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Old 27-03-2013, 10:46   #1
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Agony of indecision (first sailboat - Bav vs Elan)

Please help to choose first sailboat for small family Med. cruising.
Trying to choose between Bavaria 34 (1999) and Elan 38 (1993)
The price range is the same but Bav has a new Engine about 300 hrs.
Both boats are from charter - Bav from private and Elan from charter company.
Bav has furling main and Elan have classic with lazybag.
Bav has 3 cabins with 6 berth and Elan also has 3 cabins but with 7 berth which is prefarable for me as one of aft has two-level berth and in my opinion is comfortably because I have two children. Elan has C-table that is usual for me as I sail mostly on larger boats with such layout.
Bav looks more manicured but Elan more comfortable.
I like both and this is hell.
If I do not make a choice they will be gone

Please help to make a right choice.

PS. I heard that Elan have osmosis troubles but not sure..
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Old 27-03-2013, 10:51   #2
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Re: Agony of indecision (first sailboat - Bav vs Elan)

Tough choices.

What kind of engines in each boat?

You could make up a spreadsheet which has the features you like, with ranking importance of how important each of those features is for you, then add a column of the level say 1-10 each boat represents. Multiply the two numbers and add them up, highest wins! It's an engineering technique.

But boats aren't all about that kind of analysis. Which one makes your heart flutter when you look at them?

Good luck.

PS a new engine is worth it's own weight.
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Old 27-03-2013, 11:07   #3
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Re: Agony of indecision (first sailboat - Bav vs Elan)

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But boats aren't all about that kind of analysis. Which one makes your heart flutter when you look at them?
Thank you for the interesting opinion!
My heart flutter when I'm looking for both of them As they were chosen from about 16 others..
All things being equal but in Elan I like c-table and two-level berth and Bav looks like well maintained and have a new Engine.
Bav is 10,80 with 3,48 and has:
Volvo Penta D1-30F, 27.3 HP
Elan is 11.34 with 3.65 and has:
Yanmar, 35 hp

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Old 27-03-2013, 11:11   #4
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Re: Agony of indecision (first sailboat - Bav vs Elan)

My opinion ONLY:

from all that I read on thi and many other forums, you will find that a Yanmar will be easier to deal with than the expensive parts required for a Volvo.
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Old 27-03-2013, 11:14   #5
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Re: Agony of indecision (first sailboat - Bav vs Elan)

I would choose the boat in the best condition, is the best price and requiring the least amount of work, repairs, upgrades and new gear.

So check these areas very carefully, more or less in this order of importance and possible cost to repair.

1. Hull and deck. Are their leaks in the hull or deck. Very important is the deck solid, not wet in the core or delaminating? Blisters if they are small you can live with but may effect the resale value.

2. Engine - new is good but an old engine that is well maintained and in good condition is fine.

3. Rigging. How old, what condition?

4. Sails. Look carefully at each. Old, stained, stitches worn, shape all blown out? Figure Euro 2000-3000 each for each new sail or 50-75% of that for used sails in reasonable condition.

5. All the other stuff: pumps, wiring, plumbing, refrigerator...........
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Old 27-03-2013, 11:16   #6
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Re: Agony of indecision (first sailboat - Bav vs Elan)

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Originally Posted by Stu Jackson View Post
My opinion ONLY:

from all that I read on thi and many other forums, you will find that a Yanmar will be easier to deal with than the expensive parts required for a Volvo.
Oh so very true, from someone that has owned and rebuilt a Volvo.

On the other hand, it was a great engine and only had to be rebuilt because a crew member killed it. However, have heard some complaints about the quality of some newer Volvo models.
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Old 27-03-2013, 11:24   #7
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Re: Agony of indecision (first sailboat - Bav vs Elan)

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So check these areas very carefully, more or less in this order of importance and possible cost to repair.
Thanks! May be I should pay for survey for both? I'm just fear that one may gone right after survey and I'll lost about EUR 700 for a wind. Tried to find lees expensive surveyor in Croatia (as they are there) just for his qualified opinion about technical condition but with no result..
Equipment is almost identical - standard package for any charter boat in Croatia..
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Old 27-03-2013, 14:24   #8
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Re: Agony of indecision (first sailboat - Bav vs Elan)

I mean I'm definitely planning to hire surveyor but only for the final examination before depositing selected boat..
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Old 27-03-2013, 14:29   #9
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Re: Agony of indecision (first sailboat - Bav vs Elan)

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Thanks! May be I should pay for survey for both? I'm just fear that one may gone right after survey and I'll lost about EUR 700 for a wind. Tried to find lees expensive surveyor in Croatia (as they are there) just for his qualified opinion about technical condition but with no result..
Equipment is almost identical - standard package for any charter boat in Croatia..
Well a few comments.

