New Batch of Lighthouses Available – 2014
May 23, 2014 at 11:20 am #23564
Ocean, the missing parts of DS may be a blessing in disguise. I’d need more info on what is missing, but i suspect the side with appreciable damage is such that we could put a replacement K-brace 3 feet below water level using saddle clamps attaching to the legs, and then one brace well above waterline, such that there’s a tall enough opening to get small boats directly under the tower. This is not a feature the tower came with. This way, at least in calm water, it should be easy to lift a cargo boat up to the machinery deck, bypassing the unloading of it while bobbing in the water. Tucked up under the tower on the machinery deck, or immeadiately below it, will allow keeping it on board out of the wind-water during storms. This is another feature i do not think the tower came with, mostly because i don’t see a way the original gantry can lift tons of boat with cargo and keep it from slamming around in the wind. The pictures i have seen of the gantry don’t make much clear, and as the tower legs slope out from under the platform, it’s likely that lowering a boat from it will hit the K-brace at the waterline.
Aeolius and i went over repair options of this tower on irc a long time ago.May 23, 2014 at 11:53 am #23565
I did checked out some videos of the structure and it doesn’t look that bad,…and building a “covered dock” underneath the structure it’s a good idea. But the big question is how are you gonna make money on that location in order to survive there. The only immediate source of revenue there is commercial fishing and down the road fish or bait farming. (on a minimum investment and only as seasonal-summer-activity)
And between buying the structure, fixing it up a bit, investing in couple of boats, permits, fuel, food, etc, you are looking at a minimum of $100,000.00 just to start up.
For that money you can be seasteading all year long in the Florida Keys…May 23, 2014 at 1:49 pm #23566
I assume if we could get out there, we’d have the boats. But you cannot build a permanent dock down at the waterline there, it would never survive. However, if it’s possible to get a boat between the legs, then a floating dock and the boat could be winched up to the machinery deck easily during bad weather, it would be a simple straight up vertical dead lift. By connecting up thru the kitchen wall (while repairing the split in the floor there) to the helo deck you could support a lift capacity of tens of tons. Berthing for two modest 20ft cargo or go-fast boats should be quite possible.
The tower actually is in bad shape below, there’s a huge split in the floor of the inhabitable space, both sides of the split are sagging. But this is the easiest problem to securely patch temporarily tho, the living space can be made safe in itself very quickly (note i said ‘patch’, not 100% repair). The observation tower and the top deck are prolly fine. I wouldn’t trust any of the outside walkways or the entire machinery deck (or anything on it) until i inspected it myself, and you should show up with plate or sturdy grate (or at least ladders) to span whatever good girders there are. If you look at the remaining K-braces at the waterline, one is badly bashed downwards, as if something heavy fell off or thru the machinery deck. I’d guess all the handrails need replacing, ditto all the water lines and wiring. Before the next hurricane, i highly recommend replacing that missing K-brace in some way. Saddle clamping ladder sections to one leg, and then installing a winch good for a few tons is obviously required.
I could food, water, and fuel myself out there, i could not shuttle back and forth burning boat fuel and buying repair materials. I don’t want to turn this into a self promotion, but if i am not on the stationary DS tower, i’ll be doing it myself floating out in the Gulf eventually. While that tower isn’t mobile, i am not happy with conventional boats as places to live, so i am thinking outside the box. This would need to be a joint effort, in time and money and labor. I think this can be bootstrapped. I leave it to others to find ways to monetize it, i have no clue, i keep asking Ellmer why any business would be out on the water.May 23, 2014 at 8:18 pm #23567
I don’t see the Diamond Shoal tower happening,…ever. Regardless how you feel about seasteading on floating structures, it is the only feasible solution, so far. Seasteading on a platform 40 ft up in the air above the water line is gonna be a logistic nightmare.May 24, 2014 at 5:34 am #23568
ellmer – http://yook3.comParticipant
Just two points – steel structures that are not undergoing a regular maintainance shedule in Drydock (like a ship) are rusting away and structurally gone in short time. (2-3 years) so not a base for real estate.
