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Windkiller 05-25-2011 06:13 PM

Hi there
I have a Crown 18.5 fiberglass swing keel trailer sailor I'm renovating
Basically a Mini Cal 20 with a swing keel
I'm tabbing in new ply bulkheads and quarterberths and I'm contemplating floatation foam while I'm at it
There's enough room front and back and under the quarterberths to accomodate the foam and still leave me storage space and I could balance it out pretty well too (about 9 cubic feet front and back and 6 under the quarterberths)
I can get a decent deal on enough to float my boat about $200 for 6 gallons, which gives me about 24 cubic feet = about 1,440 lbs of floatation (after subtracting actual foam weight)
This does however add 50lbs to the boat weight and $200 to my reno cost
I'd appreciate the added security of the foam as I hope to do some Gulf Islands cruising(protected waters)
I was wondering if there were any opnions on the practicality of this etc

MedSailor 05-25-2011 06:39 PM

Yes, and it is a good idea in my opinion. I looked into this once in detail for my wooden boat. (all wooden boats are in some state of sinking).

Check out Larry Pardey's book "Cost concious cruiser". He has some good information on making your boat positively boyant.


travlin-easy 05-25-2011 06:55 PM

Are you sure the boat doesn't already have flotation? If I recall correctly, all boats built in the United States after 1965 measuring 16 to 26 feet were required to have full, upright flotation. I could be wrong with this one, but I don't have time to search the Federal regs. You may be able to Google this one and find out. A lot of smaller boats, those ranging 10 to 16 feet, have foam blocks beneath their bench seats, and the boats that are double hulled usually are foam filled between the inner and outer shells.

Good Luck,

Gary :cool:

Windkiller 05-25-2011 07:02 PM

I'm sure there is no existing floatation
I've replaced 3 bulkheads and right now the quarterberths have been completely removed, the new ones have been made and are ready to install
So there aren't any closed spaces (except between the 3rd and 4th forward bulkhead sand that's not adequate to float the boat)
This isn't a double hulled boat nor does it have filled bench seats
It's a little pocket cruiser
Besides this boat was built here in Vancouver BC by the same people that were building the Cal boats here so it wouldn't be subject to US regulations

mikieg 05-25-2011 07:39 PM

i believe that only applies to powerboats. my 1980 w.d. schock has absolutely no flotation. i always thought that sailboats cant afford the space and weight for such petty things.

Windkiller 05-25-2011 07:55 PM

My mutineer 15 dinghy has floatation and it's somewhat comforting to know that short of hitting a mine or being blown up somehow I'll likely stay afloat
I've heard that as the sailboat gets larger it stops being space effective because of the huge amount of floatation required
Any more opinions out there?

SJ34 05-25-2011 09:38 PM

Several pros and cons for flotation but if your gonna do it why not use polystyrene? It's much lighter and cheaper than the expanding polyurethane foams. You could fill most of the voids with polystyrene blocks then make up the rest of the volume with the expanding foam. Just a thought.

50lbs at the ends of an 18' boat will contribute to pitching motion.

SVPrairieRose 05-25-2011 11:21 PM

Empty pop bottles! If they can build an island they can float a boat. Come by Port Browning when your done and show it off.

Windkiller 05-26-2011 01:39 AM

Hahaha from this link here Floatation values
It looks like I'd need about 300-400 2 litre pop bottles..If I drink that much pop I might not need flotation anyway (I'd need a dentist!)..or a boat, I could just sail the pop bottle raft..
I guess I should clarify, I'm looking for flotation that'll fit inside my boat!!

Windkiller 05-26-2011 02:01 AM

ps is your picture a picture of your boat, that's a fine looking gaff schooner
Where's Port Browning?, I'll have to look that up

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