Quote Originally Posted by weekend welder View Post
How does your barge handle on open water???? I have been doing alot of internet reading and research on Dutch barges. I have been unable to find any American builders that offer a boat of this style. I am so pleased to have your reply due to my fondness of the Dutch barge. I would like to build or have the hull built and fit out myself a 55 to 60 foot by 13 or 14 foot beam barge to cruise the Great lakes, the Erie barge canal in New York and the Intracostal waterway.

hope to hear from you again

Frank aka Weekend Welder
Frank,

The Shenandoah was built to withstand 4 meter seas and Force 8 winds, so she is theoretically a coastal vessel too. I brought her out the Thames Estuary and across the English Channel, east up the coast of France to Nieupoort, Belgium, where I entered the inland waterways.

I would not do it again.

There is no longitudinal stability in a flat-bottomed boat with no keel. She is built that way because draft (or lack of draft) is very important. If a keel were designed into her hull, she would handle quite differently in a sea. As it is, on canals she has a tendency to "skid" around tight turns. I know about it and deal with it and it isn't a problem.

As for American boatbuilders, there probably are many who would tackle the job. All you would need would be the plans, the rest a good weldor / welder could accomplish.