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Thread: What makes a boat strong

  1. #1
    We visited several boat builders at the show and I am curious what makes one boat stronger than the next. For example at Lavey we were told that the top and bottom are joined together in the mold, top flipped onto the bottom while still in the mold. Also they inject some type of foam between the floor and bottom also something about the stringers. Jeff said this will be felt when you hit rough water. Lavey had very good attetion to detail and really could not find one flaw in thier boats. Also thier is not as much wood used, they use several different molds one for the ice chests in the floor, one for the ice chest in the seats, cup holders, and the seats frame in the back was a seperate mold.We were also told that they will never cut out the center section of a cuddy to make it a walk through open bow, said it is done but it weakens the boat? If you want a cuddy there is a seperate mold, if you want a cuddy open bow , seperate mold . Does anyone have more knowladge than this? sure would like to hear it

  2. #2
    To me lots of things will determine overall strength. And all these factors work together as a system to provide strength.
    *Full length stringers properly installed in a boat.
    *Quality and type of glass used
    *Type of resin and how its utilized to bond the layers (properly catalized and given enough time to cure)
    *Seperate open bow mold not just a cutout.
    *How well the top and bottom are bonded
    *How bulkheads and other supports are engineered/installed
    *How are the gas tanks installed (Just glassing them to the hull sides are not a strong as building seperate supports that the gas tank bolts to)
    * I think foam may help keep a boat quieter but I don't think it adds much strength. In fact, since it absorbs moisture, it could lead to rot.
    *Whether the floor is glassed over (stronger) versus resin flo coated.

  3. #3
    We were told that they use only top of the line materials in there boats from resins, to fiberglass, to the nuts and bolts

  4. #4
    Pretty damn strong

  5. #5
    Tom Brown
    Originally posted by cc322
    What makes a boat strong
    Rivets http://www.***

  6. #6
    Pretty mcuh all the reputable builders use similar techniques. I don't think any one thing makes one boat stronger than the other. Materials are part of the equation but so is cure time and the conditions in which the cure is happening. Who is laying it up and are they having a bad day. Minor I know, but we are talking hand laid custom boats.

  7. #7
    Originally posted by Tom Brown
    Rivets http://www.***
    The amount of grams..... in the gelcoat....

  8. #8
    Stop by Essex and aske to see the hull cut-out that stopped a 9mm bullet. They also glass in a product called Klegecell into the sides of their hulls. Makes them sturdier and quieter.
    Overall boat weight will give some indication of the amount of materials used to build the boat. Some builders use 1/2 inch wood for their floors, while some step up and use 3/4. Also, the less amount of glass/resin material the lighter the boat.
    I do most of my boating on Mohave, so a heavier duty hull is more important to me because of the chop. The Essex weighed in about 800 to 1000 pounds more than some of it's high-end competitors which made it the right boat for me.
    If I did most of my boating on calmer water, I would go for the lighter/faster super low freeboard rocket.

  9. #9
    what essex do you have?

  10. #10
    I have the 24' Valor. I had it out on Mohave a few weeks ago in 40 + mph winds, killer chop and whitecaps. It did great. It's a heavy boat (4500lbs) and handles great. Some of the lighter 24 - 25's may get better top end, but I'm happy doing 70mph and plowing right through the ripples.
    Whatever you decide, get the most motor you can afford. I went with the 496HO/Bravo 1 X-drive and am glad I did. I read a recent study that proved the bigger motors don't have to work as hard to push the same amount of boat, meaning a smaller (supposed better gas mileage) motor burns the same if not more gas to push the boat the same as the bigger one. This was from the February 2004 issue of "Boating" magazine.
    Good luck

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