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Old 14-06-2014, 01:11   #31
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Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Thailand / Malaysia
Boat: Aluminium 44' cutter-ketch
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Re: Aluminium hulls

My I recommended the attached link for members who would like to better educate themselves about (professionally built) alloy sailing boat construction.
Be warned – Futuna yachts are big boys toys and I expect may be financially beyond the reach of most readers. Nevertheless the site explains the question - “Why aluminium for boat building??” very well and is of excellent educational value for those not so well informed.
In response to an earlier post that alloy boats are ugly ------- I defy anyone to call the alloy boat shown in the link, an ugly boat!

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Old 14-06-2014, 07:09   #32
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Re: Aluminium hulls

Kasten has a very good discussion about Aluminum use in boats on his website, Aluminum For Boats and Aluminum Strength vs Steel Strength

Aluminum has to be welded with a bit more care than steel but given that the boats is 39 years old that would seem to indicate the wells are good but they should still be checked.

Having metal in the bilge of the aluminum boat is a concern but one easy to solve by painting the bilge with epoxy paint.

Aluminum vs steel is an interesting decision. If our plans work out we will have a steel boat. On the other hand, I would love to have an aluminum boat. For roughly the same strength of boat, the aluminum boat would be lighter and more fuel efficient. I happen to like the look of unpainted aluminum and having no paint saves money and time.

If you are interested in metal boats, join the Metal Boat Society, read their news letters and post on their website.


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Old 14-06-2014, 20:03   #33
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Re: Aluminium hulls

Originally Posted by u4ea32 View Post
.......... within a year or so, that (aluminium) hull will look like a workboat, a garbage scow barge. Like too many things: great in theory, very bad in practice.
In reply to u4ea32 /post #20. It appears to me that your emotional post expresses a high level of personal anger towards alloy boats. I can only assume that you may have been badly wounded by some traumatic personal experience with an alloy boat at an earlier time

I note from your profile that the boat you are building is scheduled to launch in 2014, and your plan to sail off into the sunset. Given your expressed personal dislike for alloy boats, I would encourage you to now disclose for the benefit of CF members, the design, model, and construction material of the boat that you perceive to be the perfect vessel for crossing oceans. Maybe even post a few pictures. I assume from your earlier posts that its not an alloy boat, so what is it???.
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Old 15-06-2014, 05:01   #34
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Location: Hobart
Boat: Alloy Peterson 40
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Re: Aluminium hulls

I was convinced of the benefits of metal boats when I saw an old aluminium open 60 after being caught in the pack ice down down near commonwealth bay in Antarctica. She had been graunched about for a few days and the ice had started climbing over the deck. There were dents 1 foot deep but only one small split up near the stem. When the ice opened up she sailed 1500nm back to Hobart with the bottoms of the rudders gone, prop mangled and dents everywhere, but still got home safely.

It's hard to imagine a fibreglass boat surviving that sort of abuse. Though some boats with kevlar are pretty tough. And fibreglass is deceptively strong, it doesn't have the ability to significantly yeild and permanently stretch, absorbing damage without rupture that metals have.

The open 60 was pretty lightly constructed, I think 4mm topsides on a boat that weighed about 15 tonnes. She was repaired and is still sailing to antarctica. Her unpainted bilges looked fine after twenty years of hard use.
My Ramblings
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Old 15-06-2014, 11:01   #35
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Re: Aluminium Hulls

The pictures of Panope are similar to my experience. Apparently some think that level of problem is OK. I don't. Its OK to have different standards.

I only go offshore in well built boats. That sometimes includes boats that have bad reputations but that are in fact solid, at least at the time I sail them. The aluminum boats I have sailed and from which my experience is based, were built by top builders: Abeking, PJ, Sparcraft, Derecktor, ... with top sailors overseeing the build, such as Eric Taberly.

The emotional memories are all very positive. The technical and, with the aluminum boats, aesthetic problems were just that.

I figure there is no reason that yachts MUST exist. I cannot imagine a reason to build or own an ugly boat.

Opinions vary. I share mine. Its a large trade space.

Foam core e-glass, vinyl esther, is my choice.

Photos will be shared.

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