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Old 24-11-2014, 14:14   #1
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Refitting a Cheoy Lee Offshore 31 Ketch

I have been lurking in these forums for a while but figure now is as good a time as any to introduce myself. 6 months ago I sold and donated everything I owned to pursue a life at sea. I am new to sailing but in no way am I a novice boater. I took sailing lessons over the summer and have gone out many times since then. My educational background is in Electronics Engineering, Computer Engineering and Core Programming. I currently work as a freelance software developer and will continue to do so while I cruise.

A friend came to me with a great find across the country in Virginia. A 31' Cheoy Lee Offshore Ketch. There was only one catch, she was for the most part in pieces from a refit that was abandoned. The good news is that all of her parts are there and were kept in storage. I have this constant urge to keep myself challenged and I felt what better way to prepare myself for living aboard a sailing vessel than by doing a full refit on one (with professional guidance/help of course).

So I had her inspected, put a coat of bottom paint on, dropped her in the water and loaded her up with all of the parts, masts, booms, etc. As I write this, she is being towed to her slip at the marina to await my arrival next month. I love the feel that this community provides and I hope to make a lot of friends on here. I love to learn and love new experiences. Let the adventure begin!

Jeff

For those interested, the person who was doing the refit before me took care of one of the only problems these boats are reported to have and that was fiberglass over the teak deck. The hull is in great shape and since I am going to be completely emptying below deck, I will be able to find and address any problems. I am going to change and upgrade all of the through fittings as well when I pull her out for the full paint job. One surveyor told me that there is a possibility the deck was safe anyways because pre-1972 Cheoy Lee's sometimes used solid teak cores. The only way to know for sure though is to have a sample taken. The engine is in great shape it is a Palmer 20HP diesel, I might take it apart and clean it though.

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Old 27-11-2014, 09:53   #2
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Re: Refitting a Cheoy Lee Offshore 31 Ketch

Welcome to the forum. Having built 2 steel boats of my own and restored 2 F/G boats from the keel up (including a deck core job, I will suggest that you identify only the problem areas and go from there.
I'm not sure what you mean by "completely emptying below deck", but I'm hoping it doesn't mean tearing out the interior. Projects like that can quicly over-run costs and sustained interest in the project. I hope it all goes well for you.
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Old 27-11-2014, 10:01   #3
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Re: Refitting a Cheoy Lee Offshore 31 Ketch

Those are beautiful boats. But investigate the deck cabin very well... I've seen at least one that was mostly rot under the fiberglass....
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Old 27-11-2014, 10:18   #4
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Re: Refitting a Cheoy Lee Offshore 31 Ketch

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Originally Posted by liquidkangaroo View Post
...A friend came to me with a great find across the country in Virginia. A 31' Cheoy Lee Offshore Ketch. There was only one catch, she was for the most part in pieces from a refit that was abandoned...fiberglass over the teak deck...
Oh man!

You should have asked for advice, FIRST.
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Old 27-11-2014, 10:33   #5
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Re: Refitting a Cheoy Lee Offshore 31 Ketch

Howdy!

I suppose we all at one time or another think of rescuing a neglected boat and making it our own and better.

I wish you the best of luck and hope you enjoy the refit process and the sailing afterward.

From my POV, it is better to have a boat one can enjoy, even if it is old and needs TLC, than to have no boat at all.

As you begin your refit, I suggest taking lots of photos and create a documented blog or post some photos here on this forum, showing your progress and improvements.
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Old 27-11-2014, 13:46   #6
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Re: Refitting a Cheoy Lee Offshore 31 Ketch

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Originally Posted by Celestialsailor View Post
I'm not sure what you mean by "completely emptying below deck", but I'm hoping it doesn't mean tearing out the interior. Projects like that can quicly over-run costs and sustained interest in the project. I hope it all goes well for you.
Well the emptying part has already been done for me. The abandoned refit included all of the teak that has already been pulled and refinished. It is just sitting as a puzzle in the cabin waiting to be put back together. This will also allow me to upgrade her electrical and plumbing systems to modern conveniences and safety protocols.

Cost is not so much an issue with me, as I have a great, well-paying job that allows me to work from anywhere. I am in this for the fun and adventure that I know it will provide, whether the refit costs me $5000 or $50000.

