SV Melodaire - 55' Steel sail boat project (Glen-L Lodestar) - SailNet Community
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post #1 of 91 Old 02-17-2016 Thread Starter
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SV Melodaire - 55' Steel sail boat project (Glen-L Lodestar)

Howdy everybody!

This is the start of a new project, since I was a little kid I have wanted to build a boat someday. It all started with my Grandpa Don, in 1962 he built a boat from scratch from some Glen L plans, and much of my childhood was spent on that boat.

About the time I was 10 I got my hands on an plan Catalog from Glen L, and I was bit by the bug I wanted to build a boat of my own someday. As well at the time in the Mid 90's Highlander was on TV still airing new episodes and it was one of my favorite shows, the season in Paris where Duncan lived on the barge heavily influenced me in wanting to live on a boat.

Then in 1999 after the death of a very good friend in a car accident I wound up dropping out of high school and joined the Navy and during my time in the Navy I spent a good portion of it working at the base marina which is where I discovered sailing even though I only went a few times.

In 2007 I moved to Texas for a while and got a job welding on the USS Lexington, there I did a lot of work on the ship learned a lot of skills and I went to school at the local college for welding and CNC machining. After working on the Lex I ran my own welding shop for a few years. Then in 2011 I was in a bad car accident where I broke my back and got really messed up. I spent 3 years out of work, I had to shut my shop down, it was a pretty sucky ordeal.

I wanted to return to welding when I went back to work but my body still was not ready so I went back to over the road trucking for a while.



I bought a truck and a trailer and I am currently in the process of paying it off. I still have a lot of my welding equipment and next year once the truck is paid off I am going to start working towards building a 55' Sail Boat.

After a lot of thought and careful research I have decided to go with a Glen L Lodestar. Originally I was going to build a diesel trawler, but considering I want to eventually sail around the world, it would take hundreds of thousands of dollars in diesel fuel to do so, so a sail boat it will be!

These are photos from Glen L showing the design I have chosen.





I really like the layout of this boat because each state room has its own entryway, and there are 3 bathrooms each containing a shower.

As well my best friend Charles is going to be joining me on this adventure helping me build the boat and sailing it with me. So having a berth for him, one for me and having them at opposite ends of the boat will be great to help us not get on each others nerves in close quarters. Then we will have the 3rd state room for when guests come to visit.

I am going to keep this introduction brief as I will be updating it later, in my next post I will be sharing 3d renderings of the boat that I have created from the plans I bought, and I will share those with you. As well we will be starting a YouTube channel based on the boat and I will be posting those videos here as they are uploaded.
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post #2 of 91 Old 02-17-2016 Thread Starter
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Re: SV Melodaire - 55' Steel sail boat project (Glen-L Lodestar)

I ordered the study plans so I could setup a model in Google Sketchup just to see how the boat would look when all together seeing as how very few people have built one and posted pictures of it on the internet.

To do this I started with the pdf and copied each section into a Jpg file that I could then import into Sketchup and I arranged the frames accordingly assigning each to its own layer and then assigning all of those groups to a master layer state that could turn them all on or off with one click.



The after I had traced out the frames I was able to loft the hull and come up with a basic rendering.



To this I added a swim step on the back of the transom with stairs to facilitate swimming and scuba diving from the Melodaire. It will also make it much easier not having to climb over the side when getting on board off of the dock, or my dinghy.



One thing I really love about this design is the spacious engine room located under the dinette.



I am going to set this up as a floating mobile work shop with a bench in there and tool cabinets and even a small drill press and maybe even a welder.

Anyone who has spent any time on boats can tell you this is an extremely rare feature on a vessel this size!

Then came the interior layout:



Currently I am using the interior design as specified so as that I can get an idea how everything would work, then it will be customized to meet my needs in future renditions of this drawing.

Additionally I am playing with the idea of installing a water tight door in the transom which would create a place to store SCUBA tanks and to house the compressor to fill them.

I even went as far as to draw the sails just for reference.



All in all I think the Melodaire is going to be an amazing project that will turn into an amazing adventure. I plan to live aboard her full time when she is completed.

My next step is I need to buy another years worth of Autocad Mechanical and get the full plans and patterns, from this I will develop a perfect to scale drawing and I will start to develop the Melodaire further from there.
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Re: SV Melodaire - 55' Steel sail boat project (Glen-L Lodestar)

I will throw this up as well, this is a link to the plans for the boat.

