I know exactly how you feel, mate. In the early days, I used to complain often to Jim "that looks rusty!
, Ick!" and he'd respond, "that's only surface rust." Eventually, I did learn to tell the difference between what a bit of surface rust on a screw looks like compared to the rust stain around and underneath the screw head
that indicates it needs more sealant
. And so will you. Buying
your first boat is a big step, made more difficult by lack of experience. You'll get past it. Here's two things to remember:
1) Experience is what you get just after you needed it.
2) Cate's First Law of Metallurgy: Stainless steel
What you took pictures of is not, IMO (always remember opinions are worth what you've paid for 'em), a reason to assume the vessel's a rust bucket. I thought KDH's opinion that the varnish
tells an encouraging story is likely to turn out to be correct.