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Old 25-03-2008, 01:13   #1
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Hello from Alaska

Hello friends, I live just north of Anchorage in what we call the Mat-Su Valley, its like a rural redneck part of Alaska, I work at a concrete batch plant as operations supervisor, been there over twelve years, I pretty much built it, I drive concrete mixers and repair them plus I am a good welder and fabricator, almost anything if I put my mind to it I can do, I know fiberglass and was a marine mechanic years ago and know diesels inside out, especially Detroits.
I'm 51, I have a 14 year old son and some step grandchildren, my house with 8 acres has been paid for since 2004 and my 2002 Silverado dually will be paid off this summer, so I will have a sizable amount of forecasted income to play with hopefully this next winter when I plan to fly down to Orlando or Tampa Bay and just start sticking my nose around for a great boat deal. I'm looking for an older 30' or larger cruiser like a Chris Craft or maybe a trawler, even an old fishing boat. I have seen websites of salvage boats and it saddens me when I think of what the owners went through when they lost them in hurricanes, but maybe I can find one I feel I can bring back to life like restoring a classic car like I did for a living years ago.
I would plan on either living aboard or having the boat hauled out to a lot I can rent with a secure area and a small shop, it amazes me how cheap the rent is for shop space down there! I could go for a simple houseboat idea as I have minimal experiance piloting but funny as it seems the vessel I did handle on a regular basis was the Tahoe Queen of Lake Tahoe, CA back around 1990, its a 112' sternwheeler cruise ship and when at night while the captain was at dinner I drove it basically in circles high up on an alpine lake at 6229' at night with a party almost every night, fun is too short to describe it, but alas I'm getting older, the cold bothers me and I want to do something for my son while I still have him at home.

I'm open to suggestions, ideas or thoughts of how the best way to buy a used fixer upper, between me and friends here I plan on coming down with cash available no less than $5k to hopefully get a lucky deal, I can finance but not more than $30k. I do figure it will cost a lot to get a slip plus storage and of course whatever repairs a bargain boat may need.
So if anybody has a nice big boat that needs TLC plz let me know and maybe its something I will like. I might be interested in a sailboat but it would have to be a good deall, I prefer a cruiser as I know engines much better than sails being a mechanic for over thirty years.
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Old 25-03-2008, 04:23   #2
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If people find out how useful you are you won't be retiring on board.
Stay near a marina and you'll certainly make freinds very quickl if they see you fixing up. Better still keep something on the water that'll move your welding gear and tool box. Just don't get too distracted.
Welcome, and Warm Winds. Sounds like you need them.
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Old 25-03-2008, 07:06   #3
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Sounds like you must be in Wasilla or nearby. A couple of things to add to your thinking. Fuel and dockage is expensive in Florida. Cost me $71 for 17 gals of diesel the other day.

You might want to broaden your search a bit and look in some other areas. Especially with the budget you're talking about. The Gulf Coast of Mississippi and Alabama, the Tennessee River system, and over in North and South Carolina. Basically though, it's a bit hard to find deals, when you're so far away.
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Old 25-03-2008, 07:42   #4
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I work in Wasilla but live just before the Big Lake turnoff off of the Parks hiway, there is a trawler 40 Ft. Trawler Project for sale here in the valley, the owner is up on the slope right now so I'm waiting for when he gets back, I have no idea yet how much more work needs to be done to it, I have at work a 31' fiberglass bow-picker ( Alaskan type of boat with bow net system) I worked on last year, replaced the Mercruiser 7.4 flywheel ring gear. The boat is very strong but the aft cabin above deck is dry rotted, I can buy it for under $5,000 right now but the oner wants to keep the trailer, I don't blame him, I just rebuilt the three axles, all new surge brake system, new LED lights and bunks, and applied cold zinc galvanize paint. It belongs to the son of the owner of the company I work for. I could remove the bow deck and build a longer cabin cruiser out of it, possibly extend the bow above the water line two to give me some more deck space, its a single gas motor and I would rather have a dual setup, I can buy the boat cheap, restore it and make a profit selling it though, but the whole idea again is to go someplace WARMER!

This is a pic of that trawler, again I have yet to actually see it up front, he may come down on the price because I am local and have financing immediately, meanwhile I am looking everywhere from Seattle to Key West, I'm snooping around Alabama right now and am finding some deals on fishing boats, I guess the economy while bad in most areas is good for few right now. Offhand it looks like a good buyers market in used boats right now, and diesel her in town is $3.92 a gallon, its probably double that in the bush.



