Materials used in boat construction           

Aluminium 

Ferro-Cement

Fibreglass Reinforced Plastic (FRP)

Steel

Timber

Aluminium 

Advantages:

1. Light

2. Does not rust - almost maintenance free

3. Easy to work- skilled to weld

Disadvantages:

1. Expensive

2. Comparatively easily damaged

3. Low melting point - poor fire resistance

4. Corrodes rapidly in contact with other metals such as steel, copper, bronze etc. 

Ferro Cement

Advantages:

Cheap

One piece hull, no seams

Not easily damaged

Fire resistant

Easily repaired

Disadvantages:

1. Chips easily

2. Skilled construction required for final plastering.

3. Heavy

4. Magnetic

G R P

Advantages:

1. Corrosion free

2. Light

3. Comparatively easily repaired

4. Cheap - especially if part of a mass produced design

Disadvantages:

1. Comparatively easily damaged

2. Poor fire resistance

3. Skilled construction required

4. Osmosis

Steel

Advantages:

1. Cheap

2. Comparatively easy to build

3. Not easily damaged

4. Good fire resistance

Disadvantages:

1. Corrodes readily

2. Heavy

3. Not easy to work

4. Very magnetic. Affects the compass.

Timber

Advantages:

1. Light

2. Easy to work

3. Corrosion resistant

4. Not easily damaged

Disadvantages:

1. Expensive

2. Rots

3. Burns