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Old 09-10-2012, 21:22   #151
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Re: i'm spending so much money it hurts

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Originally Posted by Weyalan View Post
2006 $6.5k
2007 $9.1k
2008 $9.7k
2009 $10.9k
2010 $10.1k
2011 $17.0k
Should't these numbers be decreasing rather than increasing!? It looks like $800 in deferred maintenance in 2010 cost you 7 grand the next year
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Old 09-10-2012, 22:03   #152
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Re: i'm spending so much money it hurts

I can often be fastidious about things from time to time but there's just something different about the boat. The boat pushes my obsessiveness to new heights, very odd and I'm not sure why. One of the setscrews is stripped in a rail fitting near the bow pulpit. It's driving me insane. The boat is going to be hauled for the winter next week, I should simply wait until I visit Dad in Florida sometime this winter, go to a second hand boat store or the Dania boat flea market in March and pick up a replacement for $5. Or I could get a bigger setscrew and re-tap a bigger hole -- but then it won't match the others and it will look funny. And then I might as well replace the crummy chrome-plated zinc rail fittings on both sides, because if I replace one with stainless then they won't match port and starboard. And then if I replace the two chrome-plated zinc fittings near the bow, I might as well replace them all because then all the others won't match and all the rest of them will be junky. And so for the sake of one 1/4"-28 setscrew, I'm going to spend $300 on new rail fittings. It's something about boats, they exert some kind of evil psychological influence that makes normal people spend money as if they're millionaires, spend an entire weekend trying to change spark plug #8 in a completely inaccessible corner of the engine bay, and surrender all dignity to change a "joker valve" in a toilet so the "material" only flows one way.
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Old 09-10-2012, 23:10   #153
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Re: i'm spending so much money it hurts

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I for one appreciate this kind of input. It's helpful to understand why people say that a used boat can "easily" cost $40-$50k in refitting. It's still hard for me to understand those numbers, to be honest. I know boat parts are expensive...

I've basically given up on the idea of going free and clear. I've pretty much resolved that I'm going to need a stream of income, and a pretty damned healthy one at that, no matter how many corners I cut, so that's where I'm focusing my efforts now.

Knowing what you know now, is there any "lesson learned" that you think you could have done something differently, perhaps in the acquisition or planning phase? Do you think you got a fair deal on the boat, or do you think the condition was far worse than you expected? Were you maybe hoping for the best, but preparing for the worst - and got the worst?

Sorry if the questions sound insulting or jabbing - I really don't mean it that way, I really just want to understand this topic better.
-- long answer --

No offense taken at all, and it's a fair question. Our boat is older (1975), but most of the systems are much newer. Engine is only twelve years old with maybe five hundred hours on it, rigging has been replaced and upgraded piece by piece over the years, new propane stove as of a few years ago, etc.

I think a lot of it depends on where you're going and what you're doing. I'm taking my 6 month pregnant wife and two year old daughter down a *barren* stretch of water in the Pacific, stopping there for several months, then continuing on through extremely remote areas that see little in the way of sailing vessels.

What can pass muster for coastal cruising simply doesn't work for setting off on a voyage like this. Chain plates need to get pulled, questionable tangs rebuilt, and an objective mechanical eye needs to go through the engine.

Then there are the spares. A spare alternator, a spare starter, spare impellers, spare fuel filters, spare halyards, spare anchor rode, spare anchors, spare snap shackles, spare clevis pins, spare batteries, spare cable, spare rf connectors, spare chainplate material (enough to make a single), spare wood. Those are just the ones that come to mind.

And then there are the things I've never needed for coastal work that is quasi-required for offshore. EPIRBS, "real" tethers instead of just bowlines on lines, a bigger sail inventory for the variety of conditions (or maybe just replacing that worn out sail with a new-to-you used one), more ventilation for the tropics, heavier duty swim step gear and ladder, beefed up dinghy for shore entries.