I agree about looking at other places, my first lookie see was of course Hawaii, there was some recent steals there but in my perspective it appears that there is a real shortage of marinas there and even by my Alaskan standards everything is more expensive in Hawaii. Now I would possibly just buy here locally but thats the problem, I want a warmer place during the winter, when in january its 40 degrees F in Orlando and everyone is wearing parkas and gloves my whole family is wearing t-shirts! We go swimming when others stay away from the water parks because we are acclimated to our weather, OTOH I find it very hard to work when it gets over 80 degrees, so actually my travels to Florida is only when its downright frigid for them.
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Old 26-03-2008, 18:24   #5
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Aloha Silver,
Welcome aboard! Got a niece with a family in Anchorage. The last time I was there was in '70 on the way back from VN. The climate between Saigon and Anchorage was very different in April.
Good to have you here. Lots of knowledgeable folks with good information.
Kind Regards,
JohnL
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Old 26-03-2008, 20:11   #6
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Thanks Skip, Wasilla is 35 miles north of Anchorage with a new 4 lane divided hiway, we are big enough here in the valley to have a new Walmart Supercenter. I manage a concrete batching plant, repair absolutely everything from 480 3 phase motors to complete engine overhauls, I hire the new seasonal drivers and I drive a very modern 12 cubic yard mixer year round though in the winter I cut my hours way back. In years past we have rented a vacation home several times in Orlando for a month for the family vacation. This next winter I plan on staying in Florida at least two weeks just looking for a boat I like, I plan to have ready cash for bargaining.

My goal is a 35' and up trawler, motor sailer or motor yacht and last a sailboat, Later on after I learn more about sailing then I will shop for one maybe, until then a motor cruiser is better for me. Just something to put around the Gulf and fish and such.

I have to scope out what it takes to store a larger boat on land if its even possible.
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Old 27-03-2008, 13:26   #7
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You were absolutely right about this one.

"I agree about looking at other places, my first lookie see was of course Hawaii, there was some recent steals there but in my perspective it appears that there is a real shortage of marinas there and even by my Alaskan standards everything is more expensive in Hawaii."

The only part I would disagree with is the everything more expensive part. Taxes are pretty low and groceries are not much worse than California. One acre buildable lots in my primitive subdivision are around $50K. Not many places to keep a boat safely.

JohnL
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Old 09-04-2008, 05:59   #8
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An update of a sort, I have found a lot of fixer upper motor yachts in Florida, quite a few over 30 and even 40ft. under $7500. I can look and speculate remotely from Alaska by cruising Craigslist but its frustrating, there is a 53' yawl I would love to look at closer. Here is a pic of it.



"Vesper" 53 foot Yawl Beautiful Boat! $35000 OBO
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Old 01-06-2008, 14:55   #9
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Ah, I see you found my Vesper. She is still for sale, and I can send anyone pictures if they like. E-mail me if you're interested at Capt_Jack_Stifler@yahoo.com.

The name's Donald.
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Old 01-06-2008, 17:11   #10
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You should renew that Craigslist ad, I had it saved in my Yahoo mail for a long time and was sorry to see it expired. I have almost bit the bullet on a 41' Hatteras owner financed, almost got involved in a 55' Chris Craft in Texas and I for awhile thought it better to just find something newer and trailerable so I can store it in safe summer storage. Problem is I still do not have all the facts about required insurance, where to find safe mooring and especially what to do about the fact that I live in Alaska and have a good job but our winters are long and I am getting tired of twiddlin my thumbs for 4 months when I'm off season and how safe and secure will be my boat when I am 5200 miles away. Besides I'm naive enough to fall into a deal over the internet like this one:1944 41 foot Motor Cruiser that was so sweet sounding but when I posted about it on other forums I was really flamed that its a poor decision blah blah blah, they mean well I know as they have been there done that.

I like the Vesper but I won't waste my time or yours with an offer, if its there when I come down to Florida I'll have a look at it. With the future of fuel its becoming more logical to get away from big engine boats, the Vesper I passed on earlier because I saw these motoryachts going cheap, now I have the info of fuel burn tables on them, problem is I do not want to pay several hundred dollars an hour cruising so now I'm looking at motor sailors, yawls, sloops, schooners etc.
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Old 01-06-2008, 19:52   #11
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Hey Don I did a search and I see you do still have it listed.
Priced To Sell ! New Low Price! 53 foot Yawl. Best Offer above $32,500



I drool every time I see it!

Do you have it listed here?


My bank cleared me for a $25k loan when i asked them two weeks ago about that Hatteras and it was a 1968, they say they would need a recent survey,The owner however changed too many things about the Hat from the interior and such. So I listened to advice and backed off.

I am an absolute noob about all this and I have no idea what to do after I buy such a large sailing boat but it looks pretty plain to me this boat has been very well taken cared of, a motorboat I do know how to maintain but this is new to me. Why not send some pics anyway? Post them here on the forum.
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Old 05-06-2008, 03:00   #12
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Don is Vesper an aft cockpit Morgan?
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Old 09-06-2008, 14:21   #13
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She is not a morgan, she was designed by T. F. Benson and built by James J. Taylor and Sons of Toronto. She is 53 feet long, including the bowsprit and the stay kit in the back. Here are some more pictures of her, if anyone is interested or if you know someone who is, please contact me.



















That's all I've got for the moment. Let me know what you think.
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Old 21-08-2008, 23:33   #14
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Re: Hello from Alaska

My first post - letís see how it goes. I finally finished spinning Baked Alaska. Very yummy. I was inspired by Hello Yarnís picture of this yarn to find a plain brown wool to ply it with. Luckily, I happened to have some from my Yarn School goodies. Iím picturing this as the yoke and possibly a decorative edge on a top-down cardigan for myself.
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Madhu

Alaska Alcohol Addiction Treatment
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