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Old 13-12-2012, 07:48   #31
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Re: Steel over GRP !!!

Steel is real! I wouldn't turn down a nice Waterline 48.

There is also something Hulk like to be able to say "my boat crush!"

But there is just the practical to consider which is why most have fiberglass boats!
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Old 13-12-2012, 08:12   #32
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Re: Steel over GRP !!!

But make sure you also get a liferaft. Then when you hit something hard in the middle of the night - container, reef, another boatie etc- and the sea rushes in thru the gaping hole, you'll be able to reflect on all those long hours you saved not scraping rust. [/QUOTE]

Or you can buy a quality FG boat from a reputable manufacturer; our Pearson took a hit from a container in a gale between Newport and Bermuda and other than losing a bit of boot stripe paint and being thrown onto our beam ends, she was fine.
As to reefs, I kinda think the idea is NOT to hit them. If you're going sailing with hitting reefs in mind, by all means buy steel! Pretty much the same for other boats, I'd think.
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Old 13-12-2012, 08:17   #33
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Re: Steel over GRP !!!

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Originally Posted by S/V Alchemy View Post
You stay in the harbour for eons?

Again, the disconnect between materials and use has little if any bearing on the material.
I'm not quite sure what your point is or was. I didn't say my boat. I was referring to peoples dreams and unfullfilled expectations. There are many people who build in their backyard for 10 years because they got caught up in the "Do it yourself and save" (Bruce Roberts being famous for this thinking). Some how they've convinced themselves that they absolutely cannot live without a Grand piano onboard and build a 53 ft. Spray. After $100,000 or so, and now in their 50's with no savings, and a boat that looks like a lumpy potato, they will have to work another 10 years to go cruising. Meanwhile the boat sits. Usually in a hot harbor.
Take a walk around any harbor. See the forgotten dreams. Sure 1 out of 50 might go but the odds are stacked against it. I have seen many of these steel projects hauled out getting their hull repaired. Imagine the resale value of these.
I've had both...the OP wants to go cruising. he has worked on Steel boats a long time. Do you really think he want to continue doing maintenance on steel that he has for 42 years?
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Old 13-12-2012, 09:01   #34
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Re: Steel over GRP !!!

"If you're going sailing with hitting reefs in mind, by all means buy steel! Pretty much the same for other boats, I'd think."

LOL

That would be my problem!
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Old 13-12-2012, 11:08   #35
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Re: Steel over GRP !!!

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Take a walk around any harbor. See the forgotten dreams. Sure 1 out of 50 might go but the odds are stacked against it. I have seen many of these steel projects hauled out getting their hull repaired. Imagine the resale value of these.
I've had both...the OP wants to go cruising. he has worked on Steel boats a long time. Do you really think he want to continue doing maintenance on steel that he has for 42 years?
On the other hand, who better to own a steel boat? I stated that prep is critical: I have found (so far, admittedly) that "touch-ups" are really not a big deal on my boat; to this I attribute a fastidious builder with the knowledge to avoid creating spots for standing water, or indeed, any water.

As for the "forgotten dreams", this is endemic across the boating community. There are many spots, such as Panama, where cruising dreams go to die and the ears of divorce lawyers begin to burn. That is a function of a marriage where too little communication went on, not steel vs. fibreglass. Life gets in the way of the cruising life, and it is relatively rare that both husband and wife want to "sell up and sale" (I am most fortunate in this aspect as I have a "sailor wife"). The glut of well-maintained, discounted cruisers on the market over the last 10 years is testament to that and to the advancing demographics of the people who first bought boats in the "golden age" of the 1970s and 1980s.

These factors to my mind render notions like "resale value" moot. I haven't sold the house to buy the (steel) boat, and if we ever do sell it, I have confidence I'll find another weirdo like myself who will appreciate its qualities of ruggedness and good construction.

Now, I have to go shave down some rubber cone plugs for the limber holes in the first of three collision bulkheads...
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Old 13-12-2012, 13:00   #36
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Re: Steel over GRP !!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by S/V Alchemy View Post
On the other hand, who better to own a steel boat? I stated that prep is critical: I have found (so far, admittedly) that "touch-ups" are really not a big deal on my boat; to this I attribute a fastidious builder with the knowledge to avoid creating spots for standing water, or indeed, any water.

