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Old 18-07-2009, 09:32   #1
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Same Ol' - I Want a Big, Cheap Boat

I know, it's the same old saw - "Oh no, another newbie who thinks he can fix what others have neglected for less than the cost of buying right to begin with!" While I accept the perils and limitations (and expenses) that accompany a project boat, I have to say that I have successfilly bottom-fished 1) my own house and two rental props (built or totally remodeled with my own hands), 2) a race car (started with a $600 hulk, fixed and modified myself, and chased Porsches for about 10% of what they spent), and 3) my last boat (a well-worn and cheap Ranger 33 that needed some care and attention, plus a few upgraded parts).

What I want is a large (33'+ -- big family) boat that needs skilled work more than purchased parts. The best rule is that it has to be WORTH fixing, a decent platform, not a piece of junk. Anywhere between Annapolis and Miami is OK (I'm in NC), especially if it can be sailed as is (or soon) or is in a cheap place where I can fix it to move it.

I'm hoping that with all of the eyes and ears on this board that I can find a decent boat and get back on the water. I love it, and so do my kids. I lost the Ranger in the Big D and I've looked seriously at a few other boats that turned out to be liabilities rather than assets, or out of reach. Fiberglass is OK if not terminally delaminated or core-rotted; ferro-cement is fine if not cracked or rusting (I can build cabin tops). Steel and wood are not preferred. A gutted rebuild, never finished, with the parts still around would be great.

I'm not destitute or homeless, but buying what I want complete is not an option. I actually enjoy the process of rebuilding things once thought past their prime. If I can get a boat out of someone's yard (personal or professional) and we both feel good about it, I'd say that's a fine day.

Most of the boats I've looked at have been at salvage value, a few hundred at most. If YOU think it's worth a look, it probably is. Definitely worth an e-mail. Thanks!

John
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Old 19-07-2009, 00:50   #2
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Try this

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Old 19-07-2009, 02:20   #3
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Why not steel?

If you want big and you want cheap then why not steel?
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Old 19-07-2009, 06:19   #4
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There are usually damaged boats, in various states of disrepair, along the Gulf Coast. After a storm the insurance companies often hold auctions to get rid of them I went to one in Pensacola after H. Ivan.There were hundreds of boats which were auctioned for prices between several hundred thousand for a lightly damaged yacht to $5.00 for a crushed, like a stepped on egg, hull.
Try Google "Hurricane Damaged Boats" you'll find lots of information.
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Old 19-07-2009, 09:05   #5
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"Hurricane Damaged" Runs the Full Spectrum

Feral/John,
Steven (actually everyone previously posting) is right in that looking in the right "category" will add exponentially to Your success potential.

Been restoring classics my whole life, it's a legitimate part time business (& has been for the last 20+yrs), I've bid more than once (wholesale) $5. on the "crushed, as in like a stepped on egg" and walked away grinning like a cheshire cat with feathers all over my face. A Giant Electric Windlass & about 1k's worth of hardware was acquired off of a 36' Jersey Boats hulk...for $65. Over $7k in "stuff" (starting w/a rebuildable YM 2GM & working out from there in reverse) was acquired in the canibalization of a 30' S2 that had been holed on the stbd side sufficiently enough to WALK THRU the opening. When looking at the "junk" factor Your costs to canibalize & ability to do so onsite (which is often acceptable if You have tools and rent a dumpster for ALL Your litter/leftovers). You'd be Amazed at how many valuable items remain on a "trashed beyond repair" sailing vessel. After Ivan I was given permission to (for $50. for the "DAY") "pilfer" from a slew of hulks. W/Dewalt battery powered sawzall in hand I had $5k's worth of winches in less than 2 hrs. Being the "greedy" type of course I didn't stop there...one man's "trash" is another man's yearly income...it's all in how (and knowing WHAT) You're looking at. Like the old "gift horse" analogy...NEVER, EVER Refuse a gr8 deal unless it simply doesn't fit either the budget (knowing the real costs) or timetable. Barter is KING in the sailing world, and I couldn't count for You the number of times I've traded..."this for that" and we BOTH made out like absolute bandits! Usually the item(s) I have that they WANT are almost "priceless" to them...sometimes the reverse is applicable as well.

