Building a Large Pontoon Houseboat
by Bill Van Lenten
(Brooksville, Florida. USA)
Building a large houseboat, some perspective about size.
I have decided to build a house boat, a large wide pontoon houseboat. And here is how I designed, calculated, and planned it all out.
To start with, I am now going to be building my own 80 foot by 18 pontoon houseboat. The cheapest, most inexpensive set of pontoons in aluminum or magnesium were priced at $53,000.00 delivered.
That was about the total price (minus engines) that I wanted to lay out for the entire house boat. So I decided to build my own pontoons. I sat down one weekend, and designed everything from top to bottom. Made calculations, drawings, and measurments.
The pontoons will be cylindrical, as the aluminum ones, and hollow, for compartments for holding tanks, fuel tanks, water tanks, batteries, and generator.
Each of the pontoons will be made of six foot sections, bolted, and glassed entirely watertight. They are 44 inches in diameter, that makes two bulkheads per sheet of 3/4 inch resin based plywood.
Each of the six foot sections are divided into two foot section, with the center two hollowed for air and storage tanks. The two end bulkheads are solid and will bolt to the next one. All seams are glass taped, then all sections glassed.
This will make two pontoons 80 foot long, completely water tight and bouyant. 2x10x18 foot floor joists will span the two pontoons, bolted to a four inch attached riser to each two foot spaced bulkheads in the pontoons. 3/4 inch plywood will be screwed (stainless) to the joists
for the floor.
The front deck is 10', the rear deck 8'. That makes the 3 stateroom 2 bath and main salon,galley, and dinning in sixty two feet of space.
The upper deck on the roof will house a bar/eatery, and grill with a party top above. As soon as I start putting this huge dream together,
I will post as many pictures as this site will allow. I will offer as much of my experience as possible. Oh yea, it will be twin outboards of 135 hp. Honda?
Bill Reply - Answer
Well Bill, congratulations are in order for deciding on building such a large houseboat. I'm sure many of our readers are eagerly looking forward to some pictures.
If any of our readers are contemplating building your own houseboat, have a look at the houseboat building section for ideas, tips and plans.Lastly
, hopefully some of our readers will share and post comments about their past or present houseboat building experiences. Feel free to use the "Click here to post comments." link found at the bottom of this page.
Thanks again for sharing, IAN from all-about-houseboats
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