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Old 20-11-2015, 14:55   #1
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Help Out a Disabled, Landlubbing Old Paratrooper

I'll make this as short as possible, but it is still gonna be a long post. Sorry. I'm looking for advice. I am an unhappy power-boater who really wanted to be a sailor. Problem is, I have severe emphysema (severe enough that I'll be on the lung transplant list come January) so when I was buying a boat a few years back all of my friends advised me that the physical demands of sailing would be too great, so I bought a 26' Bayliner (I know) to kick around with here (far, far up the Columbia River).

I liked the Bayliner (believe it or not) and lived aboard her for months but she isn't the boat to do what I want to do --go far and wide without spending thousands on fuel. To do that I need a sailboat.

I also need to learn to sail.

Here's my conundrum: The Bayliner's engine is shot. I have a rebuilt engine sitting behind her on the hard, but doing the work myself has proven a bit more than I can handle physically (climbing up and down the trailered boat wears me out pretty fast). Cost to repair is 6K (shop won't use my rebuilt engine, so I have to shell out for a new one). I'm having a hard time justifying the expense to fix a boat that --while OK-- isn't really what I want or need.

BUUUT, just down the road a bit is a '77 Irwin (I know) 25' that is a cosmetically beautiful little sailboat that I have been admiring for a year. It was for sale for $7,500 last year but apparently had some valve problems with the little 8HP Yanmar Diesel so they pulled it and replaced the valves, according to the owner. The price is now $4,500.

I know that Irwin's have a reputation for less than stellar build quality, but my gut feeling is that since I would primarily be using her to learn to sail on pretty mild stretches of river, things like leaky ports and less than ideal glasswork might not be as big a problem for me.

But then there is that engine. I'm terrified of having another boat on the hard with an engine behind it. I guarantee you I'm gonna need that engine just to get it from his marina to mine because, ya know, not a sailor. I'm assuming the cost to drop the diesel back in would be around $3,000, since that's how much the price dropped. But I just don't know if another partially-functioning boat is worth the hassle, even at that price point.

I could also go with another powerboat, but after my lung transplant (probably next year, maybe the year after) my best friend and I are planning on moving over to Puget Sound to live and sail, so I'd kinda like to know how to do it before I get there. Besides, in my heart, I've always wanted a sailboat.

I could up my budget and go larger on a sailboat, but the Irwin is close and small and seems a good starter boat for the Columbia, and I'm going to be going big on a sailboat in three years anyway, so I'd rather start small now and work up.

So:
1) Would the physical demands of a 25' sailboat on the Columbia be too much for a guy who has to do everything slow? I can operate my Bayliner single-handed, I just have to start moving and doing a lot earlier than most people. Retrieving the anchor is the hardest part. I should also point out that, especially for the transplant, strenuous strength-training of upper body and core is encouraged (as well as cardio).

2) Is the Irwin a decent choice (all other things being equal) for the Columbia between Portland and the Tri-Cities? The owner has been sailing it here for 14 years, but that could mean nothing at all.

3) Should the engine-out status of the Irwin be a deal breaker?

Also, the Bayliner is currently parked in my ex-wife's driveway, so speedy resolution is starting to be an issue

Here is the Irwin in question:
https://kpr.craigslist.org/boa/5284779314.html
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Old 21-11-2015, 00:12   #2
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Re: Help Out a Disabled, Landlubbing Old Paratrooper

Hello,

That boat look good. If the engine has new valves and runs, why not? I'd suggest you get a Fortress aluminum anchor, they are pretty light. Bottom line is, you want something you'll be happy with.. You probably will have to limit your sailing to good weather when solo, but who cares..
As to your ability to handle the boat, that is a question for your doctor; maybe find one who sails..

Gil

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Old 21-11-2015, 00:31   #3
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Re: Help Out a Disabled, Landlubbing Old Paratrooper

Quote:
Originally Posted by GoldFalcon View Post
I'll make this as short as possible, but it is still gonna be a long post. Sorry. I'm looking for advice. I am an unhappy power-boater who really wanted to be a sailor. Problem is, I have severe emphysema (severe enough that I'll be on the lung transplant list come January) so when I was buying a boat a few years back all of my friends advised me that the physical demands of sailing would be too great, so I bought a 26' Bayliner (I know) to kick around with here (far, far up the Columbia River). The Irwin won't do it for you, as your health issues are severe, and as the build issues won't evaporate just because you would rather they weren't there. Sorry to speak so forcefully..

