- What would we expect to spend finishing the ship?
I couldn't pull up the pics you posted, so can't venture an opinion on the condition of the hull. However, there probably is a good chance that it is a Samson
design as you have suggested.
A little general info: Sailboat designs are integral things, hull shapes are drawn to work with specific sail plans, and specific amounts of ballast weight. In addition, they are balanced so that centers of gravity, centers of effort and degree of righting moment are correct for the boats intended use. You cannot make changes in one area, without making changes in other areas, and still have a boat that sails
well and is safe to be on at sea. SO - get hold of the plans and follow them. They are still available through the ferrocement boats website listed in a previous post.
Next - before you do anything - spend the money
to get the hull properly analysed. You need to know what it was built of and you need to know what materials are compatible with that. Then, you need to either have it x-rayed or sounded with a device that can tell you whether or not the densities are consistent throughout. If the armature inside the hull is rusted the hull is pooched. No ifs, ands, or buts.
If you can't afford to do these things, then don't even think about trying to finish the boat.
Now - actual costs. You need to start with the tools. You need big strong tools to handle this work. Table saw, grinders, band saw, buffers, jig saw, spiral saw with flexible shaft attachment, scroll saw, vices, dozens of clamps, socket sets, drives, torque wrenches, etc. etc. etc.
Figure a minimum of $3,000.00 here.
You'll start by laying in stringers and framing. Depending on what you use figure about $500.00 for wood and another $500.00 for epoxy
, $250.00 for stainless screws and other hardware
. Don't even think about using anything other than stainless - if it was safe to do so everyone else would be doing it as well.
Now you need to set in your tanks
step, chain plates, rudder
post, etc. You'll need a couple of water tanks
at about $750.00 each. A holding tank
- another $750.00. Your diesel
tank will be about $1,000.00.
step - make sure you know what mast you are going to use - should run about $400.00 - $500.00. Chain plates, stem and backstay fittings are going to be about $3,000.00 - more if you have to have them custom made.
So where are we - about $10,000.00 so far... not bad.
Now you'll start with fitting out the interior
. This is the only area that you'll be able to really use second-hand stuff and the cost is dependent on how luxurious you want things. Let's say that you have no intention of trying to recoup any of your costs by selling the boat when you're done...in that case you can probably do the entire cabin
for about $5,000.00. If you want to sell her when you're done....well - look at 45 foot ferrocement boats on the various boat for sale
sites, gauge the quality of the interior
work and make sure you match it. Otherwise, there is no reason to buy your Samson when there are a few others out there that are much nicer inside...for a nice interior, budget
at least $25,000.00
Now you need to put in your engine
. 45 foot boat - minimum 65hp diesel
. Might be able to get one in decent shape for about $15,000.00 including drive shaft and propeller
Wiring/batteries - even minimalist level, another $1,500.00.
Mast - you might be able to find a used mast and boom for about $10,000.00. But chances are it's coming off a hurricane
boat and has been damaged. HAVING A GOOD MAST IS AS IMPORTANT AS HAVING A HULL WITHOUT HOLES. New - Mast, Boom, Winches, Standing and Running rigging
- at least $30,000.00
Now where are we - $61,500. Hmm - add another 25% because we haven't touched on things like the fact that you've never done this before, hence will make mistakes
and need to reorder materials, you need to refurbish the hull, you need to get stuff delivered, etc. and we're up to
Time to buy sails
: New $15,000.00 - used $5,000.00 plus $3,000.00 in alterations - let's go with $7,500.00
So - the minimum you are going to spend is $85.000.00 at which point you will end up with a boat that you might be able to sell for $40,000.00, providing you have built it strongly enough that it doesn't come apart in a storm killing you both.
You could find an old fibreglass boat - a real "fixer-upper" for under $10,000.00 , move aboard that and spend some time and money on refitting, sail around the world and come back and get close to what you ended up investing in her.
I know what I would do ....
Either way - Good Luck - I admire (and envy) your spirit of adventure
Although it seems like a lot of the posts are from very negative naysayers here, the opinions come from actual experience. There is nothing you can do when you are out at sea caught in the middle of a hurricane
. No helicopter can come out and save you (that option won't even be considered by most governments in the world) and no ship will be able to get close enough to you to take you off. So the only thing that can keep you alive is a stout boat under you and enough knowledge and common sense on your part that you don't make too many mistakes