65- by 32-foot catamaran 3200sqft of living space

Sorry to be AWOL for a couple days but sometimes life intrudes.

You could call this post a follow up on the fine work done by bhyde and others very early on in this thread. (Pgs 1-2).

Bhydes photos show the ‘yacht’ under construction. Since they were taken I have noticed that there has been much discussion of the materials used and speculation about whether additional structural reinforcement was added since bhyde’s pictures were posted. If you have these sorts of questions concerning the construction of the cabin my previously posted interior photos should help answer them. I do have a few more interior shots here with some discussion. These were all taken below deck inside the port hull a few days before “Flyin” went in the water. As has been my approach from the beginning I will not be offering my opinion on what these photos show. I will however, offer some help and information that all of you might find usefull in forming your own opinion.


Here we are looking forward from a little ahead of amidship. Nothing much has changed since bhyde made his photos. Note, that construction is plywood over 1x2 battens with 2x4 "frames". The "frames" are positioned at approximately 4' on center. The assembled group of 2x4s at the center reinforce the vertical bow stem. The white squares with the grey dots in the top third of the frame are the terminations of the 2x4 members that support the bridge deck and join the hulls together. We will have a closer look at these and some other details below. BTW peeking out from the bilge forward is a plastic 20-30 gallon drum. I was told that several of these were going to be converted to "tanks" to serve various purposes on the boat. Some were said to be food grade and would hold fresh water.


I rotated slightly toward the port side to capture this area in a little more detail. This is the area of the hull that turns inward toward the bow. Note that the "frams do not follow the angle of the bow. Rather the 4" dimension of the lumber is perpendicular to the fore and aft center line of the boat. Rather than bevel the short edge of the 2x4 or even the bottoms of the notches for the stringers 2 screws are driven into the bottom of the slots with their heads exposed to "support" the stringer. Notice also that the fore and aft seams in the plywood are intermittently backed up by small rectangles of plywood. Apparently this was done to support the butt seams while the fiberglass tape was applied. Although I cannot say for certain that the only fiberglass reinforcement applied to the exterior of the hulls was done in the form of 5-6" wide tape it appears to me that this was indeed the case.


Now let's look closely at the lower right corner of this picture. For clarity I have also rotated the image and sharpened it. There has been quite a bit of discussion in this thread about the materials used on this craft. Several sources, including Hot Rod himself have indicated that the hulls were made from 1/2 material. This is not the case. I captured many images of grade and specification marks and this one down near the waterline clearly indicates that the plywood used is 3/8" C-D sheathing grade plywood, commonly referred to in the US building trade as CDX. Every other plywood grading mark I captured in the hull sections is consistent with this. This material allows for considerable knots and voids. 3/8 panels are structurally span rated at 24-0. That means they are span rated against the grain at 20 inches and with the grain at 0 inches. C-D grade sheathing contains significant knots and voids, and is rated at Exposure 1. Exposure 1 panels are not "exterior glue" per se. The glue used in these panels is designed to withstand some wetness and dampness encountered during the construction process but is not rated for long term exposure to the elements. If you would like the definitive word on what 3/8 C-D sheathing plywood is rated to do have a look here: http://www.plumcreek.com/Portals/0/downloads/productInfo/J20.pdf.


Now we are looking at one of the support beam attachment points. These span the the distance between the inner surfaces of the hulls and provide the main structural support for the bridge deck. The beams themselves are made up of multiple 2x4 sections epoxied together in the fashion described by Hot Rod as "steel reinforced beams". I talked about this earlier in the context of the cabin, but essentially these are between 3 to 5 thicknesses of 2x4 glued together with epoxy paste and "reinforced" by galvanized builder's screws on about 6" centers. In this application the outer 2x4s pass into the hull on either side of the vertical "frame" while the middle thickness butts into the hull. The whole assembly is joined with a 1/2 galvanized carriage bolt through with nuts and washers on both sides. There has been some comment here about these bolts. (Some posters are calling them "coach bolts". I guess this is a British or Colonial idiom. I LIKE IT!) I won't comment on the precise strength of these bolts but I will point out two things. First, Hot Rod has installed them with washers on the head side, presumably to limit pull through. This point loads the little shoulders on the heads of these bolts. With stress and movement the square shoulders will either shear away or dig in to washer leaving the nuts to become loose. More importantly, my guess is that they are significantly stronger than the wood assembly that the hold together.

