You probably don't have time to wade thru the rest of this nonsense, so here's the skinny:

I intend to scratch build an ultra-light epoxyed plywood pontoon boat with a deck area of about 7 ' by 14' on 16 ' pontoons.
The craft will be powered by two 24V DC motors. The power will come from eight 12V Deep cycle marine (lead/acid) batteries that will be charged by solar panels and small vertical axis wind turbines.
The system will be split into two separate, isolated units
with one motor, two pairs of batteries, 2 wind turbines and solar array for each side.

The craft itself is still on the drawing board, there's some details left to work out but they're minor.
The current design displaces over 2200 pounds with only a 12" draught.

The plan is to take this boat from as far up the Mississippi as she can navigate down to New Orleans,
relying only on the solar and wind generated electricity she can create on board.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

More drawing, more problems

I started to do more math and it looks like the GVW of this boat isn't going to be even close to the 2200 pounds she displaces.
Which means the props are going to be splashing like bass on the surface and if I were to get a good gust of wind up under the deck and the canopy, she's going to turn turtle on me.
I knew she was going to be small, I had chalked her out on the driveway out of curiosity. When I threw a "scale me" onto the drawing, it was even smaller then I thought.
I was considering making the canopy larger for more cover from the weather, but now I'm not so sure it's a good idea.

Introducing: "Scale Man"
If you've seen any of my recent YouTube videos (Jump to 4:30), it's not a bad likeness.
At 5' 5" and 150 lbs I'm not exactly a big guy unless you live among the !Kung on the Khoikhoi.

Another designer had recommended using AGM batteries which are sort of like a jell cell. They're more durable and a lot more efficient then the automotive type wet cell batteries
I was thinking about using.
They're also a lot bigger and heavier.
We had come to the conclusion that they really wouldn't make much of a difference in a boat that wasn't trying to store power from re-charge point yesterday to re-charge point tomorrow, but now I'm thinking I may need the extra weight. It will all come down to the $ in the end.
How much will 8 RV batteries cost compared to 4 AGM's?

The "support staff" and I have been tossing around names for the craft. I wanted to go with something classic sounding like Ra or Sol but so far the only thing that's stuck is "Floating Spaghetti Monster".

1 comment:

  1. Question: Has Elvis (the dog, not the King or Costello) suggested any names yet?!

    "Floatzilla" has a certain je ne sais quoi.