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Old 04-08-2013, 14:00   #1
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What's the Worst Case Scenario Here?

I'm in the bay area shopping for a Catalina 27 right now. Saw this this morning:

CATALINA BAY SAILER 27'

Now...lets assume I could knock 500 off that and get it for 1500. What's the WORST case scenario of repairs it would need and guesses to cost? New mainsail, new engine, haul out, bottom painting?

Any ball parks at what I might be looking at if worst comes to worst?
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Old 04-08-2013, 14:22   #2
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Re: What's the worst case scenario here?

Worst case can be really bad!!
Like the bottom has leaks!!
Or blisters!!! The mast is cracked and bent!!! The chainplates loose!! The sails are torn!!
The engine does not run!! And the fuel tank leaks!!!
Anyone with too many !!!! is trying too hard!!
Recent Buyer discovered all this and backed out!!!

The worst case is you can't sell it unless you disclose why it was cheap and are stuck with it having to pay monthly berth fees, but can't sail it.
The worst case expenses would cost you more than a new boat!
It doesn't look bad in the pictures.
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Old 04-08-2013, 14:35   #3
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Re: What's the worst case scenario here?

that catalina looks like it's missing a galley
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Old 04-08-2013, 14:38   #4
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Re: What's the worst case scenario here?

Quote:
Originally Posted by iannitram View Post
I'm in the bay area shopping for a Catalina 27 right now. Saw this this morning:

CATALINA BAY SAILER 27'

Now...lets assume I could knock 500 off that and get it for 1500. What's the WORST case scenario of repairs it would need and guesses to cost? New mainsail, new engine, haul out, bottom painting?

Any ball parks at what I might be looking at if worst comes to worst?
If you were only using her as a Bay Sailor, then I would say that a couple of K likely the most she would need. Could spend is another matter.

My guess would be that a haulout would very likely be needed to antifoul her, if looking for some sort of sailing ability. Or at the least a diver to clean her in the water. Sails would be worth a close inspection both to ensure not blown (baggy) as the fix for that is likely new (or s/h) rather than a recut and also to make sure any damage (loose stitching / tears) was repaired before they got expensive. That can be done DIY with a needle - just takes time.

Likely the rigging is original, and as mast coming down would be a PITA and cost a bit I would be closely inspecting the shrouds and forestay / backstay for damage (run your hands up and down them, especially at the terminals - and if you go ouch and draw blood then time to replace!, and even if not 7 - 10 years is the recommended life span, albeit plenty on 20 years plus. Each gets to pick own crapshoot).

Even if the bottom is riddled with Osmosis then likely won't sink her (make it hard to sell if someone notices though), I would just suck that up. Looks like a hull liner so probably hard to tell if the bulkheads are still well attached, and likely also cored decks - me would take her out for a sail anyway before buying (motor works under load, sails go up - water stays outside!) and see that she doesn't change shape or make too many noises. Internal and cupboard doors still opening / closing also a good sign! Could even do some measuring under the mast before and during sailing. Likely won't be perfect, especially the decks being a bit spongy (wet core) - but IMO that is a suck it up at this age and price, and I would not bother even trying to "fix" it later.

On the sucking it up angle, likely the electrics will be original and have also been DIY'd by various owners.........

For me the biggie is the engine, I would throw a mechanic at it before purchase t ogive a report and factor in a good service and have plan B (if engine goes pop big time or more likely starts eating cash) of putting an o/b on the back.

Appreicate that time likely an issue here, but the trick will be not buying a POS that does not actually work on day 1 and needs money thrown at her to leave the dock (money which won't be coming back upon resale) - the risk is that it won't work on day 2!, but that comes with the territory in this price range - and you get to suck up some degree of POS .

I would also not simply assume she could stay where she is and make sure before buying where you will be keeping her and how much it costs - and whether she (and you?!) can reach there under own keel.

Most of the couple of K is for "stuff" - things which have not yet been identified but always "stuff" that needs fixing.......would be wise to have a read of a DIY surveying book.

I would also make sure you got as much equipment with her as poss (even s/h things add up), stuff like Dinks, GPS, Anchor etc - all the stuff that will be needed for whatever use you will want to make of her.
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Old 04-08-2013, 14:41   #5
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Re: What's the worst case scenario here?

Just to clarify - if you are thinking of either long term ownership or extended travel, then I would look elsewhere.......or at least spend a lot of time gaining knowledge and looking at her closely. and probably still looking elsewhere!
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Old 04-08-2013, 14:56   #6
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Thumbs up Re: What's the worst case scenario here?

Exactly what I was looking for. Thanks everyone.
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Old 04-08-2013, 15:01   #7
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If the owner can motor it out of the harbor and hoist sails half the battle is over. It'll nickel and dime you for sure though, but that's reflected in the price. The rigging should most likely be needing replacement soon and don't expect miracles in the sails either. A boat has never sank from hull blisters either though they are a PITA.

In my mind worst case scenario is ya dump scads of money into stuff ya don't need then lose the entire purchase price when scrapping it out. Best case is ya buy a boat that is what it is and ain't what it ain't, sail the crap out of it for a year or two and sell it for close to purchase price.
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Old 04-08-2013, 15:13   #8
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Re: What's the worst case scenario here?