On sustained interest, as an engineer who is OCD, things do not remain undone or unfixed around me for long. I have also been in touch with several local professional riggers, etc who I will hire to teach and work with me on her to ensure they are done properly.

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Oh man!

You should have asked for advice, FIRST.
From whom, you? I believe I stated that I had her inspected before I made my decision. I sought the help of an independent professional of my choosing. I am well aware of what I am getting myself into and know the problems that could come up during the refit and their potential high expenses. That's part of the fun, right?


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Originally Posted by Steady Hand View Post
Howdy!

I suppose we all at one time or another think of rescuing a neglected boat and making it our own and better.

I wish you the best of luck and hope you enjoy the refit process and the sailing afterward.

From my POV, it is better to have a boat one can enjoy, even if it is old and needs TLC, than to have no boat at all.

As you begin your refit, I suggest taking lots of photos and create a documented blog or post some photos here on this forum, showing your progress and improvements.
Thank you for the kind words. I am in the process of setting up a blog where not only will I cover in depth the refit, but also artistically share my photography and videography(my first love) from my travels. I am probably a month away from finishing it.
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Old 27-11-2014, 13:56   #7
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Re: Refitting a Cheoy Lee Offshore 31 Ketch

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Originally Posted by liquidkangaroo View Post
...I am new to sailing...
I took sailing lessons over the summer and have gone out many times since then...
Quote:
Originally Posted by liquidkangaroo View Post
...

Originally Posted by Terra Nova View Post
Oh man!

You should have asked for advice, FIRST.


From whom, you?...
Sorry, I didn't at first understand that YOU were here to tell US how to go about refitting a 31' boat.
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Old 27-11-2014, 14:05   #8
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Re: Refitting a Cheoy Lee Offshore 31 Ketch

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Those are beautiful boats. But investigate the deck cabin very well... I've seen at least one that was mostly rot under the fiberglass....
The second owner of this boat began a refit on her. This included completely removing and laying a new core and glass(quite an expense from what I have been told). That is one of the things that I am not going to have to worry about. I also plan on having this boat surveyed for insurance once the refit is done so I am making certain of everything as I proceed. Thank you for the heads up, though!
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Old 27-11-2014, 14:20   #9
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Re: Refitting a Cheoy Lee Offshore 31 Ketch

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Sorry, I didn't at first understand that YOU were here to tell US how to go about refitting a 31' boat.
You seem to be blind to the parts where I have stated over and over that I have and will continue to hire professionals to help me with this refit process so your "advice" of "asking for advice" seems pointless and belittling since it appears I have already done just that. So, how about instead you either not comment or offer constructive advice or criticism that will be useful to me and other readers? I am always one to listen to an opinion or advice, it is how we learn and grow. If this is how your community treats it's new members I would rather not be a part of it, thanks.
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Old 27-11-2014, 14:36   #10
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Re: Refitting a Cheoy Lee Offshore 31 Ketch

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...I also plan on having this boat surveyed for insurance once the refit is done...
Your experts should have advised you to get a survey before buying it.
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Old 27-11-2014, 14:44   #11
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Re: Refitting a Cheoy Lee Offshore 31 Ketch

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Your experts should have advised you to get a survey before buying it.
One of my experts is a professional surveyor who informed me of all of the potential and known trouble areas on the boat and also explained in depth the size of the project which I happily await, but thank you for finally saying something useful!
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Old 27-11-2014, 14:52   #12
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Re: Refitting a Cheoy Lee Offshore 31 Ketch

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One of my experts is a professional surveyor who informed me of all of the potential and known trouble areas on the boat...
OK, dazzle us.
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"Id rather drown than have computers take over my life."--d design
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Old 27-11-2014, 14:57   #13
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Re: Refitting a Cheoy Lee Offshore 31 Ketch

So what do you know about the hull shape? It looks like a Phillip Rhodes or someone who worked for him design.
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Old 27-11-2014, 15:31   #14
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Re: Refitting a Cheoy Lee Offshore 31 Ketch

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OK, dazzle us.
People like you only fuel my desire to succeed. So please keep up your arrogant attitude.
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Old 27-11-2014, 15:33   #15
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Re: Refitting a Cheoy Lee Offshore 31 Ketch

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So what do you know about the hull shape? It looks like a Phillip Rhodes or someone who worked for him design.
She is designed by L. Francis Herreshoff and is based on the Bermuda 30 (A rework of the Herreshoff 28).
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