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Old 16-11-2015, 02:00   #1
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How old is too old?

Greetings folks,

I am thinking about buying a second hand cat.
With my budget, and the size cat we want, I will need to buy something between 5 - 10 years old.
I realise this is a difficult question to answer but I would like to know how old is too old? At what point would I be buying a list of headaches?
If the boat has been resonably well maintained, is 10 years old still a young boat?
My wife and I intend to retire on the boat so we would probably want to keep it in good running order for twenty years or so. Do fibreglass hulls and superstructures last thirty years or is there a point they become work stressed and weak?

Some practical experience and opinions would be really appreciated.

Regards to all

Dave
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Old 16-11-2015, 02:10   #2
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Re: How old is too old?

Depends....
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Old 16-11-2015, 02:16   #3
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Re: How old is too old?

Size?
Location?
Usage?
Budget?
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Old 16-11-2015, 03:39   #4
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Re: How old is too old?

Size - Between 55 - 70'
Location - Europe / Middle East / Indian Ocean islands
Usage - Spend the rest of my life sailing round the world.
Budget - US$500 - 700k

I'm trying to figure out if it's better to spend most of the money on the best and newest boat I can afford with minimal re-fit.
Or, buy something older and spend significant money refurbishing.
If I'm not particularly worried about re-sale value because I intend to spend most of the rest of my life on the yacht, which is the most advantageous way of buying a big cat?
Either way I'm spending the same money, but which gets me the most bang for my buck?
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Old 16-11-2015, 03:44   #5
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Re: How old is too old?

My first reaction is that a 55-70 ft catamaran is an awful lot of boat for a retired couple for many reasons. May I ask why you have decided to go that big?
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Old 16-11-2015, 03:54   #6
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Re: How old is too old?

Hi Stum,

Thanks for the reply.
Main reasons are, we will often have family aboard.
We both like our space.
We'll only be 55 when we retire, hopefully sooner.
I'm not in to bobbing around on the ocean in small boats, it sucks.

But I could be completely on the wrong track here.

Why do you say it's an awful lot of boat? They're not that big?
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Old 16-11-2015, 04:03   #7
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Re: How old is too old?

Yes it sound very big... tak a 44-47ft 0-3 years old when you got this to offer, it sound more right. the new Helia 44 are plenty of room for 2 and for the friends ....on my wish too... and remember much bigger! you also need to clean it too
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Old 16-11-2015, 04:16   #8
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Re: How old is too old?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave-Zim View Post
Hi Stum,

Thanks for the reply.
Main reasons are, we will often have family aboard.
We both like our space.
We'll only be 55 when we retire, hopefully sooner.
I'm not in to bobbing around on the ocean in small boats, it sucks.

But I could be completely on the wrong track here.

Why do you say it's an awful lot of boat? They're not that big?
This is a larger vessel docking in strong wind.

Try this on a 60 foot Cat with no experience.

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Old 16-11-2015, 04:18   #9
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Re: How old is too old?

I'm with Sea hunter on that. My 43ft Belize is quite big enough for us to live on.

Personally I wouldn't go above about 47 ft for a cat for a couple. Still got a stack of living space and plenty of room for guests and sailing a cat this size is certainly not "bobbing around in a small boat".

Over 55 ft in a cat is "that big" in my opinion and every foot over that compounds the problem

I suggest you take a detailed look at a few cats in the 42-47 ft range before you discount them. For your budget, you could get a really good one.
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Old 16-11-2015, 05:14   #10
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Re: How old is too old?

55-70' catamaran is probably equivilent to a 80-120' monohull, in terms of space, costs and handling by a couple.

Keep in mind, purchase price is just the start. Docking a 60' cat isn't going to be cheap and come haul out time you will likely be limited to high end facilities(ie: more $$$$) using thier largest travel lifts.

Back to the original question: after 5yrs, I would say how the boat was maintained determines what you will deal with more than the age. If it's been treated poorly, you may be better off with a 10yr old boat that was taken care of.

At your price range, I suspect, you are going to be looking at substantial upgrades being needed and even if you find a deal that is ready to go, in 3-5yrs, you are still probably looking at doing those upgrades.

Another vote for something in the 40-45' range given your budget.

Have you hit the major boat shows to see how much space is in cats of various sizes? Of course, when you do make sure to count how many people are on board if a boat feels small. We saw our little 34' cat and couldn't understand why the one at the show felt so much smaller...till I counted and their were 15 people on board, with more than half in the cabin.
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Old 16-11-2015, 06:00   #11
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Re: How old is too old?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave-Zim View Post

Do fibreglass hulls and superstructures last thirty years or is there a point they become work stressed and weak?
GRP hulls must be of a perfect quality to wear the next 30 years from its building. Guess none of recent production boats will be able for that long life.

Let me know if You need the boat "today" or You can wait her building?
I can discuss with the architect possible alternative to GRP hull keeping in mind 50-ft cat for You, if this size is OK. This option will definitely work for a few decades. PM if this way is workable.
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Old 16-11-2015, 06:02   #12
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Re: How old is too old?

Thanks for all the sage advice.

A few months ago I went out in a friends 42' Cat off Singapore and I found it a bit small. It was a fantastic yacht but I just didn't feel it was big enough for trading life on land for life on water.
Sounds like I need to have a re-think
I'm still not keen on going much under 50' though.
As for experience, when I was younger I ran a small fleet of 46' pontoon fishing vessles (8 in total) so I'm no stranger to handling vessles of this size.

Thanks Valhalla for your feelings on purchasing vs age of vessle.
Yeah, in fact, thanks all, sounds like I need to pull my horns in a bit.

Dave
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Old 16-11-2015, 06:08   #13
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Re: How old is too old?

A 50 to 70 foot cat is what is used for full crewed charters serving two to four couples (guests) for a week or more. A 40 foot cat can easily handle 6 people without crowding. I think a reality check is in order regarding size of boat.

Oh, and 10 years old is not old at all for any boat that has been reasonably maintained.
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Old 16-11-2015, 06:19   #14
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Re: How old is too old?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave-Zim View Post
At what point would I be buying a list of headaches?
the minute you buy a boat.

go and actualy look at some cats at one of the various boatshows that go around the globe (next ones are in Florida i believe? Hanseboat in Germany is just finished)

even with a budget like that, KISS applies.
the more boat you buy the more effort you have in upkeep and mainenance.
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Old 16-11-2015, 09:45   #15
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Re: How old is too old?

"I would like to know how old is too old? At what point would I be buying a list of headaches?"

If a boat has been owned by a miticulous individual with deep pockets and a desire to maintain and upgrade, there really isn't an age where old is too old.

If a boat is owned by a neglectful individual who can't afford to own a boat then most systems will show signs of deferred maintenance in just a few years.

There are plenty of antique boats today that are in better shape then when they were launched.
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