White Cedar (and lots of it)

Discussion in 'Materials' started by ProjectFiji.com, Nov 26, 2008.

  1. ProjectFiji.com
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    ProjectFiji.com Junior Member

    Howdy,
    I have access to 60 acres of solid White Cedar. Ultimately, my goal is to use this timber to build a sailboat (Multi preferred, mono if not) that will circumnavigate the globe. Crew will be 4 adults (1 couple, 2 single guys) and a 4 year old child.

    What would you build and why?

    Sincerely,
    www.ProjectFiji.com
     
  2. TheWaySheMoves
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    TheWaySheMoves New Member

    I don't know enough about sailing to make that call, but I would love to circumnavigate the globe. That sounds awesome, I hope you keep us updated and it comes through.
     
  3. TeddyDiver
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    TeddyDiver Gollywobbler

    14...or are going to marry the becoming mother in near future:D
     
  4. DGreenwood
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    DGreenwood Senior Member

    Given the nature of White Cedar, I would say strip plank construction is the obvious choice. More accurately it would be- strip plank cored construction. (Requiring a structural fiber and epoxy skin)
    Then looking at the size of your crew and the ambitious route you have chosen it seems that you will need a steed of at least 40 ft+- better yet 45ft +.
    There are many multi designs like this out there. ---Shionning-Hughes-Grainger-Crowther-etc-etc.
     
  5. PAR
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    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    Yep, DGreenwood has it. I'd recommend the Lindsey Lord Method on a multi, for best performance.
     
  6. Tad
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    Tad Boat Designer

    Northern White Cedar bonds well with epoxy but it is very soft and weak, also usually knotty (defects). We have used it quite a bit as diagonal core layers in multi-layer cold-molded hulls and decks. A multi-layer diagonal laminated core will be stiffer (in more directions) than strip planks which will be stiff in only one direction. As stated above the wood can be used as core but structural fiberglass (multiple layers of biax fabric) inside and out will be needed.

    I think very few modern multi-hulls are designed for wood construction, they all seem to be foam cored these days. John Marples would be the man to contact.
     
  7. PAR
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    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    I think Tad has some points, but for a novice build, molding isn't the method I would recommend, though it can produce a light hull (not as light as a Lord method though). Strip planking in inherently novice friendly. The Lord method take strip to the next level, insuring it's strength and durability with high modulus fabrics/resins and reasonable laminate thicknesses. Unlike many strip methods which rely on considerable longitudinal stiffness from the strips, the Lord method uses the strips more as a core and panel stiffness is a function of the sandwich construction, with strains worn on the mandatory biax laminates. Many aren't too familiar with the Lord method. I've taken it heart and modified it to some degree. For a light weight, amateur built hull, it's the way to go.
     
  8. DGreenwood
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    DGreenwood Senior Member

    Absolutely one of the best and fastest ways to crank out a good lightweight hull for an amateur. Be warned, though, that your 60 acres of trees don't really contribute that much to the overall cost of building a boat.

    There are, in fact, quite a few pretty cool multi designs out there that use the strip method. Combined with lightweight cored panels for the bulkheads and interiors, you can keep the weights within pretty good performance standards.
    Shionning has a new design I really like (but I go for performance rather than cruisy designs) that is in the 45' range. This is just one example.It is the G-Force1400...Check it out
    http://www.schionningdesigns.com.au/www/welcome.cfm
     
  9. ProjectFiji.com
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    ProjectFiji.com Junior Member

    Thanks for all the great responses. I understand that the cedar will only go so far towards the overall costs. But it's a starting point. Sorry it took me so long to get back on here. I was up at camp all weekend long.

    I'm gonna have to do some research on the Lord method of boat building as I'm not familiar. At this point, I've read Buehler's Backyard Boatbuilding and Gerr's Elements of Strength. I really liked Buehler's concepts and the way that he presented them. Simple. Basic. Strong.

    Keep the good input coming.
     
  10. PAR
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    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    When George wrote his book, many of the concepts were valid, mostly because the construction grade materials he suggested being employed were of reasonable quality. An example would be MDO plywood. Back then a 1/2" sheet of MDO was 5 equal thickness veneers, few to no voids and panel construction was very good. Now the same stuff has three unequal thickness veneers, lots of voids and much lower quality control in it's construction.

    Back in the late 60's and early 70's when the home building craze was in full swing, lots of this style of construction was promoted. Hundreds of trimarans where slammed together with galvanized nails and sheathed in polyester. They didn't last long, but the craze kept them coming. George's concepts fit right in with this "live free" attitude of the era. They're not as well suited today.

    Geer's book does mention The Lord method briefly, in the wooden build methods section. You'll likely have to find a copy of Lindsey Lord's book to get a better idea of how it works.
     
  11. cahudson42
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    cahudson42 Junior Member

    Have you run across a copy of Brent Swain's Origami Boatbuilding book? Even if you build in wood, it might have some useful tips. Brent is not bashful about his opinions, and to me this helps make it a fun read.

    And seriously, if I had the opportunity to sail the globe as you plan, I'd be more comfortable with a hull of steel.

    Your Northern White Cedar could perhaps help finance the build instead. A great wood for outdoor/Adirondack furniture for example. But I can never seem to find it, and end up using Western Red instead.

    In any event, best wishes for success on whatever you build.:)
     
  12. Tad
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    Tad Boat Designer

    Actually there is a version of "origami" style construction for cold-molded boats called "Constant Camber(TM)". Created by Jim Brown, Dick Newick, and John Marples, with the help of Chris White.

    CC construction uses a single mold which is a section of a torus, or donut, having a constant radius cross section with a larger radius in the other (longitudinal) direction. With constant curvature throughout the mold all pieces are identical, simplifying layout and manufacture. A big panel is laid up in 3-4 diagonal layers, and vacuum bagged to cure. The edges of this panel are cut out on the mold and their shape controls the final shape of the boat. Multiple panels can be scarfed or butted together to make a single long panel. The deck can be built on the same mold.
     
  13. ProjectFiji.com
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    ProjectFiji.com Junior Member

    I've thought about using the Cedar to finance either a buy or build using different materials. I'm open to all options. I understand that the cedar as a material isn't going to go far into the build process, but plan on either selling it or bartering it for the other required goods.

    I've started to draw up some plans that use 1" thick Cedar carvel planked on single chine hulls. 2x6 or 2x4 frames.

    Why would, or wouldn't this work?
     
  14. rasorinc
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    rasorinc Senior Member

    white cedar

    Here is a link to wood for boatbuilding on the Glen-L site. It lists both Atlantic and Northern Cedar and tells why it is not good for use in boats. Stan
    http://www.glen-l.com/ scroll down on left for woods and plywoods then click on softwoods and hardwoods
     

  15. ProjectFiji.com
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    ProjectFiji.com Junior Member

    Is this what you are referring to:

    CEDAR, NORTHERN WHITE
    21 lbs. per cubic foot, 1.75 lbs. per board foot
    Very similar to Atlantic white cedar, but because of small trees, its use is limited to small boat construction only, especially conventional planking. It is grown mostly in the Northeastern United States, and has little use in plywood boat building.

    It's pretty much the same info that Gerr uses in his book. But Gerr says that White Cedar can be used for planking on boats up to 45'. Which is correct and why?
     
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