On to the Restorable vs. salvageable:
Know Your Limitations. I read thoroughly Your "resume'" however You omitted any experience w/FG/FRP (here in the USA we call it "fiberGlass", elsewhere it's "Fibre-Reinforced-Plastic"-I guess both are correct, just depends on Your locale) as this will be CRITICAL for realistically 80-85% of the damaged boats You'll look at. Hull-To-Deck joints are a nightmare. Holed below the WL are a nightmare. Sunk and left down for a "while" are a nightmare (barnies on the cabintop are a dead giveaway ); unless You've been doing this (& FB Repairs) for about a decade...avoid like the plague, either of these 3 scenarios. There are plenty of good deals (just not so cheap) out there aside these 3 and You didn't mention engine skills either. MOST(not all, just most)vessels in the length you're considering have inboard's, and invariably they've either been exposed to, or UNDER salt water. Depending on the make that is NOT the 'end of the world, or life as they knew it' for them. Pickling is essential, however EXPECT to have to remove from vessel & rebuild from the crank out with a complete kit, same for the tranny, and don't be so cheap as to not spring for a "valve job" by a knowledgeable machine shop...our NAPA's locally work on just about everything. Most YM's, Isuzu's, WB's/Perkins etc. have had alterative lives in small trucks, tractors, Refer Units for big rigs, etc. Ergo, the re-builders/machinists have seen them more than once previously. MOST (again, not all, like the difference between Perkins/WB 4-107's vs. 4-108's) Diesel inboards are SLEEVED, so they are by design, rebuildable, for-EVER. If necessary, get the block dipped...don't be afraid for a balance & blueprinting as well...unless You're blessed enough to find a vessel that never "took a dip" below the waterline. The benefits of diesel inboards vs. gas are another whole thread (or several), yet the cliff notes version would be "no Carbs"(they're pretty useless after Salt Water Intrusion) & virtually no electronics (same after salt). The most expensive cost of a rebuilt after submersion may well be the injector pump. Shop around and Stuart Diesel in Tampa, FL is 1 of the best in the nation (& no, I have NO affiliation w/them, they've just saved me bundles over the years).

Spars, Rigging & Sails. Yes, You Can...splice. It's never a good idea, and not something I'd do on a vessel planned for circumnavigation or other extensive, foul weather or seas intensive cruising. That said...6" can be a good thing. 6' never is. Shortening shrouds & stays is childs play w/the avdent of norseman fittings...just buy (or rent) a quality set of cable cutters. Seriously complicated rigging issues (being one here-->)I'd recommend the advice/assistance of a Rigger. Check Closely from below decks UP starting with the mast foot And VERY CLOSELY the chainplates, every fitting & every inch of the standing rigging. REPLACE ALL the running rigging...it's cheap insurance relatively speaking. Never trust that a former owner, who settled w/the insurance company & walked away w/a check, kept the vessel and all it's components in tip top shape...unless it's blatantly obvious; if that's the case it usually won't be "cheap"...You won't be bidding against a bunch of Shmucks. You'll be bidding against folks like me, that have been doing this for Decades, MANY as a full time business, who already now w/i $5-$10 EXACTLY what it will cost them to restore, and they may well have sitting in their inventory all (& I do mean ALL) the items necessary to make it/them bristol.

Do Your homework, and leave emotion at the door before bidding. I don't have apendages sufficient (or bandwidth here) to tell You the stories of folks who either, in buying back their former "love", or due to personal inadaquacies/emotional state paid MORE than the vessel would be worth, once done & perfect, while it was still in a totally trashed state, needing Thousands, or Tens of Thousands in repairs. Those folks have an agenda you're not privy to (or just plain stupid), so walk away...better deals will appear, I promise. Know Your limitations...Financially, physically, logistically, yard rules where it's at, how long You have & what costs are Daily, launch/travel-lift/crane to trailer fees, etc. For every tool You have from home restoration, You'll need ANOTHER for vessels. EG: battery powered tools are priceless. <--period behind that for a reason. a 90degree angle drill is priceless also. NOTHING is "accessible" and easy to get to hardware wise on sailing vessels. They are by design "comfortable, roomy, and filled with storage". That liveability factor by necessity BURIES things like chainplates, stringers, bulkhead tabbing, etc. For every HOUR that You think a repair will take...double it; A dynamite rule of thumb...when You beat the guideline You established, don't get cocky, the next little "project" will make sure it balances Your timetable for certain.

