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Old 31-01-2006, 01:57   #121
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Hey Wheels,Mudnut here,Ive been looking at a few FC's over this way.The main land ,the main land mate,not the little Island to the left of the ditch OK!!And ya do seem to get a lot more boat for ya buck.I read lots of ya stuff and really enjoy it when ya tell em the facts,yep their must have been a lot of backyard **** going on in the states and north of there,I thought those blokes were supposed to be able to fix anything,pitty they carnt have a better garbage containment system on board USS Ronald Reagan,anyway back to my bar bar ,OOps,I meant Bla Bla.Alot of the for sale signs over here have Designer/builder you know the ****.Anyway are there any builders that you would consider of high reputation in regards to FC's.Im looking at one at the moment 35ft been around the world,32,000 but built by the only owner ,"home made". and has a mention in an Alan Lucas book,**** hasent he wrote a few.the boats name is SEE HORSE,no typo there and to make things seem easier I talked to the owner and he sounds so salty,but Im a bit uneasy about all these replys about back yarders.Please answer my question first and my fears last.By the way has the furry one shown up yet,regards-Mudnut
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Old 31-01-2006, 07:46   #122
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There is a good articel on ferro boats in the winter issue of BoatWorks magazine. Should answer lots of questions.
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Old 31-01-2006, 11:47   #123
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Not heard of Boatworks mag Kiteboy. You couldn't mail it to me when you are finished with it could you??

Hey Mudnut, keeping that red dust outa things?

Well, if the boat has traeled that sort of distance with no issues, I think the answer is within that. All you need to ensure a good buy, is to ensure you have a pre-purchase survey. If anything is wrong anywhere, it will be glaringly obviuose at this stage in it's life.
We had the odd disarster built here in NZ back in the 70's as well. None of these boats exist anymore. A little off on a tangent here, but our insurance company insured us because our boat was so new. (1997) Actually, it's more prudent to insure one that is older and that gets a good survey report.
Anyway's, The biggest mistake by backyarders are as follow's.
1: They took a design not intened to be built in FC and never had any aspect of the design run past a designer/naval archetect. These boats usually sail like a pig because balance and weight is up the wop. Now also in saying that, some dsigns never intended for FC, have been built and handled successfully.
2: The back yarder thought the strength was in the plaster, so made it thicker to make it stronger. OR, the plasterers had no idea what they were doing and made the plaster thicker.
The result is the same as for No.1
3: The tops sides, bulkheads, basically everything thing that could be, was made in FC. The result, to much weight above the the waterline. Result, same as No.1 There are a few designs that do call for decks or cabins to be made in FC. So don't imediately rule out one that is. Just insure it was designed to be that way. As I said though, as for No.1, it becomes reasonably ocbviouse.
4. Poor materials or plastering techniques. If the boat has some age and some sea miles, any problems in this area will be so obviuose, you won't even have to be an expert.
PLEASE NOTE: Cracks!!!. This is a difficult area if you don't really know what you are looking at at first. It is sometimes common to see hairline cracks in the surface of the plaster. They are 9.9 x out of 10, nothing to worry about. Often they are superficial. A stress crack will be seen around frames. If you thump the hull with your hand, you can hear the difference in tone when you come across an internal support structure. A stress crack will be either side of that support. Even then, it isn't always a worry. If it is airline, then once again, it usualy doesn't go far. The way to tell?? once the hull is up on the hard and dried off for a few hrs, you will see seriuose issues as they well remain wet for sometime. If you are really worried, you can fill the inside of the bildge with water and see what continues to leak. Now this doesn't mean the hull is a write off. It can often be very easyily repaired. It can be used in favour for you to get a better deal on the buy price.
4. the rest is really what you would expect to be looking at in any yacht survey.
Hope that helps, yell if I didn't cover anything.

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Old 31-01-2006, 23:51   #124
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Wheels,ya been reading in ya sleep?,like I said I read lots,If not all of what you post.That stuff about the cracks and all I have allready taken on board,thanks again.Ive been reading Hartleys FC boat building by R.T himself and A.J.Reid,very interesting stuff and a fairly detailed book considering Its realatively a simple building medium.Now I know Hartleys were pro FC builders,I was just wondering "If you knew of any other Pro FC builders that may have boats lurking in Oz waters"I wouldnt imagine there to be to many.Hartleys home is Takapuna NTH if Im not mistaken and surely they wernt the only Pros doing FC.I think Id be more tempted if It wasnt a backyarder."Have ya found the furry one yet???"
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Old 01-02-2006, 00:52   #125
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The Samson range of Sailboats are another one you may find in Oz. Samson C-Quence 36, C-Breeze 45, C-Duece 45, C-Lord 53, C-Baron 55, C-Fever 62 and C-Witch 63.
Colin Brookes Book notes two businesses that were involved with FC in OZ. Kam Walker, Sydney Harbour Trust. They may or may not be still trading and I don't know what exactly they did. Colin also acknowledges three Oz designers, Joe Adams, Wilf O'kell and Bruce Roberts-Goodson.

