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Old 07-28-2011, 06:12 PM   #1
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Egg Houseboats?

I saw that Scamp/barge photo awhile back, but has anyone else seen fiberglass RVs used as houseboats? It seems like with the construction of some Burros and U-Hauls being 95% fiberglass that they could conceivably be modified into pontoon boats or somesuch.

Heck, you could probably launch Lil' Snoozy just the way it is!

Regards,

Matt
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Old 07-28-2011, 06:23 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Matt in SV View Post
I saw that Scamp/barge photo awhile back, but has anyone else seen fiberglass RVs used as houseboats? It seems like with the construction of some Burros and U-Hauls being 95% fiberglass that they could conceivably be modified into pontoon boats or somesuch.

Heck, you could probably launch Lil' Snoozy just the way it is!

Regards,

Matt
here's a couple, one from a Scamp brochure...
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Old 07-28-2011, 06:31 PM   #3
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I think it was prior to the hack, but there was/is a picture of a Scamp 13 on a river barge. The crew uses it for a rest area. I think if I was going to float a molded trailer, it would be something completely tubbed like a Casita, (some years of) Trillium, Oliver or an Escape!
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Old 07-28-2011, 06:35 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by Donna D. View Post
I think it was prior to the hack, but there was/is a picture of a Scamp 13 on a river barge. The crew uses it for a rest area. I think if I was going to float a molded trailer, it would be something completely tubbed like a Casita, (some years of) Trillium, Oliver or an Escape!
I'm trying to upload my archived photo from the Scamp brochure Here it goes again
nevermind it looks like it worked , but in a different form!
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Old 07-28-2011, 06:41 PM   #5
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Here Floyd, let me help
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Old 07-28-2011, 08:01 PM   #6
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Here Floyd, let me help
Oh my goodness, I wanna, needa, gotta have one!!!

I wonder whether I could have a pontoon boat like that made/modified to carry my '83 Burro. Heaven on Earth!

Froggie
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Old 07-28-2011, 10:12 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Green Frog View Post
Oh my goodness, I wanna, needa, gotta have one!!!

I wonder whether I could have a pontoon boat like that made/modified to carry my '83 Burro. Heaven on Earth!

Froggie
The caption below the picture read...

"You can even convert your SCAMP Travel Trailer into a houseboat. A customized 29' aluminum pontoon boat can easily handle the SCAMP 13."

The quote and the photo are from the Scamp sales brochure Circa 1983.

BTW , thanks once again for your help Donna D.
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Old 07-29-2011, 09:32 AM   #8
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Or you can skip the pontoon bit and just build the trailer so it floats. Here is the amphibian Creighton Gull:



Or, if you can stand the voiceover here it is on video: Caraboat

The Creighton Gull morphed into the more rational Caraboat, which has an active forum here in Britain: The Caraboat Club





The flags are for a trailer-boat festival! You can just see the coupler on the end of the folded-up tongue in the last photo.
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Old 07-29-2011, 10:14 AM   #9
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WOOOOW!
Those are really cool! Dreamboats you might say!
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Old 07-30-2011, 04:50 PM   #10
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We've actually talked quite a bit about fitting pontoons to the Trillium .
Most popular idea is using inflatable bladders like they use to raise boats, etc. combined with some kind of framework that deploys for "launching".
We always get hung up by the (self-imposed) necessity of keeping the trailer functionally similar to the way it is now.
I'd be real interested in hearing others' ideas on the topic, perhaps beginning with how much flotation would be needed to support 2,000 lbs.
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Old 07-31-2011, 06:09 AM   #11
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As a naval architect (ship/boat designer) in a former life, that's like a red rag to a bull....

We want to float 2000 lbs. Let's say the floatation device(s) and support(s) will weigh 500 lbs and we want a further 1500 lbs reserve buoyancy - not enough for the sea, but good for calm lakes and rivers - so we need 4000 lbs total buoyancy.

