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Old 09-08-2010, 11:27   #106
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we were surprised to find that all our handrails had been replaced with steel screws, our mast had been plastic wrapped after painting (causing massive bubbling) and that most of the electronics have been ripped out of the walls. so we had the joy of finding out all this, plus, the mexican versions of the gilligan and the skipper (two hispanic men who worked on the boat for the previous owner, they earned their nicknames by whistling the theme song while being totaly incompetent) had removed and replaced the tracks improperly.
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Old 14-08-2010, 05:49   #107
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sometimes, especially when I've gotten my drill out, I think the worst thing the last owner did was sell the boat to me!
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Old 14-08-2010, 10:38   #108
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Don Lucas View Post
sometimes, especially when I've gotten my drill out, I think the worst thing the last owner did was sell the boat to me!
i am convinced the only thing my P.O. did RIGHT was sell the boat to me!!!!
everything i repair sends me the message the fella didnt know enough to keep her well and whole.. too much neglect of her for 5 yrs.
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Old 18-08-2010, 07:16   #109
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And I thought we were the only ones that unlucky...

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Oh I am so glad to hear this stuff. I thought it was just me.
Day one of ownership, filled all water tanks. Only to find one filler was plumbed to a fuel tank. 200ltrs of water inmy fuel later, I figured something was amiss. Good thing it wasn't fule in my water tank I suppose.
The deck mounted fillers on our Tahitian 45 were connected to the wrong tanks. Like Alan, I filled my 2 700 litre diesel tanks with drinking water. We siphoned off the diesel from the bottom and filtered it before returning it to the cleaned out tanks.

How are people so stupid??
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Old 21-10-2010, 12:38   #110
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I'm glad I found this thread. It'll give me an idea of what to look out for when ever I get around to buying.
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Old 21-10-2010, 15:42   #111
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I agree. However, the surveyor on a friends new boat missed the obvious fact that the based of the steering pedestal was completely rotted out (3/4 of the backing plate was missing!) and he said the raw pump was leaking when the leak was actually coming from the completely rotten heat exchanger. I think we ought to have recourse for incompetently done inspections.

On one of my own boats, I wrote a letter to the surveyor and asked for a refund when he failed to note a number of obvious problems with the boat that I discovered while preparing it for launch. He sent a check and a thank you note acknowledging the issues and for being so civil about it.
That was lucky! At the moment I don't have time to play with my boats as job#1 is safes, CCTV and burglar alarms as things aint like they used to be.
A couple of boats that I found for a friend both had problems. First boat (not Jims first by any means!) was a Hurley 27 long keel (AKA Dockrell 27) The sink would only empty on an even keel and Jim said that the boat wouldn't go to windward. One failure was a battery terminal that cracked as we were motoring around The Lizard. The terminal was brass plated pot metal - cheap zinc alloy. Fortunately I'd made sure that Mole grips (Vise grip pliers) were on board. In Penzance there were numerous shops selling the fake brass terminals so it could be a worldwide problem. The packets are just marked "battery terminal" so the Trades Description Act is not contravened, nevertheless plating over inferior metal is IMHO deception. Country of origin not known.
Ill health forced the sale of the Hurley. Next boat was a Robert Ives 4-21 (money was in short supply) The sellers survey stated "all chainplates secure" however the boat did a good impersonation of a crocodile whilst reaching across Brixham Bay! Many faults eventually came to light with the engine failing on the very first day (sludge in the fuel - it was OK in the marina!) Curiously in English law the buyer cannot sue the sellers surveyor because the buyer did not have a contract with the surveyor! Converting the boat from its previous day sailing role to a blue water cruiser was quite a step change but it has been done. One very nasty fault was the inadequate seawater strainer (adequate in cold northern waters but inadequate where there a large populations of jellyfish) This caused an engine fire and head gasket trouble. £s£s£s! (Euros actually!) Anyhow the boats next stop will be Mindelo Cap Verde so at least it is being well used. The Ives will go to windward OK and averages about 87nm per day which isn't too bad for a pocket cruiser. Caribbean or bust!
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Old 21-10-2010, 22:37   #112
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Boat I looked at but didn't buy.

Owner had carpeted interior using some sort of brittle glue.

Worse he carpeted the insides of the topsides including over some of the little baby bulkheads where the lowers attach. Read moisture retaining covering over plywood that needs to be checked regularly since it is at a common place for leaks.

Worst, carpeted the head.
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Old 22-10-2010, 07:41   #113
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Most surveyers would run a mile if you wanted to add that.
The liability would not be worth the fee they charged.
Agree! Every surveyor's agreement AND survey write-up contains many express disclaimers and if you COULD get them to eliminate them you wouldn't be willing to pay the fee they'd want in return. You're paying for a professional opinion, not a guaranty. They live or die by their reputations, and that's the extent of it -- but that's important them and most try to do a good job, even going beyond the minimum inspection contracted, in most cases.

I'm surprised to read that some people got settlements with surveyors for hidden damage. If you did you should appreciate that you must have bullied them into it, and they paid you only to avoid loss of reputation and the time/expense associated with litigation.... NOT because you deserved it. Their agreements would have expressly excluded such damages. You who have won may feel secure in knowing that the surveyor is a nice person, and (in this case) you were not. Maybe some of us will see you in Hell along with your lawyer.
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Old 22-10-2010, 08:14   #114
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One thing that becomes evident with this thread is the extent to which one man's ceiling is another man's floor.

