View Full Version : water ballast

12-26-2000, 07:56 PM
I want to build a stable, shallow draft boat for inter-island sailing in the Philippines. Not more than 26 ft and preferably much less. Once in the water it will stay there indefinitely except for drying out between tides when beached; there's no question of trailing it here and there. What are the pros and cons of water ballast? I already have a 17 ft Wharram catamaran (somewhat modified) and it's an excellent boat but affords no protection for anyone on board so we're exposed to the tropical sun and torrential rain. It's also unsuitable as we have a young child.

12-26-2000, 08:46 PM
The previous issue of WoodenBoat, has a good writeup on the subject.

Phil Bolger has a lot of designs with this feature, though I have yet to try it myself.

Sharpies are excellent shoal draft craft.

Tom Lathrop
12-26-2000, 11:04 PM

Go to:
www.egroups.com/group/boatdesign (http://www.egroups.com/group/boatdesign)

Do a search for water balast and you will find a lot of discussion of the pros, cons and limitations of this system. Since you have no need to trailer or otherwise handle your proposed boat other than in the water, why do you need to consider water balast?

01-03-2001, 06:47 PM
Brian, I lived there for several years and sailed from the north down as far as Tawi Tawi in a Charles Wittholz design Catboat that we built in Masantol, Pampanga using System Three T-88 (then it was still jerry schindlers stuff). Charlie lived just down the road from me here in Maryland but his wife still sells plans and I believe Ken Hankinson sells them also. It was a great little boat. The Norwalk Island Sharpies would be a good choice also.
Just remember that Philippine mahogany isn't mahogany so when you start building cover every micron with the epoxy or them little water critters there will have a picnic.

01-03-2001, 07:39 PM
One of the most comprehensive discussions on this subject in is the web site for the McGregor 26MC or 26X or whatever its called. this is represented to now be the highest volume production sailboat of cruiser size. the dealers also have some good print material.
In one of the boats I'm building now, I'm installing 10"pvc water main pipe about at the wl on both p&sd for carrying water ballast in either or both sides of the boat.