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Old 10-26-2004, 02:19 PM
  #21    
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Default RE: balsa core

Just some more information......

To add to the balsa chat … manufactures bond the end grain balsa squares together (2” x 2” squares bonded together forming a larger section …say 6”x 6” squares), then arrange them and allow resin to form barriers between the squares …(water can travel top to bottom in the balsa cored section but not forward and aft in the cored area) further creating a barrier to isolate the infusion of water, helping to stopping the amount of damage (I’ve seen this first hand ). As mentioned “water into a core” and then freeze cycles really cant be good. Here is an interesting study on water intrusion to a balsa core. Balsa core failure, in my eyes, has much to do with how well the original lay up was done, and how well repairs or installations through the core , if needed, were performed.

This is part of an article I posted on another site ….I think it made it over to this site at some point…The article primarily had to do with wood cores but included interesting info on the weight to strength ratios of a pure glass and resin lay up versus the cold molded (wood and glass) method ….Its no wonder some of the finest sportfishers are constructed this way.

Production vs custom are two different beasts, different leagues even …that’s a given. As for ride some smaller boats , IMO, will benefit from weight. That larger stuff inherently have the weight due to the shear size of the boat ….In this case Hull design then drives ride characteristics and trimming weight is beneficial for speed and economy.
As for Cored Technology …no its not the inexpensive route .. Look at builders such as Garlington ….They are using corded hull technology. The owners of these things ( as with many of the offshore sport fishing boats) demand the highest quality as these boats typically aren’t seen Fluke fishing off the beach, but rather screaming at 30+ knots to the offshore canyons in the rough stuff. Those boats are certainly far far from substandard second-rate!!!

Now to figure out how to afford one
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Old 10-26-2004, 02:50 PM
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Default RE: balsa core

Thanks for the info Finesse.

Here is the article from David Pascoe, where he describes the means by which cores (of any type) usually break down in a running surface - not rot. He also exposes the marketing lie that synthetic cores are always better than balsa or wood. Pascoe is from FL, so the freeze cycle is not a usual issue w/ the boats he surveys probably.

http://www.yachtsurvey.com/cored_hull_bottoms.htm



TG_190
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Old 10-26-2004, 03:32 PM
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Default RE: balsa core

Here is a followup from Pascoe on core material from 1998. A bit of a rant, but still informative.

http://www.yachtsurvey.com/core_materials.htm
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Old 10-26-2004, 11:38 PM
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Default RE: balsa core

Quote:
is it cheaper to go with balsa core or a solid fiberglass hull? what percentage savings are there with going with balsa core.
Balsa if definitely cheaper than 'glass and resin ! How much, I don't know, but I expect it is a huge savings on boats over 20'.

I would never buy a boat with a balsa cored hull. The chance of a small crack in the 'glass and resin causing a huge, possibly unrepairable failure is an unaccepatable risk !

That's why I say go ALUMINUM !!!
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Old 10-27-2004, 06:59 AM
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Default RE: balsa core

Old Wizzard,

I do not see many aluminum boats in salt water any more but know a lot of beach fisherman used Star Craft and launched from the beach.

The few I've seen have corroded rivets. I also saw a 45-48 ft striker having its bottom welded. This is probably not very common and caused by something the owner rather then the builder did.

The problem is who can repair aluminum? A lot of people, even me, can do fiberglass repair.
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Old 10-27-2004, 08:45 AM
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Default RE: balsa core

Old Wizard - there is no savings in coring a hull, either in material or labor, unless some crap hi volume production boat company has some way of doing it cheaply and incorrectly. The accepted ways of installing coring are labor intensive and time consuming. Spraying resin into a mold, laying glass cloth down, rolling out, and spraying again repeatedly to build thickness is a much faster cheaper process. Then take into account that many builders use chopper guns to add glass/resin, and there is no question, coring is a more expensive type of construction. Talk with any hull builder if you doubt this.
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Old 10-27-2004, 01:01 PM
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Default RE: balsa core

I guess one thing is for sure, you really can't generalize about cores being good or bad.

If done for the right reasons, and correctly, the cored hull will last, and provide the performance enhancement that the designers intended. If it is done poorly and/or, as a means to reduce cost, labor, or otherwise improve a manufacturer's bottom line(despite what the marketing line might be), without considering the real design impact, then it is probably doomed for problems and/or bad performance.

