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Old 22-10-2016, 23:51   #1
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Fortissimo 33 - good for a first boat?

Hi,

I'm looking around for my first boat to sail in Indonesia, East Timor and surrounding countries (I run a social project here and will want to explore the area more in next few years). It should be able to sail with very low winds (not much wind here), accommodate 2-3 people and the draft can't be too deep (reefs and stuff around small islands).

Easy to guess my budget is not very high (it's actually non existent, I'll do crowdfunding campaign to buy and fit out the boat, after all I need her for the project .

So here's the main question:

I wold like to get a piece of advice from more experienced cruisers, is Fortissimo 33 a good boat as a first cruiser?
I know these are not crazy popular boats so chances that somebody here actually sailed it are not too high, but you can look at the pictures and description here and see how she looks:

http://www.yachtbroker-charters.com/...tissimo_33.htm

What I like the most about her is: long keel (a lot of floating fishing nets here), crank up option on engine, old Swedish construction (I would trust those boats more than modern ones).

Things I would like to improve are: extra solar panels and batteries, additional water tank and diesel tank (or a lot of jerrycans), aft mount for anchor and chain and maybe few other details.

Please let me know what you guys here think about her, do you think she is worth the money?

Cheers,
Simon
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Old 23-10-2016, 06:31   #2
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Re: Fortissimo 33 - good for a first boat?

Welcome to CF Simon !

I know nothing about these, but from a quick glance... She looks very nice for what you are proposing...
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Old 23-10-2016, 07:26   #3
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Re: Fortissimo 33 - good for a first boat?

There are plenty of them here in Sweden. I know some that have completed circumnavigation (Båten Anna | Seglar Jorden Runt which was sold a year ago and is now on its way to caribean (http://syhavanna.wordpress.com

In sweden you get them for avout 20k usd
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Old 23-10-2016, 08:17   #4
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Re: Fortissimo 33 - good for a first boat?

They are OK.

The one in Indonesia looks a somewhat beaten up. Haggle according to boat condition.

Common sorrows include:

- rusting keels (cast iron, solution: sandblast and epoxy),
- softness under the mast (unless already addressed).

I would buy one without hesitation as we are sailing a boat from the same designer. The rest is up to how the particular boatyard executed the idea and how the consecutive owners treated the boat.

It is more of a sailing boat than a liveaboard. They do not re-sell too well unless you are in Scandinavia or thereabout.

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Old 23-10-2016, 08:23   #5
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Re: Fortissimo 33 - good for a first boat?

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Originally Posted by andreas.mehlin View Post
There are plenty of them here in Sweden. I know some that have completed circumnavigation (Båten Anna | Seglar Jorden Runt which was sold a year ago and is now on its way to caribean (http://syhavanna.wordpress.com

In sweden you get them for avout 20k usd
Thanks for the links! I hope automatic translation will do a good job

When it comes to the price, I will try to talk with the present owner and drop it a bit. I know there is not so many boats like this around here for sale and I guess this is why the price is like that.

I'm going to Langkawi next week, on Thursday I have a scheduled visit on the boat. She is out on hard so I'll get a chance to get a good look at her.
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Old 23-10-2016, 08:32   #6
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Re: Fortissimo 33 - good for a first boat?

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Originally Posted by barnakiel View Post
They are OK.

The one in Indonesia looks a somewhat beaten up. Haggle according to boat condition.

Common sorrows include:

- rusting keels (cast iron, solution: sandblast and epoxy),
- softness under the mast (unless already addressed).

I would buy one without hesitation as we are sailing a boat from the same designer. The rest is up to how the particular boatyard executed the idea and how the consecutive owners treated the boat.

It is more of a sailing boat than a liveaboard. They do not re-sell too well unless you are in Scandinavia or thereabout.

b.
Thanks for the tips. I will go to see her on Thursday and have a closer look at that.

I will try to push the price down, she needs some work before going back to the water. You can see on the pictures that there were some repairs around the keel. I think she might also use new antifouling.

Not much of a liveaboard you say? Well, I think it can be done She needs some improvements for sure, water tanks, diesel tanks, more solar panels etc. I would like to have a boat with an aft cabin but at the same time I want something fairly small and easy to handle. And cheap... Fortissimo seems to be the right one. Except of cheap factor, I'll talk with the owner about that.
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Old 23-10-2016, 12:25   #7
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Re: Fortissimo 33 - good for a first boat?

