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Foam flotation under floor. Good/bad?

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  • Foam flotation under floor. Good/bad?

    Hey guys,I bought this old 16ft aluminum boat and am changing the motor. When I removed the aluminum floor I found that all of the voids in the bottom of the hull are lined with sheets of white foam flotation. I removed the flotation to get to the wires and steering cable. This flotation was not there when the boat was built. Someone else installed it. What are the good and bad points of this. I always thought flotation in the bottom of an aluminum boat was not a good idea and could make it flip easier. Should I reinstall the flotation or leave it out?? Can you guys give me your opinions on this topic? I did a search and didn't find this exact question although I find it hard to believe that I would be the first to encounter this problem.Thanksjimpittman


  • #2
    Re: Foam flotation under floor. Good/bad?

    why would foam under the floor make the boat flip easier, and why on earth would it flip anyway...?foam is there to help you swim after the boat sinks...

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    • #3
      Re: Foam flotation under floor. Good/bad?

      I don't see any way foam would make the boat flip, who the hell told you that? I'd leave it, unless its holding water.

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      • #4
        Re: Foam flotation under floor. Good/bad?

        Hey guys,Thanks for the come backs. I felt kind of stupid asking that question, but i guess it is better to be safe than sorry. I'll re install the floatation.Thanks,jimpittman

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        • #5
          Re: Foam flotation under floor. Good/bad?

          Jim – it is not a stupid question. I think I know where you are coming from with it. For the foam to have an affect on the vessels stability it would have to be exposed to the water the boat is in, exterior to the boat. But since the foam is inside the boat, you can think of it as light-weight cargo.Foam (or other flotation) is required in boats of only certain lengths (8-20 ft?) and only built after a certain year, (sorry, I forget what year it was). That is why not all boats you will see have it. Some manufacturers spray (or pour) the foam into the boat’s voids, some toss in loose chunks to meet the USCG requirement. Mako built the floatation into the hull of the boat, Boston Whaler picked up on the idea and still makes their boats that way.It sounds like the foam you found in your boat was out of the way in an unused area. It wouldn’t hurt anything to put it back, but it may not provide enough flotation to accomplish the intent if someone else added it at a later date. What Ryan mentioned is a good point. If the foam is wet or exposed to water, you will want to remove it.

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          • #6
            Re: Foam flotation under floor. Good/bad?

            Why would it help you swim?
            Mes amis nous allons quelque part dont tout
            le monde
            Se rappelle d'un endroit ou l'herbe etait
            toujours verte
            Et la fete ne s'arretait jamais
            A autour du rocher

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            • #7
              Re: Foam flotation under floor. Good/bad?

              USCG SAYS any boat below 22 ft. an made after 1972 ,, MUST HAVE LEVEL floatation..

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              • #8
                Re: Foam flotation under floor. Good/bad?

                I went back to the guy who told me not to put the foam back in and his reasoning was this. An aluminum boat is light to begin with. Just say for some unforseen reason you get water in your boat, (plug comes loose, big wave crests over the back end, etc the foam wants to come up and if you happen to lean on the gunwhale(side of the boat) and you get enough water in the boat, the boat could flip over. I didn't argue with him although I have never heard of any one flipping. So the flotation is going back in. I appreciate the good information.thanksjimpittman

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                • #9
                  Re: Foam flotation under floor. Good/bad?

                  Hey jimpitman,I dont belive your reason, you can chek it wit a scale boat, in your theory the boat will flip anyway because the air under the boat, it does not matter if you got foam under floor or not, Make shure you got the safty grab bag ready and epirb

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                  • #10
                    Re: Foam flotation under floor. Good/bad?

                    what happens if a MISSILE hits your stransom while a big wave crests over and you get eaten by a shark.....what if............sorry i just had to say that

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                    • #11
                      Re: Foam flotation under floor. Good/bad?

                      Hey guys,This isn't my theory. I got it from a friedn and just wanted to check it out with the experts (you guys). Thanks for the interest you showed.jimpittman

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                      • #12
                        Re: Foam flotation under floor. Good/bad?

                        The foam is not a factor in a flip situation, and even if it was, the foam is still going to help keep the boat at the surface where it belongs.
                        Project Skanky Beast http://70silverline.250free.com/Skankybeast.html

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                        • #13
                          Re: Foam flotation under floor. Good/bad?

                          Consider foam as the boat's life jacket! It should help it float if it gets swamped, instead of sinking into the abyss.

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