Personally, I am not a fan of coring in the running surface - too much force while running, always wet, subject to sharp impact with hard obstructions, and difficult to repair. Why and where coring is used on a hull should be design dependent and capability driven. It should be installed with great care, and good laminating. If you doubt either of these last 2 statements, then I would avoid it. You really have to trust the boat manufacturere's desire to create the best performing, longest lasting product regardless of the technique.
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Old 10-27-2004, 01:15 PM
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Default RE: balsa core

enca55 and Eric,
You are both very wrong in your assumptions.
This is the nicest way I can put this.
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Old 10-27-2004, 02:33 PM
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Default RE: balsa core

Bullshipper (perhaps appropriately named) - which assumptions are you referring too, all of them ? Care to add something useful to the discussion by substantiating your opinion ?
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Old 10-27-2004, 02:59 PM
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Default RE: balsa core

OK
Your statement - "there is no savings in coring a hull, either in material or labor, unless some crap hi volume production boat company has some way of doing it cheaply and incorrectly."
Hand laid Fibeglass is about 1/16 of an inch thick per layer= 16 layers have to be laid by hand to get a 1" thick deck instead of buying 3/4" core material and adding 4 layers of glass= cheaper material cost, less labor, less time, less money. Coring Material is lighter than glass = more bouyant =less horsepower= less expense

" The accepted ways of installing coring are labor intensive and time consuming. Spraying resin into a mold, laying glass cloth down, rolling out, and spraying again repeatedly to build thickness is a much faster cheaper process. Then take into account that many builders use chopper guns to add glass/resin, and there is no question, coring is a more expensive type of construction. Talk with any hull builder if you doubt this"

Chopper guns came out to cut labor and time laying fiberglass. Coring is a faster cheaper method to get the same result, only lighter. And foam coring can also be used to produce shapes without molds, with our without vacuum bagging.

Glad you like my handle. I find Eric to be very original and cleverly deceptive also.
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Old 10-27-2004, 03:32 PM
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Default RE: balsa core

Bullshipper, doing balsa coring takes more labor time then just laying fiberglass. The same processes still exist, there is still hand lying of the fiberglass. But to get the balsa squares aligned correctly then saturated, then vacuum bagged takes more time.
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Old 10-27-2004, 03:39 PM
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Default RE: balsa core

You are right about the balsa Kevin, I was thinking foam core.
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Old 10-27-2004, 06:02 PM
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Default RE: balsa core



Lots and lots of discussion on this subject...I also posed a question when I was
considering an older Rampage and that was " Has anyone personally had a problem
with the cored hull on a Rampage". Hundreds of hits and not one with a problem.
900 hits on this thread and no one complaining or offering first hand experience
with problems either...Not even a SeaRay guy. I find that interesting considering
the imput on other topics. Even Yamaha outboard owners citing problems which was
almost unheard of before.
One thing in common with ALL cored hull threads though...people quoting Pascoe
like he is God . No other sources except that test in his article and his word.
If you read his stuff he does'nt have much good to say about most boats. If
we all went by him alone we would all have Bertrams.
Pascoe seems like a smart guy ond sure sounds like he knows his stuff but then again so does Erich von Daniken and he'll tell you the Pyramids were built by aliens.




Kev

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Old 10-27-2004, 06:09 PM
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Default RE: balsa core

Personally I think Pasco is an A HOE.
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Old 10-27-2004, 06:34 PM
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Default RE: balsa core

Quote:
I do not see many aluminum boats in salt water any more...
Go to the Pacifc northwest and up to Alaska. You will see lots of aluminum hulls. True, they don't have the "gracefull lines" that a 'glass boat has, but pound for pound, they are way more durable.

Search some of the old threads here on THT. There are a lot "alloy" fans.
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Old 10-27-2004, 06:42 PM
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Default RE: balsa core

Kevin and Bullshipper, are all builders using balsa really using 100% end grain ?

Are they really doing vaccuum bagging on large hulls (like 30-40' SeaRay) ?

Even if they are, a well placed collision could cause a crack. And, if there is balsa core below the waterline, you may have a serious problem growing without knowing it.