Know the lay of the land. Head over a day before the auction, shop the marine surplus stores, see who has what for how much and know where SEARS is (for the craftsman dept.!) 1 of the most valuable tools in my inventory is a Honda EU-2000 generator, for battery chargers, flood lights, You name it...they're so quiet most folks don't even notice it's running & extremely fuel efficient. From a guy who filled a 4'x10' trailer w/every item of any value at all(including serviceable S/s fasteners) and a dumpster w/FG remnants of a 30' sailboat in 48 hrs, leaving not even dust in the spot where it'd been, trust me, diamonds in the rough are not: "crushed, as in a stepped on egg", they're not found with barnie's on the cabin top, yet occasionally they are the 1's that were LISTED BY BROKERAGES (with signs still aboard/ondecks/topsides) at the time of their former demise. These ARE the "cherries". Just like housing...if it was "for sale" it was probably in tip top shipshape, and bidding more is a good bet upon thorough inspection. Our current primary vessel was 1 of these "cherries", w/great bones and bloodline, personally knew the builder/designer, pedigree of THIS PARTICULAR Vessel (by checking w/the brokerage in advance, then former owner), actually bid & won it sight unseen; wasn't a bit disappointed upon arrival & first inspection showing up with bolt cutters for the locks sealing all interior contents. I secured a $65k valued vessel(so saith surveyor), needing $1.5k in actual work, for $22k. From a guy who owns 11 boats right now...trust in the fact that You won't get this lucky 1st time out, unless You paid for some serious professional "representation". I also might just have a boat that fits Your needs almost perfectly that requires more time than I have to lend it currently...email if interested. It's a Kelt 9M (31'LOD) & named "Trojan Horse"; Totally appropriate as below decks the room of 35'-36'ers; it's staggering what the French design & then sail across the big pond.
HTH,
-Mick
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Old 19-07-2009, 10:37   #6
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Bent boats

I appreciate the links to websites that might have a boat fitting my needs. My experience has been that anything priced low enough to meet my budget and advertised widely is not worth much at all. My best bet, and the reason for my post, is that someone might know of a 30+ boat that someone needs to move out of the way, out of the yard, away from the marina, to make way for something else.

Bora - My only reason for not looking at steel is that I don't know how to protect or repair. This could change.

Mick - I'm sure there are some storm boats and/or parts in my future. One way to go would be to buy a demasted boat and mate it with the rig from a holed boat. The big problem is finding the time to travel to FL (probably) to swap the parts and dispose of the waste.

All - Keep those ideas coming, and especially, contact me (PM?) if there's a boat you know of that still has reasonable potential and a motivated owner.

Maybe I should hang out at the docks as a Cat 3 approaches?

John
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Old 19-07-2009, 11:40   #7
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Something(BIG)for Nothing is Not Likely

Feral,
While granted, w/steel, Welding & torch knowledge is (pretty much) prerequisite...protection is simple "POR 15". Do a search. IF You know how to operate a paint brush You can safely "defend/protect" a steel boat.

FYI, I moved here FROM NC, because of all the "opportunities". There's no need to buy 2 vessels to make 1...there's "Sailorman" in Ft. Laud., Marine Surplus in Sarasota, Don's in St. Pete and dozens of OTHER Surplus stores across our fine state with dozens of spars/complete rigs for Your dismasted victim. It's the holed boats You want to avoid if inexperienced in the complete gut & re-hab process for vessels (vs. houses a walk in the park, btw). Starting w/a Great Hull is the ideal.

The problem is that it sounds like You want someone to GIVE YOU a big fat whopper of a deal...won't happen. You have to come to the table with SOMETHING, or You'll be wishing in that 1 hand for a long time to come. As noted in closing of last posting, I HAVE a perfect scenario vessel (ON a TRAILER Currently) that would fit Your bill perfectly. IS IT PRiced at 1/4th what CMV would be when completed?
Why yes, yes it is, never holed, sunk, or dismasted (sunk at docks from fresh/rain water, to 4" over cabin sole, no engine intrusion). Is it "Free"? Hardly.
Expect no one, "out of the goodness of our hearts" to "donate" to your desires. Not trying to be obnoxious here, just a realist. If You're serious about making Your dreams more than that, as in reality...You need to start with a budget, and that needs to be something more than "nada".

As for dockside in a CAT3...wouldn't recommend that for any sane person. As shortly thereafter as possible to lend aid & assistance to those who DIDN'T Have INSURANCE and ARE w/title-document in hand and willing to part with for pennies on the former dollar in value...well, now that might just work for ya.
Just remember in those times and places, CA$H is KING, nobody takes checks and getting a transporter/crane will be like finding a plumber on the 4th of July.

In those areas (of which much of this life has been spent), after those catastrophes, WHEN you can finally get in to the affected areas and locate Your target "vessels/owners", boy scout motto..."Be Prepared". Bring EVERYTHING You can imagine that You could possibly need (2x when possible) along w/that "CA$H".
It'll be like 2 game shows rolled in to 1:
"Let's Make a DEAL", and IF:
"The Price is Right".

Good Luck in Your quest, get realistic and You'll be "lucky" before You know it.
Just remember those 2 happiest days of boat ownership.
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Old 19-07-2009, 12:56   #8
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But seriously.....