Nup, no furry one. Spent all weekend looking. Going back this weekend, but I think she is well and truely gone. There are heaps of Mice and Rats in the bush. So hopefully she is happy. I think if she wasn't, she would have come to the house in the bay looking for food and shelter. Maybe she still will. We have become good freinds with the owner. She runs a small B&B and lodge and we are helping her with bringing out supplies as she needs.
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Old 01-02-2006, 01:00   #126
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Wheels.

As far as I know. Bruce Roberts-Goodson doesn't deal with ferrocement.

Over a year ago. I personnelly sent him an email. Now this man answers his emails personnelly. And I asked him if he deals with ferro.

At this time when I asked this question. I had written plenty of email letters to Bruce Roberts. He's a world known designer. But, he never answered that question. And he never replied to that email.

So that tells me that he does not deal with ferro?
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Old 01-02-2006, 02:15   #127
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Wheels."Now ya cooking!!"Ok.Yes a lot of those names ring a big bell in my hunt for a /the boat for me.The one I was talking about was a wilf O'kell design,"where does he hail from,seems to be a lot of those for sale over here,some actually look ancient and very romantic.Im also looking at a boat called "Birdsong"Its in the boat point web site for Oz/NZ.Its not ferro but if ya take a look It might show ya what style of boat Im after.Im just looking to sail PNG,torres strait,and maybe asia up to Thailand.Its old,wooden,but with a lot of class.similar to the Roy Hawkins thats for sale in NZ,Ithink Beacon have it on their books.Sad about the furry one ,but wev'e all heard those stories of loved ones finding their way back home.thanks anyway Wheels.
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Old 01-02-2006, 05:13   #128
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Bruce Roberts used to have quite a few Ferro designs. I went to his website and was a little surprised to see that he no longer lists them as being for sale. I must say that I agree with that decision. I see ferro cement as offering no advantage to the amatuer builder and really question whether there is an advantage for the profesional builder as well.

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Old 01-02-2006, 11:44   #129
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Jeff
Just cause you dont like ferro, it doesnt mean everybody has to rubbish them. Your views on this subject are pretty well known by now, and are not a lot of help to people who do like the material, and the resultant product.

Its not my choice either, and have yet to see a ferro catamaran (seen wood, GRP, steel and aluminium ones though!). I can still appreciate the reason some people choose this route.
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Old 01-02-2006, 12:56   #130
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Hey Jeff H.

Just like what Talbot said. You're too well known for bashing ferro boats.

Tell ya what. For those who like ferros, keep on posting ferro posts here.

And for those like (Jeff H) should keep the comments to yourself. If you personally, do not like ferro. Just leave this post alone?

I happen to love ferro. Eventhough, I do not own one. I just might get one later on. And I have stated on this forum at the beginning, when I first joined this forum. I had a great interest into ferro. I still do actually?

I don't want to bash you personally over the head Jeff H. But, come on man!! Let up on your personal bashing. And let those who like ferro, learn more about ferro's. Learn more about them. And make their posts. Let them exchange information. Without all the negetive comments?

Ferro's have had too much bashing in the past, and present. I happen to advocate ferro's. And will still do. Eventhough, if I get a great deal on a fiberglass built boat. I will still advocate positively for ferro-cement boats!!
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Old 01-02-2006, 21:52   #131
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Actually I don't mind Jeff's comments. I think it is good to get all views. He does make some good points and certainly has the technical ability to throw around the numbers. The more info available, helps us all make the wise decisions. Plus, it offers good argument and criticism on both sides. When Jeff makes a comment, another may have a rebuttle that will shed some light from a different angle.
So here is my angle.
The major issue with FC that I see is the plastering. It is simply NOT a one man job. If the builder doesnot have access to skilled help at the plastering stage, he should not consider the FC as a practicle project. Apart from that, the FC boat has got to be one of the eaisest to build. You just have to follow the rules. But no more than say, mixing Resin correctly.
I don't believe this is, or ever has been any advantage to a proffesional builder. It's why Proffesional builders have never been able to make ago at it. It is the amature that has all the advantages. Even ones like Colin Brookes and other such names, do these projects in a "semi-pro" approach. Where they are building a boat as an individual in a sense. You simply can't build one economicaly in a boat yard situation with dozens of guy's standing around. There is not enough cost saving to be made on a Hull to warrant the process.
The biggest assets in FC that I see, is it's longevity, cheapness and ease of repair, strength of the hull.
FC boats are cheap because they were cheaper to build. They also tend to hold their price, even though that was low to begin with.
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Old 01-02-2006, 22:49   #132
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Well Wheels.

I can agree to a point with you about Jeff.

