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Go Back   SailNet Community > On Board > Gear & Maintenance > Wood vs Fiberglass Maintenance cost/time
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Thread: Wood vs Fiberglass Maintenance cost/time Reply to Thread
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Topic Review (Newest First)
06-27-2012 07:48 PM
Classic30
Re: Wood vs Fiberglass Maintenance cost/time

Quote:
Originally Posted by CapnBilll View Post
It feels good to own a boat that does not rely on rustable fasteners to stay together, and isn't considered food by the stuff the grows under the waterline.
You make a good point: buying any boat requires that you know a fair bit about it's pedigree and it's limitations before signing on the dotted line.

By example, the 'non-rustable' fasteners on my timber boat are now over 60 years old and are probably good for another 60... but the odd blister or two below the water-line of your fibreglass boat might or might not be as easy (or cheap) to fix.
06-27-2012 07:32 PM
CapnBilll
Re: Wood vs Fiberglass Maintenance cost/time

I looked into buying a wood boat once, but it "popped a plank" while the owner was moving it and sank like a rock. No problem the owner said, "it does that all the time", if it happens to you just get it hauled out , and get a new plank, no problem.......I bought a fiberglass boat.

It feels good to own a boat that does not rely on rustable fasteners to stay together, and isn't considered food by the stuff the grows under the waterline.
06-27-2012 07:16 PM
Classic30
Re: Wood vs Fiberglass Maintenance cost/time

Quote:
Originally Posted by SloopJonB View Post
Cold moulded is my personal favourite - best of glass and wood. It's not really a wood boat in the sense we are discussing here - it's properly termed a composite boat because the wood is merely the fiber - it's the combination of fiber and resin that makes the material.
If it's your personal favorite, you've obviously never owned one. Best of glass and wood?? Surely you mean the opposite. It might look flash but if you ever get any hull damage, personally, I don't think anyone has yet invented a more complicated and expensive system to fix!

Cold-moulded makes traditional timber repair look like child's play.


Wood vs Fibreglass?? In my experience, when people talk about "low maintenance" and "boat" is the same sentence, they usually mean "absolutely NO maintenance unless absolutely necessary - we just want to sail the thing". A traditional timber boat needs some level of regular maintenance perfectly within the capability of a live-aboard whereas a f'glass boat needs none at all - until almost-too-late.

Both $$$ and time average out in the long term leaving only personal preference as the real decider.. but most go the "no maintenance" route - buy f'glass, sail it for a while and then sell it as a "project boat" just before it becomes too expensive to fix.
06-27-2012 04:29 PM
SloopJonB
Re: Wood vs Fiberglass Maintenance cost/time

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jgbrown View Post
what about cold molded? low maintenance, and its wood inside. View Boat Photos - YachtWorld.com -

Out of price range, but a good example. If I could afford it though... Pretty wood interior, lower maintenance hull.
Cold moulded is my personal favourite - best of glass and wood. It's not really a wood boat in the sense we are discussing here - it's properly termed a composite boat because the wood is merely the fiber - it's the combination of fiber and resin that makes the material.
06-27-2012 01:56 PM
Jgbrown
Re: Wood vs Fiberglass Maintenance cost/time

what about cold molded? low maintenance, and its wood inside. http://www.yachtworld.com/core/listi...0014&noOfPic=1 -

Out of price range, but a good example. If I could afford it though... Pretty wood interior, lower maintenance hull.
06-26-2012 05:23 PM
MarkSF
Re: Wood vs Fiberglass Maintenance cost/time

Having just spent my 4th Saturday stripping and re-varnishing the 5ft x 3" piece of Teak trim across the stern, I can honestly say that a fibreglass boat with a few bits of Teak brightwork is all I cope with.
06-26-2012 02:23 PM
SloopJonB
Re: Wood vs Fiberglass Maintenance cost/time

Quote:
Originally Posted by jimjazzdad View Post
Of course, if you asked this question over at The WoodenBoat Forum you might get a different answer. Modern wooden boat construction and material may also make maintenance easier. Even an older wooden boat that has been well maintained will be less work than a badly maintained boat - wood or fiberglass. Fiberglass boats probably tolerate neglect and abuse better.
I'm sure there are lots of guys out there, like CharliCobra, to whom hand planing a winding, tapered bevel to a 64th on a plank is childs play.

To us mere mortals however, saturating some glass cloth with resin is a little closer to an attainable skill set.
06-26-2012 12:53 PM
jimjazzdad
Re: Wood vs Fiberglass Maintenance cost/time

Of course, if you asked this question over at The WoodenBoat Forum you might get a different answer. Modern wooden boat construction and material may also make maintenance easier. Even an older wooden boat that has been well maintained will be less work than a badly maintained boat - wood or fiberglass. Fiberglass boats probably tolerate neglect and abuse better.
06-26-2012 12:44 PM
SloopJonB
Re: Wood vs Fiberglass Maintenance cost/time

Quote:
Originally Posted by bljones View Post
Hi Mag,
Welcome to the wonderful world of living afloat!
You need to start with Living Aboard 101.
"Wooden Boat" is not on the curriculum.
It isn't covered in Living Aboard 201 either.
In fact, it really should be a masters program.
A lesson I learned long ago about wooden boats (I have owned, fixed, built and continue ot own them) is that the boat you can afford is a boat that needs work you don't have the time or the skills to do, and if it needs that work you can't live aboard comfortably.

You are potential newbies to
1- living aboard
2-boating
3-sailing AND
4-wood boat maintenance.
The only successful wooden boat owners I know are those who are newbies in only one category before they bought a wooden boat. ...
or those who only use their boats seasonally.

If you want character, look for an older Bayfield.
Phd. and several years of interning.
06-26-2012 12:40 PM
SloopJonB
Re: Wood vs Fiberglass Maintenance cost/time

Quote:
Originally Posted by MattSplatt View Post
Where do metal boats fall along this spectrum? Lets say it started out meticulously cared for.
Is this a hijack? Ignore me if so. :-)
Steel boats require staying ahead of the painting to stave off rust. Attention to zincs/galvanic conditions is critical as well. If I owned a steel boat I'd definitely buy a MIG welder and learn how to use it well.

Aluminium just requires attention to electrical/galvanic conditions. You don't even need to paint them.

Full disclosure, I've never owned either - just observations from decades of hanging around marinas and boatyards.
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