Notice also that there is a grade mark visible on the 2x4 "frame" indicating " KD Hem-Fir STUD". This is typical of all the lumber I have seen on the "Flyin". KD means kiln dried, Hem-FIr is the species group composed of Western Hemlock and various true fir species. Non-appearance grade lumber is grouped together by species with roughly equivalent structural properties. BTW this is not the superior Douglas Fir Lumber that many people know. STUD is the structural grade and speaks to the number of knots and the percentage of heartwood (the strong stuff) in the graded piece. "STUD" is roughly equivalent to grade #3. Most houses are spec'ed and built at #2 or better for vertical and floor members and #1 or SEL (Select Structural) for beams and critical load bearing components. At one point I wrote a long description of exactly what these designations mean but somehow I lost it in the computer universe. Very briefly let me say that STUD grade lumber does not meet the requirements for most common building construction applications. Most carpenters consider it "hobby wood" and would not use it even in the limited applications where it is acceptable because the KD process makes the wood very prone to cracking and splitting when it is fastened. I observed many conditions (more in the cabin than the hulls.) where the builders screws used split and cracked the wood.

More information on how construction lumber is graded can be found here: http://www.engr.sjsu.edu/dmerrick/164/WWPA_PUM.pdf.

0044.jpg 0045.jpg 0047.jpg

Here are three more views of inside the inner wall of the port hull. If you recall this is a pretty much an uninterrupted vertical surface fore to aft except for the small 90 x90 degree chine not far above the waterline. You get a very good look at how it is constructed here. Notice also the common romex wire used here. I will have more to say on this later.


Finally this is a view looking toward the aft port quarter showing the framing for the transom steps.

Next post will deal with some of the "ships systems".



Here's a little inspiration for HotRod...


This is the 55' x 12' sailing raft "Son of Town Hall". It sailed and powered (by all reports, comfortably and safely) from NYC to Maine to Newfoundland to Ireland to France, up the Seine to Paris, down the Rhone to the Med.

Look, I don't read Latitude 38 myself, but are all their writers this phenomenally incompetent?

The fact that the big cat floats almost exactly on her lines is a testament to Lane's engineering skills — even though he's never built a boat before
Sweet Jeebus! You'd think a cruising sailor, of all people, would understand that a just-launched, empty boat with UN-finished accomodations,NO stores, NO fuel, NO water aboard is not "floating almost exactly on her lines"! Cripes! You fail both in basic Physics and Reporting!
The Harley will be placed for optimum balance

Here's a little inspiration for HotRod...


This is the 55' x 12' sailing raft "Son of Town Hall". It sailed and powered (by all reports, comfortably and safely) from NYC to Maine to Newfoundland to Ireland to France, up the Seine to Paris, down the Rhone to the Med.
Not he prettiest, but it's made from good recycled materials, has decent rig and sails, a 19 horse diesel engine. Oh, and it's not designed, built, and operated by a psycho.

From the website http://www.floatingneutrinos.com/FAQ.html

What you see is what it is. It's actually a raft, not a boat, meaning that water goes freely in and out of the hull, because it is floating on wood and foam, and is not water-tight like a boat. Click here to see the plans and construction details of the Son of Town Hall back to question list ask a question



lilmurray - thanks for long post, it was excellent

please please? update on the status of the ship now that its been in the water for days? :)

have you had any access? discussion with HR?



Super Anarchist
What, no gravy ?

Thanks Lilmurray. Its a longshot, but with your impartial measured and timely reporting, you wouldnt be a member of the Hotrod family ? eg the son by any chance ?

