obviously, designers can not be all things to all consumers. In considering a smaller design than the Lodestar - to get my crew up to speed before tackling the massive builds - I have viewed many designs in the 38 to 42 foot range, from designers such as Van de Stadt, Dix, Brewer, Bolt, Glen-L/Hankinson, Roberts, Simpson, Tanton, etc., and have narrowed my choices based on many factors. Though I have not found the "perfect" boat for this project - is there such an animal? - many have designs that are close to my ideal boat. When I reach the point of discussing options with my short-list of designers, It will be difficult enough to make the decision without hearing one designer slag another, something that I do not expect to have happen.

    My point is that I do not believe that a designer needs to denigrate another's designs, in order to promote their own. If it offends Brent that someone would make comparisons between his, and another designer's boat design, then he'll be offended for a very long time. I am sure that all designers take pride in what they create, probably one, or more, that they feel is the greatest design of it's "class". Still, having viewed a multitude of designs, by a plethora of designers, in consideration of stock design plans, that perfect boat seems eternally elusive.

    What one may be looking for in a design may be the cheapest build, a particular length/beam, a specific keel configuration, an "easy-build" method, etc., dependent on the consumer's wiles. In all cases, what the consumer is, most assuredly, not looking for is a designer whom is an A-hole!

    Thanks to Wynand, Dudley, Mike(Johns), and others, this thread has been dealt with.
     
  7. Brent Swain
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    Brent Swain Member

    Welding skin to frames

    Colvin did a great service to cruisers by keeping steel an option when everyone was going plastic. Technology has, however, made a lot of progress since his boats and methods were the only option, and it would be foolish to not take advantage of such progress. Yes he did do some screwups , of a type which were common and standard practise at the time, as I have pointed out. I have been told that Covin has made the same derogatory coments about my boats , giving me the right to respond in kind. Many have . I don't buy exceptionalism. If it is politically incorrect to state facts, like the fact that Colvin's Saugeen witch is very tiiny inside, or warn people of builders padding their time to fill their pockets, or builders with no cruising experience redesigning boats in ways that make them poorer boats , just to make the job easier for them, at the expense of the cruiser, then I'm politically incorrect and proud of it. When I see someone about to make a big mistake , heading for a cliff, doing huge amounts of uncecessary work for nothing, I wont remain silent for the sake of political correctness. As I would want to be warned, I feel obligated to warn others, if I know an easier and better way.
    When I see someone badmouthing a boat for sale, telling deliberate lies to force the price down to a giveaway price, so the guy doing the badmouthing can get it for a steal, yes I will warn people of his ******** motives.
    Is it morally wrong to warn people of the dangers of aids? Was it morally wrong to warn Europeans of the dangers of Hitler's agenda, or politically incorrect? Is it morally wrong to warn people of the dangers of asbestos , slagging the asbestos workers, or smoking , slagging the tobacco growers?
    Van de Stadt deserves full credit for finally taking advantage of steel and developing building methods that actually take advantage of the material, rather than simply using wood boat building methods for steel construction. It would be foolish to not take advantage of improvements in building methods based on when the boat was designed and use only the knowledge that was available at the time.
    Van de Stadt designs would adapt very well to origami building methods, as he gives the plate shapes needed for origami construction. Leaving the ends intact would eliminate the chines in the ends , giving one well rounded, seamless, fair ends, with a fraction the work, and better results. There is no reason one couldn't use Van de Stadt's or origami methods for most steel hard chine designs . There is absolutely no reason to contuinue putting deck beams and stringers in first, regardless of how it was done decades ago before modern breakthroughs in building methods, then forcing oneself to do the work overhead when plating the decks, when easier and better methods have been developed, like putting all the stiffners on the deck plates on a work bench, before installing the deck panels.
    We are here to help progress in steel boatbuilding , not to hold it back.
    For a 40 footer, the Gazelle is tiny inside with a huge, useless space between the aft cabin and the main cabin wasted by a flush deck with only crawl space under it. I once built a wheelhouse over this deck , giving the boat the roominess one would expect of a forty footer. Unfortunately, the weight of the steel wheelhouse made her a little tender, given the extreme flare and narrow waterline of the Gazelle. Had this wheelhouse been built of aluminium it would have been all a positive, huge improvement.
    There is nothing that can't be improved , and that which was designed decades ago,using the only methods known decades ago have been improved drasticaly in some cases.
    Brent
     
  8. welder/fitter
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    welder/fitter Senior Member

    "When I see someone badmouthing a boat for sale, telling deliberate lies to force the price down to a giveaway price, so the guy doing the badmouthing can get it for a steal, yes I will warn people of his ******** motives."

    You know, it's like doing something exactly the same way, twice, and expecting different results. Complete insanity. Here's a thought, Brent. Maybe, you should ask my wife what she, and I, thought about the 36' Swain design, before our trip to Comox. I think her answer would be, "too small inside", meaning that she thought it was too narrow & wouldn't be acceptable to her. In fact, she'd say that it seemed to be the same size inside as our Cal330. Or, you could talk to the fellow who's 60' Jack Carson origamiboat was the one I was there to work on. Better yet, I'll go down & dig the video out of the basement. I'm sure that someone can explain to me how to load it onto this site. Time to separate fact from fantasy? I think so.
     
