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Old 26-11-2010, 07:07   #16
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Originally Posted by NotQuiteLost View Post
Survey is primarily only useful for hull integrity. Wood and steel, especially require a survey, unless you yourself possess the necessary expertise to make a judgment on the current marine status of the hull.
I am probably broadly on the same page as you in regard to the overall value of a Survey.............but am not totally sure how much expertise a Surveyor can really bring to hull integrity above what a buyer could do, if minded to and with some basic knowledge.

With Wood of course he can "spike" into hull (and his experiance of doing that would be invaluable), but as far as I know GRP does not involve doing the equivalent (for steel or cored GRP might be a good idea though ). Apart from the Osmosis thing, with GRP I would want to ensure that hull is still attached to deck and bulkheads and keel - but that is about visual inspection (and maybe a few "taps" ), which has the same limitations as any non-destructive testing, as well as access limitations - after all, if you can't see it let alone take it apart how can anyone say for sure? I can do "Probably" as good as the next fella

In practice however I suspect a Vendor would be happier with a fully insured "expert" doing the thorough poke around rather than a buyer - if only for the presumption that no destructive testing would be involved from a Surveyor!
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Old 26-11-2010, 10:35   #17
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Originally Posted by David_Old_Jersey View Post
I am probably broadly on the same page as you in regard to the overall value of a Survey.............but am not totally sure how much expertise a Surveyor can really bring to hull integrity above what a buyer could do, if minded to and with some basic knowledge.
I was thinking more along the lines of identifying the type of GRP construction, such as looking for a plywood/balsa core, or whatever other methods are emplyoed, and then being able to look for the specific deterioration signs associated with them. There was another post where I commented about hull condition and surveys, and I think I kind of blended the two together in my mind.

But yeah, your point is well taken that short of true destructive testing, it's darn near impossible to actually determine how many miles a given hull's got left in its current condition. Except for metals, of course, which can be ultrasound tested with essentially 100% accuracy.
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Old 26-11-2010, 11:40   #18
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it's darn near impossible to actually determine how many miles a given hull's got left in its current condition. Except for metals, of course, which can be ultrasound tested with essentially 100% accuracy.
Surveyor with Ultrasound? yeah, I can see that being received better than a buyer with a drill

But probably only fair to mention, given my previous comments, that I did get a Survey Albeit a lot of umming and arring before doing so and the results did not throw up anything I didn't already know or expect (a 35 yo boat - fundamentally sound, but plenty of "scope" for refurb ).....and whilst going through her very thoroughly over the last few years I still have no argument with the Survey report (David Hopkins - south coast of uk somewhere ).
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Old 01-12-2010, 14:27   #19
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BUT YOU ARE STUCK IF YOU HAVE ANY INTENTION OF INSURING YOUR NEW PURCHASE. To my knowledge, all insurance companies REQUIRE a survey. Their requirement though does not change my attitude toward them.

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I just received a quote from Progressive for insurance contingent on sailing my prospective 32' sailboat within 75 miles of the contiguous United States. I asked them if they needed the survey. They responded, nope, what's that? LOL.

$320/yr liability. That's not too bad for a beginner with no sloop experience, is it?
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Old 01-12-2010, 14:46   #20
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I suppose just for liability they don't really need any proof that the boat is in good shape. If it was to cover the hull or something I would think they'd at least want some pictures. I'm a little surprised they wouldn't know what a survey is, unless you got someone who just isn't very knowledgable.
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Old 01-12-2010, 14:52   #21
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I'm on the fence with the survey deal. I believe that if you pay anything over 100K, definitely as it will ensure your confidence with that much purchase price. If the yacht was around 50K, I would say, perhaps if your personal visual inspection brought up some questions. Otherwise, just use your common sense and instincts, they never seem to let most people down..
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Old 01-12-2010, 14:53   #22
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Caveat Emptor. If I was going to buy a boat I would do a preliminary survey of my own. You can more or less prequalify the boat for a more thorough survey by a "Professional".
If you have concerns you can point these out to him if he misses anything. I would make damn sure I was with him when he goes through the boat if possible. Trust but verify.
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Old 01-12-2010, 15:16   #23
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My take on the value of a survey is at odds with some of the recent posts. I'll acknowledge that, despite being on the water most of my life, I've only owned three cruising boats over 20 years old in the past fifteen years. Each has been bigger and more complex than its predecessor with systems I wasn't all that familiar with. OTOH, I certainly wouldn't describe myself as knowing nothing about boats.

My experience was that the day spent with a very highly recommended surveyor was extremely helpful in building a punch list for my prior boat that helped focus limited time and dollars for several years. The new boat's survey educated me on a number of systems I will learn more about as I use them, but wouldn't have necessarily identified as needing attention. Identifying a faulty GFI in the AC circuits may have been worth the day's fee all on its own.

I agree wholeheartedly with the recommendation to accompany the surveyor. Whether you're doing it assess the competence of the individual or, as with me, learn more about the boat, it is time well spent.
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Old 01-12-2010, 15:16   #24
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In my case it ended up being a requirement of the bank anyway.

And we also found a good surveyor recommend by others here so I feel pretty good about it. Just waiting for the results as it was done today
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Old 01-12-2010, 19:33   #25
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I restore old boats, I build small boats, I rebuild engines, I know my way around an electrical system (- IS negative and + IS positive, right?), I build nautical niceties and necessities, i can work a moisture meter and poke hulls...
and i still get any purchase bigger than $5Gs surveyed.
Three reasons why:
1. It's required by my insurance company, BUT, experience has shown me that a purchase survey and an insurance survey are two different horses on the same course, so to speak. When your surveyor asks you whether the survey is for insurance purposes, three things usually happen- the survey cost goes down, because the survey is more cursory, and the valuation applied by the surveyor usually goes UP.

2. It's a second pair of eyes. An experienced SAMS surveyor may see things that I didn't, or that I didn't worry about, because my paradigms are different from his.
3. MOST IMPORTANT REASON: It is a bargaining tool. If you look at a boat and make a whole list of deficiencies, the broker and the seller can simply blow you off, unless you have a whole string of abbreviations after your name, among them NA.
But, sign a deal subject to survey, and the surveyor presents a list, even a short one of deficiencies, now you have something to negotiate. I have never had a survey cost me more than $750...and I have never had a survey NOT save me at least $1000.

In other words, i do it because a survey doesn't cost anything.
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