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Old 22-12-2010, 15:53   #1
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Exclamation Buyer Beware: Dodgy Catalac 9m in Greece

Came accross an advert on a well know auction site (you all know the one I mean i'm sure but I don't want to suggest they are dodgy) for a very reasonable looking Catalac 9m (known as the Catalac 30 I believe in the 'states). The price was about 5k less than others i'd seen so was interested and contacted him for more pics and details.

24hrs went by with no reply so in the meantime started reserching about them. Turns out they seem to be a nice little cat, British built and with an excellent reputation. Duering my research I found out that the model advertised was a 'MK1', having circular rear windows and that they stopped making them in 1979. However, the advert stated it was a 1992 model!!

In the mean time, the owner had replied asking for my email to send the pics, (even though i'd already given it) so I replied and told him what i'd found and asked could he explain the descrepancy. Also, the boat is on the hard in Greece, the owner is in Austraila so I asked him if we did want to do a deal, how would we procceed. He suddenly went all defensive and said he didn't want my business if I was going to question things!!! In the present market, to get ANY responce to an add is good going so to suddenly turn me away because I was asking questions set alarm bells ringing!

So, I thought i'd share that with you. I'm not saying don't buy it but if the boat exists at all (remember, its on an online auction site and he would no doubt ask for a deposit on close of sale), be very wary. Don't part with any money until you've seen or got the documentation. As the seller is literaly on the other side of the world, if he ran off with your deposit, you'd have no chance getting it back.
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Old 22-12-2010, 16:00   #2
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Always good advice, whatever your buying, boats or otherwise, and especially people
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Old 22-12-2010, 16:12   #3
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Always good advice, whatever your buying,.... especially people
It is so hard to find a reputable people- dealer any more.
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Old 22-12-2010, 17:36   #4
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Hey bljones,
Thanks for the clarification. I thought Anjou was contemplating buying people, even though the Crown outlawed that nearly 2oo years ago.
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Old 22-12-2010, 17:38   #5
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The crown didn't outlaw humour, did she? or attempts at humour?
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Old 22-12-2010, 17:43   #6
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Always good advice, whatever your buying, boats or otherwise, and especially people
I'm....'Negotiable....'
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Old 23-12-2010, 16:39   #7
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I think you're being a bit harsh on this guy, he's posted a response to your questions on the add.
His feedback is very good, having sold a boat that website you get quite feedup with time wasters and people who mess you about with bids and then don't pay.
I don't know much about these boats but if it's what you want and the price is right it may pay you to keep an open mind.
There are ways to work out if the deal is genuine or not.
Why not talk to him further and see if you can do a deal, if not then walk away.
Good luck in your search.
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Old 23-12-2010, 16:59   #8
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Indeed he has and he states that "She does NOT have rear windows so isn't a 1970's model". However, if you look at one of the pics from the ad that i'ver added and highlighted below, she does indeed have circular rear windows. These were dropped on the MKII model, being replaced by the same style as the forward two windows. Now, in the main ad text, it does indeed say that it was built in 1983 and launched in 1990 (as I noted to him in my question), even though he's listed the age as 1992 in the main details.

Here is the FULL question so you can see it in context as sent to him regarding it, cut and paste from my messages;

Hi, still not recieved an answer to my original enquiry but have a couple more questions for you. Firstly, there seems to be some discrepancy over the age. In the add it's listed as 1992, then you state it was built in 1983 and launched in 1990. However, you boat has circular rear windows and so must be a mk1 boat, this would put it before 1980. Can you clear this up? Also, can you give more details on the bow damage you mentioned. Is it just cosmetic or what? Do you have any pics of the damage? I'd still like to see more pictures, especially the interior and some of the deck so I can see how the lines are laid. Are all the main lines lead back to the cockpit for example? Thanks

As you can see, I simply asked him to 'clear it up' as i'm sure, any prospective buyer would. However, like I said, he started getting all defensive and told me to look elsewhere! Shame, for him, because at that price I was VERY seriously thinking about doing a deal. If he'd had been reasonable I would not have been too bothered if it was a 1970's hull. I just wanted to know the true age either way. I dont think this was at all 'harsh' as you put it or "A fairly aggressive line of questioning" as he has stated in the Ad', do you?

