GB5508 Rebuild - Soma's Project

us7070

Super Anarchist
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Designers have a tough time, they design amazing boats, and people tend to fill them up with too much stuff.

I would guess that very experienced multihull sailors would be the opposite and want less stuff, and simpler systems.

The Trimaran "Spirit" is a very good example of experienced multihull sailors cruising in a excellent sailing multihull.  


there is nothing inherently wrong with wanting to cruise on a catamaran at a high level of comfort - everyone, designer, builder, buyer just need to be realistic about the trade-offs.

it's not "too much stuff" if that was the design brief to begin with.

as we get into some of the bigger sizes.., the usage scenarios become more superyacht than bare-bones cruiser. That may not be the way you would use a boat like this.., but there is room for everyone to have the boat they want.., and to use it they way they want to.

 

Student_Driver

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Darien
@Soma, I remember in 2014 at BEYC we were on your F40 cat and we were discussing Gunboats and the 55. You mentioned that there was a serious weight issue. I thought you meant 10-15% over budget.

I would love to read an article or business school case study on this.

Perhaps someone should write a book.

IMG_1667.jpg

 
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KC375

Super Anarchist
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@Soma, I remember in 2014 at BEYC we were on your F40 cat and we were discussing Gunboats and the 55. You mentioned that there was a serious weight issue. I thought you meant 10-15% over budget.

I would love to read an article or business school case study on this.

Perhaps someone should write a book.
To justify the effort of doing a business school case there has to be a useful lesson or pattern to teach the students. What business lesson would be learned from Gunboat? That serial failure predicts further failure? Given the mess left behind in South Africa and then China, who was honestly surprised about what happened in North Carolina?

Where / when did Gunboat operate for any sustained period of time (5-10 years) covering costs including capital, honouring commitments to workers and suppliers, delivering on commitments to customers, and consistently producing a quality product? Some good boats got produced – many of them not finished by Gunboat – e.g. Extreme H2O and I expect 5508 will end up among the outstanding boats – that only came to life after getting free of the clutches of Gunboat.

I frankly don’t see the value in the brand “Gunboat” – any person who does the least research will read “Gunboat” as meaning: you will needed an outstanding agent like Soma to actually get this to work for you, but you will still have to pay twice...how is that a compelling value proposition?

What is to be learned from Gunboat...stay away from serial failure.

 
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MR.CLEAN

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I don't.  GLY bought the name and all the legal liabilities and assets right?.  They made out fine.  PJ made out fine.  Many GB employees (not all) made out fine.  But the buyers of unfinished boats ALL got COMPLETELY screwed inside and out, upside and down. Just my (one) opinion and worth what you paid but if GLY acted as as a sellers broker and then AGAIN screwed (again my opinion) those same already screwed buyers now sellers I hope they get sued and I hope they lose their shirts.  Everyone comes out clean except the contracted buyers?!  Ten cents on a dollar.  F*ck that. Sorry, but no nice way to say it. 
You make wild, unsupported assumptions, and your beef seems to be with the US Bankruptcy Code rather than anyone else.

 

Wess

Super Anarchist
soma said:
JUST painting is probably 8000+ hours. 
No, just lawyers @MR.CLEAN; but I have to admit I would want one reviewing all contracts if I was building new.  The customer seems to take all or most the risk and too many builders/brands have gone belly up.

Geeze @soma - versus how many hours to gelcoat?  Maybe I am just a redneck hick who don't care enough about cosmetics and style but I don't think I have ever looked at a GB (didn't know they were all painted) and thought wow that is so much better looking a finish than the 5X gelcoat or whatever.  Didn't one get a wrap or am I still high on post op pain meds?

 

MR.CLEAN

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No, just lawyers @MR.CLEAN; but I have to admit I would want one reviewing all contracts if I was building new.  The customer seems to take all or most the risk and too many builders/brands have gone belly up.
Agree.  Until you get to the really big money - buyers who require personal guarantees from builders and builder partners - build contracts are a pretty big joke. That's how so many really big customers end up owning boatbuilders.

 

us7070

Super Anarchist
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The problem is that it's not enough to just make certain that your money goes to your boat...

if the company goes bust and you have a partially completed hull.., it's probably worth 10 cents on the dollar without a going concern to finish it.

in the end you really can't be entirely safe.

 

trackday

Member
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soma said:
Labor estimate for the 55 was 8,000 hours (per PJ). Actual? 54,000. Ouch! To make matters worse, that 8,000 hr estimate was for construction in China. The actual was 54,000 in the US. 

[email protected]$6/hr= $50,000

54,[email protected]$40/hr=$2,160,000

You can see why they went bankrupt!
I am not sure the labor rate was $40/hr nor was the time to build each boat 54,000 hours.  Here is a part of a snap-shot in time that I was supplied;

image.png

 
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mad

Super Anarchist
soma said:
I've seen that same spreadsheet. The $21/hr labor rate didn't reflect the fully burdened labor cost. That 44,000 hrs was the total direct labor. Accountants, marketing, project manager, design, were all additional. For example, PJ spent $900k on marketing the last year they were in business. You also have to include amortized tooling cost, rent (to himself). That gets that labor rate number up to $40+ quickly.

