Step 2: Floatilla

About 2400 soda bottles in two wood pontoons float this beast. I tried to do some buoyancy calculations by estimating final mass and volume. And I predicted that it would float about 50 percent of the boat below the surface. I was right.
<p>What a cool idea - If you added a structure to this deck, would it stay dry ? And the panels shown - is their function to contain the bottles ? When this boat is on the water, the hulls are full of water, flowing through them ? It sure looks like it would work well and not cost a lot. good job - </p>
<p>Not sure what you mean by a structure? I did put on a biminy top. Yes the hulls fill with water at least about half way up them. I think your questions can be answered in the text if I haven't addressed them well here.</p>
Since I'm older &amp; not interested in sewing my oats like I was at 19, I have always wanted a pontoon boat....I think that I will try &amp; build one but I'll use plastic barrels(6 or 8 of them) for the pontoons.<br><br>A 20 footer should be enough to pahty on &amp; catch fish with as well. 8=D<br><br>And if I get REALLY bored, I just might end up with a home made houseboat.<br><br>I loved reading how you did this, gives me lots of ideas!!
As a kid we had a steel pipe raft, a big one floated with 6 steel drums. It bobbed like a cork. I'll bet you could get by with 4 of them if they are about the size of the steel ones.<br>
Perhaps a little water inside the barrels will reduce the stability problem.
this is prolly true guys....however, I would rather have too much floatation than not enough.<br><br>as far as water in the barrels, that might work....kind of like a counter balance thingy...there's a 64 million dollar name for it, but I have no idea what that name is. :)<br><br>TY both for the input. Much apreciated. 8)
<p>Ballast, now, where to pickup my 64,000,000...</p>
Except that you will be hauling that water around with you - at 64lbs/gallon. <br> <br>Light is best. <br> <br>Cylindrical hulls aren't really great, hydrodynamically - flat bottoms are much better. <br> <br>2ftx2ft pontoons on a 20ft x 8ft platform will give you more than enough flotation for 10 people and all their gear, assuming you don't make it all out of cast iron! <br> <br>Here's a great, cheap, easy plan for a scalable platform boat from Pop.Mech. <br> <br>http://www.svensons.com/boat/?p=HouseBoats/PlatformBoat
Doh! 64lbs/cu ft, not per gallon!
It's called ballast.
TY. ballast is not the word I was looking for, but it works too. :)
I think you mean &quot;keel&quot;?
The keel is the bottom of the hull.
<p>Sad. I remember reading about this when I was in college. Luck with your new tardy boat.</p>
Flotation....ping pong balls
<p>much to expensive </p>
<p>would love to build with my grandsons WE did build a raft from G-2 bottles Last summer I used liquid nails to hold the bottles together in our very hot and dry Arizona air the bottles started to come apart we had great fun for a summer season and cost me under $10.00 scrap wood from Home Depot bin and Liquid nails on sale it was a piece I cut down to 4X5 and had two layers of bottles that covered the bottom</p><p>Kids had fun making the raft and more fun with it in the water </p>
<p>Yous should keep a similar design for the new one but have the pontoons made from 4 50 gallon drums stacked lengthwise. Then make nice cones on the ends and possibly sheath the top in sheet metal so you cant see the tops of the barrels but so that the bottoms come in contact with the water. It would be alot easier to move through the water.</p>
<p>55 gallon drums...</p>
What about recycling a few of those old aluminum drop tanks from old retired military aircraft from the Bone yard in Arizona. Can be repaired/patched real easy and sealed up with that extreme duty tire sealer used in off road vehicle tires. Put a metal tire valve stem on them to compress them with air to hold the seal. Those tanks were used on many different aircraft, thus many different sizes. A pair of B-52 drop tanks would be big enough to make an ocean going craft, the rest is up to your imagination as to what you would use for your cabin and power systems. This is about recycling right? That is just another way to do it. Could use the forward section of an old cargo aircraft as your cabin, mounted to the wing mount hard points on the drop tanks. I am a former aircraft mechanic from the air force, I know that those tanks can float real easy and are very durable and strong.
