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Old 09-01-2016, 18:52   #16
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Re: Boat Hunting Tuesday... Florida

Hayland;
I looked for approx 2-2.5 yrs before buying my current boat. What helped markedly was narrowing my search to 2 boats, Sabre 34 (centerbrd) and Tartan 33. Chose those 2 based on quality of build, draft (4 ft or <), cost (late 1970's to early 1980's), anticipated use - Marion to Bermuda run and Long Island Sound w/ some coastal cruising, sailability, budget to refit (eg standing rigging, running rigging, sails, etc), and room below (enof for 2-4 humans, 6 ft plus headroom). With such a narrow focus I could compare "apples-to-apples" and developed experience/knowledge after seeing 15-20 boats (& asking questions of anyone who would stand still) to recognize obvious good from bad. Doing the right thing by planning on seeing alot of boats. Would also create record (eg spreadsheets) of boats you see and those you view on line to record impressions and track their fate (date listed, date sold, listing price, equipment, engine+hours, location,etc). Soon you will know what a good price is and can act on it quickly. Lastly, would recommend reading books on boats, whether "Capable Cruiser" by the Pardeys, "This Old Boat" by Casey, "How to Buy the Best Sailboat" by Gustafson, "Seaworthy Offshore Sailboat" by Vigor or whatever based on your plans in the Caribbean ....always good to do your homework. Enjoy the hunt, its fun and challenging, but always educational. Dave PS..Ironically I ended buying a Bristol 35.5...my previous looking at Sabre/Tartan enabled me to recognize quality and value in a one-time deal.
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Old 09-01-2016, 19:11   #17
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Re: Boat Hunting Tuesday... Florida

Three things to check (actually four)

Like any boat, check it out, but here are things I suggest to everyone:

1. Dipstick access. If it's a pain to do, you won't, nor would the PO. Is it easy to get to or do you have to tear the cushions out?

2. What engine? Are spare parts reasonably available? Yanmar parts are hard to get (worse in Canada). And very expensive. Not a deal killer, but... Universal engines are Kubotas so tractor stores have the parts. Yanmar are reputed to be available world-wide, Kubota not so much, but they're both tractor engines on boats in the 30-38 foot range. PS – There is a Kubota tractor dealer just outside Duncan, BC on the Island, right on Hwy 1. Great folks (July 2015).

3. Sleeping - try out the berths. Really. Our boat has what I have found to be THE largest V berth of any boat in its size class, even the C36s. Try out the berths. Try out the berths...

4. A thorough, complete, searchable and supportive boat owners website. C34 and C36 are very, very good. Many of the systems are also applicable to the C30, which has had too many and various websites available over the years.

Courtesy Boatman61 on cruisersforum:

Make up a list of boats that are up for sale near you that are accessible to viewing externally.. tromp the pontoons and check out the exteriors.. salty enough.. or trendy enough.. the way the exterior is maintained tells a hell of a lot.. not so much the gleaming S/S.. more the general appearance.. sloppy lines, mildewed running rigging.. the way the sails are stowed.. can tell one a lot before you even look below.. don't like it.. Scratch it..
A coupla w/ends of this you'll have a short list..
Call the brokers or owners and set up 2 viewings a day for when it suits you and then go for it.. – limit the viewings and take cameras & lotsa photos.
Get on Board.. the more knowledgeable checks out the top while the other heads below.. now some boats.. I don't know why.. but as soon as you reach the bottom of the steps its: “No Way.”
Not because its a mess.. just a kinda antipathy.. don't strike any others of the same model off the list.. unless it happens again. Its weird..
Anyway.. when you've both finished nosing around.. ask the broker or owner for some time alone together one the boat.. no excited patter/chatter or this good.. that bad..
Thats for later.. this is bonding time.. sit back.. maybe lay on the bunks.. and open up.. you'll know what I mean when it happens.. that little smile with eyes closed on both your faces means.. You've found THE Boat..
And you'll go home and start scheming how to get it yesterday...
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Old 09-01-2016, 22:23   #18
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Re: Boat Hunting Tuesday... Florida

Quote:
Originally Posted by Haylands View Post
Step 1 of our master plan goes into operation on Tuesday when we fly into Miami for 3 weeks to look at some boats and chat to some good people from this and the Trawler Forum.

I have lined up around 30 boats to have a look at, as varied a cross section as I can find from a 40ft Catamaran to a 62ft Trawler, some power, some sails, some old and some not so old...