Our shakedown cruise really showed me that a lot of things I'd been focusing on didn't matter. The varnish doesn't matter, the goofy **** that people in marinas obsess about doesn't matter. Getting out of the water with chop up 4' of freeboard matters. Getting heavy ground tackle out and in, on repeat, matters. Having a cockpit you can basically live in during passages matters.

A fresh coat of bottom paint with some thruhulls and seacocks getting replaced and nothing more than that ended up costing around $3.5K ($1600 for the haul and paint, $500 in parts, rest in labor). Needed a new oil cooler for my Yanmar, plus got the heat exchanger cleaned and serviced. Total for that and labor will be a few grand.

Regarding labor, I do a lot of my own work. I farm it out usually under two conditions. One, it's something I simply can't do well enough on my own like sand blast a heat exchanger housing or even really tell what's clean-able versus what's got to be dumped. Everyone has things they don't know as well as things they do, or they're kidding themselves.

The second reason is that sometimes my job, which lets me make money, takes precedence. Today instead of futzing with the leaking diesel tank I was doing my job which allows me to keep getting a paycheck. It's hard balancing those two things, but at least at this stage of the game it's necessary.

But in summary, walk around a boat and look at everything and ask yourself some simple questions:

- If this thing broke, would the vessel become unsafe? If so, have I done everything I can reasonably do to ensure it is in top form and do I have a realistic way of repairing it if and when it fails?

If you're a single guy or traveling in some well worn areas you can probably be a little loose with the math on that stuff. But at least for me, with a family onboard and going to some really remote areas, I look at everything on the boat quite skeptically.
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Old 10-10-2012, 00:12   #154
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Re: i'm spending so much money it hurts

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Also, please do the people a favor and do not deliver eyeglasses as it is a common scam taking place world-wide to force people to be dependent on something which will cost them and cause suffering down the line. Glasses did not exist in the no-so-distant past, and half the world was _not_ blind.
You really have to stop reading the National Enquirer or was it on this site?
Weekly World News | The World's Only Reliable News
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Old 10-10-2012, 00:30   #155
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Re: i'm spending so much money it hurts

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You really have to stop reading the National Enquirer or was it on this site?
Weekly World News | The World's Only Reliable News

LOL! Awesome site. I love that their logo is Batboy. I have an old friend who compulsively collects tabloids like this with crazy headlines, he has a huge collection of all the original Batboy stories. He actually frames this stuff and puts it on the walls of his awesome house, has a whole room devoted to Batboy and the Two-Headed Werewolf-Vampire Heroin Addict from Mexico. He's a strange guy, collects all sorts of wierd stuff. Entertaining though, it's amazing to think anyone out there might actually believe that stuff.



Originally Posted by boat_alexandra

Also, please do the people a favor and do not deliver eyeglasses as it is a common scam taking place world-wide to force people to be dependent on something which will cost them and cause suffering down the line. Glasses did not exist in the no-so-distant past, and half the world was _not_ blind.




Yeah, and about the same time most of the world couldn't read and didn't live much past 35. Things have changed since then. Now people get old, and some people (like me) read so much that they have terrible eyesight by the time they are adolescents. I suppose I could just give up reading, but I'd rather be an informed person with poor eyesight and glasses (or contacts), than be a moron with great vision.
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Old 10-10-2012, 01:59   #156
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Re: i'm spending so much money it hurts

Reading all this I am not only astonished but flabbergasted.

Neala is old (1976) but technically 100% - although last year and this year I spent about 600-700 Euro (eq. 800 usd$) monthly to get her updated. What I buy is the best available and even with all my difficulties in the family I managed to sail 200 hrs, logging 100 engine hours as well. In spite of the terrible weather.

If your boat is basically not sound, don't travel at all. If you have to discover that, during your trip you have to chenge/replace vital elements, something is very wrong.

2nd to that, prices in the US are ridiculous. Particularly costs of labour.
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Old 10-10-2012, 02:18   #157
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Re: i'm spending so much money it hurts

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Reading all this I am not only astonished but flabbergasted.