  9. Brent Swain
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    Brent Swain Member

    We all saw your postings on the origamiboats site, when you were trying to buy the boat for roughly a third of what she was worth and eventually sold for. Those postings are still there. She will be launching soon.
    It wasn't me who brought up the subject of Evan . Someone else did and I simply answered their questions.
    I have a friend who has been busting his *** to get the 50 footer his wife insisted on out cruising. It is obvious that insisting on a huge boat is her way of making sure he never gets free. Huge oversized boats kill more cruising dreams that all other causes combined.
    More disinformation from Mike. Is anyone surprised?
    Brent
     
  10. welder/fitter
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    welder/fitter Senior Member

    "We all saw your postings on the origamiboats site, when you were trying to buy the boat for roughly a third of what she was worth and eventually sold for. Those postings are still there. She will be launching soon."

    "More disinformation from Mike. Is anyone surprised?"

    Is this like annual pms for you, Brent? Three years running, just like clockwork. Yes, the posts are there, thank god for that. My wife thinks I should feel sorry for you, I guess I'm just not as much a christian as she. I do think you need to seek professional help, however. Still, I can agree with my wife that you're a sick, lonely old man & will probably die as such. BTW, there's a video of a boat that you & Alex built, coming out on Youtube soon. Enjoy!
     
  11. Brent Swain
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    Brent Swain Member

    Mike,you are the one that keeps digging it up , I just repond.
    I'm a much happier camper than I'd ever be married to some of the wives I see.
    I feel like the old guy who was out fishing, and heard a small voice beside him. He turned around to see a frog on a lillypad saying " Kiss me and I'll turn into the most beautiful bride you ever imagined..It will make all your friends jelous."The old guy thought for a moment , then picked up the frog and put him in his pocket. The frog said "Aren't you going to kiss me and end up married to the most beautiful woman in the world? Are you crazy? The old guy said " No thanks . At my age, I'd rather have a talking frog."
    I'd prefer the talking frog, altho anyone can go to a third world country and come home with a bride, who'd marry anyone, given the alternative. They are that desperate.
    Why would your wife feel sorry for me, when you are the guy she's married to?
    I dont wish I was working in a shipyard year round and still talking about building a boat, instead of having cruised almost full time since my early 20's, altho talking is mighty easy.
    Paul ,who's boat you did some welding on, sold his 36 to build a bigger boat. She was almost ready for painting. Ten years later , he is at the same point he was at on his 36 ten years ago. He said selling the 36 to build a bigger boat was huge mistake. He said " I should have listened to Brent. I'd have spent the last ten years cruising."
    Some prefer to just keep talking about building, and never will.
    Any publicity is good publicity. You tube postings should help sell a lot of books and plans.
    What Mike is saying is , as he doesn't have the huevos to deal with me face to face, he will retaliate against a friend , one who has done a lot to help boaters , at his own expense. Does cowardice get any lower?
    I don't recall ever slagging any of the designers you list. All are light years ahead of Colvin. More lies and disinformation from Mike.
    What is the name of your boat?
    Brent
     
  12. YachtManuals
    Joined: Oct 2007
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    YachtManuals Junior Member

    Curve of longitudinals

    Sorry for this newbie questions:
    1)Are the longitudinals pre shaped (curved) to the hull plating curve, or straight?
    2)When you "push" a longitudinal to reach the hull plate for tack welding, are you actually bending it out (can a stringer really be pushed out in it's stiffest direction) ?
     
  13. Wynand N
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    Wynand N Retired Steelboatbuilder

    1. longitudinal stringers are fitted straight and takes its "natural" curvature as it goes over frames.

    2. you are actually pushing the stringer towards its "natural" curve a explained above. Sometimes it pushes out easily where the curvature of the plating is not much, in tighter curves it gets a bit more difficult and the stringer is pulled to the plate by dock & wedge easily and very seldom with the help of a bit of heat.

    Visit my webpage complied for the amateur and there is a section about stringers, in fact, every aspect of steel boat building.
     
  14. YachtManuals
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    YachtManuals Junior Member

    Dear Wynand,

    Many thanks for the quick reply and clarification. I have been reading your website and apreciate very much all the help you are giving out here and there.
    How long are the stringers? As long as possible I suppose. Do you butt-weld them together lengthwise before installing on frames??

    On a related subject: floating frames are an advantage as they eliminate the hungry horse shell plating. If this is related to the direction of curvature of the developable plates relative to the direction of the stiffeners (frames and stringers), would the following be true: in the area of the constant radius chine, where the curvature of the plate is the opposite direction (or at 90°) would the hungry horse not be better eliminated by floating stringers on welded frames? If the hungry horse comes from another cause, such as perhaps the direction of the largest dimension of each hull plate, could it still be so?
    The procedure in use by you (and others) obviously works well, so I am not questioning it as much as I would like to understand the technical reasons.

    Thanks,
    Leo (Swedish s/y at anchor in Maine, USA)
     

  15. Brent Swain
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    Brent Swain Member

    Hungry horse comes from first welding the plate to the frames, then doing the longitudinal welding, which shrinks the edges of the plates. With floating stringers, this shrinkage along the edges lifts the middle of the plate into a beautiful compound curve. Rather than fight this shrinkage , letting it lift off takes advantage of it. Then pushing the longitudinals out to it and tacking them on to maintain this curve, before attaching the longitudinals to the frames, makes an extremely fair hull.
    Brent
     
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