AR15.Com Archives
 The Redneck Barge: Making a pontoon boat out of 55 gallon barrels?
Gone_Shootin  [Team Member]
7/18/2008 12:51:12 PM EST
A friend & I were talking about boats today & the conversation ended up with us talking about making a pontoon boat out of 55 gallon barrels.

Has anybody here on ARFCOM done this?
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ScaryBlackGuns  [Team Member]
7/18/2008 12:52:15 PM EST
This is a perfect start of your cover story for an Obama presidency. Good job!!!
Brians_45  [Team Member]
7/18/2008 12:53:33 PM EST
Non-motorized? Sure.

Motorized? Take video. I need a laugh.
Cypher15  [Team Member]
7/18/2008 1:01:22 PM EST

Originally Posted By Brians_45:
Non-motorized? Sure.

Motorized? Take video. I need a laugh.

if the drums are welded together and nose cones/hydrofoil built it could work very well.
Silence  [Member]
7/18/2008 1:03:47 PM EST
Fill the drums with foam.
sherm8404  [Team Member]
7/18/2008 1:04:07 PM EST
[mom]And just where do you plan to go in this pontoon boat of your mister?[/mom]
Hawken50  [Team Member]
7/18/2008 1:08:21 PM EST
we had to do for boy scout camp or some such. the trick was, we had to do it while in the water.

i'm sure the scout leaders had a good laugh.
man_of_few_words  [Team Member]
7/18/2008 1:09:14 PM EST
hawaii
SeanTX  [Team Member]
7/18/2008 1:09:57 PM EST
I saw one of these several years ago.

It looked like a bunch of barrels welded together with a deck thrown on top of it....that is to say like hammered shit. But hey, go ahead and build one. Second the previous posters thought on foaming the barrels.

Take this to the lake and you can use the money set aside on condoms for more beer!
22bad  [Team Member]
7/18/2008 1:11:08 PM EST
What would be the minimum number of barrels required? I can get a few of them
3-Phase  [Member]
7/18/2008 1:13:01 PM EST
55 Gallon Drum Houseboat

Apparently, it can be done. Mildly funny video also.
abnormal  [Member]
7/18/2008 1:13:49 PM EST

Originally Posted By Silence:
Fill the drums with foam.


Just fill them with packing peanuts.
GR8TWYT  [Team Member]
7/18/2008 1:15:38 PM EST
Around here they're called "docks"
Keith_J  [Team Member]
7/18/2008 1:18:46 PM EST

Originally Posted By 22bad:
What would be the minimum number of barrels required? I can get a few of them


3, for stability although good luck getting a USCG type rating...that would net you about 1200 pounds of bouyancy, at the most. But I would recommend 200 pounds each.

Watch for corrosion.
Grimjaw5  [Team Member]
7/18/2008 1:19:54 PM EST
Junkyard wars did a few of them.

RyJones  [Team Member]
7/18/2008 1:20:59 PM EST
I ask that you buy barrels that were used for foodstuffs. Not for some enviroweenie reason - welding on a drum that's held hydrocarbons is just plain stupid. You need to back-flush it with steam while you're welding, blah blah blah.

You could also get the large olive drums. We use them to store AN at the shoot - they're plastic and would last a lot longer in the water than metal.
FMJshooter  [Team Member]
7/18/2008 1:21:21 PM EST

Originally Posted By 3-Phase:
55 Gallon Drum Houseboat

Apparently, it can be done. Mildly funny video also.


LOL some classic one liners.

"If we had balogna during the Civil War we woulda won."
BUCC_Guy  [Team Member]
7/18/2008 1:24:52 PM EST
Eh, we've made rafts out of kegs, and were shitfaced doing it. (It was a wonderful opportunity brough upon us by Hurricane Ivan.)


I'm sure a pontoon boat, put together sober, is more than doable.


- BG
Flashman  [Member]
7/18/2008 1:26:42 PM EST
How many barrels?

Keith J is right -

Each barrel will support about 430 pounds when fully submerged. Do you want them fully submerged?

You do the math.

Filling the barrels with foam will reduce their load carrying ability by the weight of the foam.

On the other hand if the barrels leak the foam will save your rear end.

Mike
the_ak_kid  [Team Member]
7/18/2008 1:28:20 PM EST

Originally Posted By Gone_Shootin:
A friend & I were talking about boats today & the conversation ended up with us talking about making a pontoon boat out of 55 gallon barrels.

Has anybody here on ARFCOM done this?



It was on an old episode of junkyard wars about 2 weeks ago...


I didn't stick around for the end result. We watched whos line is it anyway instead.
TexTJ209  [Team Member]
7/18/2008 1:29:19 PM EST



Forest  [Team Member]
7/18/2008 1:29:55 PM EST

Originally Posted By Keith_J:

Originally Posted By 22bad:
What would be the minimum number of barrels required? I can get a few of them


3, for stability although good luck getting a USCG type rating...that would net you about 1200 pounds of bouyancy, at the most. But I would recommend 200 pounds each.

