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Ballast adjustment after fit out and relaunch

Hi I have recently bought a 50x10 wide beam which was an unfinished project,I intend to do the fit out myself with no previous boat experience but I am a carpenter/builder so I hope to draw on that knowledge.my concern is that the boat is currently in the water it has no engine fitted the ballast has been installed and ply flooring fitted ,I intend to have the boat lifted and transported to my local Marina to complete the fit out on the hardstanding,how do I determine what ballast adjustments will be required after have installed the engine and completed the fit out,I intend to fit oak floors through out so it concerns me that when I relaunch the bow might be pointing skywards and I would have no access to make major adjustments.I think this may be my first of many questions.David

Asked by: David Anderson  | 4.21pm, Thursday 2 June

WW says:

Hi David
My experience of launching ready ballasted boats is confined to narrow beam craft but I see no reason why the same general method shouldnt serve in your case. My method was to take an educated guess at the amount of ballast required and then aim a little on the light side. Ballast was then packed tight between the floor bearers in the centre of the shell leaving several of the front and rear floor spaces empty. The positions of the steel floor bearers were then transfered onto the upper surface of the ply flooring and marked on in heavy felt tip to show their exact locations and also show which floors were full.
After completing the fit out and launch, the trimming ballast can be added through holes cut in the ply floor with a jig saw in suitable spots.My favoured ballast material is blue bricks or concrete paving bricks, they are easy to work into place and pack in tight to prevent unwanted movement.
Laying the final floor finish with the boat afloat covers up the hatches cut in the plywood floor when the fuel and water tanks are full, booze cupboard stocked etc. Since the boat is afloat now, you will have some water marks to work to at its current weight, according to my rough calculations each tonne of weight you add will increase the draft by about 20mm.
Best of luck with the project I hope you enjoy the experience.

Mike Jordan  | 8.11PM, Thursday 2 June

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