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Old 04-03-2010, 09:19   #1
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Older vs Newer Boat for Future Cruising

I am currently completing the sale of my 31'Beneteau. Our plan is to buy a 43'-47' boat for coastal cruising in about 10 years (my retirement). Our budget is 100K - 200K.

My choices are to buy an 80's cruising boat (1983 C&C Landfall cc) and refurbish it or buy a MUCH newer Beneteau (42 cc 2004) that is fully equipped and just finished doing the exact cruising im interested in and keep it maintained for our futuer cruise.

I figure I will spend 200K with either boat.

I was talking to the surveyor at my haul out yesterday and his advise was to buy the newest boat I can afford.

Any opinions?
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Old 04-03-2010, 09:34   #2
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even if only going coastal i would get the heaviest and strongest boat i could afford .. not the newest .. but that's just me.
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Old 04-03-2010, 10:34   #3
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Our plan is to buy a 43'-47' boat for coastal cruising in about 10 years... Any opinions?


Seems to me that if your time of departure is going to be ten years away, you’ll probably have partially refurbished whatever vessel you decide on anyway, regardless… partly because you’ll add/modify systems to your preference and partly because even if you buy brand-new and she becomes (horror of horrors...) a well-maintained dock-queen, some systems will need upgrading within the decade anyway. Used regularly, you’ll likely have redone half the electronics, a new suit of sails, or at least the working sails during that period. Nonetheless, I’m not necessarily advocating an older boat unless you are prepared to “be without” during periods of major upgrades (power and rigging, for instance). It’s a crap shoot either way…

With your time-window, I’d probably go with which ever vessel spoke to you and yours… if it was the older one, so be it… Sail it when you can; you know what’s ahead of you. If the newer one, you may get more immediate use (depending), but surely some major refits are lurking out there over the next decade, nonetheless… Although one can build a theoretical case for one over the other, all other factors being equal (are they ever) I doubt either one is the wrong call, and I’d be tempted to just look at `em boat for boat…
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Old 04-03-2010, 11:04   #4
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1984 Cantieri Navali Ambrosi Scia 50 Sail Boat For Sale - www.yachtworld.com

I can't believe this one hasn't sold. Good looking boat that could go anywhere.
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Old 04-03-2010, 11:50   #5
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Just for reference my 30yr ols boat has no stuctural issues, those that are known to the type have been fixed/re-inforced. Engine re-placed (badly, now sorted). Standing rigging in good nick, probably five yr old. Sails will need renewing on rota.
And there are things I don't like. Water tanks added in stiff poly canvas are too small for cruising.
Water system, electric pump, should be to a two gallon header tank (not a pressure sustaining tank with a pressure switch bringing the pump on as needed).
I'm adding more cupboards and cubbyholes indoors, and more seating and wind screens to the cockpit. Cockpit is too small.
I'm adding a fixing point in the cockpit where I can lock a vice down, or a table, or the post for a marina awning, or lots of things.
Most of these would apply to a new boat as well, things are never 'right' for everyone and it's hard to tinker with a new boat and keep the quality and appearance up to spec.
And hard to work out what's needed in the first year.
e.g. Fridge needs 2 to 3 inches of insulation for cruising. Solar panels AND wind genny for cruising. Auto-pilot and hydraulic steering more important. Sail management without risk as weather worsens. Capability of a single female getting the boat home when you fall overboard, break an arm, get appendicitis. Cosy berths near the roll centre. In a cat that's near the stern, in a mono it's the middle of the saloon.
And you, the buyer and skipper, have to like the look of it, the functionality to suit your cruising style, and the crew accommodation. Even better when people will rent it from you because it's so well sorted, but that adds a load of extra costs to be insurance legal.
I suspect that what's new today will be about the right price in five years, and add a bit of a refit for working up, then new standing rig and sails for departure. Those 'green cats' run smoothly though I'd rather have two smallish gennies on board than a heavy battery bank, and you get the option of a/c and some real mains power for washing machines and so on. Might have to add a domestic diesel tank though, with a padlock on the 'ships' diesel tanks!
Good luck, planning is the cheap bit!
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Old 04-03-2010, 12:11   #6
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A 10-15 year old boat that hasn't been updated is going to be way more expensive, in the end, than a 40 year old that has been recently upgraded. The newer boat will probably need an engine rebuild, rerigging, new sails, electronics, canvas, etc. An older boat may have a much newer diesel and most of the equipment upgraded.

My preferences are a boat that has had a recent new engine installed and everything else discounted to no value in the purchase price of the boat. I want to equip the boat way I want and not have to pay for someone elses equipment that I'll just remove and replace. I bought my current boat because I thought it had much of the equipment that I wanted. After sailing the boat for a while, I've pretty much sold off all the equipment that were a big factor in buying the boat in the first place.