First, not sure how a sale is managed in Europe but in the US you negotiate a deal with the seller but the sale is subject to the buyer having the boat surveyed and approving the sale based on the report. If problems are found that the buyer doesn't agree to then the deal could be canceled or renegotiated between the seller and buyer to account for the problems found.

The main point is, the buyer is assured that he or she will not spend the money for a survey only to have the owner sell to another party before the deal closes.

If you have some experience with boats you can do the initial check on a lot of these details before paying a surveyor. Some you can get just by asking, like the age of the sails and the age of the wire rigging. You can make a pretty good guess if these will need to be replaced based on how old they are.

It might not be too expensive to pay just a mechanic to do a quick inspection of the engine, especially the older one, to look for good compression, smoke or fuel in the exhaust, bad leaks, etc.
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Old 27-03-2013, 14:31   #10
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Re: Agony of indecision (first sailboat - Bav vs Elan)

Lets see, its sailboat right, so which one sails nicer...
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Old 27-03-2013, 15:34   #11
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Re: Agony of indecision (first sailboat - Bav vs Elan)

So I looked at specs for both boats, both shoal draft, probably sail the same. 4k difference disp. With my 20 minute assessment, if I had to pick, I'd get the bigger Elan....the fact that it didn't come with a roller furler, says something romantic about it to an old racer...? And Bavaria is a wannabe Swan... so there...but the pics I saw of a 36 didn't look like one....
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Old 29-03-2013, 05:37   #12
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Re: Agony of indecision (first sailboat - Bav vs Elan)

Thanks all for commenting.
Today broker told me that the Bav owner decided that will proceed with the survey only after the boat will be reserved - 10% of price. It is strange for me as I planned to pay for survey from my own money and they will not returned if the boat will not match the description.
What can you say about international practice in this situation?
Thx!
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Old 29-03-2013, 05:54   #13
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Re: Agony of indecision (first sailboat - Bav vs Elan)

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Originally Posted by Cheshire View Post
Thanks all for commenting.
Today broker told me that the Bav owner decided that will proceed with the survey only after the boat will be reserved - 10% of price. It is strange for me as I planned to pay for survey from my own money and they will not returned if the boat will not match the description.
What can you say about international practice in this situation?
Thx!
That doesn't sound right to me. If I was the seller I would be only too happy to have a potential buyer pay for a survey. The fact that he is expecting a 10% deposit down before he will even have a survey paid for by you is a red flag to me. Perhaps he knows something about the boat that he hasn't disclosed?
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Old 29-03-2013, 06:01   #14
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Re: Agony of indecision (first sailboat - Bav vs Elan)

On the basis that both are in same (good?) condition I would go for the Elan - because it's bigger and layout seems to work best for you (with kids onboard then bigger would find a use!).

On the engine, 20 years old does not automatically make it junk (a numpty can ruin an engine within a few years as well) - just would be wise to get a marine engineer to do an inspection, ideally as part of a sea trial (although could get him onboard first and before a surveyor to simply say whether to bother going further! - the good news is that a Marine Engineer report is a lot cheaper than a Surveyor, the bad news is that with engines can't guarantee that all is well........but half bad / half good news! is that engines rarely go 100% pop - they just constantly eat money!

The Vendor having some bills as well simply a record of what engine work has been done (their will have been some!) would be very useful to know (for the engineer, if not for you!) as you don't want every bit of the engine to be original!

On the brokerage thing, 10% up front to a Broker is the normal starting point - some brokers will move on that, others won't. Personally I would say no, especially as going cross border on the basis that I might be entitled to the money coming back if the sale fails but enforcing that legally would be a PITA at best and costly at worst and whilst many brokers may send the money back with no problem, some would take "expenses" - if not more.

As you say, if willing to put hand in your pocket for expenses (Survey / Haulout) that you won't get back does make you a serious buyer (Tyrekickers dont usually spend 1k or more) - and if a Vendor or Broker can't work with you without 10% down (coincidentaly! that figure also covers their own fees!) then I would move on to another boat and broker.
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Old 29-03-2013, 06:32   #15
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Re: Agony of indecision (first sailboat - Bav vs Elan)

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That doesn't sound right to me. If I was the seller I would be only too happy to have a potential buyer pay for a survey. The fact that he is expecting a 10% deposit down before he will even have a survey paid for by you is a red flag to me. Perhaps he knows something about the boat that he hasn't disclosed?
THis is not uncommon, The buyer wants to see commitment. Some will allow you to survey the boat at will , others ( and that includes me) will expect a commitment, for that 10% you then take the boat off the market. The survey is not a means to bargain the price, its a means to establish what you see is what you get. ( ie you have basically made a decision). This is exactly how I sold my boat in France two years ago.

As to Yanmar over Volvo, Ive not found any appreciable difference in spare parts pricing, I have found Volvo parts very easy to order and get quickly often on 24 hour delivery. The same cannot be said for Yanmar.

dave
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