As for the "forgotten dreams", this is endemic across the boating community. There are many spots, such as Panama, where cruising dreams go to die and the ears of divorce lawyers begin to burn. That is a function of a marriage where too little communication went on, not steel vs. fibreglass. Life gets in the way of the cruising life, and it is relatively rare that both husband and wife want to "sell up and sale" (I am most fortunate in this aspect as I have a "sailor wife"). The glut of well-maintained, discounted cruisers on the market over the last 10 years is testament to that and to the advancing demographics of the people who first bought boats in the "golden age" of the 1970s and 1980s.

These factors to my mind render notions like "resale value" moot. I haven't sold the house to buy the (steel) boat, and if we ever do sell it, I have confidence I'll find another weirdo like myself who will appreciate its qualities of ruggedness and good construction.

Now, I have to go shave down some rubber cone plugs for the limber holes in the first of three collision bulkheads...
Well you have definitely done it correctly in regards to buying a good boat and if you keep up on the paint...great. I know there is a lot to understand with steel boats and hopefully you're up on the latest electrical gizmos to alleviate stray currents.
I have a friend whose Roberts 43 was in a marina in Mexico and one day noticed his water from the integral tanks tasted salty. He hauled out and was greeted to pin holes on the bottom. I don't have the details as he didn't want to elaborate and I knew well enough not to make him feel any worst. He had the areas fixed and left it on the hard. He told me that he sleeps better knowing the boat is safe on Mx on the hard while he sleeps at night 3000 miles away.
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Old 13-12-2012, 14:17   #37
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Re: Steel over GRP !!!

Again many thanks to all those who have contributed to my post, as always there will be many different points of views !!.
My steel yacht option is a 1991 44ft Swedish design, with teak deck on steel that all needs to come off, I am thinking of painting the deck with anti-slip paint after making good and not replace the teak, the GRP being a 44ft 1984 Irwin in good order (it seems), both are around the same price and centre cockpit versions which is what we are after as we fancy the aft stateroom space.
The steel yacht being fitted with a bow thruster and water maker beyond that the spec of both are similar. I think the answer is to check all the hidden nooks and crannies on both yachts and then spin a coin !!! Cheers all.
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Old 13-12-2012, 17:30   #38
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Re: Steel over GRP !!!

Swedish design but where built?

Sweden has never been great in steel boats. Sweden was all wood and then they quickly went for plastics.

You want a steel boat, go hunting to Holland. (If EU based.)

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Old 13-12-2012, 17:53   #39
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Re: Steel over GRP !!!

Some could say fiberglass boats are toys, and that steel boats are "for real." (Gee, just pay your money and take your choice.) Don't like the idea of a wood core covered by fiberglass although my Coot's pilothouse roof is so constructed.

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Old 13-12-2012, 21:30   #40
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Re: Steel over GRP !!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Celestialsailor View Post
Well you have definitely done it correctly in regards to buying a good boat and if you keep up on the paint...great. I know there is a lot to understand with steel boats and hopefully you're up on the latest electrical gizmos to alleviate stray currents.
I have a friend whose Roberts 43 was in a marina in Mexico and one day noticed his water from the integral tanks tasted salty. He hauled out and was greeted to pin holes on the bottom. I don't have the details as he didn't want to elaborate and I knew well enough not to make him feel any worst. He had the areas fixed and left it on the hard. He told me that he sleeps better knowing the boat is safe on Mx on the hard while he sleeps at night 3000 miles away.
There are definite concerns with steel, certainly, and I have a number of books on the necessity to galvanically isolate the hull, proper deployment of anodes and various other technics to have the steel cake and eat the electricity...hmmm...bad imagery. Anyway, I hope to master these problems conceptually and operationally before we actually regularly sleep aboard, as we plan.

For reference, this is the boat I am (re)fitting out:



There are of course problems with any boat material. Perhaps I'm a bit touchy because I'm currently reading "Two Against the Horn". Set in the mid-'70s, it's the story of the Roths and how they managed to fix a significant rent in their Spencer 35 beached about 25 miles from Cape Horn. Welding in a fresh plate seems somehow more plausible than that, but of course had they had steel, maybe the beaching could have been solved with a rubber mallet and some two-part paint.

My "pro-steel" stance is personal, in that I don't care if anyone else buys a steel boat, and experiental, in that my wife and I were present when some B-team louts at a yard managed to spill our steel boat and its cradle off a trailer and six inches into the tarmac. The pad closest to the cradle impact dished in a plate a bit and cracked the interior paint job. It would have left a nice square punch out in fibreglass. I know this because I've seen FG boat collisions and crane mishaps.

