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Old 06-12-2005, 09:42   #1
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Survey Advice

Finally found the 'right' boat for us, and off to survey we go. Boat has been surveyed (out of water) within the past 6 months, and I have a copy of the report. Since the underbody, shafting & rudder were all fine AND my lender does not require out-of-water survey, I'm thinking about skipping the haulout.

Opinions on that? Also looking for tips on what to be sure the surveyor looks at while I'm looking over his shoulder.
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Old 06-12-2005, 12:29   #2
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We just finished the survey/boat buying process.

Hauling the boat and pressure washing the bottom cost $450 on a 41 ft boat. I would look at that as cheap insurance against what the previous surveyor might have missed. Plus seeing the bottom cleaned and getting good pictures was nice.

If you have chosen a good surveyor he will know what to look for. Ours had a well thought out routine he follows to cover all the systems.

If you have suspicions about any area I would suggest telling the surveyor your concerns, for instance does the boat type and model have any consistent weak points?

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Old 06-12-2005, 17:14   #3
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I think if you are planning on using the boat in the water, you might want to see it float, load the engine, and do a sea trial. This is the last chance before the spending begins.
I recently was chasing what I thought was a 36 footer for 10 to 15K under market. I did the presurvey myself and checked out the hull and deck. I also knew of a few problem areas typical to this boat and check them. They had the problems, but not as bad as many others of the same type. Dek and hull were sound. I thought I had a deal. The surveyor showed me several other areas known for problems and when I added it all up, the boat was fairly priced, but no bargain. The boat was on the hard and could not be splashed to do a sea trial. Engine showed signs of rust and possible leaks. Seller would only go for a 3K escrow and only for the engine. We also could not fully inspect the rod rigging since it was high up on the rack. Bottom line - not a bad boat and not a bad price - I walked. My 10 to 15K under market was not there. I did not want another project right now. I would be taking a risk with no potential gain.
It is expensive to hire a good surveyor. It is the best continuing ed seminar I can think of. I wish I could do it once a week. I always learn alot.

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Old 06-12-2005, 20:40   #4
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Quote:
capt lar once whispered in the wind:

I recently was chasing what I thought was a 36 footer for 10 to 15K under market.

capt lar
Was that the Sabre 36 you talked about recently?

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Old 07-12-2005, 06:33   #5
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Jim - Correct ! The boat was not bad, but without being able to launch and complete the survey, I was not willing to take over what I saw as the seller's problems. I also learned alot about Sabre's construction methods and the weaknesses. (all boats have 'em) Bottom line - I had IMO a better boat in better shape with better equipment for less $ in my Bristol 31.1 My point in this thread is I thought I had the numbers worked out. There were a handful of additional labor intensive problems to resolve (or ignore as the present owner chose to do) that really changed the value for me. The surveyor said the boat was typical and worth what I offered from what he could inspect.
I am coming to believe that 20 years is a critical point for many boats. If they have not been properly maintained, the typical problems with water infiltration are becoming critical. It really frustrates me to find rot at chain plates and mast steps where proper maintenance could have prevented the problem. The first couple of owners get away with it, but those issue become big problems - not my problems this time.

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Old 07-12-2005, 06:48   #6
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Re: Survey Advice

Quote:
markpj23 once whispered in the wind:
Finally found the 'right' boat for us, and off to survey we go. Boat has been surveyed (out of water) within the past 6 months, and I have a copy of the report. Since the underbody, shafting & rudder were all fine AND my lender does not require out-of-water survey, I'm thinking about skipping the haulout.
Who commissioned the survey that was done 6 months ago? What do you know about the surveyor who did the survey? Although marine surveyors are accredited by SAMS and certified by NAMS, it still really is a caveat emptor kind of business.

If it were me (it was me last June and July), I would make sure that I was well versed in evaluating the condition of the boat myself, and then still hire the most crumudgeonly surveyor I could find (perhaps one recommended by boatyard service managers who have no interest in the sale). I think I would not want to buy a boat without both seeing it out of the water, and testing it in the water.

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Old 07-12-2005, 11:36   #7
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After much thought and review of several inputs - thank to all who replied here - I've decided to go ahead and haul her out. Boat was sailed 700nm since last survey was done, so this way I'll know for certain what the owner hit on the way

As mentioned in this thread, this boat also has some mast step corrosion that could have been avoided with some maintenance. It's beyond me why someone would let that go on a boat that cost >$400K some 13 years ago.
I've seen others where the owner spent $40 on resin and solved the problem for the long term. $5 work of paint & wire brushes would have done the same.
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Old 07-12-2005, 11:56   #8
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Mark & PJ - What killed it for me is the water leaking down the mast affected a bulkhead separating salon from head. There was a patch cut into the bulkhead, but far too small to suggest any work had been done behind the patch. I feared "cover and run". This is a structural bulkhead, although not at the point of the problem (yet - we think), and it is an expensive pain to repair. No way to know how much of a problem will be found. I have a problem with buying an expensive boat (for me) and then taking a sawzall to it. My motto - Let the seller pay.
I did not understand your original post. The boat is currently in the water and rigged and you simply want to haul, inspect and splash ? That should be maybe $250 and I would definitely want to see and sound the bottom, rudder, post, thruhulls, zincs, prop......big money down there. Good luck.

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