In any case, the cost of outfitting the boat will be a lot more than you originally estimate. At a minimum, double your estimate of fitting out cost. For an older boat, it can easily exceed the purchase price. That's not so bad as you'll still have less in the boat than you would buying a much newer boat especially if the original gear is the same vintage as the hull.
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Old 04-03-2010, 12:17   #7
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Buy whichever one you fancy using most for the next 10 years.
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Old 04-03-2010, 12:37   #8
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There seems to be some consensus among the forum users that the fiberglass hull, properly done, will last longer then us so you are really looking at all the stuff attached to it. In 10 years most of the important stuff will have been replaced or will need to be.

The only thing that does stand the test of time is the actual layout and even that can be modified significantly if desired. I chose to buy the hull and layout I wanted and have proceeded to replace all the other stuff as I go so that when I leave it will be as much like a new boat as possible. The big difference is that I will know all about it.

If my boat was 15 years newer I wouldn't feel any more comfortable about it standing up to cruising then this one. I probably would have paid more though.

Jim
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Old 04-03-2010, 14:11   #9
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It has always seemed to me that the old older boat is lots of times in better condition that less old older boat. The older boat may be 5 or so years older in age, but lots of times it has had more refit due to this. But the newer old boat is about to need the refit. So except for comestics the older one is a better deal and in better shape. I have been on-line shopping lately and sometimes up my price range by $50k. I don't find any boats I like better, they cost more to start with and will need even more money in next few years.

I think the best deal is always the older crusier that was refit 5 years ago so the owners could cruise and now they moving on from boating.
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Old 04-03-2010, 14:52   #10
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As times change, so do designs and materials.. You know from experiance, that your 31 is far a better boat than the boat built of the same size 30 or 40 years ago..
The times of the monster heavyweight for a cruising boat have passed, and when arriving in a distant anchorage, the first conversation that always comes up is that of a fast and comfortable passage..
Check out all the boats doing the Ha Ha this comming year.. or the Puddle Jump..and you'll be surprised at how many "Heavyweights" are not in the mix...
If it were me and I had a couple hundred "K" to spend.. I'd pick the newest design avalable for the money........
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Old 04-03-2010, 14:59   #11
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Look, one thing to keep in mind, and never forget, is that a boat, which is nothing but a very complex set of systems which happen to be attached to a hull, can very quickly and very easily get into a condition where the boat is worth less than the cost to repair, renovate, and/or update it. So if you see an older boat and say to yourself "it's cheap! I can fix it up!", it usually means you will lose money, and besides that lots of time. The flip side of that, is that if you are on the buy side, from someone who has just lost a ton of money by doing a lot of expensive repairs, renovations, and upgrades to an old boat, is that this can actually be a good value, if if was done properly.

Some people particularly like old boats because they think they are more unusual, have more character, are more beautiful, etc., etc. That's a matter of taste, which you will have to decide for yourself. To my taste, an ounce of romance in an old boat costs a pound of performance and practicality. I prefer newer boats, although anything less than 6 or 7 years old becomes unjustifiably expensive in my opinion. Even a "built-to-a-cost" mass-produced Beneteau with its fake wood cabin sole, would be preferable to me than something like our own previous boat, a 28-year old Pearson. A lot of the guys here sneer at them, but Benes are great sailing, great performing boats which in my opinion are just great for coastal use. They are an excellent value. Sure they're not built and engineered, or finished, like an Oyster, and won't hold up to, say, three circumnavigations in a row, but do you really need that for your particular application? I like them, personally.
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Old 04-03-2010, 15:06   #12
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In any case, the cost of outfitting the boat will be a lot more than you originally estimate. At a minimum, double your estimate of fitting out cost. For an older boat, it can easily exceed the purchase price.
Oh boy! Is that ever true! The cost of fixing up and equipping our new-to-us boat is already triple th eorignal estimate, and we haven't nearly finished. It is amazing!


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That's not so bad as you'll still have less in the boat than you would buying a much newer boat especially if the original gear is the same vintage as the hull.
Just don't forget you will NEVER get it back upon sale. "You'll have less in it" is only worthwhile in terms of your own use of it. No part of the cost will ever be recovered if you have to sell the boat.
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Old 04-03-2010, 15:30   #13
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Having just worked on a Finot boat I wouldn't go to sea in one, without major improvements .. The C&C is a far better boat.
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Old 04-03-2010, 17:18   #14
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1984 Cantieri Navali Ambrosi Scia 50 Sail Boat For Sale - www.yachtworld.com

I can't believe this one hasn't sold. Good looking boat that could go anywhere.
God that gorgeous! Nice find. I can only think its the schooner rig that has kept it from selling so far.
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Old 04-03-2010, 18:25   #15
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These are all good points. The one thing I find interesting it the current and future market place. Most banks wont loan on anything older than 30 years (1980 right now).
It is easy to get a loan on a boat 10 years or younger (2001 right now).

If you do a boat search, the 80's will yeild lots of big keel boats. After 1990 that list get real small. After 2000 all you get is Hunter/Catalina/Beneteau (unless you have lots of money). Seems to me, in another 10 -15 years the cruisers wont have much choice. Pay all cash or buy a more modern production boat.

I'm finding it easier to get the loan on a six year old Beneteau for 170K (equipped to the gills and low hours on the engine) than a thirty year C&C for 80K (well equipped but needs a lot of expensive stuff including an engine eventually).
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