He may know some engineering stuff. Or just is mathetmatically inclined, to the point of being close to an engineer?

Yes. People could use all the angles. But, the constant bashing is very tiring? And I agree with you there also!!

But, if a person were to approach this intelligently? Then, using professional help in laying up a hull. Then there is very good potentinal, for a very good sound hull!!

Not following that, could invite disaster at a later time?
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Old 02-02-2006, 14:19   #133
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Italian Plasterer

When I had my boat plastered I employed a professional Italian plaster who had done several boats, but was normally a house plasterer. He arrived with a team of four workers and they did a fast fair competent job. This was two shot so they came back later to do the second shot, four weeks after the first had cured.
If there may be a problem with the experience of the plasterers then two (or even three) shot may be the way to go.
The two shot technique is very similar to the way a house is plastered in that the plasterer loads up his trowel with the right amount of "mud" and slams it into the armature(make sure that the armature is well braced!). A good plasterer can do this very well. The disadvantage in my case was that they did too good a job and little nobs appeared on the inside. It was a lengthy tedious job to cut them off but the result was a thin fair hull.
I did not use any joining substance. No problems were experienced.
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Old 02-02-2006, 20:31   #134
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Maybe I am wrong on this, but it is my belief that if this forum is to have meaning then a discussion should look at all sides of a topic and not just be a fan club, even if that means that someones sacred cow gets gored.

As to my comments above, which I admit, in hindsight, were too brief to be meaningful, when I saw that someone was talking about Bruce Roberts not selling plans for Ferrocement boats I was surprised because I have lofted a Bruce Roberts' design for a fellow planning to build it in ferrocement. I looked on the Bruce Roberts site and was surprised that Ferro was no longer listed there and I thought that the historical perspective would be helpful as well as supporting his decision.

I also made my comment because I think of the designs by Bruce Roberts as being the haven of amatuer builders looking for set of cheap drawings. (Yes I know some are professionally built). And I thought it might be helpful to comment on my experience with this material for amatuer construction. That could have been stated more clearly.

I don't know how many of you have ever been involved in actually building a ferro-cement boat, but compared to the building of fiberglass boats and wooden boats that I have been involved in ferro takes the most skill and the most time and frankly done properly saves little or no money. The last time that I was involved in a comparative cost estimate for the materials to properly build the form, buy the reinforcing and high grade cement to build a Ferro cement boat, vs the costs to either build a wooden boat or a glass boat, the Ferro boat was more time consuming and came in equal or more expensive.

The hull is a very small part of the cost of a boat, and carefully building an interior into a ferrocement boat proved much more difficult than other building technique. As has been pointed out above, I have discussed the engineering aspects of ferrocement else where so I won't get into that here but I did think that it is relevant to discuss build issues when the discussion turns to someone thinking of building in ferro.

I am sorry if some of you resent the fact that I am trying to provide a realistic, albeit counterpoint, personal perspective that comes from having sailed on, worked on designs for and having actually helped build boats in this material.

I won't have my feelings hurt if you choose to avert your eyes when you see one of my posts on this topic. And if you wish to refute my points, I would be glad to see divergent opinions. I would appresiate if you wished put up some numbers or describe your experience as Chris has. To me Chris's post clearly supports exactly what I was trying to say above about the skill level and manpower required to properly build a Ferrocement boat and made the point that frankly with as much skilled labor as he needed, he still did not end up building the boat in a single shot as is the generally recommended method for building a long lived, structurally sound ferrocement boat.

Respectfully,
Jeff
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Old 02-02-2006, 21:54   #135
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Well Jeff H.

It's nice that you are a architect and sometimes yacht designer.

And that's how come you could provide such a definitive argument against ferros?

Sure. Like I said earlier. There have been alot of shady people in the past taking too many shortcuts. While building a ferrocement boat.

By doing that. Well!! Like alot of us here on the forum. Have seen derelict abandoned ferro hulls sittting around. On many properties and backyards?

That's the price some people do pay. And yes. It's a damn shame that these people took those shortcuts. And many of these ferro's actually made it to the sea. And made many voyages before they realize their mistakes. By taking shortcuts. Improperly laying the cement over the wire mesh. Etc. Etc. .

I'm with you, on that disagreement there Jeff H. And I wouldn't steer you away from that thought. And my disagreement was more likely falling into the realm of trying to get you to ease up a little. But, ok. I understand a little better on where you're coming from.

And yes. Bruce Roberts used to deal with ferrocement boats, back in the heyday. But not in quite a good while? I have researched Bruce Roberts designs. I even ordered his boat building books. Quite good reading I do might add!!

But yes. I have had lengthy email letters with Bruce. And he and I had developed a little repertoire ther for a while. Because of all the constant emails going back and forth etc. etc. . So I have asked him that question about ferros. He never answered my email letter about that. I asked him again. Nothing? I guess, he just doesn't want to deal with that stuff no more!!
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