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Originally Posted by Simon SbS View Post
Thanks for the tips. I will go to see her on Thursday and have a closer look at that.

I will try to push the price down, she needs some work before going back to the water. You can see on the pictures that there were some repairs around the keel. I think she might also use new antifouling.

Not much of a liveaboard you say? Well, I think it can be done She needs some improvements for sure, water tanks, diesel tanks, more solar panels etc. I would like to have a boat with an aft cabin but at the same time I want something fairly small and easy to handle. And cheap... Fortissimo seems to be the right one. Except of cheap factor, I'll talk with the owner about that.
EASY?

Yep. This is the boat then. Swedish boats of that era are all like either a small folkboat or else like a big folkboat (that is to say a sailing VW Beetle). Simple, predictable, repairable.

Our boat came from the same designer (Norlin, LO). The guy knew what he was drawing. His boats sail upwind beautifully - the balance is there and they are as easy to sail as a big sailing dinghy. Downwind they sail like anything else that was not built for downwind - mediocre, at best.

I have already had a look at Fortissimo as our possible step up boat but I was put off by the boat being much longer yet offering zero LOA gain over our present boat. If I were to go towards 33 feet or thereabouts, I would chase after a Nicholson 35 - bigger boat, better interior and quality at least as good as the Swedish boat. A Victoria 34 (Morris, in the US) is another prime design in the same LOA range.

LIVEABOARD?

Well ... It IS a small boat. Good for one with limited appetite for boat facilities or for intimate two with strong background in camping. 100% doable, just 99% dependent on what you are all about. Most modern people will not take this level of deprivation easily. Some will not take it at all. A Bavaria 32 offers twice the volume, space, light and cockpit area.

BTW You can still get a Fortissimo NEW built now in Holland to a mind boggling standard. Comparable only to Rustlers, Contessa 32, etc.

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Just look at interior images. Cream, huh?

28k is an OK asking for this design except the one shown in the images is pretty far from bristol. You will want to offset this against the general level of boat prices in Indonesia.

Good luck!

Let us know what you find when you get there!

Cheers,
b.
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Old 23-10-2016, 20:57   #8
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Re: Fortissimo 33 - good for a first boat?

Quote:
Originally Posted by barnakiel View Post

Yep. This is the boat then. Swedish boats of that era are all like either a small folkboat or else like a big folkboat (that is to say a sailing VW Beetle). Simple, predictable, repairable.

b.
That's the reason why I'm so interested in this one. If I'd get more choice I'd try to put my hands on Hallberg Rassy but there is not too many of them in this area, much easier to buy them around Baltic Sea / Northern Europe (This is one of my backup plans, to go there and look around)

Quote:
Originally Posted by barnakiel View Post


LIVEABOARD?

Well ... It IS a small boat. Good for one with limited appetite for boat facilities or for intimate two with strong background in camping. 100% doable, just 99% dependent on what you are all about. Most modern people will not take this level of deprivation easily. Some will not take it at all. A Bavaria 32 offers twice the volume, space, light and cockpit area.


Let us know what you find when you get there!
b.
I am aware of that. When I'll see it with my own eyes it will be easier to judge if I can live in a space like that. I have spent last almost two years on a boat twice as big, but with two owners on board. Deprivation on a high level

I'll write a post once I'm back, no worries about that.
Thanks for all the tips!

Cheers,
Simon
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Old 24-10-2016, 08:36   #9
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Re: Fortissimo 33 - good for a first boat?

Simon, this boat...even if bought at a 20-30 percent discount is going to take a lot of money to make her right as rain. The things I see with her wood work inside is one thing...but rigging, sails, chainplates, heaven's only knows what is happening with the engine other than the cutlass and engine controls. Mate, you better have your eyes wide open on this beat up yacht. It could cost you twice that amount of money to get her restored. Buying project boats, like this one is, takes a certain type of man who has skills procured by years of experience....which you might not have "yet". I am not trying to rain on your parade. I am trying to just say...be careful with boat lust. Many on this forum have been bit and paid enormous sums of money to restore "project" boats.

Do you know anybody in the area that you have some respect for...and who respects you? You need some advice and a good surveyor to tell you what you are about to jump into. I think you would be shocked to find out what it costs to bring this puppy back to life.
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Old 24-10-2016, 09:29   #10
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Re: Fortissimo 33 - good for a first boat?

