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Old 09-10-2008, 19:13   #16
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Thanks for the link, looks a very nice boat. Glad to hear your father was able to get one good cruise around in her.

Don't know when I saw it in Nelson, the name just rang a bell as we sail to Nelson every year or two and obviously have a mooch around the boats - last visit was for 2-1/2 weeks during April/May this year, and next previous was autumn 2006.

If it is in Seaview would you let me know? That's where we are and I'd enjoy having a wander around to have a look.

John
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Old 12-10-2008, 07:29   #17
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We have owned fiberglass, steel and admittedly very small wooden boats. It is now our opinion that wood is best suited to small boats, or folks with very deep pockets who can afford to hire help. Love the way wood feels under sail but we no longer look towards wood for living aboard.
Our fiberglass boat was well laid up, had enough wood to not look stark , but also to keep one busy with finishes twice a season. Our steel boat, well, we paint, dump the goo in the bilges, check the inside of the hull for signs of rust and otherwise enjoy. Yes rust is the enemy, but I appreciate the steel hull when against rough walls, little paint might get abraded... oh well get the brush and paint out and it is taken care of.
All materials have their own peculiar maitenance issues, requiring time, money and elbow grease.
I hope you enjoy the boat and are able to sail it as much as you wish too.
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Old 12-10-2008, 07:39   #18
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Witchcraft,

Have you ever taken your boat south (or north) to salt water? Every Lake Ontario steel boat that goes south comes back bleeding rust all over. For example, a Goderich 35 from our club went south for one year. The owner spent the next two getting rid of rust. The worst part was the little flange under the teak bulwark cap. What a job that was!!
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Old 06-05-2010, 15:49   #19
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Have you ever taken your boat south (or north) to salt water? Every Lake Ontario steel boat that goes south comes back bleeding rust all over.
Pretty much the same thing could be said about the osmosis problems experienced by many fibreglass hulls in the tropics.

I agree with witchcraft: "All materials have their own peculiar maintenance issues, requiring time, money and elbow grease."
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Old 06-05-2010, 16:58   #20
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Fiberglass is best. It is easy to work on, cheap, and popular. Welding and steel work really aren't that easy.
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Old 06-05-2010, 20:41   #21
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Fiberglass is best. It is easy to work on, cheap, and popular. Welding and steel work really aren't that easy.
I really beg to differ with you on this..

check out some of my posts about the work I am doing with my steel Offshore 38.

I challenge anyone with a fiberglass boat to remove and relocate the cockpit and come out with something that looks like it was designed that way.

I agree with those who state tha the purpose of the boat dictates the materials that are most adequate.

I am planning a trip to the Antarctic, which dictates either steel or Aluminum, and Steel is easier to weld and repair than Aluminum, so that is the way I went.
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Old 06-05-2010, 22:00   #22
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I really beg to differ with you on this..

check out some of my posts about the work I am doing with my steel Offshore 38.

I challenge anyone with a fiberglass boat to remove and relocate the cockpit and come out with something that looks like it was designed that way.

I agree with those who state tha the purpose of the boat dictates the materials that are most adequate.

I am planning a trip to the Antarctic, which dictates either steel or Aluminum, and Steel is easier to weld and repair than Aluminum, so that is the way I went.
Interesting as I would have thought most who buy a boat would not be planing to relocate the cockpit or any other major structure? Fibreglass can be fixed or at least patched anywhere, you can't weld anywhere or not with what gear can easily be carried on a cruising boat, I am sure some one is about to tell me that they carry a welder, lathe and mill aboard though. The majority of cruising boats world wide are made from fibreglass that I would have thought would have said something about suitability of materials. Look on yacht world or other sights and you will see that steel boats are cheaper due to buyer resistance.
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Old 07-05-2010, 21:51   #23
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That being said, I believe that there are more ships made of steel than any other material by more than 10 to 1.

The primary reason for fiberglass as a building material has more to due with the cost effectiveness of laying up hulls in a mold vs fabricating over ribs with steel, than the "suitablity" of the product from a maintenance standpoint.

Steel can be welded in any conditions, even UNDERWATER, with reasonably priced equipment. (and yes, my welder has it's place on my boat)
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Old 07-05-2010, 22:07   #24
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steel? nay.
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Old 07-05-2010, 22:50   #25
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Steel Aye!

I'm with Rusty on this one. As a matter of fact we have the same boat

Steel boats will take a hell of a pounding and still live to tell the tale. Just for giggles look up Bernard Montessier and his boat Joshua. She went aground in Cabo San Lucas in the 80s during a major storm, and was the only boat of all that ended up high and dry to make it back to water. My first steel boat fell of a trailer at 60mph and slid down the highway on its side for about 800 feet. After putting her back on the repaired trailer, the previous owner beat the dents out with a 4x4 block of Oak and a hand sledge. A tad ugly to look at, but it never cracked a seam or split the plate. When I got her she was as rusty as all get out, having been stored outside without cover for several years and poorly painted. A days work with a sand blaster and she was ready to prime with epoxy, and that was it for rust.

