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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi , I would like to look at building a steel ketch gaff rig.( 38 to 50 ft)
QUESTIONS:
1) what good and easy designs are available (Dudly Dix ?)
2) what 'country' would be a good place to build the boat in terms of materials and labour cost and availability.....India, Malaysia or others ???
3) is it best to try get a finnished hull and build from there or is it best to start from scratch.

The reason I am interested in building a boat as appposed to buying a finnished boat is a budget issue. I have a very set budget of £20'000.00 and would need to have everything done within budget as there is no further funds.
Things to consider: steel / material cost, labour cost, skill lavels, I would need to rent an area to build the boat at a cheep rate.

Please be part of my dream and add your knowledge.
Many thanks
Noel
 

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Dear Noel:
for £20000 you may be able to buy some (probably not all that you'd need for a major trip) of the new sails for a 38' boat. A friend of mine- a professional carpenter- built himself a 35' boat. It took him three years. It would be easier and cheaper to buy a used boat. Look online at the listings on Yachtworld for ones in your neighborhood so you can see what you're getting into. We usually budget about 10% of the purchase price of our boat into upkeep, maintenance and improvements each year. Good luck.
 

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Read "Voyaging on a Small Income" by Annie Hill. She explains their actual experience building and cruising a simple design. Dave Gerr and Tom Colvin both designed simple cruisers. But I agree that you are on a very small budget. Cheap labor and a very simple design will be necessary.
 

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I think for your budget, you will be limited to stealing someone elses boat, then outfitting it for your new life on the run. Then of course you wouldn't be limited to only 50', maybe you can find a bigger one.
 

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Nait,

If your goal is to economize and get into sailing on a modest budget, building your very own 38-50' steel boat, whether from scratch of from a bare hull, is probably the very last thing I would advise.:eek:

May I suggest that you downsize your range to an older, but solid, 27-33' fibreglass design?

It's basically an easy choice between going sailing this decade, or at the end of the next one (and even then you'd be defying the odds). ;)
 

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As John says, you have chosen a very expensive route that makes very little sense. If you are concerned with building a serious offshore cruising boat in a tight budget than I would not use either steel or go with a gaff or a ketch rig as all of these are comparatively expensive and time-consuming ways to build a boat. If you not planning on building an offshore cruiser then I especially would discourage you from building a steel, gaff rigged ketch.

When you talk about building in steel, assuming that you are doing the building yourself, then you want to be in an industrialized country with fairly inexpensive energy costs, say South Africa or the US. But if you want to build cheaply and sturdily, you can't beat glass over plywood.

The key to building a boat for serious cruising is to make sure that you have a really good design and not some hacked together mess or nostalgic fantasy. I know of no readily available gaff rigged ketch design that I would call a really good design.

If you have your heart set on building a boat the the advice to read "Voyaging on a Small Income" by Annie Hill is excellent. 'Badger' is still out there cruising. I also think that the advice to think smaller and fiberglass production boat is excellent advice. Having cruised very cheaply purchased, very simple boats over the year, I seriously question whether you could buy at wholesale the materials to outfit very simply and build a boat of the size that you are contemplating.

Respectfully,
Jeff
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I love boating but I don't have lots of ideas on how to make a boat. All I know is you should balance it's body to avoid accident on the sea. Only I can say to you is make it bigger and durable. I'm sorry if I'm not a big help. I just don't have idea.:)
 

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Now Jeff......Like so many of us here I bow to your superior knowledge and experience in boat design but how could you possibly go past a Gaff Ketch Bruce Roberts Spray ? What more could you ask for ? Finest cruising design ever, you should know that.....

(that scuttling noise you can hear is the sound of Wombat running for cover......)

ps - Nait...go for a wander over to MetalBoatbuilding.org - Welcome to the Frontpage. It is , as you may have guessed a site dedicated to metal boatbuilding. I'm a member over there and get some seriously good advice from those people. they are going to tell you that you are living in a fantasy land if you think you can build a 50'er for $20,000 but they may well be able to tell what is feasible and what is cloud cuckoo land.




As John says, you have chosen a very expensive route that makes very little sense. If you are concerned with building a serious offshore cruising boat in a tight budget than I would not use either steel or go with a gaff or a ketch rig as all of these are comparatively expensive and time-consuming ways to build a boat. If you not planning on building an offshore cruiser then I especially would discourage you from building a steel, gaff rigged ketch.

When you talk about building in steel, assuming that you are doing the building yourself, then you want to be in an industrialized country with fairly inexpensive energy costs, say South Africa or the US. But if you want to build cheaply and sturdily, you can't beat glass over plywood.

The key to building a boat for serious cruising is to make sure that you have a really good design and not some hacked together mess or nostalgic fantasy. I know of no readily available gaff rigged ketch design that I would call a really good design.

If you have your heart set on building a boat the the advice to read "Voyaging on a Small Income" by Annie Hill is excellent. 'Badger' is still out there cruising. I also think that the advice to think smaller and fiberglass production boat is excellent advice. Having cruised very cheaply purchased, very simple boats over the year, I seriously question whether you could buy at wholesale the materials to outfit very simply and build a boat of the size that you are contemplating.

Respectfully,
Jeff
 

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Nait, I would suggest that you are looking to become a financier and general contractor in a foreign land with unknown contract workers, no knowledge of the materials and procedures, or the local laws and regulations....In other word, you are going to be getting into a disaster andlosing all of your investment, as is typical for "project" boats that are huge projects for folks with no experience with them.

More typically someone starts one of these in their back yard and ten years later, is trying to sell the half-finished hull for a dime on the dollar just to get it hauled away as scrap.

Better to buy a boat that you KNOW has been properly built and working order, even if that is only 1/4 the size you want. Then get some years of experience with the issues and start your project knowing how to manage it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Thanks to all who have adviced

Thanks to you all for your replies.
I think out of all the advice the three options are:
1) build a smaller boat
2)buy a hull from some-one else who got into this earlier and ran out of money like I am destined to do.
3)Nick a boat
All have merit but probabley not all the same merit
I think I'll try the smaller route
thanks
Noel
 
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