Second 40 foot above the waves is not safe anymore since the non linear wave model is in place – 90 foot are required to let a Draupner Wave pass below and a decent safety factor required of 1:2 would put the “required height to be Draupner safe” at 180 feet above the watersurface – a engineering nightmare that not even oil industry and its almost unlimited resources can handle…On a 40feet structure pray every night that the Draupner wave may hit somewhere else you are playing Roulette with your life… http://concretesubmarine.activeboard.com/t45822161/draupner-new-year-wave-and-its-consequences-for-seasteading/
Conclusion: The structure you are talking about is a “scrap metal removal liability problem” instead of a “seasteading opportunity”. No bid from my side…
On the other hand a Pod like this – especially if submerged and with a access tower, would do the job to create decent living space at a decent cost in the same exposed sea area.
It is safe and “surviveable” on the surface (like a rescue pod), but it is comfortable (no wave motion) when submerged.
The cost of living space per squarefoot is by far lower in a “submerged bubble” than it is in a Draupner safe tower.May 24, 2014 at 7:13 am #23569
Ellmer, those towers have been there 50 years already. They are in a place where a 40ft peak above calm level is impossible because the ocean floor is shallower than 40ft below calm water. To hit the deck, the water would need to be a tsunami with a 90ft face, not a 90ft Draupner. Besides, the legs are 4ft diameter, what if they were filled with concrete before they rusted away? Altho, if you think about it, the WW2 sunk steel ships in Hawaii are all still there, 80 years after those ships were launched.
I think the oil industry can do 180ft easily, every Norwegean factory floatout of a North Sea installation is over 180ft out of the water. And many GOM installations are more than 180ft below the water, and every drill rig goes above 180ft above the water. For many reasons, 180ft is a small measurement in any direction for making a deck stable on the water.
Ocean, i do not think 40ft above the water is a problem, especially if you consider the 160ft Fonseca Project of 160ft on the water. Or an average 300ft length of a coastal trader or people ferry boat. If the strong point of a stable boat is the 160ft or the 300ft model, why isn’t that also the base of the 40ft tall seastead? After all, the 300ft boat is surely over 40ft tall, and the Fonseca Project will also be over 40ft from keel to roofline. Why is 40ft an problem?May 24, 2014 at 12:40 pm #23570
First of all, I have BIG doubts that those legs are structurally safe anymore. After 50 years and very little maintenance it is almost a certitude that they are rusted like hell. When was the last time a diver was send down bellow to check on them? When was the last time and overall marine survey was done to the whole structure.
As Wil said plain and simple “scrap metal removal liability problem”. Period.
Now, why is 40 ft above water line a problem. First of all a if a floating structure has a hull with 40 ft of topsides (the part of the hull measured from the water line to the main deck), that’s not a problem. Other boats can dock alongside and passengers and cargo can be easily be transfer between the 2 ships. Also, note that even in heavy seas the 2 ships docked alongside will pitch and roll in a “synchronized” motion, as one “unit” (assuming that they are about the same displacement) and therefore not affecting to much their business at hand.
If you have a fixed platform suspended 40 ft from the sea level on legs and no solid surface there, supplying and passenger transfer to and from the platform WILL be problematic. If docked by the legs, even in mild seas the supply boat will constantly bang against the legs. Cargo will have to be hauled up using a crane to the platform. If generators are used, fuel also will have to be hauled up instead of pumped from one tank to another (as per normal refueling procedures). If this is the case, fuel have to be shipped to the platform in barrels. That will be MUCH more expensive than bulk shipping and transfer. How about water? Assuming the platform has a water maker (what else if not so?) the seawater to be desalinated will have to be pumped 40 ft up. Running such heavy duty pump will cost fuel = MONEY. (on a regular boat you just open a seacock and water pours in) How about passengers (or dwellers)? In the case of a bigger platform which might want to run some sort of accommodation business, than everybody will have to climb the legs up and down and then “make” it on the deck of a moving boat?? No way. You will have to use an elevator cage like on oil platforms,…that will go really well with some people
The whole scenario is NOT conductive to anything. Business or seasteading.