In fact, one never "owns" a boat or for that matter much of anything else. One may have temporary custody and financial responibility but, eventaully all boats--and things--will pass into other hands and one (and all) shall eventually become a more or less well regarded "Prior Owner".

Having recognized this a long time ago, for my part I have always tried to think very carefully about any replacement or modifications and then to keep good records, sketches and, in some cases, photographs in our "Boat Book" which is somewhat of an expanded maintenance/repair log. We also keep a standard maintnenance/repair log--a contination of the log passed on to us by our "Prior Owner" (a retired Navy Captain)--but our Boat Book is an expansion of that and intended to serve as an "Owner's Manual" for some future owner/custodian. (It also help's my wife understand how stuff works in the event I'm not aboard or away when something needs doing.)

A "Boat Book" is really pretty easy to assemble. Start at the bow with a camera and a note book and work aft. Make good notes and explainations. Keep a file with all of the surveys, manuals, receipts and paperwork for all of the modifications and equipment added to the boat and remove those of equipment that has been removed to pass on to the "New Owner". He/she will appreciate it--a lot. (The family that bought our prior boat did and somewhat continued the practice which was passed on to and appreciated by the current custodian.)

FWIW...
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Old 22-10-2010, 15:53   #115
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Wow, after reading all this I feel pretty fortunate.

I just acquired my 1968 Pearson Wanderer in August.

The previous owner did a lot of work on her over the 8 years he owned her, to rectify neglect inflicted by the guy he bought her from. He told me he bought her as a "project."

He was reasonably meticulous and got a whole lot of original paperwork from the guy he bought her from and then also kept very good records of his own, including a littel maintenance log book, in which he wrote down everything he did and the date he did it. He gave me all of that paperwork, which already has proven to be extremely useful. Lots of very helpful information buried in there.

All of the work that he did that I have examined so far has been fine - I haven't found anything that left me scratching my head or shaking my head ruefully.

There is still more to be done to her, though - he did not finish his big list of things needing done and his even bigger wish list of things he'd like to do. I'm going to address the "needed" things first - starting with rebedding the leaking deck hardware.

There are, however, some abandoned circuits in there - but I don't think my seller did that - I think they are just ones he never got around to pulling out or maybe never found. He told me he pulled out a bunch of abandoned circuits himself. Looks like I have a few more to yank out.

Considering how simple the boat is (no holding tank, no electric fresh water pump, no generator, very little electronics), I'm surprised how many wires there are all over the damn place!
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Old 22-10-2010, 16:45   #116
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I'd have to say the poorly designed kerosene heater was the worst (it almost cost the boat) but the one that annoys me the most is replacing the "proper head" with a port-i-potti.
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Old 22-10-2010, 17:47   #117
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I'd have to say the poorly designed kerosene heater was the worst (it almost cost the boat) but the one that annoys me the most is replacing the "proper head" with a port-i-potti.
That is not an "Offshore Cheoy Lee 32" is it?
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Old 22-10-2010, 18:15   #118
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predates the Cheoy Lee by a long shot

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That is not an "Offshore Cheoy Lee 32" is it?
It is my present boat, designed by William Atkin in 1949, there are some similarities to the Cheoy Lee, but my boat sacrificed space for speed, it was originally commissioned as a single handed boat in the style of the time which has become the classic blue water boat (design was commissioned by author E.B.White)....I just updated the info in my "about me"
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Old 22-10-2010, 19:20   #119
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After reading a few of these horror stories I feel very fortunate not to have bought someone else's problems, errors or neglect. If any of the vessels I considered buying over the past 30 years did not have a thorough maintenance log, timely servicing above and below decks and was in decent nick, I would take a pass. In each case before buying I commissioned a survey even though I've spent many years at sea. A fresh set of experienced eyes always helps. One horror story I would share was when a good friend purchased a Hans Christian 43, lightly used and in good shape. As part of the deal, he asked the PO to accompany him bringing the boat from Santa Barbara to San Diego. Both up steering all night because every time the auto pilot was engaged, the boat ran in circles. He asked me to try and sort out the problem even though the autopilot installation was performed by a qualified electronic mechanic certified by the manufacturer. A quick troubleshooting sail found that the fluxgate compass was mounted about 18" away from the VHF. Turns out that the autopilot installation was fine but PO had installed a new VHF AFTER the autopilot installed. Fix was easy... just remounted the fluxgate compass amid ships about 6 feet away from the VHF. Worked like a damn! If there was a maintenance log noting the new VHF mounting, it would be fairly easy to scope out where the problem might be without leaving the dock. Not sure why the surveyor didn't note this deficiency in his report... maybe the VHF wasn't turned on (?). Would you buy a used car without getting a mechanic check it out? Doesn't guarantee you won't find all the problems but sure cuts the down the odds of getting screwed. Capt Phil
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Old 22-10-2010, 19:45   #120
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All of the previous owners were "old school" sailors who abhorred gizmos (and knew how to take care of their boats)..so there were no "technological innovations" and other gadgets that didn't exist when the boat was built 40 years ago, so there hasn't been much to go wrong.
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