Australian-Made Houseboats Benefit from the Latest Fiberglass Technology

17 June 2014

Australian-Made Houseboats Benefit from the Latest Fiberglass Technology

Poppy’s Fibreglass on the Sunshine coast, Queensland, Australia, uses DIAB infusion technology to take the manufacturing of their houseboats one step further.

According to DIAB, the experienced father and son team has been in the fiberglass industry for a combined total of 35 years; 11 of them running their own business. A registered boat builder, Poppy’s Fibreglass also manufactures panels for busses, camper roofs and ski boats, among other things. DIAB describes their successful houseboat/caravan, “Boat A Home,” as the perfect choice for people who enjoy boating as well as camping.

Designed for three, the combined houseboat/caravan accommodates up to six people for a day of fishing or camping. Powered by one or two 40hp engines, the “Boat A Home” has a top cruising speed of 25 knots. The twin hull design ensures a stable and comfortable ride and the interior of the houseboat offers comforts such as a cooker, fridge and freezer, shower, toilet and a comfortable double bed.

DIAB explains that the “Boat A Home" is able to stay so light due to its construction. Using DIAB’s lightweight marine sandwich composite allows the team to produce a lightweight, yet strong and durable construction. DIAB says a high-quality vinylester resin on the hull helps eliminate osmosis, and the pontoon twin hulls are filled with buoyancy foam for positive floatation with extraordinary strength. As a result, no special vehicle permits are required, since the vessel is well within the ADR (Australian Design Rules) standards and towing requirements. The vessel/vehicle is light enough to be loaded onto its custom-designed aluminium trailer to take to the next lake or campground.

Poppy’s Fibreglass has decided to move from contact moulding to a resin infusion process. DIAB explains that, by attending one of its infusion training courses in Australia, Poppy’s has learned more about the process and have now introduced the efficient and flexible vacuum bagging system in their production.

With the new system, Poppy’s Fibreglass is able to manufacture fiberglass panels that are up to 7 meter long and 2.4 meters wide, with a large selection of colours to choose from for true customisation. DIAB says the production system also allows for the manufacturing of one-off products as well as mass-produced parts for commercial industries.

Photo courtesy of DIAB.

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