Amazing! So many great comments too! I think I read them all. I know the last post here was about a year ago. I hope your still out there. I have had a pontoon house boat thingy in my head for years. I imagine ABS pipe with a frame. You mention you are welder now. I was thinking a metal strut frame, thought too heavy perhaps. What about using sections of an aluminum ladder, coupled with metal strut, for strength and to build deck off of? <br>Hope your still about.
I'm still here. All good ideas.. If I do it again. It will be with plastic 55 gallon drums. You can usually buy them from car washes. They get all their soap in them. Here's they're 5 bucks each. Those somehow encased in a welded up metal frame and It could be fairly light and work well.
but if i intend to use the boat to sea, then the metal frame would be too easy to get rusted yes?
use a sacrificial zinc.
Do you reckon this will work with pool noodles?
Sure it would. They float and shouldn't get waterlogged. Why not?
do you need a boating license for this? i doubt it... but do you?
In Maine, any powered boat has to be licensed. Even electric so yes here it has to be licensed.
Love the idea. Im going to need to make one now. <br>
Here in SW VA we have a Coke plant and I can get 50 gal plastic drums that are fused together at top and bottom and only the lid which is a pain in the rear to get out is the only &quot;leak&quot; point. You have to buy 8 at a time and you get 8 for $40. 8 of those should float a &quot;titanic&quot; sized pontoon.
have you built a new one yet
Haven't built one yet. I'm remodeling the house. it's always in the back of my mind though. I live on a lake and I miss being able to glide over the water.
i am working on building one for fishing can you give me some tips
That's great. When I do this again. And it may be soon. I'm going to eliminate the bottles and use sealed 6" pvc pipe. I think it will float well and be easier to manage.
What thickness pipe - schedule 40 PVC pipe is a lot heavier than the PET plastic in soda bottles? [Sc. 40 PVC = 3.53 # / ft.] I am also concerned about the brittleness of PCV. I wonder if there is a better substitute? Have you considered foam wrapped in fiberglass or carbon fiber? I saw this done to make a sailboat pontoon in an old PopSci Magazine article. Or, could the soda bottles be connected together in a large monotube, wrapped in something like shrink wrap or fiberglass?
I had considered cutting disks of foam out of 2&quot; thick pink foam you see as building materials at big box stores. then stacking them into cardboard sauna tubes and fiberglassing the whole thing. But, the cost and work involved would be quite a bit.<br><br>As for the PVC pipe:<br>The PVC pipe (one 6&quot;x10ft) would buoy about 100 lbs of wt. would be insterted underneath a pipe skeleton framework so they wouldn't really be support structures. Also, if you bundled about 5-6 of them with straps they'd be pretty strong.
fill the pipe w capped bottles, not much added weight, but xtra security if the PVC cracks
I'm not sure how buoyant small boys are, but my guess might be to try using 6 teenage kids each side to start with. They might kick for a while but will eventually fall quiet and provide ample buoyancy for your boat.
Just give them an area for food, drink and air then you have your motor too....LOL
very good, sir!
Thank you.
Your Instructable is good as well, but I was referring to nachobobs's comment. It was really funny. Sorry, deveiver. That carved dragon's head is freakin' sweet, though! What's that made of? Having spent most of my youth around boats I love how you made the port and starboard lights the eyes. Very cool.
Ha, didn't catch that. The head is just a bunch of pine boards glued together. I carved it with a 4" grinder and some chisels. It took about 2-3 hrs to carve once I started it.
Wow. I am duly impressed. You are a true artist. I've got skills in other areas, but not sure I could do that.
Dark, but funny non the less.
You are a twisted individual . But i like the idea ,if it works you can get some supplies from my neiborhood we have an over abundance of noisy kids! LOL.
if those are two liter bottles, u guys drank 4800 liters of soda. wow
Deceiver, where did you get all the bottles?

About This Instructable




Bio: Retired Jr. High teacher of 30 years. Always into lots of things. Now I seem to be into them more. Love woodworking, guitar, portrait painting ... More »
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