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May 21st, 2012, 03:09 PM   #1
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Buoyancy / Load capacity of a barrel... plz help!

Hi,

First, this is a short explanation as to why I need some help. I'm building a 20 ft x 12ft pontoon boat to be used on a lake. It will float by use of closed polyethylene barrels with with normal air (NOT compressed). The barrels will be held in place by a wooden deck. On top of this deck, I'm building a 12 ft x 8 ft wooden cabin, with door, windows, and a roof that doubles as a deck. Additional major weight factors include the motor, anchor, batteries, small canoe, fresh water storage, people, supplies, etc.

But before I get to drawing and building I need an answer to the most important question: how much weight can my barrels support? Right now, I'm considering 2 sizes:


55 Gallon Polyethylene Barrel
34 3/4 (in) height
23 1/4 (in) diameter
23 (lbs) weight
This is a straight barrel (NO tapering)

Or

30 Gallon Polyethylene Barrel
34 3/4 (in) height
23 1/4 (in) diameter
23 (lbs) weight
This is a straight barrel (NO tapering)

I would much prefer using only the 30 Gallon size, however, that might not be feasible. Anyway, hope someone can help me out determining the load bearing capacity of the above barrels on water. Thanks
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May 21st, 2012, 03:14 PM   #2
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Re: Buoyancy / Load capacity of a barrel... plz help!

DIMENSIONS OF 30 GALLON BARREL WRONG.

The specs of the 30 gallon barrel are:

31 (in) height
19 (in) length
19 (in) diameter
13 (lbs) weight
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May 22nd, 2012, 01:33 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by newercase
how much weight can my barrels support?
Let's assume that under maximum load the barrels (and nothing else) are just submerged. The total load supported, including the weight of the barrels, would then equal the weight of the water displaced, which can be calculated as the product of the total volume of the barrels and the density of the water.

Is the revised specification for the 30 gallon barrels correct? I don't understand what is meant by the length of a barrel, as distinct from its height.
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