Watch for corrosion.


Use plastic 55gal barrels then .

Get them from Coke & Pepsi bottling plants.
22bad  [Team Member]
7/18/2008 1:31:32 PM EST

Originally Posted By Keith_J:

Originally Posted By 22bad:
What would be the minimum number of barrels required? I can get a few of them


3, for stability although good luck getting a USCG type rating...that would net you about 1200 pounds of bouyancy, at the most. But I would recommend 200 pounds each.

Watch for corrosion.


I've got a couple that I was thinking about making a bbq pit with
but, they've taken some rust from being outdoors for a few months

I could start collecting them and painting them with something to
delay their rusting If I had some sort of a design plan to work with

Preferably a design that would allow for the EASY replacement of rusted drums
22bad  [Team Member]
7/18/2008 1:32:59 PM EST

Originally Posted By Forest:

Originally Posted By Keith_J:

Originally Posted By 22bad:
What would be the minimum number of barrels required? I can get a few of them


3, for stability although good luck getting a USCG type rating...that would net you about 1200 pounds of bouyancy, at the most. But I would recommend 200 pounds each.

Watch for corrosion.


Use plastic 55gal barrels then .

Get them from Coke & Pepsi bottling plants.


I can probably get the metal ones(in pristine condition)for free
Keith_J  [Team Member]
7/18/2008 1:37:13 PM EST
Stainless are used in the wine industry...
MikeJ77  [Team Member]
7/18/2008 1:38:26 PM EST
This is one of those "Hold my beer and watch this!" moments.
krpind  [Life Member]
7/18/2008 1:40:33 PM EST

Originally Posted By Keith_J:
Stainless are used in the wine industry...


Stainless bbls are used for nitric acid too.

15 years ago the deposit was $350/bbl.

It is probably $500 now.

Beer kegs would be cheaper than ss bbls.



ETA Plus a barge made out of beer kegs would be the ultimate redneck barge.



I own page 2 of the redneck barge thread.

Gone_Shootin  [Team Member]
7/18/2008 1:55:35 PM EST

Originally Posted By Cypher15:

Originally Posted By Brians_45:
Non-motorized? Sure.

Motorized? Take video. I need a laugh.

if the drums are welded together and nose cones/hydrofoil built it could work very well.


We're planning on some sort of nose on the pontoons, a little trolling motor & mabye a 5 or 10 hp putt-putt motor.


Originally Posted By abnormal:

Originally Posted By Silence:
Fill the drums with foam.


Just fill them with packing peanuts.


I think packing peanuts dissolve in water.

We're planning on the 2 part rosin that expands into foam.


Originally Posted By Keith_J:

Originally Posted By 22bad:
What would be the minimum number of barrels required? I can get a few of them


3, for stability although good luck getting a USCG type rating...that would net you about 1200 pounds of bouyancy, at the most. But I would recommend 200 pounds each.

Watch for corrosion.


I can get all the steel ones I want for free.

And I guess we'll just have to keep an eye on the paint.


Originally Posted By RyJones:
I ask that you buy barrels that were used for foodstuffs. Not for some enviroweenie reason - welding on a drum that's held hydrocarbons is just plain stupid. You need to back-flush it with steam while you're welding, blah blah blah.

You could also get the large olive drums. We use them to store AN at the shoot - they're plastic and would last a lot longer in the water than metal.


They all had corn oil in them.
TexTJ209  [Team Member]
7/18/2008 1:58:14 PM EST

Originally Posted By Gone_Shootin:


Originally Posted By abnormal:

Originally Posted By Silence:
Fill the drums with foam.


Just fill them with packing peanuts.


I think packing peanuts dissolve in water.

We're planning on the 2 part rosin that expands into foam.



Most dissolve in Acetone, not water. But there are some that dissolve in water, to be eco-friendly. Just make sure you get the right kind
Gone_Shootin  [Team Member]
7/18/2008 1:58:15 PM EST

Originally Posted By MikeJ77:
This is one of those "Hold my beer and watch this!" moments.


22bad  [Team Member]
7/18/2008 1:59:03 PM EST

Originally Posted By Flashman:
How many barrels?

Keith J is right -

Each barrel will support about 430 pounds when fully submerged. Do you want them fully submerged?

You do the math.

Filling the barrels with foam will reduce their load carrying ability by the weight of the foam.

On the other hand if the barrels leak the foam will save your rear end.

Mike


What foam should be used and what would be the foam per barrel cost?
Gone_Shootin  [Team Member]
7/18/2008 2:00:33 PM EST

Originally Posted By krpind:

Originally Posted By Keith_J:
Stainless are used in the wine industry...


Stainless bbls are used for nitric acid too.

15 years ago the deposit was $350/bbl.

It is probably $500 now.

Beer kegs would be cheaper than ss bbls.



ETA Plus a barge made out of beer kegs would be the ultimate redneck barge.



I own page 2 of the redneck barge thread.