Regardless, though, 44,000 hrs is a lot more than 8,000.  

The other thing to note, the "materials" for 5501 were equal to the TOTAL advertised introductory sales price. 
Fucking hell! There’s absolutely no excuse for getting the material costs wrong, it’s on the drawings and laminate spec. Hard to believe the alarm bells weren’t ringing a lot earlier about this, or were they? I’ve either forgotten, or stayed away and didn’t follow it all that closely. 

 

MR.CLEAN

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The problem is that it's not enough to just make certain that your money goes to your boat...

if the company goes bust and you have a partially completed hull.., it's probably worth 10 cents on the dollar without a going concern to finish it.

in the end you really can't be entirely safe.
Nope, but if you have a good lawyer and you're the biggest fish in the boatyard you can at least own the builder after they default and finish it yourself!

 

Zonker

Super Anarchist
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Geeze @soma - versus how many hours to gelcoat?  Maybe I am just a redneck hick who don't care enough about cosmetics and style but I don't think I have ever looked at a GB (didn't know they were all painted) and thought wow that is so much better looking a finish than the 5X gelcoat or whatever
You shoot gelcoat into a shiny polished mold and it's a one person for one day for hull and deck. (OK more for interior molded furniture but you get the idea). Gelcoat is lots heavier than paint so for a performance boat, you paint it instead.

If the boat is not built in female tooling i.e. one off over male mold frames, then the labour hours to fair and then paint (at least 1 or 2 layers primer + 2-3 layers topcoat, with sanding between each coat) is HUGE.

Ian Farrier has a chart on his website showing build hours for a home built. Not directly comparable when you have tooling, but a GB level of finish does require lots and lots of sanding and fairing. I think his hours are realistic for one-offs. 

8K is criminal though. 54K hours is a LOT though.   It doesn't sound like production was that efficient or perhaps a lot of the interior was custom to each owner (and systems / electrical too)

Notice the shape of the curve is climbing pretty steeply. Ian probably had a good handle on hours for smaller tri's but really would have underestimated for larger 40-45 catamarans if finish level was excellent.

Buildtime.JPG


https://www.f-boat.com/pages/costsandtimes.html

Until you get to the really big money - buyers who require personal guarantees from builders and builder partners - build contracts are a pretty big joke. That's how so many really big customers end up owning boatbuilders
Very important to have this - I was involved in a one off powerboat of about $1-2M contract price. Contract required a performance bond. Cost the builder ~1-2% of the value of the boat, but they had been around for 20+ years and had a good track record. Way too many builders are financing the completion of one boat with the down payment on the next one.

If the builder can't get a bond, you have to ask yourself why not - and then run away!

 

HotCarNut

Member
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Denver, CO
soma said:
I've seen that same spreadsheet. The $21/hr labor rate didn't reflect the fully burdened labor cost. That 44,000 hrs was the total direct labor. Accountants, marketing, project manager, design, were all additional. For example, PJ spent $900k on marketing the last year they were in business. You also have to include amortized tooling cost, rent (to himself). That gets that labor rate number up to $40+ quickly.

Regardless, though, 44,000 hrs is a lot more than 8,000.  

The other thing to note, the "materials" for 5501 were equal to the TOTAL advertised introductory sales price. 
So I did some backwards math on this, averaged it, and came up with the following for the 55 series:

image.png

Again, I'm a finance guy.  Based on a reasonable margin of 25-30%, the boats should have sold for roughly $4M each.  Kind of makes sense when you think that the new 68s are selling north of $6M, except the performance of the 55 wasn't up to spec.

 
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Student_Driver

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I'm pretty sure Ian Farrier had the data to back that chart up.  It isn't just a guess.
No doubt. That’s not my point. IF no doubt has the experience and data  

Obviously, displacement goes up with the cube (^3) of length.  Labor to build has a similar relationship to length. A chart of Disp vs Length,  would look very similar. E.G. a 10 Ton boat should take ~2X the labor of a 5 Ton boat. That seems like a result which one could have guessed without the data. 

 

sail(plane)

Anarchist
688
106
No doubt. That’s not my point. IF no doubt has the experience and data  

Obviously, displacement goes up with the cube (^3) of length.  Labor to build has a similar relationship to length. A chart of Disp vs Length,  would look very similar. E.G. a 10 Ton boat should take ~2X the labor of a 5 Ton boat. That seems like a result which one could have guessed without the data. 
You are right, but you are assuming you know the mh from a boat to then scale up or down.

its not banal to have that constant man-hours/ton from a good source. Then how you graph it is irrelevant

 
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