Mick, everyone --

Your points are well-taken and on-target - and I don't take offense. I have been offered boats for free that had value, just not to me (too far, too small, too far gone). And "free" can mean "if you'll get this hulk out of my driveway...." or "if you'll start paying the storage fees that the owner won't...." which implies expense from square one.

I don't wish bad fortune upon anyone anywhere, so I'll wait for nature to take her course. Odds are there will be a selection of storm damaged boats and parts on the east coast in the next year or two. In the meantime, if anyone knows of a good candidate at your marina, in your neighborhood, or in your neighbors yard, I'd love to hear about it.

BTW, Mick, what's the price on that boat you were talking about? Post here or PM me.

Thanks,

John
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Old 19-07-2009, 12:59   #9
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Perhaps wait for hurricane season to finish and then see whats available?
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Old 19-07-2009, 17:32   #10
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Feral,

Try calling Lippincott Marina in Grasonville Md. Ask for Ken Church (look up on google). I bought my Columbia 41 from him. There was a Morgan 41 on the hardstand next to my boat. The asking price was $35k. It may still be there.
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Old 19-07-2009, 20:57   #11
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pirate Regarding the 9m Kelt Cutter Rigged Sloop

John
It's $15k, w/40mi. Furuno Radar, loaded to the gills w/toys & gear (6 sails, 3 vhf's, etc.)...that DOESN'T Include the Trailer although the trailer isn't really appropriate for it anyway(flatbed/heavy equipment). These boats by design are "beachable" w/swing keel & twin skegs on either side for the massive european tidal swings; Lots of deck space w/an only slightly raised cabin top, basically flush decks, tons of storage, 2 legit staterooms, it's an '84 & if I took the time to complete the headliner, replace batteries, tune up engine, bottom paint, awlgrip or emron topsides, step mast and splash, I'll get 30-35k from a canook coming this way in Nov-Jan.(Yes, they really are worth that much & more, just check out www.yachtworld.com ) Getting our Pearson back here there are finally about to be more pressing (Read=CRUISING) issues desired to finally be pursued. I need to keep the flat bed trailer for hauling milsurp vehicles (my other love) & I could offer up 6 stands (this junkie has 20+ sitting in the back yard behind the garage) and delivery if You were willing to pay for same, plus You'll need a crane on site upon arrival up there. I don't have a duelly so I'd contact a neighbor & ride up/back w/'em, title in hand. I can put together a full listing/inventory & muster up some pictures if You're really serious. I'd also be negotiable for well...anything that doesn't eat? Wife wants (I know this will sound hokey, but IT IS The truth) a Big Screen TV (so we can lose my custom cabinetry shopsmith built walnut entertainment center that she thinks is just "sooo" outdated), & well, I'm always interested in anything "interesting". (see the pics below John if there's still some interest)

That Morgan 41 in MD, sounds like a deal too; Speaking of which SAM, Plan B...is it an OI? Or the non-floating tub model (<-that's sure to stir some feathers)? I've sailed circles around 41 OI's actually trying to get somewhere, just for grins, w/a26' Columbia in younger days w/nothing better to do w/an afternoon on the h2o...recently did it again w/a 50'OI & the P39...sorry folks, yes, I agree that the "destination" IS the boat, however getting places at faster than 5kts is desired too, but that's just us...Charlie Morgan had cruisers in mind, however 95%of the OI's I've seen are L/A floating houses that never leave the docks. Doing both is the ideal imho;
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Old 20-07-2009, 02:05   #12
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Just ran across an add on craigslist in the charleston sc area for a free 36 pearson. Unfortunately it is on the bottom of a creek here. Apparently it broke free of its mooring and ended up on its side in a storm at low tide. As the tide came in, it filled with water. Don't know much more about it though I suspect I know the boat and if it is the one I am thinking of, I have been aboard it and it was ok. Have no idea how hard it would be to free and raise. I do know the creek that it is in and can tell you that the depth at low tide in that creek will be less than 12 feet probably more like 8 feet.
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Old 20-07-2009, 19:07   #13
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Raise the Titanic?

OK, I'm in contact with the owner of the P36 that got away and layed down. The sails and motor are not on the boat, and some of the woodwork is also removed and stored. That's the good news, along with the price (free) and a couple of old-time pals (divers) who want to help me with this adventure.

I'm thinking that everything not made of SS, glass, or plastic is garbage. Is it probable that the deck core is completely waterlogged and soon to be rotten? I've done some small area core fixes but never the entire foredeck. Wiring is shot, for sure. Some cockpits are plywood reinforced and that may be compromised. What else do you guys see as major trouble spots, i.e., deal killers?