Thanks for your input and best wishes anyway, there's always another boat out there......
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Old 23-12-2010, 19:21   #9
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I think you're being a bit harsh on this guy, he's posted a response to your questions on the add.

His feedback is very good, having sold a boat that website you get quite feedup with time wasters and people who mess you about with bids and then don't pay.

Why not talk to him further and see if you can do a deal, if not then walk away.
Good luck in your search.
Not sure how asking a reasonable question is being harsh. However, I do see the sellers response as being harsh. In fact, from what I read the seller has closed the door. So "talking to him further" after the guy said he does not want to deal with the potential buyer would seem like groveling to me.

Having made a few bucks buying and selling, I'd say the seller sounds... not so motivated. Yes, sellers can get jerked around by time wasters. But a seller that isn't willing to be scrutinized is either personality challenged or character challenged in my opinion.
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Old 23-12-2010, 20:12   #10
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Yeah OK sounds like the vendor needs to ripen a bit before he has the right attitude towards the sale, like you say there are plenty of other boats out there.
All the best I'm sure you'll find the right boat somewhere.
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Old 23-12-2010, 20:26   #11
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Yup, he actually told me not to email him again as he was going to block my emails! At the end of the day, I KNOW this is a 1970's hull after doing some research, whatever he might say to the contrary, however, I was genuinly still interested in buying it.

Idealy, i'm after something a bit more modern and so would have to wait untill my motoryacht sells before I could buy. However, from what i've read, these little cats have a superb reputation and they also have a great layout with a master cabin that most 40ft monohull owners would kill for! My thinking was that I could buy it now, spend a month or two getting it up to spec and by that time, (hopefully) my motoryacht would be sold and i'd have money in the bank to go cruising. Never mind, there are others out there, I just wonder if he'll regret it in a few months when he still hasn't sold it!

Speaking as a seller as well, i've had some enquiries about my own vessel. Yes, some have been a bit daft but you NEVER know who you're dealing with so each one has been answered quickly and politely, even though I know that no one will be in a position to buy for a couple months due to the time of year. This guy puts it on a 10 day auction and takes TWO DAYS to respond to a genuine buyer and then still refuses to answer the question properly!

Never mind, the search continues.....
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Old 23-12-2010, 21:22   #12
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Don't buy what you can't see.
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Old 23-12-2010, 21:23   #13
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Yes I agree move on or let him sweat for awhile, I also think you are spot on with being polite and prompt with emails.
I've been dealing with a company that has been quite vague and frustrating to communicate with due to language diff etc but now that the deal is coming together they are being very nice and accommodating with fixing issues raised in the survey.
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Old 24-12-2010, 08:24   #14
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Glad to hear tou're getting there Dragon Lady. Don't worry, there are a couple of other Catalac 9m's in Europe that i've been sent details on, i'd love to buy one and send him a photo of me on it!
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Old 24-12-2010, 09:49   #15
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First boat I ever went to see with a view to purchase was a Catalac and boy, what a let down that was. I took a mate from work who does the GRP repairs and even he was breathless. So many star cracks and shatters in the bridge and hulls, 2 perkins engines which were corroded to hell, all wiring and plumbing in need of ripping out, rigging shot, interior rotten, etc etc.

The guy was asking 25k sterling 2 years ago and as I told the broker, if he paid ME 25k, I would still be out of pocket and in trouble with such a liability to deal with.

The boat did vary from the year model by having a full size shower in the port rear quarter where the round window is. The head was in the opposite hull.

Maybe a good boat in its day but we have all moved on since then and expect more/can do better
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