Hi S4L. I couldn't figure how to paste pics in pm so I'll just reply here. Please excuse thread drift. I did the wood/epoxy build, as my dad had a woodwork joinery and that's the medium which I had most experience with at the time. Which method are you using?
If I were to build another cat, I'd look for a hurricane
for reconstruction or use the Derek Kelsall
method. Foam core results in a lighter build and glass has greater appeal when it comes time to sell. Wood
takes a lot of time (construction, fairing, sheathing and painting).
I was lucky to have other boat
builders around who gave me good advice
. One in particular, who had just completed a 45 ft Simonis Cat (designer of the Leopard
cat), convinced me to make some changes to the origional Woods plan. This is often where home builds go wrong, but having seen the Simonis boat, I thought it was a good idea.
I did not like the flat deck
surfaces nor the hard chine of the gunnel on the woods cat, so we added curved tops to the bulkheads to reshape the deck
and used strip plank to shape the gunnel before glassing over and under it.
I continued the stringers about another foot aft of the last little bulkhead to give room for transom steps. On the Woods design there's just a flat panel on the stern.
I made the stringers each in one continuous length instead of scarfing them on bit by bit. This made "the rib" cage curve evenly and gave the hull
a natural continuous bend. We found that the stringers needed to be forced down onto the stem and the natural curve wanted the stem to be a little further forward. So we made the bow a foot longer by moving the stem forward.
This also made the trampoline area bigger. It's really small on the Woods plan. One other reason for doing this is that the woods bridge deck seemed too far forward and at greater risk of bridged deck slamming.
boxed channels were added underneath and glassed over as bridge deck stiffeners.
Here you can see the top of the bulkheads are curved to shape the deck. The extra foot in length makes the fore peak bunk space more useful.
You'll likely get a lot of nay sayers, thinking that you are crazy to build a boat, when there are so many good used boats available. They do have a valid argument. I took quite a knock when I sold
as these boats don't have the same perceived value as production boats. If I had worked the same number of hours at a job instead of on the boat, I probably could have bought a used boat
with the money
earned. The costs add up and if you're doing a home build you need to crunch the numbers and watch you spending. My biggest mistake was renting
a warehouse for construction. If you can find a barn or free space, then grab it as the build will usually take longer than you expect. I started by buying
cloth and epoxy
as I needed, which was quite expensive. Later I bought a 44gal drum of epoxy
and full rolls (400ft) of cloth at wholesale prices (half of retail).
Feel free to bounce ideas off of me. Good luck.