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Old 24-03-2010, 10:25   #1
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Made an Offer, Now It's Time for a Test Sail

I have never owned a sailboat before. I have been around them a little, and I've read some books. I have made an offer on a 1979 Pearson 28. It's contingent on a survey and test sail. My question is: What do I look for on a test sail? I mean, I will be able to tell if it floats, but that's about it. What specifically am I looking for?

All I'm looking for is a nice comfortable, reliable boat that my wife and I can learn to sail.

Any imput would be appreciated.
Thanks
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Old 24-03-2010, 10:29   #2
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If you can arrange to have your survey and test sail accomplished on the same day, I would strongly recommend that you have your surveyor accompany you and the owner and/or broker on the test sail. He will want to check systems as they are being used, something he can't do while the boat's in the slings or tied to the dock.

Talk it over with your surveyor . . . and good luck!

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Old 24-03-2010, 11:07   #3
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Alex,

Like TaoJones says, the surveyor should join you. While he does his job, it would be best when you watch the captain & crew: how do they sail the boat: tensed, relaxed, any problems etc. Ask questions about what happened and why later, on the way back but before moored again because they might be out of there before you can ask...

They will probably ask you to take the wheel too, which is nice but don't do that too long (they want to hook you that way ;-) Let them do some tacks and gybes while you watch.

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Old 24-03-2010, 11:15   #4
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Thanks for the responces. There has already been a survey. I have not seen it yet. It is being made available to me in a couple of days.

There will only be my wife and I, and the broker, on the test sail.
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Old 24-03-2010, 11:21   #5
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If your surveyor is still in the area, ask him how much he would charge to accompany you on the sea trial (maybe it could be arranged to happen at the time he delivers your written survey.) It shouldn't be anywhere near his charge for the survey. Without the expertise of someone like your surveyor aboard during the sea trial (assuming you do not have similar expertise), it becomes just a day sail / pleasure cruise that will not reveal much to you and your wife unless something breaks.

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Old 24-03-2010, 11:41   #6
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Was it your surveyor that did the survey? I had the thought that maybe the seller was giving you a copy of a survey he had done.
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Old 24-03-2010, 11:43   #7
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Hmmm . . . good point, Randy - I hadn't thought about that possibility. If it's a second-hand survey, I would like to read it but I wouldn't rely on it. If it's a couple of years old, it isn't real worthwhile and your insurance carrier probably won't accept it anyway.

It is far better to have your surveyor conduct a new survey - relying on a dated survey could cost you a lot more than the price of a new survey.

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Old 24-03-2010, 13:46   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TaoJones View Post
It is far better to have your surveyor conduct a new survey - relying on a dated survey could cost you a lot more than the price of a new survey.
Indeed, and incl. the sea trial in that survey. If the survey was done just now and you paid for it, you can still call the surveyor and ask him to do the sea trial with you.
I don't really understand this because for many items of a survey the boat needs to be underway (auto-pilot, engine mounts, sails, steering etc.)

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Old 24-03-2010, 13:55   #9
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You can check a lot of things on a sea trial. For example, how well does she point? how does she handle? How much does she tend to heel? Weather helm? How well does she track. Can you put her in a "groove" and let her go on her own? Is the deck layout adequate? Is the cockpit comfortable? How wet? Windage?

Course you really can't judge any of this without some experience and context for comparison.
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Old 24-03-2010, 14:23   #10
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The survey was paid for by another prospective buyer a month ago. The boat was hauled and test sailed. Then the buyer backed out. I am buying the survey from that prospective buyer. I know, I know. There was a reason the other buyer backed out. There is probably a huge hole in the bottom or something. I still plan to test sail the boat. I would still like to know what I should be doing while on a test sail. Like what do I do? Sail it? I don't know how. Look around below? I hope I'm not wasting anyones time. With this post or with the test sail. I am, very much, looking forward to buying a boat and learning to sail.
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Old 24-03-2010, 14:26   #11
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Well if you don't know how to sail yet, then nevermind. Ideally, you should learn how to sail first -- at least get certified, bareboat charter, etc. -- before buying a boat. However if you're just buying a "practice boat" which doesn't cost you a lot of dough, then heck, just go for it, as long as you can afford it. Take the surveyor along and some friends who do know about sailing. See what they say. Take a sailing instructor along.
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Old 24-03-2010, 14:28   #12
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Okay, that survey will be good then. Give the surveyor a call and let him talk you through the survey to highlight his points etc. You can ask him why the other buyer backed off.

