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Old 05-01-2012, 01:01   #1
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38ft Trimaran - Too Much to Fix ?

Have been looking at a 38ft trimaran. My first impression was that the boat needed to many small-medium projects so I rejected her....but I can't really get the boat out of my mind. I have heard the expression "Never fall in love with the boat"...but still...

The boat is built with foam as core material and looks very strong. That is one of the main reason I want to buy her. There are not to many trimarans built in a non-plywood material around. Especially within my price range and that size.

According to me the boat need:
New Deck paint
Stanchions needs caulking
Pilot house need some wood replacement due rot (pilot house and bulkheads are made of wood)
Bulkhead rot about 1x2'
New refrigerator
New Toilet and hoses
Needs to be hauled out and bottom painted.
New Autopilot (may go with a wheel pilot)
Some electrical job (now there seems to be an additional electrical panels that have been added with regular glass fuses...needs to be replaced according to me)
The engine is prob. since 1984 (looks clean...and started at first attempt - will this one keep on runnin'?)
New Trampolines needed and some way to fasten these.

....maybe I forgot something (in that case I let you know)

I don't want to spend a very long time fixing this up. Maybe a couple of weeks. To go or not to go?
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Old 05-01-2012, 01:52   #2
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pirate Re: 38ft Trimaran - Too Much to Fix?

By your list there's nothing serious wrong with her... but it'll take more than a coupla weeks...
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Old 05-01-2012, 05:12   #3
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Re: 38ft Trimaran - Too Much to Fix?

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By your list there's nothing serious wrong with her... but it'll take more than a coupla weeks...
Well....I think thats my problem (that I under estimate the time needed)
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Old 05-01-2012, 05:43   #4
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Re: 38ft Trimaran - Too Much to Fix?

Trimarans seem to have really bad luck in my area. In the past 9 years I've seen three destroyed and others damaged or rotting away.

People seem to give up on them. There is so much surface area to take care of. With three hulls the bottom work is, at least, double of a monohull. They do have a lot of deck space but not really more interior then a mono of it's same length.

And one really needs to learn how to sail these before going off shore.
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Old 05-01-2012, 05:54   #5
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Re: 38ft Trimaran - Too Much to Fix?

Run, do not walk, away!

If you don't believe me, and in any case, get a competent surveyor to go over the boat and tell you what needs doing BEFORE you buy.

And, talk to those who've been there, done that, and have spent many long YEARS, not weeks, on project trimarans.

Bill
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Old 05-01-2012, 06:47   #6
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Re: 38ft Trimaran - Too Much to Fix?

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By your list there's nothing serious wrong with her... but it'll take more than a coupla weeks...
I second that! I've owned three trimarans and three monohull sailboats, and NOTHING else equals a trimaran for sailing pleasure. Having done a MAJOR refit and a lot of other small jobs... I have found that if I double my estimate I might be in the ball-park but only if nothing unexpected rises in the job. Given that's rarely the case, I have blown a lot of estimates. One discovers issues along the way, and the scope of work increases.

As others have said, never fall in love with a boat (especially before you buy it). The advice above about about getting a surveyor is advice you should heed, and tell him he's being hired for the reality check, not just to satisfy your need for an insurance survey. That info might change his attitude.

One other thing -- anything the insurance company sees on a survey in the way of recommendations will become mandatory fixes in their view, and they will not write a policy until they have proof they have been fixed. Tell the surveyor you want the insurance company survey to list only "mandatory" repairs that address legal compliance, safety and hull/rig integrity; and a separate write up for "other suggestions" that are optional. Also, FYI -- a boat denied for insurance can get "port risk" coverage for theft/fire/liability while remediation is in progress.
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Old 05-01-2012, 08:46   #7
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Re: 38ft Trimaran - Too Much to Fix?

At least it's not an old plywood Lodestar! But what is the make and design?

Note that SailFastTri has some good advice on the survey and insurance issues, and that tramps can cost more than you might expect. I recommend you budget for the yard storage bill for some time against the bargain price of the boat - this is an issue I'm considering now with my current project.
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Old 05-01-2012, 11:37   #8
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Re: 38ft Trimaran - Too Much to Fix?

If the surveyor finds nothing structurally wrong with her, GO FOR IT!
You'll be working on far more jobs until you have her as she should be in your eyes - but that list is very doable and normal in my experience.
Hope it works out for you!
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Old 05-01-2012, 12:02   #9
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Originally Posted by Billy Higgins
At least it's not an old plywood Lodestar! But what is the make and design?

Note that SailFastTri has some good advice on the survey and insurance issues, and that tramps can cost more than you might expect. I recommend you budget for the yard storage bill for some time against the bargain price of the boat - this is an issue I'm considering now with my current project.
It's Horstman tristar.

I had hoped to only do the
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Old 05-01-2012, 12:07   #10
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Re: 38ft Trimaran - Too Much to Fix?

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At least it's not an old plywood Lodestar! But what is the make and design?

Note that SailFastTri has some good advice on the survey and insurance issues, and that tramps can cost more than you might expect. I recommend you budget for the yard storage bill for some time against the bargain price of the boat - this is an issue I'm considering now with my current project.
It's a Horstman tristar

I had hoped to only do the most necessary out of the water (in the yard) and do the rest while she is in water...to save me from huge yard bill

I also think there would be some other projects (like adding another water tank, installing new interior lighting etc).

Maybe also some interior paint to get her look brighter.
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Old 05-01-2012, 12:43   #11
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Re: 38ft Trimaran - Too Much to Fix?

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Originally Posted by andreas.mehlin View Post
It's a Horstman tristar

I had hoped to only do the most necessary out of the water (in the yard) and do the rest while she is in water...to save me from huge yard bill
Actually, some on-the-hard places are less expensive then slips, if you can even find one. It depends on where you are (location).
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Old 05-01-2012, 12:54   #12
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Re: 38ft Trimaran - Too Much to Fix?

I agree that you'll be better off in a yard as much as possible if it's cheap. They usually have a lot of tools and used parts, both are good. My boat's yard bill was $190.00 a month for 45' LOA, monohull. Trying to find a cheap yard that can haul a tri is the trick.
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Old 05-01-2012, 13:23   #13
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I agree that you'll be better off in a yard as much as possible if it's cheap. They usually have a lot of tools and used parts, both are good. My boat's yard bill was $190.00 a month for 45' LOA, monohull. Trying to find a cheap yard that can haul a tri is the trick.
My plan was to fix it up asap and then head offshore and get to Panama before hurricane season.

Rigging looked good seen with my eyes, but could been since boat was new(possible?)

Material paint the deck? 1000usd?
Bortom paint 600 usd?
Tramps 1500usd?
Fix bulkhead 100 usd?
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Old 05-01-2012, 13:36   #14
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Re: 38ft Trimaran - Too Much to Fix?

Get a survey.
It might be doable.
Two weeks? Wouldn't that be nice? Ain't gonna happen.
Horstmans have lots of room for their size, but aren't speed demons.
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Old 05-01-2012, 13:58   #15
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Re: 38ft Trimaran - Too Much to Fix?

be sure you fix the leak that caused the rot before you fix the rot
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