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Best case is ya buy a boat that is what it is and ain't what it ain't, sail the crap out of it for a year or two and sell it for close to purchase price.
I am under the impression it takes a very long time to sell a boat. I don't know how long it takes, but if, for example, it takes a year, I'd rather set my boat on fire than wait for a measly $2k.
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Old 04-08-2013, 15:17   #9
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Re: What's the worst case scenario here?

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Originally Posted by CPseudonym View Post
If the owner can motor it out of the harbor and hoist sails half the battle is over. It'll nickel and dime you for sure though, but that's reflected in the price. The rigging should most likely be needing replacement soon and don't expect miracles in the sails either. A boat has never sank from hull blisters either though they are a PITA.

In my mind worst case scenario is ya dump scads of money into stuff ya don't need then lose the entire purchase price when scrapping it out. Best case is ya buy a boat that is what it is and ain't what it ain't, sail the crap out of it for a year or two and sell it for close to purchase price.
What Pseudo said. Bought mine for $4k then pumped another $5k into her. I've had her for four years and I THINK i could get $7500 or maybe $8k for her now.
But she's mine all mine and like the song says; "I love her".
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Old 04-08-2013, 15:18   #10
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Re: What's the worst case scenario here?

Other things to look for:

Separation along hull to deck joint -- the early Catalinas had a problem there.

Bulkheads having come agley

Keel damage

Expect to replace the rigging and all the wiring.

Water ingress stains

Engine & transmission

Holding tank?

Condition of bilges?

Find out why the "buyer backed out" 'cause could be something really bad that none of us have mentioned yet. Do not believe broker. Some reflect the truth, some only want to move the boat. It is unreasonable to expect the broker to have your best interests at heart. You get what you pay for; another CF poster had a horribly expensive experience with a boat that was too cheap.

If you hire a surveyor, he works for you, not the seller; so do not accept the seller's survey as a substitute for one of your own.


Take another yachtsman or 'woman with you who is more knowledgeable than you to look at it with you.

And as DOJ said, don't take it without it's passing it's sea trials. It sounded like the broker wants it out of the marina fast, from the ad. I wonder why....

Good luck with it. Buying a boat in haste is a little like marrying in haste. One repents at leisure.

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Old 04-08-2013, 15:29   #11
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Re: What's the worst case scenario here?

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If you hire a surveyor, he works for you, not the seller; so do not accept the seller's survey as a substitute for one of your own.
Keeping in context of the actual boat he's buying, would it be worth getting a survey on a $2000 boat? (I don't know how much these things cost)
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Old 04-08-2013, 15:46   #12
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Re: What's the worst case scenario here?

There could be a ton of things wrong with the boat and/or the boat is just a little tired and the owner in a bind needing to get rid of it. If the engine runs, the rigging is good, the sails in one piece, the hull doesn't have structural damage, $2,000 is damn cheap for that boat.

It's very easy to put a lot of money into any boat you buy. At least with this one you'd have a little cushion if it didn't have any fatal flaws. If you have no experience with boats, get someone who does to go with you to do a thorough inspection even if you have to pay them. A surveyor's going to cost you way more than they are worth if there are no readily discernible problems with the boat. Exercise all systems, open/close all valves, run the engine at moderate power for at least a 1/2 hour to be sure it's working and not overheating, hoist the sails and carefully inspect especially the stitching, check the tabbing of bulkheads to the hull, in short thoroughly go through the boat. If nothing turns up, you probably have a deal in the making.
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Old 04-08-2013, 16:23   #13
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Re: What's the Worst Case Scenario Here?

Quote:
Originally Posted by iannitram View Post
I'm in the bay area shopping for a Catalina 27 right now. Saw this this morning:

CATALINA BAY SAILER 27'

Now...lets assume I could knock 500 off that and get it for 1500. What's the WORST case scenario of repairs it would need and guesses to cost? New mainsail, new engine, haul out, bottom painting?

Any ball parks at what I might be looking at if worst comes to worst?


Someone wanted to sell my old boat for me, for $1500. He would have taken a broker's fee.

The mast was about to fall down. The port side of the hull was separating from the deck. The boat needed to be put out of its misery.

I know of one Catalina 27' for sail for $8k and two others for $5. At least one of them has a lot of problems. It can be a great boat. But if it's repeatedly been "ridden hard and put away wet" -- not well maintained -- you could be buying a boatload of trouble.

For heaven's sake if you don't do anything else get an engine survey.
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Old 04-08-2013, 16:40   #14
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Re: What's the Worst Case Scenario Here?

Theoretically you could in the worst case spend say 30K +. Motor and sails might cost 12-15K.
You wouldn't do that though as it would not be worth it.
You might get a boat you can use for 1-2k more if it is in going condition now. Then you potentially lose pretty well all you put in, or not.
Get someone knowledgeable to check it out with you for major items. It wouldn't take that long. Might cost some rum.
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Old 04-08-2013, 16:48   #15
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Re: What's the Worst Case Scenario Here?

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Theoretically you could in the worst case spend say 30K +. Motor and sails might cost 12-15K.
You wouldn't do that though as it would not be worth it.
You might get a boat you can use for 1-2k more if it is in going condition now. Then you potentially lose pretty well all you put in, or not.
Get someone knowledgeable to check it out with you for major items. It wouldn't take that long. Might cost some rum.
Theoretically the seller could be some sort of evil villain who wants you to chop off your arm for the boat. Not likely, but remember, this is all theoretical.
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