Hopefully we will get some idea of what we want and what will fit us....

Anyone got any tips for looking at the boats, we are not going to buy one this trip, it's just a look see, I'm after the more generic suggestions rather than the condition side.

Just trying to learn from others experience, is there anything you wish you had looked at / asked / checked when deciding if a boat is suitable?

There is some history of us, and a request if you are about for a chat, on this thread...

Anyone in Florida/Keys/Caribbean in January...

Thanks for reading, we are really looking forward to this next adventure..
I wish you had posted this much earlier, as my knee jerk reaction was...

I can almost smell frustration already.

This is like trying to take in the Louvre in a half hour.

I suspect if you are fairly new to boating, this will be stimulation overload, and after 5 or 6 boats, you won't be able to remember what was what.

Taking pictures and making notes is great if looking at 5 or 6 boats. 30 boats in 3 weeks? Place your finger horizontally between your lips, lift it up and down and blow out at the same time. (This will make a blurble, blurble, blurble, blurble....and so on, sound.)

Based on what you may have learned by boat 25, you would look at boat number one, two, and three, and so on, in a totally different light.

I would have suggested doing some research locally to narrow the playing field.

What is your power and sail boating experience. If none for either, these 3 weeks will not tell you if you like boating at all, let alone which you prefer.

What is your budget for initial purchase, refit, annual maintenance, annual operation, etc.

In general, comparing LOA, a power cruiser will generally have more accommodation space than a monohull, and at a certain age, the selling price may be less. Then again, if the motor(s) are on their last legs, the refit could be incredibly higher.

To sail a monohull sailboat at 5 knots for 300 miles, you may use 2G of fuel, and for the power cruiser at 30 knots, 200G of fuel.

Now that I realize that you already have flights booked and will be here in days, all I can say is, have fun talking boating for 3 weeks, but don't be surprised if you are more confused after, than you are now. Researching boats should be fun, so don't put pressure on yourself to have all the answers after 3 weeks. I've been sailing for 20 years. I knew in the beginning I wanted nothing to do with a power boat. I have since owned 3 sailboats, and have been thinking maybe its time for number 4, and maybe some day down the road, I should reconsider power, or maybe sail here and power there. Who knows? If I haven't figured it out after 20 years, I'll be damn mad if you sort it all out in 3 weeks. ;-)

It is a fools game to attempt to buy the correct boat for life. Your needs will change. Some have done it; bought a bought and kept it for 30 years. In some cases it was the right thing to do; in others it was just so they didn't have to admit to themselves they chose wrong because they wanted to move on to something else. Changing boats does not mean you chose wrong; you simply can't know now, what you will in 6 years. (My best guess is that the average boater sells a boat every 6 years of their active boating life.)

At some point, you just have to say, I have done enough research, and based on how I feel today, this is how I think I should proceed. Do it. Get some experience. Don't be surprised if after you get some, you realize that your decision was correct, but now, maybe something different would be better.

Keep an open mind, have fun, and enjoy the ride.

Ramblin Rod
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Old 09-01-2016, 22:44   #19
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Re: Boat Hunting Tuesday... Florida

I recently sold my boat. I'm sorry to say that you are about the worst type of person to come view a boat for sale. You just aren't a serious buyer yet. You don't even know if you want power or sail...one hull or two. You are using the boats for sale, their owners or representatives, for your own research project. I'm sure they will all be happy to show their boats, because they want to sell. The more expensive the boat, the happier they will be to see you.

IMHO, you should be able to determine at the very least the type and age of boat you want, based on your finances and personality.

My prediction: You will like the biggest, newest, most expensive boat you look at. Who wouldn't?
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Old 10-01-2016, 03:37   #20
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Re: Boat Hunting Tuesday... Florida

PM Sent.
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Old 10-01-2016, 06:28   #21
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Re: Boat Hunting Tuesday... Florida

that brings back memories ,, we flew into Miami , rented a car and started with repossessed boats . i was flexible as i had owned many boats nothing i wanted to live on . we spent a week looking including working with two different brokers neither of which listened to my budget and kept showing me boats listed for twice or more what i was willing to spend. make a long story short i never found my dream boat .. i retired to panama and found my perfect boat 42 solaris catamaran . i have 70,000 in it but financial problems and a recent heart attack forces me to sell her ,, she is listed here in classified .. good luck boat hunting dont know your plans where you are going but some great boats for sale here in panama if south is your ultimate destination ..
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Old 10-01-2016, 06:32   #22
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Re: Boat Hunting Tuesday... Florida

Wow... really great to read everyone's experiences and points of view..

