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Old 01-06-2009, 13:07   #1
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What to look for when buying a boat?

What should one look for when buying a boat? mono or multi hull? Lets say i see this boat that catches my eye but since i know nothing about boats I don't know what to look for to make sure i don't get a junk boat? What should i look for? Any old tricks of the trade or anything??

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Old 01-06-2009, 15:12   #2
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This isn't likely to be what you want to hear, but the answer is that the ONLY trick of the trade is to NOT buy a boat when you describe yourself as "knowing nothing about boats".

Those of us who DO know something about boats often make serious errors when buying, and you, my friend, are a victim looking for a predator.

If you insist on carrying on, the answer is to hire a really hard nosed surveyor to inspect your lust object, and then actually listen to what he says... far too many lust ridden buyers don't!


Jim and Ann s/v Insatiable II lying Mooloolaba, Qld oz

Jim and Ann
s/v Insatiable back in MBTBC marina, waiting for next eye jobs to be done
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Old 01-06-2009, 15:29   #3
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Yea, it's hard buying a boat even if you learned from a lot of mistakes already. Then again, we all started somewhere!
1) Learn as much as you can about the specific boat on-line .
2) If you've been sailing, racing etc talk with others about the boat. (post one you are interested in on this forum!)
3) Read. Learn enough about the differences to know what fits you best. Cat ? Mono? small? Centerboard? Full keel? SLoop, Ketch etc.
For instance, if you are not the type to be in a hurry and love tucking into small coves where the 40 footers cant go, then maybe a 28 ft centerboarder is for you.
etc... If you love moving at break neck speed, waves pouring down the foredeck, then maybe a fin keeled racer/cruiser is best for you.
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Old 01-06-2009, 15:40   #4
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Maybe I didnt answer the question you asked: SOME tricks of the trade.
Is the bilge saturated with oil? Has the boat been little used for a couple of years or more? (many things on a boat go bad from sitting!), any sign of leaks at the chainplates or other deck fittings? (this can mean wet deck core.) Fuel tanks in the bilge? (often leads to holes in tanks), is the ballast encapsulated in fiberglass or bolted on (encapsulated less likely to have problems, but bolted on can be fine), Look under all the bilge boards for blisters in the fiberglass inside the boat, if it has them, then will likely have them outside also. Is the wiring neat and not been made a mess of? or is the wiring everywhere you look messy like a birdsnest? Does the steering seem tight and responsive? Are the engine shifters/fuel advance smooth? Do the bilge pumps work? You can "sound" the deck for water saturation using a small ball peen hammer. Lightly tapping should get a clear ringing noise response. when you get over an area that sounds dead compared with the surrounding it may be saturated. This is a bit of an art though..Oh... it just goes on and on, but remember one thing. Common sense prevails and where there appears to be a problem, there likely is one!
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