I'm putting that in the title!
Lister  [Member]
7/18/2008 2:07:23 PM EST
A guy did that in Iowa with all his shop tools and saved his own business. Good thinking.
Gone_Shootin  [Team Member]
7/18/2008 2:28:03 PM EST

Originally Posted By 22bad:

Originally Posted By Flashman:
How many barrels?

Keith J is right -

Each barrel will support about 430 pounds when fully submerged. Do you want them fully submerged?

You do the math.

Filling the barrels with foam will reduce their load carrying ability by the weight of the foam.

On the other hand if the barrels leak the foam will save your rear end.

Mike


What foam should be used and what would be the foam per barrel cost?


From what I've been able to find out, an average 55 gallon drum has 7.35 cubic feet of volume.

We're thinking of using 8 barrels. SO, 8 X 7.35cu ft = 58.8cu ft. I found a kit for 40cu ft for $260. I fugure that will be enough to keep a rusty barrel from sinking. But that works out to $32.50/barrel.

Our origional idea of using expanding foam is sounding like it wasn't such a good idea. There's gotta be a cheaper way.
Thumper45  [Member]
7/18/2008 2:37:19 PM EST

Originally Posted By sherm8404:
[mom]And just where do you plan to go in this pontoon boat of your mister?[/mom]
Hawaii
BIGMITCHBAKER  [Member]
7/18/2008 2:39:43 PM EST
This has T.B.A. all over it.
GreyGoose  [Team Member]
7/18/2008 2:43:01 PM EST


3-Phase  [Member]
7/18/2008 2:47:01 PM EST
MNGuns  [Team Member]
7/18/2008 2:53:09 PM EST
Do you really need to foam the barrels...? If they are in fact sealed, the air alone should provide enough bouyancy (in theory). With multiple barrels welded together you would have a safety factor as each would be seprated from the other. Had I a source for barrels, I'd challenge you to a junk yard war...
ASUsax  [Team Member]
7/18/2008 2:56:48 PM EST
tag on the Redneck Barge thread. Could be epic.
Ben70  [Member]
7/18/2008 2:57:33 PM EST
Want real, expert advice?

Ask some recent Cuban ex-pats.
Gone_Shootin  [Team Member]
7/18/2008 2:59:17 PM EST

Originally Posted By 3-Phase:
www.theloudpedal.com/uss_methlab.jpg


OH yeah, I forgot about that one. What was the name of that thread?
Fireguy3  [Member]
7/18/2008 2:59:21 PM EST
It has and can be done, used to be lots of them in my AO in lakes.
Tomtbo  [Life Member]
7/18/2008 3:00:57 PM EST

Originally Posted By Ben70:
Want real, expert advice?

Ask some recent Cuban ex-pats.



100%
DernHumpus  [Team Member]
7/18/2008 3:02:41 PM EST
Definitely foam the barrels. They are bound to leak, especially after you weld them.
PaDanby  [Member]
7/18/2008 3:16:14 PM EST
One of the Boy Scout troops in my town put a few together and would take them to the Colorado River and go on float trips with them. Usually had at least 2 power boats around to keep them out of too much trouble.
monstercat79  [Team Member]
7/18/2008 3:20:39 PM EST
can a plastic barrel be used?
i can get them for free and they come in many differnt colors (blue, white, black...)
svtfast  [Team Member]
7/18/2008 3:24:42 PM EST

Originally Posted By 3-Phase:
55 Gallon Drum Houseboat

Apparently, it can be done. Mildly funny video also.


OMG "If we would of have bologna during the civil war we would of won"

22bad  [Team Member]
7/18/2008 3:41:02 PM EST

Originally Posted By Gone_Shootin:

Originally Posted By 22bad:

Originally Posted By Flashman:
How many barrels?

Keith J is right -

Each barrel will support about 430 pounds when fully submerged. Do you want them fully submerged?

You do the math.

Filling the barrels with foam will reduce their load carrying ability by the weight of the foam.

On the other hand if the barrels leak the foam will save your rear end.

Mike


What foam should be used and what would be the foam per barrel cost?


From what I've been able to find out, an average 55 gallon drum has 7.35 cubic feet of volume.

We're thinking of using 8 barrels. SO, 8 X 7.35cu ft = 58.8cu ft. I found a kit for 40cu ft for $260. I fugure that will be enough to keep a rusty barrel from sinking. But that works out to $32.50/barrel.

Our origional idea of using expanding foam is sounding like it wasn't such a good idea. There's gotta be a cheaper way.


Maybe there's a better deal on foam somewhere
22bad  [Team Member]
7/18/2008 3:45:04 PM EST

Originally Posted By GreyGoose:


It's got a sundeck, bedroom, kitchen, bathroom\shower
(it just needs an add-on mini-garage for a motorcycle)
MNGuns  [Team Member]
7/18/2008 3:48:42 PM EST

Originally Posted By DernHumpus:
Definitely foam the barrels. They are bound to leak, especially after you weld them.



Not a welder are you....
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