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Old 09-06-2014, 09:26   #1
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Interested in Catamaran Cruiser Build Plans

Hello all, I'm looking for a little edification on your forum.

I grew up on the Texas gulf coast enjoying the plethora of water sports. My dad has always had boats, most of my friends own boats and my best friend from youth owns an offshore fishing charter business with 2 boats. I have never felt the need to own an ocean vessel. Until now!

I am a classically trained cabinetmaker and furniture maker with about 40 yrs experience and now I have decided to build a catamaran cruiser in the 40 foot range.

My wife (a disabled veteran from the first gulf war) has always wanted to cruise the Gulf and Caribbean coasts and beyond, as well as provide our children with a better understanding of the outside world.

I have found myself reading your forum several times over the past few years and have found plenty of good information herein. I have been searching the inter web looking for build plans and am hoping that some of you can direct me to what is available. I am considering designing my own but I don't want to waste too much time reinventing the wheel. Any information would be greatly appreciated, build plans, software options. I've been researching for a while and it feels like I've hit a brick wall.
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Old 09-06-2014, 09:44   #2
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Re: Interested in Catamaran Cruiser Build Plans

Welcome to CF.

For excellent sailing performance and good resale value check out the John Shuttleworth designs.

Price List for Plans

Here are some used on the market.
shuttleworth Boats For Sale
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Old 09-06-2014, 22:00   #3
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Re: Interested in Catamaran Cruiser Build Plans

Some additional designers -
James Wharram, Kurt Hughes, Jim Brown, John Marples, Richard Woods, there's lots more.
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Old 09-06-2014, 23:09   #4
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Re: Interested in Catamaran Cruiser Build Plans

Consider flat panel foam infused construction.
Lot of information on Kelsall http://www.kelsall.com/UniqueKSS/WhatIsKSS.pdf website and Richard Woods.

Definitely a set of plans from a well known designer and then apply your life skills which definitely lie in boat design.

Flat Panel building



Catamarans - Kelsall Catamarans - Boat Designs

Cheers
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Old 09-06-2014, 23:56   #5
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Re: Interested in Catamaran Cruiser Build Plans

Follow the build of a FF46, a very large vessel for 46ft built using flat panel construction.

Picture Gallery - FreeFlow 46 Construction

Cheers
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Old 10-06-2014, 01:40   #6
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Re: Interested in Catamaran Cruiser Build Plans

Wood ( and especially ply) may not be the best for resale value but in terms of building a smaller cat in less than a lifetime it could be practical.

Quite a few seem to have completed EasyCats for relatively modest amounts of money.

Link to Easy Catamarans Home.
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Old 10-06-2014, 04:31   #7
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Re: Interested in Catamaran Cruiser Build Plans

Easy by Peter Snell EASY
Lizard by Peter Kerr LIZARD
Pescott by Mark Pescott PESCOTT
Barefoot by Tony Grainger BAREFOOT
Wilderness Series by Jeff Schionning Wilderness Series
Various designs by Mike Waller WALLER

I'm sure I will think of more.
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Old 10-06-2014, 10:10   #8
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Re: Interested in Catamaran Cruiser Build Plans

Richard Woods is one of the better designers of home built cats in the world, and given the cost of plans you would be foolish to try and design your own.

But frankly I would really suggest reevaluat the plan to build yourself. Typically the cost of home building a boat is the same as having a custom yard do the work, but will take years longer. A 40' cat for instance will probably take somewhere in the range of 10-20,000 man hours to build, plus the time spent dealing with suppliers and trips to the store. Most projects this size never make it to the water, or if they do not until the original builder has spent years working on it, then sells it to someone else.
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Old 10-06-2014, 11:49   #9
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Re: Interested in Catamaran Cruiser Build Plans

Do you plan to build it from wood?
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Old 10-06-2014, 12:05   #10
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Re: Interested in Catamaran Cruiser Build Plans

Don't listen to the pessimists, go for it if it is something you like to do. If there is one thing that irks me the most it is when someone on a forum asks for help, and there is always one person that has to give a smarty pants answer and say you are wasting your time. Those people need to be banned, this forum should only be for support and advice, not pessimists.
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Old 10-06-2014, 16:38   #11
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Re: Interested in Catamaran Cruiser Build Plans

Quote:
Originally Posted by jrb1001psu View Post
Don't listen to the pessimists, go for it if it is something you like to do. If there is one thing that irks me the most it is when someone on a forum asks for help, and there is always one person that has to give a smarty pants answer and say you are wasting your time. Those people need to be banned, this forum should only be for support and advice, not pessimists.
So instead of giving honest advice from experience we should just toss out happy platitudes and encouragement? The reality is that a vanishingly small number of large home builds ever hit the water. Almost all of them fail for one reason or another, and while everyone believes they will be the exception to the rule, in reality most won't be.

There is also the reality that building a large homemade boat is almost always more expensive than buying used, and generally the same price as buying new. Is this something that should be discussed honestly, or just toss out platitudes that if you scrimp and scrape and build from recycled materials you can save a bit, assuming you don't value your time at anything.

The best reason to build a boat is because you like the building process and enjoy boat building, thinking it will save you money is typically a mistake.
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Old 10-06-2014, 16:59   #12
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Re: Interested in Catamaran Cruiser Build Plans

No, that's not what I said, but encouragement helps. I have had friends build vessels, it was expensive and took 20 years, but I wasn't about the time and money, it is about enjoying doing it.

So a better way of saying what you said might be "Based on my experience... it will take a lot of time and be expensive...". Not by saying "you should reevaluate your plans", you don't know their background.

They were simply looking for plans, advice, facts; not you telling them they should change their minds.
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Old 10-06-2014, 17:09   #13
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Re: Interested in Catamaran Cruiser Build Plans

Work on at least 10,000 hours + or - depending on the design.

Your thoughts cutndried. A lot of info to read through already posted.

cheers
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Old 10-06-2014, 17:23   #14
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Re: Interested in Catamaran Cruiser Build Plans

The building of a boat is a lot different to what you are used to although many of your skills are similar if not the same except that everything is inside out, i built my own but only because i could not find what i wanted any where.

The build took me 2 .5 years Hulls only 3 months finished (i was a catamaran 10.5 m) and when i finished and turned over the hulls i thought i would finish it in a year.

Costs blew out to be about 50% more than i budgeted because i didn't allow for all the sandpaper,masking tape,extra paint, mistakes , etc etc (about 10% was down to price increases because i was too busy build i hadn't released that prices were going up on electronics, fridges, Stainless etc etc)

When i put the boat in the water i had a boat exactly as i wanted, i could have had a standard production boat for a lot less money.

Your time is the critical factor in building a boat yourself you should consider the size boat you want carefully then go and talk to a few home builders that are building them and see for yourself if you are prepared to do this.

One tip though involve your wife as much as possible as many i know have had issues when building in their spare time and the wife feels neglected.

Just do your homework well and good luck it is and can be fun if you want it to be, it is a problem for a lot who start unprepared with time and budget.
Most unfinished projects are related to time i have found not just the money.

In hindsight (wonderful thing) i would have just bought a production boat and refitted to my specification it would have been cheaper and years quicker
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Old 10-06-2014, 17:32   #15
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Re: Interested in Catamaran Cruiser Build Plans

Check out the B&B build thread on the construction forum.
That boat was based on a 40' hull Graham designed for me.
I was going to build her with strip planked bottoms and plywood sides.

Check her out.

Construction Thread for Custom 45' Cruising Powercat
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