Personnally, I think Pascoe is a "bit too full of himself", but I agree with him, "No balsa below the waterline !"
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Old 10-27-2004, 07:15 PM
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Default RE: balsa core

Quote:
flynny7 - 10/27/2004 7:02 PM Lots and lots of discussion on this subject...I also posed a question when I was considering an older Rampage and that was " Has anyone personally had a problem with the cored hull on a Rampage". Hundreds of hits and not one with a problem. 900 hits on this thread and no one complaining or offering first hand experience with problems either...Not even a SeaRay guy. I find that interesting considering the imput on other topics. Even Yamaha outboard owners citing problems which was almost unheard of before. One thing in common with ALL cored hull threads though...people quoting Pascoe like he is God . No other sources except that test in his article and his word. If you read his stuff he does'nt have much good to say about most boats. If we all went by him alone we would all have Bertrams. Pascoe seems like a smart guy ond sure sounds like he knows his stuff but then again so does Erich von Daniken and he'll tell you the Pyramids were built by aliens. Kev


I don't agree with everything Pascoe says in all his reviews, but your informal poll of*Rampage owners looking to volunteer information about problems they have encountered is even less useful.*Rampage may do it right. I really don't know. Maybe the 5 out of the 900 people who*know enough to *have answered your question, can't type or don't care. Hardly conclusive in either proving Pascoe is wrong, or*Brand X*hull are good.

*Everywhere else you read about boats, nobody has anything negative to say. Articles in magazines are never gonna expose anything other than praises, as the boat makers pay the advertising in the magazines. Pascoe may be harsh, and*favor some bertrams, contenders, pursuits,etc. *but he is the only one I've read that has anything really critical to say about any boats (some of which I have personally confirmed to be true). I guess you think he has an agenda. Take it, along with everything else*with a grain of salt. BTW, why do surveyers have water meters, and check for soft spots- because it never happens???

The Yamaha big block issue is widespread, and turning into a class action lawsuit. Everybody knows it, its most probably not the consumers' faults, why not chat? Try and sell a boat w/ a 250 or 300 HPDI, and you are not gonna get top dollar i bet, but what are you gonna do - change the decals, wait for updates, Repower?? Yamaha may get it right, and it may turn out to be a great motor, but for now its a problem like the Optimaxs were when they first came out.

I, and others, *have seen delamination in cored hulls. Go to your local fiberglass repair guy and ask him, or better yet talk to a good surveyor.*
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Old 10-27-2004, 08:20 PM
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Default RE: balsa core



TG,

Never intended to PROVE Pasco wrong...just sayin' maybe he's not as right as some people think. Like you said you don't agree with some of what he says why
can't someone disagree with the cored hull thing. And..cored hulls are'nt the only one's
that delaminate or blister, and cored hulls are't the only place a surveyer would use
moisture meter either.

Kev


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Old 10-27-2004, 11:07 PM
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Default RE: balsa core

Quote:
flynny7 - 10/27/2004 9:20 PM TG, Never intended to PROVE Pasco wrong...just sayin' maybe he's not as right as some people think. Like you said you don't agree with some of what he says why can't someone disagree with the cored hull thing. And..cored hulls are'nt the only one's that delaminate or blister, and cored hulls are't the only place a surveyer would use moisture meter either. Kev


Kev,

I stated in my earlier post that it isn't black and white re: coring, and stated my personal preference. Pascoe has a lot of common sense valid points, and much info related to the original post. He may not always be right (like I think he completely misses the point on Boston Whaler construction* because of his own preferences), but he tends to be critical based on his experience and shares what he knows/feels. Agree, delam is not exclusive to cored construction, but introducing new/different materials between layers increases the risk of it occuring if not done with great care and the correct*materials/adhesives/resin.**Measuring/detecting water*intrusion in cores is one of the main reasons I was told (by several different surveyors) that*they use the meters.

TG_190

TG
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Old 10-28-2004, 07:55 AM
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Default RE: balsa core

Bullshipper - quality hull manufacturers don't typically eliminate significant layers of glass just because they are using coring. Its not a substitute for glass, which is still needed for impact resistant and other structural reasons. As far as coring below the waterline, Baltek has some very interesting information on their website, obviously take it w/ a grain of salt.
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