I liked the Bayliner (believe it or not) and lived aboard her for months but she isn't the boat to do what I want to do --go far and wide without spending thousands on fuel. To do that I need a sailboat.

I also need to learn to sail.

Here's my conundrum: Bayliner's engine is shot. I have a rebuilt engine sitting behind her on the hard, but doing the work myself has proven a bit more than I can handle physically (climbing up and down the trailered boat wears me out pretty fast). Cost to repair is 6K (shop won't use my rebuilt engine, so I have to shell out for a new one). I'm having a hard time justifying the expense to fix a boat that --while OK-- isn't really what I want or need.

BUUUT, just down the road a bit is a '77 Irwin (I know) 25' that is a cosmetically beautiful little sailboat that I have been admiring for a year. It was for sale for $7,500 last year but apparently had some valve problems with the little 8HP Yanmar Diesel so they pulled it and replaced the valves, according to the owner. The price is now $4,500.

I know that Irwin's have a reputation for less than stellar build quality, but my gut feeling is that since I would primarily be using her to learn to sail on pretty mild stretches of river, things like leaky ports and less than ideal glasswork might not be as big a problem for me.

But then there is that engine. I'm terrified of having another boat on the hard with an engine behind it. I guarantee you I'm gonna need that engine just to get it from his marina to mine because, ya know, not a sailor. I'm assuming the cost to drop the diesel back in would be around $3,000, since that's how much the price dropped. But I just don't know if another partially-functioning boat is worth the hassle, even at that price point.

I could also go with another powerboat, but after my lung transplant (probably next year, maybe the year after) my best friend and I are planning on moving over to Puget Sound to live and sail, so I'd kinda like to know how to do it before I get there. Besides, in my heart, I've always wanted a sailboat.

I could up my budget and go larger on a sailboat, but the Irwin is close and small and seems a good starter boat for the Columbia, and I'm going to be going big on a sailboat in three years anyway, so I'd rather start small now and work up.

So:
1) Would the physical demands of a 25' sailboat on the Columbia be too much for a guy who has to do everything slow? I can operate my Bayliner single-handed, I just have to start moving and doing a lot earlier than most people. Retrieving the anchor is the hardest part. I should also point out that, especially for the transplant, strenuous strength-training of upper body and core is encouraged (as well as cardio).

2) Is the Irwin a decent choice (all other things being equal) for the Columbia between Portland and the Tri-Cities? The owner has been sailing it here for 14 years, but that could mean nothing at all.

3) Should the engine-out status of the Irwin be a deal breaker?

Also, the Bayliner is currently parked in my ex-wife's driveway, so speedy resolution is starting to be an issue

Here is the Irwin in question:
https://kpr.craigslist.org/boa/5284779314.html
OH gosh, I'm sorry to have to be so blunt, but here goes:

You have a major health isssue. Get the Bayliner out of the picture, sell it for whatever you can get for it.

For the moment, your priorities have to be dedicated to putting yourself in the best position possible for recovery from a lung transplant operation. This means that you need really good advice from physical therapists about how to do *whatever* prior to your surgery.

The boat is less important than you are. Ditch it, coldheartedly. Take the very best care of your body that you can for this limited time period.

After the recovery period from the surgery, when you are stabilized on your meds, then re-consider.

If you at that time want a pocket cruiser, go for it.

However, with life threatening issues, you may choose something new. Give yourself space for that.

My guess, as a bilateral total knee replacement gal, is that your new lungs will not be as good as your birth lungs when new, but better than no breath at all. Man, I wish you the very best of luck with it. It's a messy situation you have there, and I wish you well with solving it all.

Ann
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Old 21-11-2015, 01:23   #4
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Re: Help Out a Disabled, Landlubbing Old Paratrooper

Quote:
Originally Posted by GoldFalcon View Post
1) Would the physical demands of a 25' sailboat on the Columbia be too much for a guy who has to do everything slow? I can operate my Bayliner single-handed, I just have to start moving and doing a lot earlier than most people. Retrieving the anchor is the hardest part. I should also point out that, especially for the transplant, strenuous strength-training of upper body and core is encouraged (as well as cardio).

2) Is the Irwin a decent choice (all other things being equal) for the Columbia between Portland and the Tri-Cities? The owner has been sailing it here for 14 years, but that could mean nothing at all.