It will be like living in a tree house on the ocean. That’s sea scouting not seasteading.May 24, 2014 at 1:26 pm #23571
Ocean, 40ft up is less than 20psi of pump pressure, that’s not such a big deal, i run a very little water pump (much like this 12v one) to pump my water 70ft up the side of the mountain to a 3000 gallon holding tank (takes 2 days to fill it up from dry). A significant pump can do it faster, of course, like the stainless steel vane pump i have which weighs ~80lbs for the pump alone. Toss in two gallons of fuel ($8?) for a baby 4cyl car engine to run it for 20 minutes, pumping 60 gallons per minute of fuel from bulk tanks in a delivery boat in calm water, and i don’t see a problem. There’s easy procedures for transfering fuel in rough waters, including really long hoses. Actually, if the seastead is up 40 or more feet, it’s likely deeper than that, and you’d be pumping the fuel down into storage tanks. If i were visiting a seastead, i’d be concerned if the walkway from the boat to the seastead was at water level, and i’d be very concerned if the boat had to pull alongside, instead of using a 20ft gangplank to handle the difference in height and movement. Elevators are like “so what, the cruise ship has them, why not a seastead?”.May 25, 2014 at 9:03 pm #23574
$100,000.00 just to start up.
For that money you can be seasteading all year long in the Florida Keys…
I am back home from a 5 days camping tour at the Florida Keys. Nice. I think, I will move.May 26, 2014 at 1:27 pm #23576
I’m glad to hear that! Were in the Keys did you go camping?May 26, 2014 at 7:28 pm #23577
Key Marathon.May 27, 2014 at 6:37 am #23578
“It will be like living in a tree house on the ocean. That’s sea scouting not seasteading”. Have you looked at The Seasteading Institute logo, lately?May 27, 2014 at 11:57 am #23579
That’s an old logo from an old TSI “tree house like” project of theirs that at the time I heavily criticized
And I am really glad to see the new Ocean City Project in a floating doable format!May 27, 2014 at 9:54 pm #23582
I read a recent report on new cruise ships: “The tallest now in service reach more than 230ft(98m) above the waterline”. The shortest fleet boat in the USN in the 1940′s was just over 300ft long, the Gato class of submarine. The proposed Fonseca Project is 160ft square. The 1995 Draupner wave was 60ft/18.5m above calm water, and was preceeded and followed by troughs 23ft/7m below calm water level. Waves at least this tall have been seen before and after the Draupner recording. The proposed DPS 2001 drill platform has legs 160ft/50m apart (on center), and “For the in-place condition, the truss and heave plate are extended and the draft of the platform is at 320feet (bottom of heave plate)”, and it’s 210ft/64m from the bottom of the deck to the keel (a Draupner would pass under it and no one would notice).
The shortest dimension i state above is the Draupner wave. I don’t consider it silly to talk of a deck 100ft/30m above calm water (but i’d make that adjustable, lowering it considerably during calm weather), and i don’t consider a heave plate hanging 300ft/90m deep to be a big number either (it’s 300ft up my driveway to the road). When the lowest number you guys talk about for money in a seastead for one person or small family being $80k or $100k, spending $2k on a 400ft leg for a seastead able to ride above “freak waves” seems cheap.June 1, 2014 at 6:20 am #23626
An update from January, from the owner of Diamond Shoals Light Tower on his Facebook page:
“Sorry…been busy for a while…new job….etc. The next trip out to DSLS is planned for May. Looks like it will be a helicopter/boat trip. I have 2 sets of ladders I will bring out and put into place. That should eliminate the “sight seeing” boats rides…..if any of you know of any welders (not afraid of heights), that want to hang in the ocean for a long weekend…send them my way!”
It is now June, with no updates whatsoever. Oh well.
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