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Old 12-08-2009, 13:54   #1
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Restoration Costs?

Hello fellow sailors, Need some good quality advice here please. Thinking seriously of restoring a 37' Searunner. Hulls seem to be good, no motor, all decking needs replacing, centerboard trunk questionable, needs new mast and boom. Pretty major restore job, would anyone have some current numbers, ball park only, of the dollar amount to resore this type of job? Im thinking 4k for a diesel, maybe 3k for a mast and boom, the sails are ok. Don't have a clue as to what the restore would cost on the decking and the centerboard trunk. I know the cost can get out of hand pretty quick to where you reach a point of no return. I have a full-time job so me doing any of the work is out. I know, that's a cost killer. I can get the boat for free (I know, I here the laughing here, nothing is free, lol) Ok, so let me have it, is it worth it, or is this just a pipe dream??? thanks for all the imput, advice from sailors who are out there doing the deed is invaluable. Thanks wizard
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Old 12-08-2009, 15:37   #2
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If you do not have the ability and/or the time to do the repair work yourself, better have very deep pockets and money to burn. You will be spending way more money than the boat will be worth when fixed, even if you get for free. You'll also get no use out of the boat until it's repaired. You'd be better off buying a house, holding it till the economy turns and selling it for a profit. You may end up with a 'free' boat if you go that route. Certainly, you'll get in just as much sailing.

"If you want to build a boat, build a boat. If you want to go sailing, go sailing. Don't try and mix the two as you'll probably accomplish neither." A few words of wisdom from Jim Slatt, a guy who tried the first but accomplished the last.

A boat project gets you into a boat at an affordable price. It allows you to put more money into the boat than you would have done if you bought a ready to go boat though dribble the money in small increments.

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Old 12-08-2009, 16:10   #3
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You will be spending way more money than the boat will be worth when fixed, even if you get for free.
It's sort of if you have to ask the answer is always no. The depth of a big undertaking when you have not done it before yourself is not the time to do it yourself for the first time. Folks with a lot of experience can jump in with eyes wide open. The small projects are rewarding but the big ones are debilitating if you are not ready.

My own experience says get the better boat for a little more money. Time and money say you'll be sailing sooner at less total cost. All that time you are working the clock and calendar are working against you. Boats age as you work on them and you won't be sailing.
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Old 13-08-2009, 21:35   #4
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wiz, Don't do it. As you revealed, the decks have problems, the centerboard trunk is questionable. These tell me that the boat was not built with epoxy, so the integrity of any remaining structure is going to be so questionable that it will reveal problems later, after you have completed repairs and begin driving the boat to weather, taking wave tops with your underwings, putting loads on your cabintop from sheet winches and lead blocks. Why don't you just build one? I did my 40 in four years, and still worked for a living. I didn't have enough money to buy new sails, so I scrounged some from a sailmaker's junk pile. Read a copy of Jim Brown's Searunner Construction Manual. It's timeless and informative. Don't waste your resources on a has-been boat, it will only break your heart and your bank account. I don't want to be an Eeyore. Dead and dying boats should be respectfully recycled. Go with a boat that you can bet your family's life upon, because that's what you will be doing eventually.
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Old 13-08-2009, 23:00   #5
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I'd say double at least for the engine & rig, but those are the easy fixes.

The centerboard trunk goes into the heart of a Searunner - it's major work. Your dollars will go farther waiting for another 37 with the routine repairs & refurb.
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