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Old 11-06-2012, 15:39   #1
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1967 Bristol 39' as a first boat.

Hello again!! So it seems our hunt is over....we lost the Rafiki 37 we wanted to someone a few hundred miles closer with cash in hand. However we found a 1967 Bristol 39' (not CB) on eBay did a little research, decided she seems to have everything we were looking for! We placed a low bid thinking we'd likely not win but....WE DID! We are very new to the cruising world, this week Greg and I took a 7 day ASA sailing course so we know just enough to be pretty dangerous I'm sure
Anyway, we have chosen a marine surveyor for the sea trial and bow to stren to keel, a haul out facility in Pompano Beach to lift her out and a slip that we should be able to keep her in till after the storm season is passed. I know to look for blistering on the hull. The engine is new with 200 hours on it. Anything else I should look into with this one before I sign the check? Do you think it's safe to leave in an 8ft deep slip in Pompano....or should I move her to Indian Town? Wet or dry storage for this season? I'd appreciate all the tips I can get! Thanks!
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Old 11-06-2012, 17:07   #2
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Re: 1967 Bristol 39' as a first boat.

Having lived in Florida for the last 37 years my advise:

Drop the mast and take her to Indian Town and put her up on the hard.
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Old 11-06-2012, 17:27   #3
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Re: 1967 Bristol 39' as a first boat.

With the hurricane possibilities in Florida and you not being there, would definitely put the boat on the hard. Rereading your post, it's not clear if you are living where the boat is. In any case, I'd still haul the boat if you aren't going to be using it. Any new to you boat is going to take some tweaking to fit your needs and a new coat of bottom paint won't hurt. It's a lot easier to do out of the water. Definitely drop the stick just in case there is a storm. You can do a thorough inspection of the rigging that a surveyor may miss with it on the ground and replace anything that isn't right. With a boat that old, I'd replace the chainplates just out of principle. You can buy SS bar stock in the proper width and have a machine shop cut it to length for not a lot of money. You could even make them yourself if you have access to a drill press.

The Bristol 39-40 are really sweet boats. Still kicking myself for losing out on a couple of years ago. Take it easy when you first start sailing. With the full keel, won't turn on a dime. Practice maneuvering the boat in tight spaces, getting in and out of the slip, how prop torque works for and against you and be aware of tidal currents and how it will affect your approach to the slip. might want to try and recruit an experienced boat owner to go out with you the first few times till you get some experience with the boat. Sailing the boat in open water is pretty easy to do but manuevering in tight spaces surrounded by expensive boats can be unnerving and expensive. Sail it a lot to get experience and make short overnight trips before jumping off for longer vouages. Seems too many people, including me, spend all their time getting the boat ready for a cruise but leave with little experience with the boat. You might be surprized what things you'll want to change after a few days on the ocean and it will be a lot cheaper to do in Fla. Only one way to get experience and that's by doing. If you bought the boat right, should be able to cruise for awhile and sell and at least break even if not make a profit.
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Old 12-06-2012, 06:50   #4
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Re: 1967 Bristol 39' as a first boat.

That is a damn good sea boat...just going by the numbers...that is a very balanced sea-boat....all the numbers you want are there...plus she's fairly roomy and the build quality is likeley at least slightly above average since it's a Bristol...maybe better than most...I'd say you did quite well...and it's a bonus if the chainplates and rigging and engine are in serviceable shape...check those chainplates though..as previous poster said..
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Old 12-06-2012, 06:58   #5
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Congrats! Great boat!! Good advice to be found amongst the CF participants. Experience builds skill and confidence; seek to learn something new daily... Again, congrats.
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Old 12-06-2012, 07:14   #6
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Re: 1967 Bristol 39' as a first boat.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Miu Miu View Post
Hello again!! So it seems our hunt is over....we lost the Rafiki 37 we wanted to someone a few hundred miles closer with cash in hand. However we found a 1967 Bristol 39' (not CB) ...
Congrats Miu Miu. Too bad you missed out on the Rafiki, but Bristols are wonderful sea boats. Assuming your survey looks good, I'd say you've got yourself a great boat.

What to look at? Everything. Blisters, yes ... although don't get all panicked if you find a few. They can be repaired.

I would focus on core structural questions. Make sure you examine all the chainplates and standing rigging. Pull all the floorboards and examine the bilge. Examine the mast step, and look at the deck around where it intersects the deck. Pay close attention to any stress areas such as windlass and winch. Of course you want to check for water intrusion into the deck (is it cored?). Check all thru-hulls. Make sure all seacocks are working properly. Check the rudder and keel joint. Probably a lots more... There are some good books out there on conducting your own survey. Lots on the Net.

Bottom line, congrats. Bristols are known as great boats.
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Old 12-06-2012, 07:23   #7
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Re: 1967 Bristol 39' as a first boat.

I came into ownership of a '68 Columbia 40 in the last few months...she's a shoal draft c/b that draws 4 and a half foot...not as beamy as yours and probably has the room of catalina 36 or lesser but 10 and a half beam is okay with me..wehn I stand at the bow and look back she still looks beamy as hell in my eyes for whatever reason...she's got a good Universal Mx-25 that so far just needs injectors..former owner already bought them but i guess he ain't gonna send them to me..I dunno..he lost aolt of money on the boat and I basically got it for free..seriously...but no such thing as a free boat...the title transfer has been a bit of a process but worth it...The P/o put a new injector pump in there while he had her...and he was in another state (TX) when the boat (in Florida) broke her windlass out of the deck in a storm..he had planned to bring the boat from FMY to Galveston but had been paying like $250/month just to moor in the City morring basin out in the river and one thing led to another.Charlie Morgan is one of the best designers...build quality was not as good as bristol but I am happy overall..how could I not be.I have title to a C-40 and have about 300-400 dollars invested so far...the rigging should be okay for a couple years...not totally surer about the chainplates..check the numbers of the Morgan C-40..they seem awfully good...and she's a real looker with all her overhangs...though I don't know if they match a Bristol 39..that's a good find...
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Old 12-06-2012, 08:28   #8
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Re: 1967 Bristol 39' as a first boat.

