Catamaran Construction - Sarasota Florida

We build and repair multihull boats
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A few pictures for your edification.

The latest images of the khd 32 including the launch are here.

To the right, as of january 20, 2004 from our webcam.

Our shop is about 2300 sq foot, but offices take up a good part of that. we will just have enough room to work around a 16' x 32' cat. the door is only 12' wide, but there are ways around that; a new 16' door, which would be lovely but expensive, or cutting the door frame and removing a bit of building skin temporarily. much cheaper for one use... and easier the second time. we set up the shop during the summer of 2003 in a wonderful space at the end of a dead end cobblestone street, one of the very few left in sarasota. we started out with a couple of small building jobs, we put a floor and a deck onto a unique nomex/prepreg 19' bowrider that had been built from leftovers from the stilletto factory, and pulled from a mold 18 years ago. here's a picture of it. after that excursion, we were ready to start on the next thing, a kurt hughes 32' power cat. actually, we had planned on a 31' 6"cat, but after all was said and done, it looks like we are at a few inches over 32 feet!

Below - here are jerry and jim applying carbon tape to the crossbeam stringers prior to sheathing the crossbeam with laminated plywood skin. the bulkheads are 6mm and the back is 9mm. the stringers are laminated spruce 18mm x 36mm with 13 oz unidirectional carbon tape over the top. the skin is two layers of 3mm bagged together over a form. i went to a lot of trouble to scarf in some bending plywood so i could wrap ply all the way around the tight radius and avoid strip building, but i think that it might be faster to just strip the whole thing. it's complicated by the fact that there is no easy way to get at the inside of the beam if you put the back on first to hold it together. we cut a couple access holes on what will be the bottom of the beam glued onto the floor of the cockpit. i think strip building the skin on a female form, glassing the inside, and then gluing it onto the frame would probably be the best way.

here we have a pair of hull sides in the bag under 18" vacuum. the black breather material is polyethylene fencing mesh- 25 cents/sq ft at home depot and it works very well. epoxy pops right off of it. the clamps are there to flatten out the top edge which tended to get pretty wavy. we built a compound curvature mold, it is about 35mm higher in the middle than on the ends, but we weren't able to get the plywood to take all of that curve without trading off some serious waviness on the sheer. probably would have been fine, and the extra fullness at the keel would have come in helpfull when lining up the spread hulls. the bagging went well, we did the final pair in under two hours. we built eight hull halves in four sets. the bottom (keel) edge that is in the lip, tends to injure the bag when placing the sheets of plywood into the lip, we added a second strip of poly about six inches wide along that edge to protect it. the bag was taped together with package tape, which worked quite well for two people, one holding the poly straight, and the other taping. takes about ten minutes to seal up a bag. there are different types of poly out there. we used up our first roll and bought a second one at home depot, six mil instead of four. but when we tried to make a bag out of it, it turned out to be full of pinholes, and have a very slick surface that tape would barely stick to. so we returned it, and reused some old bag material, which was preferable. the manifold is a drilled garden hose, the vacuum gauge came from ebay for $8, and the vacuum inlet is just a 1/2" pvc tee stuck to a piece of plastic with five minute epoxy.

stacking all eight hull sides before lacing and squeezing.

current stage of the cabin.

looking forward through the hull

all the pieces coming together

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Catamaran Construction
Sarasota FL 34236

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