3) Should the engine-out status of the Irwin be a deal breaker?

Also, the Bayliner is currently parked in my ex-wife's driveway, so speedy resolution is starting to be an issue
1) No. I am in a similar predicament, at least initially (I need approx. 3 months in dry heat and salt air to begin to get sorted). I agree about the anchor. I never used to have a problem with anchors, but those days are now over. So it is time to look at solutions like this:

LEWMAR 6670011108-312 LEWMAR V700G VERTICAL WINDLASS WITH ROCKER SWITCH AND CONTROL - Walmart.com

There was somebody down in Florida selling that windlass for $411, and I can't find the link any more.

2) Not to me. Me, I'd run away from it as fast as possible.

3) Yes. Plus the fact it isn't the boat you want to end up with.

Sell the Bayliner for what you can get, and sell the engine for what you can get (I'd sell them separately), if you can't get someone to install an engine for a sensible price.

If someone tried to charge me $3,000 to install an engine, I would beat them round the head with it. That's 150 hours of labour at $20 an hour - if they take that long, they SUCK! Why are we putting up with this nonsense? For goodness sakes, the Chinese are RETAILING brand new diesel engines for $500, and THAT is more than I paid for my new Yanmar 5hp diesel (which costs less to make now, than when I bought it)!

It costs the square root of sweet FA, to make ANYTHING any more, and it never cost that much to make stuff in the first place (a lot less than people think). For example I used to sell a very good French natural slate cutter with useless (but essential) springs, that constantly broke. The springs cost me in trade, over 5 each. So I went to a spring maker in Birmingham (in England), and bought properly made springs. If I bought 3,000 of them, they cost me just over 0.01p each. The properly made springs never broke. When I sold a new cutter, I would give the customer a free spare spring, and if they wanted, I would change the spring for them before they left the premises, and gave them another new spring free as a spare.

I sold a lot of cutters.

Skip the middle step, save your money, and buy something you want to keep, so any money you spend on it, isn't going to be wasted. I'd make sure it at least has foresail furling already, as it's a very expensive add on (way over priced for what it is), and if possible, get something with in mast furling as well.

That will give you something to live and fight for, during your struggles with your health (and to help that along, I would change my usual approach, where I do cosmetics last, and bump cosmetic near the front, so you have a very beautiful lady front and centre in your head, to think about).

That's my $0.02c anyway.

Best of luck to you, and get well soon.
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Old 21-11-2015, 02:07   #5
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Re: Help Out a Disabled, Landlubbing Old Paratrooper

As always, Ann's advice is very wise.

Hers was life advice, mine is boat advice. From bitter experience I urge you to avoid poor construction at all costs. It is like metastized cancer; all the care and effort during your ownership will never overcome the underlying problem. There are too many older glass boats around from mainstream quality builders at attractive prices to consider a bottlm-of-the-heap product.

And secondly, if you want to sail, go to Puget Sound. It's not without its challenges, but it's a LOT better than the Colombia river. I know there are people who sail there (we shall probably soon hear from several of them) but having lived there, my opinion is the Mighty Colombia is a fine place for a power boat.

Good luck, Paul

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Old 21-11-2015, 03:43   #6
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Re: Help Out a Disabled, Landlubbing Old Paratrooper

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If someone tried to charge me $3,000 to install an engine, I would beat them round the head with it. That's 150 hours of labour at $20 an hour - if they take that long, they SUCK!

I had to double check to make sure this post wasn't 30 years old when I read this....
I am curious, Just what business can stay open if it charges only $20.00 per hour? If it is only charging 20 bucks per hour how little does it pay its mechanics? Any decent mechanic will not work for low wages. Even if you take the boat to his house and park it in the back yard for him to work on it on the side, if and when he has extra time on his hands....

Maybe you feel comfortable going to the labor pool and picking up a couple of vagrants with hangovers, to work on your boat. I'm sure you can get them for 10 bucks an hour!
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Old 21-11-2015, 03:45   #7
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Re: Help Out a Disabled, Landlubbing Old Paratrooper

Greetings and welcome aboard the CF, GoldFalcon.

River sailing can be a real beast. Lots of tacking.
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Old 21-11-2015, 03:59   #8
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Re: Help Out a Disabled, Landlubbing Old Paratrooper

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I had to double check to make sure this post wasn't 30 years old when I read this....
I am curious, Just what business can stay open if it charges only $20.00 per hour? If it is only charging 20 bucks per hour how little does it pay its mechanics? Any decent mechanic will not work for low wages. Even if you take the boat to his house and park it in the back yard for him to work on it on the side, if and when he has extra time on his hands....

