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I have built several boats from Marine Grade Aluminum I very much like the Pahi 42 desine .    I do not like the idea of dagger boards,  I prefer the small keel on the Tiki desines .I was hopeing to recieves some of your thoughts on this idea . Also I have only found very little information on building a James  Wharram desine in aluminum,   just a few photos of one vessel on the internet any more info  information would be very help full.    I just purchased a new miller welder for wellding aluminum Wow it makes welding aluminum so much easyer than in the past ,   the auto settings are great .   I love building in Aluminum very fast. so light. easey to work can be cut with woodworking tools .   no painting sanding , only need to paint the interior ,   very good tensile strength many of my friends build aluminum river boats one hit a larg rock at 25 mph crumpled the bow but it did not leak he just cut out the first 4 feet and welded a new bow , I was amazed.    Some grades of aluminum are close in strength to mild steel , thank you for your interest on  this subject .

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I will not disagree that aluminum will not rot. It certainly will corrode and will fatigue. In the past I repaired many times the aluminum ferries in San Francisco.

 My issue here is the ridiculous imo cost comparisons you are presenting. Why would you compare rosewood and ebony to normal structural boat building woods?

 Please tell us where to buy  5 sheets of 5'x12'x1/4" 6061  for $1200. I can ship this to Fl and make a nice living reselling. 1088 Okoume from Boulter Plywood runs less than $6 sqft. 1/4" 6061 runs closer to $14/sqft.

Your arguments lose credibility when you make comparisons such as these.

Full disclosure. I have built a lot with aluminum and hate it. This is me. I don't like the feel, the smell, the ferocious noise of working with it and I can't have my dogs loose when welding due to the light. I also have been burned from exposure to the flash when working aluminum. Mind you I was not the welder, as they were plentiful in the yard I worked in. The light will burn any exposed flesh with enough exposure. This means lot's of protective gear. Not so bad in BC but in FL it sucks. It is cool as compared to steel that one can use wood working tools to cut and shape it but the noise is horrible. 

 Boats are personal and if aluminum floats yours, groovy, but don't pump us.

 Rant over, out.

I live in wood country but you will rarely see a wood boat here mostly fiberglass and coveted by many longtime knowledgeable boat owners  is aluminum light very fast to build repair and aluminum boats hold there value very well, I have always sold my boats for more than they cost me  wood boats are great if that what you choose do not mind lots of maintenance and repair because if you let the maintenance slide so will the value of you boat very quickly. In fact  if you go to any boatshows you will always see aluminum boats front and centre because that's what knowledgeable owners want not to mention there are so many backyard boatbuilders he In BC Canada building there own aluminum boats and most of them are not in the welding trade

You obviously have a strong bias.

"Knowledgeable owners?" I am not sure I have met many of those. Most people succumb to marketing hype, including Wharram builders.

I have owned, lived, sailed, worked, built and crewed on more boats, types, designs, and construction material types than most people even know exist. I was a service tech and service manager for a Florida marine service business that worked on boats systems on any type of boat, from open fishing to super yachts. I have never come across a "knowledgeable owner" who thought aluminum was the way to go. Every aluminum yacht owner I have met (with the exception of super yachts) bought aluminum because of the marketing hype, not from real world experience. Most boat owners know very little about their boats or the systems that make them run.

From my personal experience, I would never own an aluminum boat unless it was so large (mega yacht) that aluminum was the key to its success or it was a small skiff/tender. I cannot say that I would choose wood, fiberglass, or steel over each other because it would be dependent upon what I wanted the boat to accomplish before I chose the material. But I do know that I would not choose aluminum. But that's me.

Alfred Archibald Linthorne said:

I live in wood country but you will rarely see a wood boat here mostly fiberglass and coveted by many longtime knowledgeable boat owners  is aluminum light very fast to build repair and aluminum boats hold there value very well, I have always sold my boats for more than they cost me  wood boats are great if that what you choose do not mind lots of maintenance and repair because if you let the maintenance slide so will the value of you boat very quickly. In fact  if you go to any boatshows you will always see aluminum boats front and centre because that's what knowledgeable owners want not to mention there are so many backyard boatbuilders he In BC Canada building there own aluminum boats and most of them are not in the welding trade



Alfred Archibald Linthorne said:

 Yes this includes 2 complete hulls with material left over these sheets are 5 ft x12 ft have not priced masts yet but tapered flag poles made of  hi tensile aluminum 6061  35 ft are about 2000 Canadain dollars each 8" on the base 4" inch on top     3/16" wall  still researching beams .

My apologies my price was wrong the quote I got was 7.5  American dollars per sqft for 6061   12 x5 ft .250 for a 30,000 dollar  purchase from Samuel and son metal suppliers North America I miscalculated in transferring currencies. I was referring to an overall price aluminum to composite wood fiberglass construction. I still believe this makes aluminum favorable overall in cost as well as durability  I acknowledge everyone's freedom to build as they wish these are merely the conditions we see in my area of limited vision. Take for instance shipping here in Canada if you buy online what you get in the US shipping included or for 5 dollars  can cost up to 100 shipped here I have found out the hard way on some small few dollar perchases  If I may suggest if you buy anything at a supplier see if the company you work for  purchases there and see if you can buy cash sale via there account with permission . you will often find prices much more palatable.  
 
Omar M. Rashash said:

LOL, you noticed that. I can get as much Sapele as I want locally for $5.50/bd. ft. I can get Goncalo Alves for $5, $10 if I want stripe. The only boat wood that's expensive is Teak,  starting at $30. All of this also ignores the Tiki range was designed to be built using sustainable softwood, which should be readily available, especially in Canada. After all, it grows on trees.

Omar


boatsmith said:

Aluminum is an option that might be suitable for some people.

But the numbers posted here  are goofy!!

"one piece of some foreign hardwood and not a big piece one board 2 inches thick about 4 square feet in all,  1200 dollars Ouch ! Thats a lot of aluminum 5 sheets 5ftx12ftx.250 "

 

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