Quote: "I hope automatic translation will do a good job "

Not likely to, but you could always give me a link to the Swedish bit. I need the practice ;-0)!

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Old 24-10-2016, 10:38   #11
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Re: Fortissimo 33 - good for a first boat?

For a modest charge --say two hours of time--you can enlist a qualified surveyor to do a "walk through" for a preliminary evaluation; money extremely well spent in getting an informed view of condition, obvious defects etc. if the surveyor gives a green light the fee may be negotiated as a credit against a ful survey of your offer is accepted subject to a survey
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Old 24-10-2016, 12:11   #12
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Re: Fortissimo 33 - good for a first boat?

About as good as they come. I worked a few months in the yard (Aqua Boat) in Nykoping, Sweden where the hulls were built. Most were owner finished interiörs from a kit supplied by the yard. For all practical purpose, and no disrespect to Mr Norlin, this is an up scaled Folkboat. You wont be able to find much better boats for safe and reasonably fast cruising from that era. Not very fast, but very well behaved. And certainly repairable. As straight forward as it gets!

Regarding price, well, you'd have to see the boat in person to get an idea, so I say nothing. I ditto 2k USD in Scandinavia, but then I'd like to point out that boats in Scandinavia are in general in a lot better shape than in the US, or even more so, in the tropics... Could be compared with Maine perhaps. The Baltic Sea, specially from Stockholm, Helsinki and northwards is not per definition salt water, but brackish. About 0,3 % compared to 3% in the ocean. Kinder on hulls, engines and most of all stainless.....

Good luck with it, they are very good boats.
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Old 01-11-2016, 23:36   #13
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Re: Fortissimo 33 - good for a first boat?

Thank you all for advice and tips!

I went to look at the boat last week and as it goes she looks worse live than in photos. Here are few pictures which will address the main (in my opinion) issues:



Yeah... The ballast, as much as it's still part of the boat, it looks like they don't like each other so much any more. There is a crack on the whole length of the join, marked with rust stains. Iron ballast would have to uncovered, cleaned, protected with paint and closed again with glass. I hope it's bolted to the rest of the boat, otherwise one might just loose it someday.



That bit of plywood looks unhappy. It also holds the chain-plate for second forestay. This is not the only bad piece of wood there.



That's under the sink. Mostly dirty but when you touch it it doesn't feel too solid anymore. Same with some of the floorboards.

It looks here like there is a leak that brings water along the bulkhead.


And this just as a bonus: interesting plumbing. It's the main fuel valve to switch between tanks (out of which only one works anyway)



Outside again:

The rest of stantions looks much better btw.



All in all, after spending few hours opening floorboards, trying to look at the engine from each possible side (which is f**king pain in the ass on this boat), jumping on deck and getting all the possible information from the broker I think it's a nice boat. She is not worth 28k and it's good price is negotiable. Yes she needs work and it will cost money but it's not something that cannot be done. If I would decide to buy her I would call the surveyor first anyway to check on her. I'm especially curious about this ballast situation. Did anyone here had a situation like that before? I would really like to know how these things are being built and if it's safe at this state.

On the other hand, I am not throwing myself on the project just right now. I have to think about it a bit more. I was looking few weeks ago at amount of boats similar to Fortissimo at Baltic Sea and choice there seems to be much better. Somebody mentioned few posts earlier that Baltic Sea water is much more kind to boats than ocean / tropical. Can't argue with that. And since I come from one of the Baltic countries I might just go there and look around.
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Old 02-11-2016, 00:31   #14
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Re: Fortissimo 33 - good for a first boat?

If that boat was in the US or Australia, it would be looking at 28 hundred dollars, not 28 thousand. Way too many serious issues to be worthy of much consideration IMO.

Looks like a looser to me. I would not spend the money for a serious survey. YMMV

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Old 02-11-2016, 00:51   #15
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Re: Fortissimo 33 - good for a first boat?

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Originally Posted by Jim Cate View Post
If that boat was in the US or Australia, it would be looking at 28 hundred dollars, not 28 thousand. Way too many serious issues to be worthy of much consideration IMO.

Looks like a looser to me. I would not spend the money for a serious survey. YMMV

Jim


^^^ this ^^^

you'd be better off buying in Australia or Thailand
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