Glen-L Lodestar


I would also like to hear from you more experienced sailors out there. The vast majority of my experience in the past is with power boats and Navy ships, I am pretty new to sailing, and this is going to be my first live aboard.
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Re: SV Melodaire - 55' Steel sail boat project (Glen-L Lodestar)

That is a very big dream. I am a builder/DIY by nature and have build my share of big projects and still building stuff but never a boat project that large. In my experience the best way to complete a project that large is to start building. The pictures of the build and the internet documentation are fine. making renderings can be helpful when planning mods to the original design but sticking to the plans will get you a boat built in the least amount time. Considering a build of this size will take 20 years to complete I would not plan to many mods to the original as they can triple the time to build. Then there is the money that will be required to build that large a boat equipped to sail the 7 seas. even if you use all good used materials and equipment a project of this size will cost a minimum of $500k.
If you are a true builder you will spend the next 20 years building your dream boat at twice the price you could buy one for. if building is your dream then build, if sailing is your dream then buy a boat and sail.

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Re: SV Melodaire - 55' Steel sail boat project (Glen-L Lodestar)

I was surprised no one responded to this.. but just realized it was an hour ago and no one is up at 2 a.m.

I am amazed by this.. I don't know how I thought steel boats were built, but I guess it never crosse my mind they could be a home project

I'm waiting for the SV Melodaire blog


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Re: SV Melodaire - 55' Steel sail boat project (Glen-L Lodestar)

Dude, you need a reality check. It is a huge project. Tens of thousands man hours. It is a very expensive project. Someone mentioned half a mil. I would say at least $300,000 to complete, with mostly your own labor, but you will need help. The boat is just too big for one guy to build. And you have problems with your back.
I see quite a few cheap steel boats out there that are outfitted but need to be refurbished, anywhere from 35 to 60 feet. If I had your skills, this is what I would do. Would take maybe a year or two and you are on the water, living large.
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post #7 of 91 Old 02-17-2016 Thread Starter
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Re: SV Melodaire - 55' Steel sail boat project (Glen-L Lodestar)

Quote:
Originally Posted by overbored View Post
That is a very big dream. I am a builder/DIY by nature and have build my share of big projects and still building stuff but never a boat project that large. In my experience the best way to complete a project that large is to start building. The pictures of the build and the internet documentation are fine. making renderings can be helpful when planning mods to the original design but sticking to the plans will get you a boat built in the least amount time. Considering a build of this size will take 20 years to complete I would not plan to many mods to the original as they can triple the time to build. Then there is the money that will be required to build that large a boat equipped to sail the 7 seas. even if you use all good used materials and equipment a project of this size will cost a minimum of $500k.
If you are a true builder you will spend the next 20 years building your dream boat at twice the price you could buy one for. if building is your dream then build, if sailing is your dream then buy a boat and sail.
I am not an amateur hobbyist, I went to school for welding and CNC machining and not only have I worked as a ship fitter but I used to run my own welding shop.

Instead of spending the next 20 years building this thing in my back yard, I am going to methodically plan and model it out, have all of the pieces CNC cut, and then I am taking 3 months off of work and my helper and I are going to get busy with it and get the entire hull fitted.

In those 3 months we are going to work 6 days a week on it, That is 780 hours. I think the hull can be fitted in that time.
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Re: SV Melodaire - 55' Steel sail boat project (Glen-L Lodestar)

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Originally Posted by titustiger27 View Post
I was surprised no one responded to this.. but just realized it was an hour ago and no one is up at 2 a.m.

I am amazed by this.. I don't know how I thought steel boats were built, but I guess it never crosse my mind they could be a home project

I'm waiting for the SV Melodaire blog
Check out SV Seeker on YouTube, Doug has built a 75' all steel Chinese junk in the last couple of years just working weekends on it.

Pretty amazing what you can do when you put your mind to it.
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Re: SV Melodaire - 55' Steel sail boat project (Glen-L Lodestar)

SV Seeker has been going on far longer than a couple of years...with very high costs in many respects - and a LONG way to go before she's done.

That's all I'll say.

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Re: SV Melodaire - 55' Steel sail boat project (Glen-L Lodestar)

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== snip ==

In those 3 months we are going to work 6 days a week on it, That is 780 hours. I think the hull can be fitted in that time.
a lot of content howers there ...



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