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Old 22-07-2016, 02:55   #1
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Osmosis.... Again

Hi all I am looking at purchasing a very nice used Nicholson 31. The boat has been cruised extensively and has some great inclusions. Water maker, hot water, great sails to mention just a few. I lifted the boat for an inspection and found extensive osmosis across large sections of the hull. The blisters although many are not large in size in the main they are the size of a little finger nail up to 10-20mm across. I am really interested in the boat however at a greatly reduced price.
What I want to know is now that this issue has been discovered do I have to address it immediately. It seems to me this hull was laid down in 1982. Presumably this issue has taken 35 years to develop. As such, I am thinking I don't have to fix this straight away. I can simply antifoul over the top and get to it in the couple of years. Not sure if this effects insurance. Is there any advice out there on this topic. All gratefully received. S
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Old 22-07-2016, 03:42   #2
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Re: Osmosis.... Again

Well...... I don't think you have to do it straight away but you do need to do it if only to protect the value of your investment...... and I would discount the purchase price of the boat by the cost of fixing the hull.....

Cost of fixing it?

In the first pic... about a 40 foot boat.. owner thought NZ$30,000 was too much to pay for a proper job so he had a 'grind and bog' job done for NZ$15,000....
Second and third pics..... proper job being done with the Hotvac system by Osmosis Solutions, Gulf Harbour.

A 32 footer would be cheaper.
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Old 22-07-2016, 03:54   #3
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Re: Osmosis.... Again

There are countless threads about the subject, with various opinions. If the boat is nice otherwise and you really like it, I would get a quote from an expensive shipyard and communicate to the seller how much it would cost to fix it and then make a ridiculously low offer. If the offer goes through fix it DIY and be happy and enjoy your new boat.
IMHO an osmosis issue is a God send to a buyer as it generally makes such an easy negotiation tool, but the issue doesn't really have to be a serious one. No boat was sank by osmosis and some relatively new boats have had some. Just don't pay a yard to fix it..
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Old 22-07-2016, 05:06   #4
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Re: Osmosis.... Again

My boat had hydrolyzed through 5 layers of mat and roving on the starboard side, 6 feet by 6 feet. It had other smaller and less deep spots also.

The surveyor did not note anything other than many minor blisters.

I ground the whole bottom off, including the gel and mat layer, relaminated the deep spots, and recovered the whole bottom with a layer of cloth and epoxy. Finished with barrier coat.

5 years later, not a blister and she lives in the water year round.

I read up a lot on osmosis and hydrolyzing of laminates. Most of the misguided info I got was from boat forums. Some readings and research into the composite underground storage tank and piping industry was eye opening. Even many boat yards had uninformed views of the problem. A few yards that specialize in peeling and bottom work seem to be on the same page with each other and seem to agree with outside industries on composite issues.
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Old 11-08-2016, 03:44   #5
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Re: Osmosis.... Again

Quote:
Originally Posted by Smudge601 View Post
Hi all I am looking at purchasing a very nice used Nicholson 31. The boat has been cruised extensively and has some great inclusions. Water maker, hot water, great sails to mention just a few. I lifted the boat for an inspection and found extensive osmosis across large sections of the hull. The blisters although many are not large in size in the main they are the size of a little finger nail up to 10-20mm across. I am really interested in the boat however at a greatly reduced price.
What I want to know is now that this issue has been discovered do I have to address it immediately. It seems to me this hull was laid down in 1982. Presumably this issue has taken 35 years to develop. As such, I am thinking I don't have to fix this straight away. I can simply antifoul over the top and get to it in the couple of years. Not sure if this effects insurance. Is there any advice out there on this topic. All gratefully received. S
Do you have photos of the Osmosis issue?
and have you had a quote to repair it?
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Old 13-08-2016, 02:27   #6
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Re: Osmosis.... Again

hi allthanks for the interest. on closer inspection the problem had developed into what Don Casey described as severe pox. There were blisters all ovet the vessel and in my opinion it was not worth the money to put it right . For the record the local guy who it seemed to me was more enthused than informed quoted 15K for a complete peel and reskin. In the end I have good boat . So not for me. Thanks for the comments. Cheers Smudge
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Old 27-08-2016, 01:16   #7
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Re: Osmosis.... Again