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Super Anarchist
cmon scooter, this thread needs the Sailing anarchy mobile truck webcam up and running. Fit one to a truck and park it there for a week... You will get the sinking footage exclusive and drive hits on this website through the roof.... Next week you could park it at Fowl River and catch the other 60 foot sinking cat...... Gold. DAWOODY isnt this your line of business too ?

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cmon scooter, this thread needs the Sailing anarchy mobile truck webcam up and running. Fit one to a truck and park it there for a week... You will get the sinking footage exclusive and drive hits on this website through the roof.... Next week you could park it at Fowl River and catch the other 60 foot sinking cat...... Gold. DAWOODY isnt this your line of business too ?


and I wouldn't want to be anywhere around the CDX Burg when it Caves in Haves

That'll be a Wall of Water !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!



New member
hey people nana here with a little info on this project. this is my first post and so sorry if I do bad.

I'm a bay area native who is part of HR,s extended family. I cant tell you how sea worthy the FH is or isn't.

I can tell you we wont have long to wait. I would ask forum members here to support HR for just one reason, having a dream and working oneself to the bone to make your dream happen.

2 men making a boat. or a house or a combo of the two. in two years while working side jobs to do it deserves recognition!!

Dreams can and do often change to nightmares in the blink of an eye. Many people in the middle of our country are living through this as I type this. due to powerful storms

I would ask for this forum to help HR in everyway possible . Insults to a boxer or mma fighter don't do a thing when they come from the crowd.

If you post comments here that you are two chicken ship to say to rods face you are far less than a sailor. real men have the nads to say what they mean to the person they are saying it too.

most common comments 1 what is it? = a cupcake

2 how do you know it floats =resin covered wood floats(possibly many pieces)but floats..

3 when will you launch= when they/we are ready.

I am worried about many things on this build. because I have done many metal parts on the FH . I work as a cnc machinist. Another boat I make parts for is team Artemis racing. the Americas cup cat..Did it capsize do to lack of experience/skill or not enough engineering?? or expensive materials.. Mother nature wins. just a matter or time.

So just so you all know HR is driven by universe! Universe is making it all happen against all odds. i'm not sure why, nature may demand a sacrifice, or likes to make fools of internet posters. I think both!!

Point Is I want to know who is willing to see us fly or fail. Celebrate with us or drag our asses out of the bay. I will post again tomorrow . HR wasn't too happy and now the lawyer is on the job if you are using a likeness of HR or FH this is your only warning .stop now or face full prosecution to the maximum extent of the law. If your taking pics. have the guts to say i'm posting it on the web ok rod.

if you have the will and means to help with $ or rescue floatilla and or equipment let me know 10 am tomorrow at the loch lomond marina

we will give 20 min on board tour with the soon to be in/famous Hot Rod asking $100 donation. Iets see if enough people come out to make one side of FH drop at all. I think not.

and lastly remember what Gandhi say.....

First they ignore you, then they ridicule you, then they fight you, then you win . by Mahatma Gandhi.

We are ready for the fight ..hehe 10 am see u jellies


Super Anarchist
Wow, it's even worse than it looked! So there is one sheet of knotted ply between the ocean and the interior? The support for the bridge deck only extends to the inside edge of the 2x4 on the inside edge of the hulls? How has this pos not folded and failed yet?

Every single comment I have said is something I would definitely say straight to Hot Rod's face. . . .but I don't think it would do the slightest good to someone with this kind of profound delusion of adequacy. He doesn't have the slightest idea how poorly he's done--and apparently neither do you, nanaj2013. I -can- tell you how seaworthy FH is not. I'm actually kind of an expert on crappy plywood boats, though even my worstest quick n' dirty Bolger sharpie ever was a fucking Royal Yacht compared to this phenomenally fucked up trainwreck.

But if I lived in the area, I would most definitely be on hand to watch/provide a legal witness of the coming disaster...


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