For your sail: enjoy it and do what I wrote earlier: observe.

I know you know this but I write it anyway: regardless if you end up buying the boat or not, join some sailing school in your area!

cheers,
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Old 24-03-2010, 14:34   #13
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I few thoughts, having bought a boat ~ 15 months ago.

Quote:
Originally Posted by alex37 View Post
The survey was paid for by another prospective buyer a month ago. The boat was hauled and test sailed. Then the buyer backed out. I am buying the survey from that prospective buyer. I know, I know. There was a reason the other buyer backed out. There is probably a huge hole in the bottom or something. I still plan to test sail the boat. I would still like to know what I should be doing while on a test sail. Like what do I do? Sail it? I don't know how. Look around below? I hope I'm not wasting anyone's time. With this post or with the test sail. I am, very much, looking forward to buying a boat and learning to sail.
Call the surveyor. He may be able to add some light.

It is a shame you are not a sailor, in terms of a test sail. I would try to fine a sailor of a somewhat similar boat to go with you. Failing that, ask some Pearson 28 sailors what they think and what weaknesses are typical of that boat (very important).

Mostly, assuming there are no serious problems, do you like it. Does it make you feel good. There is no point in buying a boat that you don't like. Remmember, there are lots of boats in that range on the market - there is no reason to accept serious problems.

Typically insurance companies accept a survey less than 12 months old, but ask.
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Old 24-03-2010, 15:38   #14
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A Pearson 28 is a good starter boat, well built and easy to sail. There are probably some problems, do to age,,,, wet core and such but all that can be fixed if the price is right.

Maybe try to get a couple other sailors to go along with you or ask the broker to bring along a mate.

You'll be fine with this boat and if you don't like sailing it should not be to tough to get rid of.

Oh, and try to join a local sailing club, boat club, or yacht club.

Good luck,

Joli
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Old 25-03-2010, 09:19   #15
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Does anything jump out at anyone?




Profile starboard side

Cockpit

Cockpit 2

Cockpit 3

Salon looking forward

Salon starboard side

Salon port side

Salon table

Galley starboard side


Additional Specs, Equipment and Information:


Specs
Builder: Pearson
Designer: William H Shaw

Dimensions
LOA: 28'
Beam: 9'3"
LWL: 24'
Maximum Draft: 5'
Displacement: 7850
Ballast: 3530
Bridge Clearance: 43'

Engines
Engine Brand: Universal
Engine(s) HP: 30
Engine Model: Atomic

Tanks
Fuel Tanks: 14
Water: 22
Holding Tanks: 15



Accommodations
  • Ships clock and barometer

Galley
  • Origo non-pressurized 2 burner alcohol stove
  • Sink with fresh water foot pump
  • Large Ice box

Electronics
  • B&G fathometer/knotmeter
  • B&G Wind indicator (sending unit inop.)
  • Raytheon 12 mile radar
  • Apelco Loran C
  • Simrad autopilot
  • Cockpit bulkhead compass
  • VHF marine radio
  • Sony AM/FM/CD stereo with MP3/Ipod input
  • Cabin and cockpit speakers

Electrical
  • Heart Interface inverter/charger
  • (2) Group 27 deep cycle batteries
  • Cabin 110V outlets
  • Cabin C02 monitor

Deck/Sails
  • Mainsail
  • 130 roller furling genoa (new 2009)
  • 140 roller furling genoa
  • Tri-radial spinnaker
  • Spinnaker pole
  • Mule
  • SS bow anchor roller,
  • 13lb Danforth type with 30’ chain and 200’ rode
  • 13lb Danforth type with 200’ rode
  • Dodger
  • Edson wheel steering with tiller back up

Additional
  • Bronze seacocks
  • Dry wave dehumidifier
  • Solar vent
  • Rudder shaft packing gland new 2008
  • Stainless radar mast
  • 500gph automatic bilge pump
  • Whale Gusher manual bilgepump in cockpit
  • Stainless Cockpit rail BBQ

Disclaimer
The Company offers the details of this vessel in good faith but cannot guarantee or warrant the accuracy of this information nor warrant the condition of the vessel. A buyer should instruct his agents, or his surveyors, to investigate such details as the buyer desires validated. This vessel is offered subject to prior sale, price change, or withdrawal without notice.


Electronics 1
Electronics 2
V berth
Head starboard side
Head port side
Atomic 4 engine



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