Thanks,

John
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Old 21-07-2009, 11:11   #14
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DEAL KILLERS?

John,
What are You Smoking?!
This is (probably) a 365...dynomite hull, super interior layout, probably ketch rigged, and a STEAL. If YOU don't JUMP ON IT...I WILL.

Contracting a crane barge to come get it & take to the closest haul out/do it Yourself marina will probably cost You less than ("<" from here on out) $2k. Most do-it-Yourself yards have a 4-7$ a foot monthly tab. Stop Sweating the the danged cores and "GIT 'ER UP"!
There's this product called Git-Rot (which I've used successfully on the ENTIRE deck after removal of a poorly installed/removed Teak Deck...yes, it DOES take time, and once done is Stronger than Original, which still wasn't saying much for T.Irwin's "Tubs"). The only down side I see is that You MAY have to replace the drive (probably a paragon V). His having the engine OUT was a major life (& Cost) Saver. Probably a Perkins/WB 4-108 & again a dynamite little motor...impossible to kill.

YES, You'll need to rip out all the wiring thru hulls and probably wear out a pressure washer on the inside...so what? All the thru-hulls & senders make for gr8 DRAIN HOLES. IF the boat is complete, when done (including new bulkheads, which are INCREDIBLY Easy IF You have the originals as "templates" this is an absolute no brainer. She's a 25-65k boat upon completion. It WILL take You a YEAR, best case scenario working part time & 3-5 months FULL TIME. Last I checked that works out to 40-$80k a yr. as an income (IF YOU Sold it).

Something tells me You'd want to haul it home just as soon as the mud was out, fresh water enough applied for the stink to be tolerable, and sticks stepped. That'll cost You $3-$4. a mile for a pro pulling permits and running daylight hours only.

I'd just about guarantee (as a guy who's been doing this as a part-time/formerly full time LIVING [prior GWB1 & his "luxury tax"]) that TO YOUR DOOR (or where You want it stored) You'll be in to < $5k. That's Freaking KILLER!. Got a truck? If Not, get 1, You're gonna need it. You'll need stands (6 min.-10 ideal when doing bulkheads), a workspace, electric (or generator), and a ton of time & cash. Your costs will be between $5k & $10k purchasing GOOD QUALITY USED Materials aside Teak luan and MARINE GRADE Ply for the bulkhead replacements (& then again, that's Worst Case Scenario...They might NOT need replacing upon thorough inspection of tabbing).

YES, You have a boat load of work in front of You...and it'll be worth every penny. Considering the cost for a Diesel engine, the rig, & anything remaining savable (nobody mentioned whether fresh or salt on that "creek"?) would well exceed Your initial investment. This doesn't sound like a "cut 'er up" scenario to me, & fyi, YES, 95-99% of Your rig SHOULD be salvagable.

Stop sweating the details, git 'er up, git all the goodies, and git 'er home. This is exactly what You were looking for. Time to step up to the plate.
-Mick
PS (the Pic attached below obviously was 1 heckuva lot worse...netted a little over $9.5k in salvaged parts once (almost) everything was sold off; turned it in to a small dumpster load & a trailer full of parts in a 3 day weekend. Do the math on THAT money...bought it for a whopping $52. 3+k a day profit. Don't be afraid...it's just sweat equity... what You stated You wanted. 365's are dreamboats for couples cruisers & liveaboards. Have 1 > 150 yds from my back door at a dock right now (theirs' is VERY poorly maintained last 6 yrs & for sale...$38k...nuff said?)
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Old 21-07-2009, 13:12   #15
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Don's in St. Pete.....

Quote:
Originally Posted by captmick39 View Post
Feral..... There's no need to buy 2 vessels to make 1...there's "Sailorman" in Ft. Laud., Marine Surplus in Sarasota, Don's in St. Pete and dozens of OTHER Surplus stores .........
We bought "Our Baby" from Don's son in St. Pete. Don had bought it for the kid as a B'day gig but kid wanted a power boat so he sold it to us. A 73 Bristol 34 for $5700. That's right I said "$5700 US DOLLARS" on EBAY. She needed some new swages, mast boot and step, a THOROUGH engine cleaning, and she'll need a little core replacement on the bow and a paint job above and below. No Biggie! After a diver inspected and cleaned the hull, absolutely no visible blisters or delam, none. All she needed was a little attention and TLC.(and 6 bottles of Dawn run thru the fresh water cooling system to get the oil out!!!!). There's a few pix of her on my profile album and more are to come.

Point is, YES you can find excellent deals out there. Word from my partner is that he may be willing to sell this boat...(how much, Johnny?)..if.. the price is right!
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