Does anyone still make hulls out of marine ply?

A general, non-powerplant specific, discussion on airboat technology, ie., hulls, rigging, polymer, etc..
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CactusJack
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Does anyone still make hulls out of marine ply?

Post by CactusJack » Thu May 28, 2009 8:18 am

I have built ply boats (not airboats) before & don't have access to aluminium welding, so I figure a ply hull (full deck) with a good poly covered bottom might be the way to go?

The boat will be auto powered (probably 400 ci Chev, RD)... we dont have anything as sticky as the everglades over here in Oz, so the boat will be mainly used in water, not mud... maybe a little land work, if the boat doesn't end up too heavy or under powered?

Any comments, advice much appreciated :wink:
I was told I was wrong, once (not sure I believe it though)
If you can't blind 'em with brilliance, baffle 'em with BS
Airboat experience so far, limited to having bolted a gyrocopter to a flat bottom punt.... but THAT.... is about to change, bigtime :-)

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Re: Does anyone still make hulls out of marine ply?

Post by Olf Art » Thu May 28, 2009 9:17 am

Cactus, very few are built of marine ply (mostly the mini's) but there isn't any good reason
that I can think of why a very handsome and tough airboat couldn't be. I've wanted to try
a project like that for years.

Properly stressed, with attention to materials, a wooden boat could be both very strong and
also very light. Remember that the largest airplane ever built was made of wood .... the Spruce
Goose.

I would use only epoxy adhesives as they're impervious to water, and paint every surface of the boat
with epoxy when it's finished. If you were proud of the workmanship you could use a clear
epoxy finish to let the beauty of the wood shine through. :wink:

Vibration would be one of your biggest enemies so you'd need to pay attention to balancing the
engine and prop carefully. It sounds like a fun project ..... go for it and keep us posted.
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CactusJack
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Re: Does anyone still make hulls out of marine ply?

Post by CactusJack » Thu May 28, 2009 10:20 am

Thanks Art

Yeah, I have re-decked a couple of trailer yachts & helped a mate build a ply ski boat before, there is good ply around and the adhesives these days are great, I cant see why a good hull couldnt be built. When I build stuff tho, I generally 'overbuild it', so it might end up a bit on the heavy side, but like I said, not too much sticky mud over here (nothing remotely like the EG's).... I just want to make an @ss of myself in the local waterways :lol: If I end up with a nice hull that works well, I might even make a fiberglass mold of it and try a glass one (poly lined bottom)

Is Poly a dedicated boat lining? or is it something used for some other purpose, but Airboaters use it for their own purpose? Just asking, coz I don't know where I would get it (what industry it is used in) here in Oz?

Thanks for your input so far :wink:
I was told I was wrong, once (not sure I believe it though)
If you can't blind 'em with brilliance, baffle 'em with BS
Airboat experience so far, limited to having bolted a gyrocopter to a flat bottom punt.... but THAT.... is about to change, bigtime :-)

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Re: Does anyone still make hulls out of marine ply?

Post by ffcracker » Thu May 28, 2009 10:37 am

check with the trucking industry, they use it over here to line the bottom of dump trucks so the complete load empties.
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CactusJack
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Re: Does anyone still make hulls out of marine ply?

Post by CactusJack » Thu May 28, 2009 11:21 am

Awesome, thanks ffcracker :wink:
I was told I was wrong, once (not sure I believe it though)
If you can't blind 'em with brilliance, baffle 'em with BS
Airboat experience so far, limited to having bolted a gyrocopter to a flat bottom punt.... but THAT.... is about to change, bigtime :-)

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Re: Does anyone still make hulls out of marine ply?

Post by goldhunter_2 » Thu May 28, 2009 5:44 pm

you could also consider doing a honeycomb composite hull I believe there is a big manufacture down your way of those honeycomb sheets (or it could have been the dryilcell (sp?) can't remember now)
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CactusJack
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Re: Does anyone still make hulls out of marine ply?

Post by CactusJack » Fri May 29, 2009 3:27 am

ffcracker, I googled 'dump truck liners' her in Oz, came up with a company called Dotmar, who does all sorts of plastics/poly.... can you have a look and see if it is the same stuff as used on airboats please

http://www.dotmar.com.au/component/virt ... &itemid=54

It certainly looks like the 'right stuff' :wink:
I was told I was wrong, once (not sure I believe it though)
If you can't blind 'em with brilliance, baffle 'em with BS
Airboat experience so far, limited to having bolted a gyrocopter to a flat bottom punt.... but THAT.... is about to change, bigtime :-)

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Re: Does anyone still make hulls out of marine ply?