My current boat has some rust on her, but with a small compressor and sand blaster that will be taken care of pretty quickly. The same applies to any corrosion I find inside as I do the rebuild. As for the equipment to do repairs and mods, I have a mig welder aboard. It takes up about 2 cubic feet of space. The generator which runs all my gear also puts out 230v so I have the power to run the welder. At the moment, cutting steel is something I have to do ashore as I don't have the equipment to do that yet. But it will be aboard when I leave. Vasco mentions a fellow who spent two years catching up on the corrosion from one season down south. I would put it to you that the fellow wasn't serious about doing the work, and/or probably didn't have access to sand blasting gear. That flange joint is a real monster to work on if you leave the teak attached, because you can't get into the joint without removing the teak. We all know how much of a pain that is, pulling the plugs out to get at the screws, and then making a mess of it. I would put it to you that sometimes its better to do without the wood. All steel toe rails, accessible from all sides, removes that problem. If you want teak trim, then perhaps attaching it in a different way would be the way to go. Personally I don't have a problem with exposed screw heads if it means I can pull the wood off and do a proper repair of the steel underneath.

I dare say that getting steel boats repaired is a lot easier out in the boonies than a glass boat, as pretty much all the fishing fleets of the world are steel. Corrosion is a problem but not an insurmountable one, just as glass boats get osmosis, or cracks or or delaminations. Things that need to be fixed. I'll bet I can find a steel plate or angle easier than you can find a pot of resin and hardener. Plus I can weld new fittings on, no need for sealer or drilling holes n stainless bolts. I can even fabricate the new fittings from raw materials. Try that with fibreglas.

One more thing to consider, is that as Oil becomes harder to find, so will resins for glass boats. Steel will be around a lot longer. I would expect private fiberglass boats to be out of production due to high building and repair costs in less than 20 years at the rate things are going.
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Old 07-05-2010, 23:49   #26
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SabreKai - Your post says it all you are very sold on steel. But look at it from a glass boat owners point of view, he does not need a welder, generator to run it and in your case you intend to have a cutting facility as well + room to store + expertise to use the equipment. Most operators of welders doing this type of repair are very poor welders as well. Are you going cruising or is the real hobby fixing the boat? I can patch a glass boat with some resin and glass matt in an emergency.
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Old 08-05-2010, 00:08   #27
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There are a lot of adhesives around that allow a steel patch to be glued in place and just as watertight and strong as the weld.

See here:
http://www.itwplexus.com/UserFiles/File/tds/32.pdf

With fiberglass you still need tools, grinders, sanders, etc. If you don't properly taper in a fiberglass patch, then count on it coming lose when the area gets stressed. Combine that with the problems from wood coring, etc, and repairing fiberglass is MUCH more difficult than steel. You will also need to carry spare resin and glass. god forbid that they get water contamination, otherwise you will need to try and find some decent quality resin or glass matt out in the boonies.

Of course if you do not sail outside the bounds of "civilization" then the glass repair is not an issue, but neither is finding a quality welder.

This is clearly an argument that can go both ways all night long, and that is not my intention. I just wanted to bring forth the other side of the discussion regarding steel vs glass from a maintenance and emergency repair perspective as well as the flexibility that is available with a steel boat that is not as readily available with glass regarding modifications to the built design.
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Old 08-05-2010, 01:24   #28
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There are a lot of adhesives around that allow a steel patch to be glued in place and just as watertight and strong as the weld.

See here:
http://www.itwplexus.com/UserFiles/File/tds/32.pdf

With fiberglass you still need tools, grinders, sanders, etc. If you don't properly taper in a fiberglass patch, then count on it coming lose when the area gets stressed. Combine that with the problems from wood coring, etc, and repairing fiberglass is MUCH more difficult than steel. You will also need to carry spare resin and glass. god forbid that they get water contamination, otherwise you will need to try and find some decent quality resin or glass matt out in the boonies.

Of course if you do not sail outside the bounds of "civilization" then the glass repair is not an issue, but neither is finding a quality welder.

This is clearly an argument that can go both ways all night long, and that is not my intention. I just wanted to bring forth the other side of the discussion regarding steel vs glass from a maintenance and emergency repair perspective as well as the flexibility that is available with a steel boat that is not as readily available with glass regarding modifications to the built design.
I respect your point of view but when it comes to small craft cruising yachts etc. I think worldwide you have a big job ahead convinceing the masses.
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Old 08-05-2010, 02:03   #29
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I bought a steel boat and I am more than happy. Previously I had a share in an older fibreglass boat and the deck leaked from nearly every fitting. My steel boat is the same age (albeit recently refitted/rebuilt in Thailand) and it is as solid as a rock. The downside is the rust. However, as with the fibreglass boat, most other materials will also perish and rust maintenance is not as difficult as some will have you believe.

The other upside is the strength. Mine has proven itself and I have sailed away from situations that might have sunk other boats with nothing more than a bit of antifouling missing.
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