Originally Posted by Yes maybe
Have searched on here and google
The above title is in relation to purchasing
a 38' to 43' cat for cruising (2 or more yrs). And longer ownership
1/ Trying to work
out, the for and against for each construction method.
2/ Strength - cruising safety
- hitting submerged objects.
3/ The boat may be 20+yrs old - Epoxy v Polyester Gelcoat - Osmosis
and other longer term issues.
4/ Ongoing maintenance
costs for polyester gelcoat v epoxy with painted top coat.
5/ The cedar plank epoxy will be heavier the foam core
Big picture wise, given that you're looking at older boats, what really matters is finding one which was both well built, & also well cared for. As any cored boat of that vintage has a decent chance of having water
intrusion issues, regardless of the type of core
, construction method, or resin type.
Which leads to there being advantages to a foam cored boat, as it won't rot
. Though if there is water
intrusion, with both types, usually the core will need replacing when it's time to fix things.
Albeit, again, how much the water migrates from the original intrusion point depends almost entirely on the workmanship which went into the build. As if kerfed foam or balsa was used, & the kerfs weren't filled when she was built, then the water can travel quite extensively. And in a timber cored boat, the wood
will tend to wick the water. More so than is commonly stated in the literatue in a lot of cases.
So you need a Really good survey
prior to buying a boat
in either case. One which preferably is done by a Surveyor
well versed (certified) in the use of a Thermal Imager. As it'll pick up on whether or not cores are saturated better than will a moisture meter... if the operator knows their stuff. And there are some good posts on such topics here on the forums
You might also want to do some reading of boatpoker's
page (he's a Surveyor), as there's a lot of good info to soak up on what to look for when boat hunting. Including some great stuff on cores.
All about the boat systems and structure
Also, in boats of the stated age, the weight differences of the two types you're asking about will be fairly negligable. Well, unless you're looking at a racer
or boat built to similar standards/tolerances.
But even then, in mid-sized boats & larger, the difference is pretty easy to adjust for or negate, by how you load the boat. Meaning that if you offload everything 2x+ a year. And leave off the non-essentials each time, she'll be lighter regardless. Plus, doing so is a good practice on any boat. With some racers, mono & multihull
, even doing it daily.
And generally speaking, a well built foam cored boat will be more impact tolerant than will other types. But again, the quality of construction plays a big role. As does proper design & engineering. And of course, not all foams are equal; far from it.