Maybe you feel comfortable going to the labor pool and picking up a couple of vagrants with hangovers, to work on your boat. I'm sure you can get them for 10 bucks an hour!
Skilled time served tradesmen round here, are now 15 an hour (that's about $22), and still struggling to find work.

If the overheads for your business are too high, that's not the customers problem, and you had better do something about it fast, because you will not survive what is coming.

It isn't 2006 any more (and it shouldn't have been possible to end up like 2006 anyway, because that approach destroys industries).

Businesses that put their prices up going into a Depression, never survive the Depression. Those that cannot compete their way out of a wet paper bag, that cannot provide value, are going to be so out of luck. Big established garages for example around here, that used to charge 60 an hour and more, are already bankrupt and have closed their doors.

The customer should always be King, and the customer is going to be King again. Cheap money and Easy Street has driven out real businesspeople in so many areas of life, and those 'at the top' no longer seem to have the first clue about business (is what is happening to McDonalds, etc., really lost on you?).

It's already a buyers market, isn't it?

PS. The important fundamentals today, worldwide, are over twice as bad as they were in 1929. Buckle up, there's a storm coming.
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Old 21-11-2015, 04:31   #9
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Re: Help Out a Disabled, Landlubbing Old Paratrooper

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Skilled time served tradesmen round here, are now 15 an hour (that's about $22),....... (is what is happening to McDonalds, etc., really lost on you?).
Lemme see if I have this right. You think it is outrageous that a company will charge a customer $20.00 per hour (your previous post) but a skilled craftsman makes $22.00 per hour.
Unless you are using some kind of new math, I'd say that company is going to go broke because it is losing 2 dollars per hour...No, my bad....it is actually losing a lot more than that...The company has to have insurance just in case they accidently damage a customers boat....they have to provide workers compensation insurance....they have to match the employees SS tax.....they provide a warranty.....they have to pay the person that answers the phone....the building the light bill etc.etc....

And now you want to compare a qualified mechanic to a burger flipper at McDonalds?
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Old 21-11-2015, 07:16   #10
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Re: Help Out a Disabled, Landlubbing Old Paratrooper

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Lemme see if I have this right. You think it is outrageous that a company will charge a customer $20.00 per hour (your previous post) but a skilled craftsman makes $22.00 per hour.
Unless you are using some kind of new math, I'd say that company is going to go broke because it is losing 2 dollars per hour...No, my bad....it is actually losing a lot more than that...The company has to have insurance just in case they accidently damage a customers boat....they have to provide workers compensation insurance....they have to match the employees SS tax.....they provide a warranty.....they have to pay the person that answers the phone....the building the light bill etc.etc....

And now you want to compare a qualified mechanic to a burger flipper at McDonalds?
No that is not what I think, and it should be obvious that is so.

Just how many hours do you think it takes to install an engine?

I have PERSONALLY removed car engines and transmissions, and replaced them, in a lot less than a day. A hoist is not an expensive item, and I wouldn't expect every customer to reimburse me for the full cost of a hoist on each job. I wouldn't expect them to have to pay the value of my personal toolkit either (which any tradesman should have).

What is it about a relatively simple job, which is what installing an engine and transmission is, ESPECIALLY if you are trained in that field, that you think warrants a $3,000 bill?

It is inexcusable.

I have run and owned businesses. The necessary (and over here, compulsory) insurances aren't that burdensome. Per customer, the costs are diminutive. Far and away the biggest burden on a business, is local business taxes (the tax they tried to impose on a friends small village pub was so high, it wasn't possible for him to sell enough stuff in a year, to pay it). But I am competitive. I always buy the best products I can, and sell them at the best prices I can, while still making a reasonable profit. I could usually sell good stuff cheaper than my competitors were selling rubbish, because I worked at it. To get the best, I became an importer, and I have seen the quality that so called professional buyers, are feeding into their supply chains. I quite enjoyed trading foreign exchange for my imports too, because I normally made more profit on the FX, than I did from selling the products I imported. That helped my customers get even better deals.