Our purchase of a boat is to enable a particular way of life, this has been chosen because of medical reasons, the various injuries I received, in the line of duty, mean that I have osteoarthritis at 52, it won't get better and during the wet and cold winters in the UK it is, quite frankly, horrible...

The decision on what type of boat will be decided purely on how we fit it and it fit's us, it will not be an emotional purchase, or something we have longed to do for years, we need to know what will be the most comfortable to live in, ie, eat, sleep, sit, drink, sail/motor, maintain etc.

Personally I think an 80's or 90's age boat will be better, they seem to be better made than a lot of the later boats and with a more traditional technique that enables repairs, refit and maintenance to be completed far easier and cheaper.

We are not confused about anything, I have read more books on boats and boating than you could shake a stick at...

The problem we have is that any suitable boats to go and take a quick look at are over 5000miles away, you need to own a boat to get on a marinas in the UK, there are very few that you can walk around and I don't see the point as you can't learn much from just looking at the outside of boats...

Our budget for purchase is up to $250,000 but I find that a lot of boats in the $50,000 to $100,000 range appear to be more than adequate for our needs, I have searched repeatedly on every web site I can find and getting information on headroom in all parts of a boat is next to impossible, even the original spec sheets only tend to have head room in the saloon, it "appears" to me that we will have to go pretty big to get the size I require, once we know what type/size we need I will then start looking at the financial aspect of the purchase, bearing in mind, upgrades, repairs and running costs, it's not worth looking too deeply into the costings until we decide what boat we want... There is the outside possibility that we will not find any that are suitable (very slim I think) but there is always the possibility of not being able to afford to keep/run a boat large enough for our needs....

We won't be taking detailed pictures or recording notes on boats this trip unless they are suitable in all areas, it should take less than 5 minutes to rule most boats out, those that are promising will need closer examination.

I appreciate that we are "tyre kickers" or "timewasters" this trip, I have been honest with the brokers I have approached, they know we will not be buying, I have deliberately not approached any private sellers to view boats so they don't pay for a professional valet or similar just for us to have a look...

Hopefully we will get an idea of boats that will be suitable, when it has been established that our "plan" will work then we shall be spending time and money on seeing if we like sailing/boating and getting the necessary training, it seems to be a waste spending money to try out a new venture until we are sure we are able to do it...

We don't have a "plan B" at the moment, I prefer to concentrate all my efforts towards one goal, I'm pretty sure we can make this work and it has been an immense help to have thoughts and ideas of others from this forum and to be able to use the forums massive collective knowledge in making decisions.

So a big Thank You to everyone on here, pat yourselves on the back and if we meet, the drinks are on me....
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Old 10-01-2016, 06:46   #23
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Re: Boat Hunting Tuesday... Florida

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Originally Posted by svfraidknot View Post
that brings back memories ,, we flew into Miami , rented a car and started with repossessed boats . i was flexible as i had owned many boats nothing i wanted to live on . we spent a week looking including working with two different brokers neither of which listened to my budget and kept showing me boats listed for twice or more what i was willing to spend. make a long story short i never found my dream boat .. i retired to panama and found my perfect boat 42 solaris catamaran . i have 70,000 in it but financial problems and a recent heart attack forces me to sell her ,, she is listed here in classified .. good luck boat hunting dont know your plans where you are going but some great boats for sale here in panama if south is your ultimate destination ..
Thanks for the offer, seems a nice boat, we are off to Florida to look at boats as there seems to be the biggest concentration, once the decision is made the net will be cast further... Sods law says that the one Cat I really think maybe suitable does not have one for sale in Fl, TX is the closest. It's the FP Bahia 46, if any owners/friends/neighbours of one are reading this, please get in touch... drinks and Pizza on me!!!!
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Old 11-01-2016, 15:57   #24
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Re: Boat Hunting Tuesday... Florida

As mentioned earlier, you would really do yourself a favor if you could extend your stay and attend the Miami Boat Show. There is everything there from trailer-sailor/cruisers, go fast boats, trawlers, catamarans and huge mega yachts. I think, even if you attended the show every day, you would not have enough time to board every boat there. At least that's how it was in the past, the show has moved to a new location this year.

The only caveat, all the boats there will be new or very "shiny" used models. When I finally went seriously looking, many boats on the used market are not in "shiny" condition.

In any case, good luck searching.
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