Neala is old (1976) but technically 100% - although last year and this year I spent about 600-700 Euro (eq. 800 usd$) monthly to get her updated. What I buy is the best available and even with all my difficulties in the family I managed to sail 200 hrs, logging 100 engine hours as well. In spite of the terrible weather.

If your boat is basically not sound, don't travel at all. If you have to discover that, during your trip you have to chenge/replace vital elements, something is very wrong.

2nd to that, prices in the US are ridiculous. Particularly costs of labour.
What is boatyard labor in Europe? It has to be comparable doesn't it? In the US it's $125-200 an hour. I think the difference is that in the US the actual employee is lucky to be making $15 or 16/hr. So we probably get less value for what we pay.
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Old 10-10-2012, 02:43   #158
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Re: i'm spending so much money it hurts

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Reading all this I am not only astonished but flabbergasted.

Neala is old (1976) but technically 100% - although last year and this year I spent about 600-700 Euro (eq. 800 usd$) monthly to get her updated. What I buy is the best available and even with all my difficulties in the family I managed to sail 200 hrs, logging 100 engine hours as well. In spite of the terrible weather.

If your boat is basically not sound, don't travel at all. If you have to discover that, during your trip you have to chenge/replace vital elements, something is very wrong.

2nd to that, prices in the US are ridiculous. Particularly costs of labour.
I'll clock 200 hours just clearing baja. And you can't really compare the self reliance necessary for sailing around a country like Honduras to western Europe where I'm guessing you're based out of.

Maybe compare the places I'm going to sailing down the coast of West Africa. Do you think your vessel is ready for that trip in all regards?
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Old 10-10-2012, 03:00   #159
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Re: i'm spending so much money it hurts

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I'll clock 200 hours just clearing baja. And you can't really compare the self reliance necessary for sailing around a country like Honduras to western Europe where I'm guessing you're based out of.

Maybe compare the places I'm going to sailing down the coast of West Africa. Do you think your vessel is ready for that trip in all regards?
O yes. I understand your self reliance because that is what I do too. I am fixing everything myself. It makes to me no difference being wherever.

Cost of labour - are about 60 Euros (US$ 75,-) if you pay more you are plainly overasked.
A haul out set me back about Euro 150,-- (US$ 187,50,-)

A complete engine service cost me 250 Euro (US$ 312,50) including parts (dis.belt, impeller, oil, filters etc.) by a Mitsubishi rated engineer.

Sailing in the (sub)tropics cannot be compared with European conditions.
We have to work and nobody can afford or has the time to log (in general) more than 50-100 hrs a season. Not counting the days spent in harbours.
At least that what I see here.
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Old 10-10-2012, 03:06   #160
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Re: i'm spending so much money it hurts

The math I see over here is that when you're underway for 75-100 days a year in places with zero repair facilities and multi-week delays to order parts at best, you need to operate in a whole different mindset. The folks I talk to very much recommending bringing 2"x4" beams and as much spare plywood as you can handle.

It's really hard for me to imagine that you have sufficient spares and a boat currently ready, today, to spend that kind of time offshore in distant corners of the globe. I mean you currently have 10 shaft zincs and a dozen oil filters? The list is never ending and if you've never stared down the barrel of leaving your home country for the third world I just don't think you can get it.

Maybe you can, maybe you've done it before, maybe I have no idea what I'm talking about. I've worked on boats and been in the Navy. Leaving for this trip is a whole different ball of wax when you really break it down.
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Old 10-10-2012, 03:30   #161
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Re: i'm spending so much money it hurts

RH, I'm with you. Most years I mange about 40-50 days coastal sailing per year. I still carry a ton of spare parts and tools.

I'm working towards my RTW and making list of all that I will need. The list is already looooooong (sigh) and getting longer by the week (double sigh).