But then again, I am a competitive Capitalist, and not a Cartel, Monopolistic, anti-competitive Corporatist. To get ahead I HAVE TO give my customers what they want, along with the service they deserve. I don't expect them to walk through my door, and empty the contents of their bank accounts at my feet, and then be grateful if I don't keep them hanging around for hours or days for stuff that might well be of questionable quality. People only had to tell me what their materials budget would be for doing the work, and I would fit in a range of options that would suit, and also give them something that was beautiful when it was finished, and stay good for as long as 400 years.

An extreme (but all too common) example of this whole, suicidal approach, was an accident repair carried out on my motorbike, after an unattentive arab on a mobile phone drove into the back of it.

An indicator, a number plate, and the number plate light, were replaced, and the bike was checked over (this was the real reason for me putting it in on insurance, I wanted to be sure that nothing had been knocked out of line).

Total time spent doing the work, was under an hour. Total retail value of the components changed, was under 50.

The approved repair centre HAD TO bill the insurance Company, for 3,780!

Now I don't know about you, but to me, that is nothing short of criminal, and it is a criminality ALL OF US are paying through the nose for.

As for McDonalds, stop making stuff up, and acquire reading comprehension.

Why did you pull blameless burger flippers out of your derriere, when it is the top people at McDonalds, and similar chronic incompetents, that have their heads firmly rammed up their derriere?

If there's an ignore facility on this forum, welcome to it.
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Old 21-11-2015, 07:29   #11
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Re: Help Out a Disabled, Landlubbing Old Paratrooper

Apologies to the OP, but it is this suicidal rip-off culture, that is making it so bad for everybody, and especially the likes of veterans, the disabled, the elderly, etc.

It is just so unnecessary, and with no eye to inevitable consequences, it is extremely bad business.
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Old 21-11-2015, 07:32   #12
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Re: Help Out a Disabled, Landlubbing Old Paratrooper

i found copd to relieve at sea. funny abou tthe air there... makes a difference. only time i have faail with asthma(cough variant) or lung disease is when the huanacaxtle treees are in full bloom and i am in port. even in port i am less ill than i was on land with my advancing copd resulting from my cough variant reynauds disease based asthma.
i am also allergic to th eyellow blooming trees here... but not as bad as the orange ones...
i found the associated scents and air particles to be an issue with my particular type of copd. my stinkpot made life worse. i owned 2 of those over a few years in lost angels..
in usa i neeeded to take claritin d 24 daily, and did over years if time. now i only need it when the allergens are increased..blooming season. there are 2 here, called spring and fall in temperate zones. overall, life is much better, quality wise, from a breathing point of view.
for columbia river and with plans to upgrade in time-- yeah the irwin will teach ye stufff mebbe ye dont wanna know, as will any other sailboat. it willbe fun.
as you learn to sail better and better you will learn what you like in a sailboat and go from there--is all a learning experience...
you willbe sailing a river, so size isnt an issue with swells or seas...you should do well. have fun and keep us posted..
and, PLEASE post pix as you go....
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Old 21-11-2015, 09:22   #13
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Re: Help Out a Disabled, Landlubbing Old Paratrooper

Walk away from the deal. Cruddy boat, and should never buy a boat that needs work unless your young and capable of doing the work yourself, or unless you got big bucks.
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Old 21-11-2015, 10:21   #14
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Re: Help Out a Disabled, Landlubbing Old Paratrooper

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No that is not what I think, and it should be obvious that is so.

Just how many hours do you think it takes to install an engine?

Well, lets go read your previous posts....Yep, you did say that.....

as for how long it takes to install an engine? Longer than it takes to remove one....Which is what that mechanic will have to do....

Apparently YOU think they are quoting....what did you say???150 hours? At $20.00 per hour?
News flash! It is more like 15 hours at 100 bucks/hr.

Dude....if 20 dollars per hour is enough, then will you PLEASE come over here and replace a Perkins 4-108M for me?????

Don't worry about shaft alignment, I will have someone who knows what they are doing to get that part done...Just get the old one out and the new one in without damaging anything on the boat....AND leave the boat as clean as it was when you arrived!

BTW my reading comprehension is just fine....
Maybe that "magic hat" you are pulling stuff out of, isn't a magic hat but something else?

No, I will not ignore anything you post because I need a good laugh once in a while....
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Old 21-11-2015, 10:23   #15
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Re: Help Out a Disabled, Landlubbing Old Paratrooper

My apologies to GoldFalcon for the thread drift.

I hope you get the answer that helps you in the best way possible!
OH! and WELCOME to the forum!
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