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Old 30-01-2012, 11:17   #1
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Seaworthiness of Houseboats

Forgive my nativity on this topic, as I know that there has to be some reason that people don't cruise with houseboats more. Maybe they do and I just haven't noticed. But would it be possible to take one to the Florida keys, up the ICW or out in the Atlantic, and around the Great Lakes? What about to the Bahamas during a good weather window? Could a houseboat be modified or designed better to let wind pass through big sliding doors, or to have more hydrodynamic hulls? It seems like this type of boat would be ideal for the Great Loop where you are avoiding most of the bad weather. Am I missing something?

Is it the windage, they need too much power, that anchoring would be hard in a storm, you can't carry enough supplies, the waves, the construction method isn't strong enough?
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Old 30-01-2012, 11:20   #2
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Re: Seaworthiness of houseboats

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Is it the windage, they need too much power, that anchoring would be hard in a storm, you can't carry enough supplies, the waves, the construction method isn't strong enough?
YES!!
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Old 30-01-2012, 11:25   #3
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Re: Seaworthiness of houseboats

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YES!!
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Old 30-01-2012, 11:34   #4
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Re: Seaworthiness of houseboats

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+1
Yes +2
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Old 30-01-2012, 12:00   #5
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Re: Seaworthiness of houseboats

It is windage and quite a number of other factors.

It is low freeboard. It is larger thinner windows. It is a superstructure that is not designed to be hit by greenwater. It is structural including racking and shock load stresses on a hull that is normally supported evenly fore and aft, and never rolls hard.

Houseboat hulls can get away with smaller scantlings since they are only designed to be operated in relatively flat waters. You also have vents that might take on water in seas or chop. The boats stability may not be adequate as well. Windage is one of factors taken into consideration when calculating stability for a commercial passenger vessel.

Houseboats are great fun on small lakes and rivers, but anymore than that and you will want a boat that is designed from the beginning to take seas and chop.
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Old 30-01-2012, 12:04   #6
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Re: Seaworthiness of houseboats

Because they are more house than boat..
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Old 30-01-2012, 12:12   #7
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Re: Seaworthiness of houseboats

I understand that there is a modern version of the houseboat that does all you desire.

It's called a trawler.

Some of the more cynical sailors could suggest that one of the more popular sailing arrangements would be suitable for this use as well.
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Old 30-01-2012, 12:17   #8
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Re: Seaworthiness of houseboats

You might want to Google Lagoon
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Old 30-01-2012, 12:20   #9
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Re: Seaworthiness of houseboats

Let's not go there DOJ. We don't need the wrath of owners of any particular brands of boats upon us.
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Old 30-01-2012, 12:32   #10
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Re: Seaworthiness of houseboats

Houseboats typically have shallow drafts and flat-ish bottoms. Flat-bottomed boats do not fare well in ocean conditions.
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Old 30-01-2012, 12:34   #11
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Re: Seaworthiness of houseboats

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Let's not go there DOJ. We don't need the wrath of owners of any particular brands of boats upon us.
I think he was saying that Lagoon makes a seaworthy "houseboat."
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Old 30-01-2012, 12:35   #12
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Re: Seaworthiness of houseboats

forget the flat bottomed part......barges do it all the time. It the sliding glass doors that worry me!!

HB 191
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Old 30-01-2012, 12:36   #13
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Re: Seaworthiness of houseboats

My brother-in-law used to own a houseboat on Lake Powell. One day, while we were motoring along, a large Scarab turned right in front of us, throwing a larger-than-usual wake. It broke over the foredeck, came right through the sliding glass door in the front, and proceeded through the boat until it exited through the aft sliding glass door. Soaked everything on that boat knee level and below.

Would hate to see something built like that powering through serious wind chop.
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Old 30-01-2012, 12:41   #14
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Re: Seaworthiness of houseboats

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My brother-in-law used to own a houseboat on Lake Powell. One day, while we were motoring along, a large Scarab turned right in front of us, throwing a larger-than-usual wake. It broke over the foredeck, came right through the sliding glass door in the front, and proceeded through the boat until it exited through the aft sliding glass door. Soaked everything on that boat knee level and below.

Would hate to see something built like that powering through serious wind chop.
Yes, but what a great way to clean the boat
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Old 30-01-2012, 12:43   #15
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Re: Seaworthiness of houseboats

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Let's not go there DOJ. We don't need the wrath of owners of any particular brands of boats upon us.
Just trying to help.

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