So I like steel for its ability to take a hit. I've seen some things aft at sea I wish I'd seen forward first, and that means steel is a comfort. So is a collision bulkhead, too.

But realistically, the world of sub-50 footers is 90% FG. Interestingly, the world of 50 degree N and S sailing is predominantly metal. Conclusions may be drawn according to their relevance to one's plans.
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Old 13-12-2012, 21:35   #41
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Re: Steel over GRP !!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Just Cruisin View Post
Again many thanks to all those who have contributed to my post, as always there will be many different points of views !!.
My steel yacht option is a 1991 44ft Swedish design, with teak deck on steel that all needs to come off, I am thinking of painting the deck with anti-slip paint after making good and not replace the teak, the GRP being a 44ft 1984 Irwin in good order (it seems), both are around the same price and centre cockpit versions which is what we are after as we fancy the aft stateroom space.
The steel yacht being fitted with a bow thruster and water maker beyond that the spec of both are similar. I think the answer is to check all the hidden nooks and crannies on both yachts and then spin a coin !!! Cheers all.
Get it surveyed BY A STEEL BOAT SURVEYOR ONLY, and if you see a bilge filled with orangey foam, avoid. Trapped moisture is a killer of steel. Steel boats are fine insulated with (ideally) sheets of closed-cell down to the waterline, but should be just painted beneath. Bring a dental or extendable mirror and a digital camera and seek out the nooks and crannies, particularly at the chines or where the frames could impede water.

Irwins are steady, not fast and fairly rugged boats, but if you are going off the beaten track, steel could be very nice indeed. If you buy it, don't bin that teak...learn to make dovetail joins and use it to make attractive "authentic" cabinetry!
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Old 13-12-2012, 21:40   #42
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Re: Steel over GRP !!!

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If you buy it, don't bin that teak...learn to make dovetail joins and use it to make attractive "authentic" cabinetry!
Best advice on the whole thread.
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Old 13-12-2012, 22:40   #43
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Re: Steel over GRP !!!

Steel boats, I wish I knew more about them.

I own John G. Alden Design No. 947, to my knowledge she is one of kind, made of steel 56.5 feet on deck and 15.5 feet in beam.
The hull was fabricated by the Duwamish ship yard up in Seattle in 1958 and finished out by 1960 by Fellows and Stuart. So she is fifty plus years old and still floating.

She does have some corrosion issues in the gunnels, but so far in the three years I have owned her she has not leaked a drop
below the waterline and is pretty tight above the water too.

Some people with small fiberglass boats tell me they wouldn't take the Alden if I gave her to them and I understand that.

I have been welding for years but I am sure I am still learning and have more to learn.

The John Q. Alden Boothbay Explorer at 58 feet is a close approximation of my "Andiamo" but in fiberglass. I don't know how those boats will be when they are fifty years old and I don't know how repairable they will be, but for me I prefer the steel.

Being an Alden design and nearly 60 feet with 1400 gallons of fuel with a strong six cylinder Mercedes truck engine she makes me feel that there just isn't much in the way of a fiberglass boat that I could feel was more boat that the old steel Alden.

I keep telling myself, if I want a better boat I just have to make this one better and that, I'm told is the beauty of steel, it is very repairable and the steel itself is fairly inexpensive.

Fortunately I bought a boat to work on because I haven't done much sailing but that's okay with me because I'm having a good
time and so far I'm glad I bought a steel boat. When I've sailed her I feel a strength against the wave and sea that wasn't there in any of the fiberglass or wood boats I owned or sailed.

Packard used to say, "ask the man who drives one." Well I say, steel is real, rust never sleeps and make sure you are real handy or got big pockets of money if you are contemplating a steel boat.

I think a steel boat takes knowledge and commitment that a lot of people are not going to have. I see fiberglass boats with a little
bit of teak and the owners can't even keep that up. These people definitely do not have steel boat owner potential.

Hope my comments don't frighten anyone off that is realistically thinking of a steel boat. bye for now
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Old 13-12-2012, 22:40   #44
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Your steel boat goes up on a reef: you wait around while it gets repaired or search far and wide for another quality steel boat. My GRP boat goes up on a reef the little balsa bits float away and I simply buy another readily available GRP boat in the next cruiser harbor. kinda joking, kinda not.
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Old 13-12-2012, 22:51   #45
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Re: Steel over GRP !!!

Has no one mentioned the other big advantage of steel (esp. in Oz).

It's way cheaper!
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