Congratulations!

As others have said, Indiantown for sure.

will you be present at survey? Have you vetted the surveyor or need
recommendations for one?
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Old 12-06-2012, 08:35   #9
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Re: 1967 Bristol 39' as a first boat.

Welcome to CF. I have looked at boats on ebay also but thought you had to do your survey stuff before biding and winning the auction.
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Old 12-06-2012, 12:22   #10
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Re: 1967 Bristol 39' as a first boat.

Bristol 39 is a very long boat with very shorty waterline. Pay for the waterline!

Do not expect yours to deliver a modern 40' of performance nor the living space of many other 40-footers, but sure thing - she is a pretty boat to look at!

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Old 12-06-2012, 13:15   #11
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Re: 1967 Bristol 39' as a first boat.

Wow! Lots of great information! I have a serveyor who came highly recommended by a couple of marina yards (not ones that I plan to have work done at...so I don't think he'll tell me there is a ton of work to be done so that his buddies can make some cash off me.) The owner is moving her over this afternoon and the survey and sea trial is tomorrow morning, we wont be present for it unfortunately but since we hired the surveyor I think he will be more loyal to us than the seller. Even if she needs a bit of work it should still be a good deal, as far as I can tel we won the auction for around $15k+ under what others have been listing these for.
As far as survey pre bid on ebay...ebay as a company is really into happy buyers so if his add says I've had divers down loking at the bottom and everything looks great, then I haul her out and find out it's totally ruined....ebay will cancel the sale or refund my money in accordance with their buyer protection policy.
If all goes well I think we will be moving her to Indian Town and spending some time tweaking her out to our specs this summer.
@ Mike....I'm really sad about the Rafiki, went for $10k LESS than we were offering....so I'm wondering if there was more wrong with the boat than we knew about. Either way, I am really excited about the Bristol!
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Old 12-06-2012, 14:45   #12
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Re: 1967 Bristol 39' as a first boat.

Quote:
Originally Posted by barnakiel View Post
Bristol 39 is a very long boat with very shorty waterline. Pay for the waterline!

Do not expect yours to deliver a modern 40' of performance nor the living space of many other 40-footers, but sure thing - she is a pretty boat to look at!

b.
Extra speed isn't everything..I'll take the slow release of reserve bouyancy that long overhangs give you and a more comfortable speed when it's blowing hard. The newer, faster longer waterline boats do sail flatter and that does add comfort...which may offset the tendency to pound that they possess...I think for long-range cruising a Bristol is a great choice..Not everyone can pound through waves day after day on offshore races like a hardened testosterone-flaring young race crew...
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Old 12-06-2012, 15:21   #13
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Re: 1967 Bristol 39' as a first boat.

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Originally Posted by souljour2000 View Post
Extra speed isn't everything..I'll take the slow release of reserve bouyancy that long overhangs give you and a more comfortable speed when it's blowing hard. The newer, faster longer waterline boats do sail flatter and that does add comfort...which may offset the tendency to pound that they possess...I think for long-range cruising a Bristol is a great choice..Not everyone can pound through waves day after day on offshore races like a hardened testosterone-flaring young race crew...
Agreed, I am much more interested in stability than speed.
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Old 14-06-2012, 12:10   #14
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Re: 1967 Bristol 39' as a first boat.

Beware buying a 39' Bristol in Pompano beach. Had to back down....the survey showed 40+ blisters, stove and water not plummed, needs new sails, rudder, exposed pin where previous repair failed and prop issues, mast step issues, electrical problems, black mold inside, needs new paint, chain plates, seller said engine had 209hrs, surveyor says 1200+, seller said larger fuel tanks than are actually there and around $15k on the low end of other must fixes. Unclear title mixed up in a divorce.....The seller seriously misrepresented this one saying it only needed new batteries. Then started bullying us and really being rude when we showed him the survey and asked him to speak to the title person..... So I guess it's on to the next boat and hoping for a more honest seller this time.
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Old 14-06-2012, 13:06   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Miu Miu
Beware buying a 39' Bristol in Pompano beach. Had to back down....the survey showed 40+ blisters, stove and water not plummed, needs new sails, rudder, exposed pin where previous repair failed and prop issues, mast step issues, electrical problems, black mold inside, needs new paint, chain plates, seller said engine had 209hrs, surveyor says 1200+, seller said larger fuel tanks than are actually there and around $15k on the low end of other must fixes. Unclear title mixed up in a divorce.....The seller seriously misrepresented this one saying it only needed new batteries. Then started bullying us and really being rude when we showed him the survey and asked him to speak to the title person..... So I guess it's on to the next boat and hoping for a more honest seller this time.
Very sorry to hear this Miu Miu, but good call on your behalf. There are lots of boats out there. You'll find the right one eventually.

I spent at least five years looking before finding our Rafiki. Granted, I wasn't in any rush b/c we already had a boat that would do what we wanted. But I probably seriously considered two dozen boats, and looked at nearly 1/2 of them before finding Pachina Mia.
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