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Originally Posted by Smudge601 View Post
hi allthanks for the interest. on closer inspection the problem had developed into what Don Casey described as severe pox. There were blisters all ovet the vessel and in my opinion it was not worth the money to put it right . For the record the local guy who it seemed to me was more enthused than informed quoted 15K for a complete peel and reskin. In the end I have good boat . So not for me. Thanks for the comments. Cheers Smudge
It will definitely be a fantastic Ocean cruiser once the Hull is peeled & reskinned, with having all that high quality equipment onboard costing more than I paid for the boat, and the Rock Solid reputation of the Nicholson 31, and after some deliberation, I decided it is worth it to me to have the Osmosis fixed, then this Classic will be reborn.
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Old 14-06-2017, 04:53   #8
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Re: Osmosis.... Again

I recently found an Oceanis 430 for sale, even the seller says it has severe osmosis problems. Any idea about the cost ceiling in Greece or Turkey? Are the yards down there skilled to completely renew the hull, that it can be sailed around the world afterwards?
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Old 14-06-2017, 06:54   #9
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Re: Osmosis.... Again

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I recently found an Oceanis 430 for sale, even the seller says it has severe osmosis problems. Any idea about the cost ceiling in Greece or Turkey? Are the yards down there skilled to completely renew the hull, that it can be sailed around the world afterwards?

I saw that B430 as well, since that's the model I dream of. IIRC in the ad the broker said 14k Euros to repair. The big question is if the damage is structural or largely cosmetic. Read this:
Buying a Boat or Yacht : Buying a Blister Boat

I can tell you nightmare stories about a reputable yard in Turkey, so I'm suspect of the will and capability to do it right. The right yard, sure, with the right employee. But how do you know?
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Old 14-06-2017, 07:43   #10
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Re: Osmosis.... Again

Indeed it's a pig in a poke... Lovely boat really, but in case that 14k figure is overly optimistic, the whole refit could put you/me beyond any reasonable economics... I guess a decent hull peel and epoxy for a 43 footer costs more nowadays.
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Old 19-08-2017, 10:31   #11
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Re: Osmosis.... Again

The information in the body of this thread, and in the external links, make for interesting reading. Thank you, to all the knowledgeable contributors to this forum.

Today I have come across a boat that ticks every single box on my boaty wish list - including all the equipment and the right accommodation plan. At the end of the advert, however, I read that it has osmosis...!!! Normally I'd have moved straight on and not given it a second thought. But I am interested as she is exactly what I have been looking for.

It would seem, from reading above and now much wider on the net, that I shouldn't be overly concerned. I certainly shouldn't dismiss her completely. Her price reflects the repair cost (professional). With repair carried out, she'd still be within budget (just - if I squint a little!!).

I plan to view the boat on my return from a business trip to discuss the issue with the seller and yard who have generated the quote.
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Old 19-08-2017, 10:53   #12
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Re: Osmosis.... Again

It can be a dilemma. The problem is, you dont know if it's been fixed before. For all you know it has. I ran into this on a boat I bought. 3 years later I discovered the hull was so waterlogged there were blisters inside the bilge also! The hull was ~1.25" thick there!
One key thing is how thick is the hull? I had a boat in the 80's (layed up 1974 during/after the gas crunch) The hull was actually laid very thin. Maybe 3/8" in spots. This boat had a reputation for being a "tank". Obviously it doesnt apply to all of them produced. Some blisters were huge, a couple 6" x 2", others the size of a dime. The big ones were at least half the hull thickness deep. One starts to worry when that's the case. It was a long stressfull process getting that all fixed and selling the boat.
Boats are a lot of work anyway, dont start with one that has a major issue like blisters. It may seem cheap but it's actually expensive. Run, dont walk from that boat.
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Old 20-09-2017, 08:10   #13
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Re: Osmosis.... Again

Another suspect here: the seller doesn't say, but is that only the previous paint of something serious?

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Old 20-09-2017, 09:07   #14
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Re: Osmosis.... Again

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Originally Posted by GTom View Post
Another suspect here: the seller doesn't say, but is that only the previous paint of something serious?

I cant see that well enough. All I see is worn bottom paint. Are there actual bumps? Pop one with a pocket knife. Is it just on the surface or does it ooze and go deeper?
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Old 20-09-2017, 11:07   #15
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Re: Osmosis.... Again

Haven't seen the boat in person, asked for some closeups
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