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Old 12-04-2014, 06:54   #1
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Advice on 36' project cat purchase

I've been waiting to find a deal on a boat locally so that I would be able to get to and from it easily. Well, this morning I saw this boat on craig's list:

36' Trimaran Sailboat Estate Sale

It appears to be the perfect size for me. I'm still 10+ years away from being able to live aboard locally, and most likely 20+ from being able to cruise full time, so I'm ok with a project boat. I'm average/above average with mechanical aspects of boats (never worked on diesel before though) and have an average "home improvement" set of skills (just redid my heating system in my house from single zone cast iron to 4 zone copper with an add-on wood boiler in October/November). Additionally I have some friends in the area who do various different trades, and a couple who have worked on boats for a few years, so I feel confident that I can take on a project boat.

So, considering I could be buying a $2,000 pile of junk that I then may have to pay to remove from the marina, I thought it might be wise to come on here and ask what major problems I should look for in this boat? I doubt I can ask them to drop it in the water. Are there any tell-tale signs I should look out for that spell the doom of a boat? I expect to have to do major overhaul, and it does say the interior is unfinished (which is good, I most likely would have ripped and refit anyhow). There are no sails, which I would expect would be 10K+ (the cost of a new roof) but I know a local canvas guy, and maybe I could get a good deal there.....however that's a 2+ year expense.

In addition to problems to look for, if you guys would be willing to give me some advice on how to ask the marina owner the cost for a "workspace" where I could work on this boat, that would be great. I know costs will vary, but if anyone knows the going price along the Hudson, I'd love it if you'd share it!

Thanks!
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Old 12-04-2014, 11:10   #2
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Re: Advice on 36' project cat purchase

I called the owner and he gave me a few details. It sounds like it's been stored on the hard for 10 or more years. He said there are a few soft spots, I didn't really press him for any more since he told me he doesn't know a lot about the boat. I'll take some pictures, and assuming the forum let's me, I'll post them when I get back.
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Old 12-04-2014, 11:18   #3
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Re: Advice on 36' project cat purchase

If it's an old plywood/fiberglass tri and it's been stored outside for 2 years I would probably run away from it.
The things to be wary of are rot and delamination. If you see some there's bound to be more.
If it's been stored for 10 years I would really run.
From the pix it would seem that if it took on any rain water it would congregate in the bows from lack of drainage. Fresh water and stale air is what creates rot.
Be very careful.
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Old 12-04-2014, 11:34   #4
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Re: Advice on 36' project cat purchase

If you are really 5-10 years out from being able to use the boat, I'd only consider buying one that you can keep in your backyard, as storage fees for something that size will cost way more than the boat is worth.
Plywood that old is often toast, which makes the boat worthless.
However, my epoxy coated plywood cat is 32 years old and still solid, so its possible it could be good, you'd need to look it over very closely.
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Old 12-04-2014, 11:46   #5
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Re: Advice on 36' project cat purchase

Your first step to making that a project cat will be to cut off one of the hulls…

Mark
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Old 12-04-2014, 12:03   #6
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Re: Advice on 36' project cat purchase

Quote:
Originally Posted by colemj View Post
Your first step to making that a project cat will be to cut off one of the hulls…

Mark
LMAO! Details, details.
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Old 12-04-2014, 12:31   #7
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Re: Advice on 36' project cat purchase

Quote:
Originally Posted by colemj View Post
Your first step to making that a project cat will be to cut off one of the hulls…

Mark
Indeed, I always screw up Trimaran and Trimere...I figured better safe then sorry since I was using the app and not on the computer, so I put Cat. :-) Easy to spell...although I suppose Tri would have worked just as well. lol

That being said....not worth it. Just drove down and looked at it. The cabin is tiny, perhaps 10' x 4', with two small (under 6') births on either side of the cabin. I think there's a spot for a cabin in the rear of the boat as well, but with it being totally gutted, it's hard to tell what is supposed to be there.

Fiberglass is delaminating in a good number of places, and it was stored on plywood sitting on cinder blocks....so there are some severe depressions and cracks in the keel of the outriggers. The inside was damp, and you could tell that time and lack of care had really killed the plywood that was on the inside of the boat.

There is no galley or toilet, unless you count a porta-potty and camping style stove. Even with the little experience around sailboats I have, I saw it was a "stay away" as soon as I climbed aboard.

Also...it's been sitting up for at LEAST 10 years. The guy at the boat yard said more then 10, and I saw the last registration was 01....and he said it was there for a couple years before that, so it had to be at least 15 out of the water.

Oh well, can't say I didn't go take a look at least. :-)
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Old 12-04-2014, 12:31   #8
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Re: Advice on 36' project cat purchase

A member posted this link to a restoration of his tri.
https://buildingmytrimaran.shutterfly.com/pictures
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Old 12-04-2014, 13:15   #9
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Re: Advice on 36' project cat purchase

That boat is worth exactly what a junk yard will pay you for it.
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Old 12-04-2014, 13:19   #10
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Re: Advice on 36' project cat purchase

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That boat is worth exactly what a junk yard will pay you for it.
Even less, since I'd have to get it cut up and removed (streets are too small to move it out). It was sailed in, and they used a crane to take it out of the water, and it's sat where it was put since.....

And now my eyes itch from the mold! lol
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Old 12-04-2014, 13:22   #11
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Re: Advice on 36' project cat purchase

Quote:
Originally Posted by colemj View Post
Your first step to making that a project cat will be to cut off one of the hulls…

Mark
Tonga bed on the hard at least another 5 years for that.
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