Post by airduds » Fri May 29, 2009 6:42 am

Back in the 60's when I was a kid my dad re-built a couple of fishing boats made out of marine plywood. He would lay fiberglass over the bottom and about a third of the way up the sides.

I believe a glassed over hull with poly on the bottom would be just about indestructible.
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MD
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Re: Does anyone still make hulls out of marine ply?

Post by MD » Fri May 29, 2009 7:33 am

when and if you build it please show pictures as your building it thanks MD
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CactusJack
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Re: Does anyone still make hulls out of marine ply?

Post by CactusJack » Sun May 31, 2009 12:11 pm

Certainly will, MD ^

Still looking for hull designs/ideas.... have posted a thread in 'Tech' to ask for plans/advice.... hope you will take a look (below link) and maybe offer some advice :wink:

http://www.southernairboat.com/phpBB3/v ... 85&t=18564
I was told I was wrong, once (not sure I believe it though)
If you can't blind 'em with brilliance, baffle 'em with BS
Airboat experience so far, limited to having bolted a gyrocopter to a flat bottom punt.... but THAT.... is about to change, bigtime :-)

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Re: Does anyone still make hulls out of marine ply?

Post by pirate » Sun May 31, 2009 12:51 pm

Compromise is failure on the installment plan.

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MD
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Re: Does anyone still make hulls out of marine ply?

Post by MD » Fri Jun 05, 2009 7:44 am

i think i would build a deck over and use 1"x12"x14'pine for stringers cut them to the shape of the boat you want i would use about 6 of them use 1/4" ply wood foam fill the bottom. that way the hull will be strong and want sink keep the shape of the boat simple so if you use polymer on the bottom it easy to put on weight wise when your done it should be close to the weight of a heavy glass hull or you can build a mold out of ply wood and lay you a fibber glass boat just thoughts for you
born in the south die in the south with a mountain dew in my hand

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CactusJack
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Re: Does anyone still make hulls out of marine ply?

Post by CactusJack » Fri Jun 05, 2009 2:29 pm

Thanks MD, when I eventually end up with a hull I really like, I will probably use it as a plug and make a mold off of it..... but thats way down the line :wink:

Yup, will be a deck over and foam filled... will be strong and DEFINATELY wont sink.... might be upside down, but it wont sink :shock: :mrgreen:

As I said above somewhere, I am going to use crap hardware/timberyard ply to start with, just to learn & perfect technique.... so if I wear the bottom out on the hill, there will be another hull on its way..... when I am happy with everything, will make it in marine ply and poly the bottom :wink:
I was told I was wrong, once (not sure I believe it though)
If you can't blind 'em with brilliance, baffle 'em with BS
Airboat experience so far, limited to having bolted a gyrocopter to a flat bottom punt.... but THAT.... is about to change, bigtime :-)

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Re: Does anyone still make hulls out of marine ply?

Post by Wild Bill » Fri Jun 05, 2009 11:12 pm

Research that I did when I was thinking plywood/glass taught me that interior, exterior and marine plywood generally use the same type of glue now and will just have thicker/less plys with more voids the less money you spend. I over analyzed everything and the turn off for me was the opinion that only Epoxy should be used and my consideration of screwing poly to the hull with all those holes and water intrusion resulting in a short lived hull. In hind site I am sure the polyester resin I got for nothing, even if I did fill the hull with holes would have lasted long enough for me and would have been a faster build.

The Polystone stuff looks like the right stuff!

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Re: Does anyone still make hulls out of marine ply?

Post by CactusJack » Sat Jun 06, 2009 9:16 pm

WB,
Yeah, the main difference I can see with normal exterior ply vs marine ply is quality of the layers (apart from the top layer) Marine ply, the other layers are almost as good as the outside layer. The normal ply, of course, is not supposed to be used for things like boats, it is designed to be used for boarding up broken windows, floors, boxes and concreting etc. I will just go thru the stack and find the best (less knots on the inside layer etc best looking quality by eye) I will use plenty of bulkheads & stringers.... As I said.... I can't actually look at any airboats (none around here.... maybe in the Northern Territory or far north Queensland) so I will be working by trial & error. For my initial self training, I woul rather stuff up a $30 sheet than a $190 sheet :lol: and there is a good possibility I will get a hull together and hate it straight off (I might get lucky.... but there is so many variables in hull design. That is why it has been so helpful the info so far from you guys :mrgreen:

I appreciate you guys help, heaps :wink:
I was told I was wrong, once (not sure I believe it though)
If you can't blind 'em with brilliance, baffle 'em with BS
Airboat experience so far, limited to having bolted a gyrocopter to a flat bottom punt.... but THAT.... is about to change, bigtime :-)

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