Plate Aluminium Boats vs Fibreglass Boats
If you are thinking of buying a serious offshore fishing boat you have a number of choices. You can buy a plate aluminum fishing boat or a fibreglass boat.
You are buying a boat because you want to be fishing, not working on boats. If you want to be working on boats buy a timber fishing boat and you will be guaranteed spending many hours working on it.
What do you want in a fishing boat? Well you want it to be tough. Water resistant. Impact resistant. Low maintenance. Long lasting. Light and easy to use.
Aluminum is all of these and more. It is extremely tough. It is welded not riveted, so it is totally waterproof. It is highly impact resistant. That doesn’t mean that it can’t be holed, but it’s hard to do. Rather than get a hole aluminum tends to dent. This is great. If you hit something, you end up with a dent. If you hit something in a fibreglass boat chances are high that you end up with a hole, and someone needs to come and get you because your boat is sinking.
Aluminum has a very high strength to weight ratio. So it is light and easy to handle, both in the water and onto and off a trailer. It is incredibly strong and will take a stack of punishment. It needs very little maintenance and will last forever.
A fibreglass boat on the other hand, has some drawbacks. It is heavier. It is less resistant to impact,and more easily holed. It takes a little more maintenance, although much less than a timber boat. And if treated badly it can absorb water.
And whereas a plate aluminum boat retains a very good resale value because they are so tough and durable, fibreglass boats can be more easily damaged and for this reason may not retail their value as well.
With fibreglass, any number of vastly-different-quality resins may be used whose performance and durability can vary widely. While aluminum welds can be x-rayed for verification of a boat hull’s integrity, an entire section of fibreglass would have to be excised and essentially destroyed to subject it to analysis.
All told, aluminum boats offer significant advantages over the competition with regard to their weight, strength, durability, the maintenance they require, and their resale value. And, if your aluminum boat bucks the odds and winds up headed for the scrap heat, take heart; it’s also highly recyclable.
So if you’re pondering your choices between the different types of fishing boat, make it a plate aluminum boat – a Noble Boat. You won’t regret it.
Aluminium Boats Prove Their Mettle, By John Simpson Aluminium Now.
Aluminium Now and Michael Skillingberg VP, Technology The Aluminium Association, Inc.