We plan on a 4 year RTW. Spending a winter on NZ. Spare parts etc should be available there. But spare fuel and oil filters, spare impellers, spare hoses. spare thruhull valves, spare rigging wire, spare set of sails, etc etc etc. double up on lots of things.

Near as I can figure I will spend about USD 25 k over the next couple of years just on necessary equipment such as: sails, water maker, Radar, wind rudder and christ knows what else.

But when you are far from anything - you gotta be able to fix it yourself. And despite what their commercials say, FEDex does not deliver anywhere in the world in 24 hours. I know sailors who have waited weeks to get things that were shipped "air express"

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Old 10-10-2012, 03:36   #162
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Re: i'm spending so much money it hurts

A dozen oilfilters? To do what? A dozen oilfilters is good for 6 years service. You are talking big ships, no yachts of normal size. I change my oilfilter twice a year. Dieselfilters more often, but they cost about 8 US$ each. For my travels I need a spare dis. belt, some filters, two impellers and grease for the shaft.

I have spares for the rig, a couple of stanchions/shrouds and number of smaller things.
With that I can easy go to the UK, or France, or Denmark or whatever else.

My engine, shaft and prop, as well as rudder are renewed last year. I do not know what you are sailing but 10 shaftzincs is ridiculous. I have 4 pieces which are renewed every year. And I have a steel boat.

My boat will laid up next month for the winter till first of March. In March the boat will hauled and will receive a new coat for the underwatership. Ameron 400, 4 liters, costs about 200 Euro's, Haul, 150 Euro's, Zincs 60 Euro' s, Engine annual service 250 Euro' s - all in total 660 Euro' s and I am set for another season. Which I will use to go to France.

O yes, AF I do not applicate - waste of time and money.
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Old 10-10-2012, 05:03   #163
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Re: i'm spending so much money it hurts

Over the last ten years I've been cruising ten months of the twelve for each year. Admittedly, my cruising has not been in isolated "third world" areas, but I am subject to the US cost of labor. I've been hulled out for a "bottom job" three times over these ten years with an average cost of labor, paint, zincs, etc. ca $1,200/event. I have had few other needs for hired labor as I do most all myself. I have purchased two oil pressure sensors and an oil cooler over these ten years and sent out my transmission for repair. These tasks cost me about $3,000 total. Sure, I change my oil and filters, but I haven't logged that DIY cost. I have also replaced my radar, life lines, six shrouds, and numerous lines, but all as DIY projects. Totalling all these expenses, I'm cruising more than 80% of the time for maintenance costs of about $2,000/year. It's difficult for me to understand how some might pay five times this amount and only cruise for a fraction of the time. There is a huge difference in costs for those that take their boat to a repair facility and contract a job to be done compared to removing a part from your boat and shopping for repair or replacement and then refitting it yourself.
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Old 10-10-2012, 05:18   #164
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Re: i'm spending so much money it hurts

That sounds quite reasonable and those costs are quite justifiable.
Change of filters, most of all repair- and maintenance jobs are DIY to me and I have still a few upgrades ahead.

1) changing all nav-lights for bigger ones with Led;
2) even after adding antislip, my flush steeldeck is quite dangerous when wet. I am going to cover it with Afzelia, Yellow Cedar, or Teak when I can obtain a lot against an affordable price;
3) changing the electric wiring and adding 2 solar cells of 200 W each. The present wiring is not done professionally, adding a appropriate switchboard with fuses (not the automotive ones).

To do this, I do not need outside help. So I may keep costs low.
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Old 10-10-2012, 08:08   #165
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Re: i'm spending so much money it hurts

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it's amazing to think anyone out there might actually believe that stuff.
...or that it is a scam to help people in other countries who cannot see there work.
I read years ago where a optometrist cruiser went to French Polynesia and fitted dozens of locals with used eye glasses he had collected over the years of his trade. The French got onto him and stopped it. Seems the French were more happy selling inter-Island boat tickets to them to go to a larger Island and see a French Optometrist who charged them dearly. Hence most of them could not afford to see.
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