This could be achieved by two pontoons 12 feet long by either 20" square or 24" diameter - they would be maybe 15 feet long overall with a bit of taper on the ends. Add three or four cross-beams that fit under the egg's frame and you've got a practical solution, with a cross-section like the attachment (each bar at the bottom is one foot).

The floats/pontoons have to be mounted so that the egg floor isn't underwater when the 'boat' is heeled over - but in fact getting the floats/pontoons low enough that the door will open over them is actually what sets their height. Remember, extra height means less stability and even on a calm lake you want some stability!

The red line show where the whole 'boat' floats, so only the bottom of the wheels/tyres are in the water, and rust damage shouldn't be a problem.

The circular pontoons look a better option since they can be inflatable and transported in the back of a truck that also carries the (aluminium?) cross-beams on its roof.

But..... the killer question is: how does it get into the water? The floats/pontoons are well below ground level when the trailer is still on its wheels, so they can't be set-up/inflated on dry land.

Some sort of hinging mechanism in the cross-beams so the floats/pontoons can be wound down once afloat could be arranged but that still probably lets water into the trailer while launching.

It might be possible to design the cross-beams and floats/pontoons so that the whole 'boat' could be picked up in the slings of a boat hoist and put in the water - but that then rules out secluded lakes and means only busy waterways can be visited.

So, not ideal. Any suggestions?
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Old 07-31-2011, 06:36 AM   #12
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I'm not a nautical engineer (and don't even play one on TV) but my idea was more along the lines of a glorified ferry... I was thinking that if the egg could be backed down a ramp onto the deck of the waiting pontoon boat, then secured in place with its normal leveling devices/locations and perhaps some straps on the wheels like are frequently used on land based car-carrying trailers. The boat would be a bit larger, necessarily, but it could operate independently and the camper could be driven onto or off of it pretty quickly and easily. Now the deck would have to be high enough and/or broad enough for the door to open freely, and if the floats extend up very high so the deck would be wider, it would have to be extra wide to make the camper be centered. It's probably a pipe dream anyway, but it is fun to dream.

Froggy
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Old 07-31-2011, 07:25 AM   #13
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Jacks makes the tubes you're looking for.inflatable rafts, catarafts, pontoons, inflatable kayaks, dry bags, paco pads by Jack's Plastic Welding Inc.
Mine are 14'x22", but I'm not quite ready to strap my 4500 to them.
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Old 07-31-2011, 09:39 AM   #14
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Thanks, Guys!

But-
Before we go any further, I'd like to get this out of the way:

Q: How do you make a Trillium float?
A: To each glass of root beer, add two scoops of Trillium.

We now return us to the subject at hand...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Andrew Gibbens View Post
As a naval architect (ship/boat designer) in a former life, that's like a red rag to a bull....

We want to float 2000 lbs. Let's say the floatation device(s) and support(s) will weigh 500 lbs and we want a further 1500 lbs reserve buoyancy - not enough for the sea, but good for calm lakes and rivers - so we need 4000 lbs total buoyancy.

This could be achieved by two pontoons 12 feet long by either 20" square or 24" diameter - they would be maybe 15 feet long overall with a bit of taper on the ends. Add three or four cross-beams that fit under the egg's frame and you've got a practical solution, with a cross-section like the attachment (each bar at the bottom is one foot).
I'm glad the ol' "wave a red flag" maneuver worked!
It works on my engineer husband, too- it's just that in his case, he answers so very thoroughly.
While I may come away with a better understanding of some principle of physics,
I'm so distracted by the details that even I can't remember what my original question was.
Those numbers are exactly what I'm looking for as a practical starting point!
And the drawing is very much how I (hazily) pictured the pontoons to be.
We got started on this subject due partly to the fact that we own several (small) pontoon boats of the type in Scott's picture, and seeing them leaning up against the Trillium....
Well, you know how it is!
It's actually beginning to seem a lot simpler than it sounds.
A framework that perhaps pushes in to receivers on the trailer frame, with inflatable pontoons attached upon arrival.
I wonder if one could back in to the water and then inflate the pontoons, raising the trailer clear of the waterline...

Thanks!

Francesca
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