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 Post subject: Which One? Dark Blue Gelcoat or White?
PostPosted: 28 Sep 2017 13:44 
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Skipper

Joined: 09 Aug 2017 15:35
Posts: 178
Location: Maine/USVI
Blue: 1979. Gelcoat, looks like crap. Faded bad. Can't imagine that hours of buffing will make it look REAL good. 1979, 5 year old pile of electronics, not much use, maybe 1400 hrs. on the Westerbeke; no skeg and rudder will have to be dropped, but 4 bolt pintle plate O.K. - pin needs to be welded. Some rot around one of the plastic portlights. Can't drop the centerboard until I get to another yard with a lift - trailer only. Needs complete redo belowdecks. All wood needs refinishing.

White: 1978 Gelcoat. 3 bolt pintle plate needs replacing, bearing missing in action, not much for electronics, new stove, good centerboard; about the same sail setup, with an extra main. No bad rot around portlights, plastic dorade vents instead of chrome . . . westerbeast maybe 2000 hrs. Same on the wood refinishing.

Papa wants a damn windlass and neither boat has one. Probably looking at a minimum $10K in upgrades either boat. The way I do it, that's probably conservative. One asks $42K, the other $39K (on yachtworld, Robinhood Marine, Maine).

I'm just ruminating aloud here. I like the white gelcoat hull . . . easier to deal with. But . . . I'd prefer the other boat overall, although the fighter pilot setup on the binnacle with all the instruments is way more than I'd ever put in my line of vision. And the heavy radome on the backstay doesn't excite me, either. Neither one has a bimini.


 
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 Post subject: Re: Which One? Dark Blue Gelcoat or White?
PostPosted: 01 Oct 2017 07:40 
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Skipper

Joined: 21 Oct 2006 18:12
Posts: 257
Keep looking? There should be some that are ready to go.

Richard


 
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 Post subject: Re: Which One? Dark Blue Gelcoat or White?
PostPosted: 02 Oct 2017 10:58 
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Skipper

Joined: 09 Aug 2017 15:35
Posts: 178
Location: Maine/USVI
I do refits primarily so I know every wire, ever through hull, every chainplate. I learn the diesel. I replace all through hulls and valves. Bronze degrades. Even if someone says "ready to go," I'm yanking the chainplates on any 20+ year old boat, even moreso on a 40 year old boat. I usually buy a hull with various accoutrements and go from there. The prices aren't the concern, since these are simply asking prices. Both boats have their ups and downs, and I'm not going to pay for a "ready to go boat" if I didn't have a hand in making it "ready to go." I'm just enamored with the T37. I could go with a P367, but that double quarterberth and forward facing nav have my attention. I've done . . . half a dozen or more total refits and the deeper you dig, the more problems you find. Tanks don't last forever. Wiring doesn't last forever. Rigging doesn't last forever, and, certainly, with the unique T37 (actually, I saw a T30 I almost bought once with the same funky bent and welded - but smaller chainplate that gave me the creeps) chainplate setup, one should be careful and educated on the subjects. These are 40 year old boats. My 1972 Bristol 35 was only 20 years old when I bought it, and it got gutted for offshore, rerigged and repowered. But the seller said it was "ready to go."


 
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 Post subject: Re: Which One? Dark Blue Gelcoat or White?
PostPosted: 03 Oct 2017 07:28 
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Skipper

Joined: 29 Dec 2006 09:38
Posts: 520
Not sure what your question is beyond blue or white gelcoat and you seem to know that white gelcoat is the best—it is sometimes possible to bring back blue or black to somewhat of its original, but white is repairable and the other colors are much more difficult. I would not buy an Awlgrip or Imron painted boat because you simply are signing up for repainting over repair in the finish at some near distant time. Patching is tough to make look decent. I have had both. Boatyards love the stuff—it is fast, expensive, and looks great (going out of the yard, at least) and they know you will be back in a few years to do it all again.
I have rebuilt several boats including, over the 25 years I have owned my T37, nearly every system on it. However, I think that buying distressed boats like the ones you describe are very, very poor investments. I agree that, if you own a boat long enough, you are likely going to have to repair/replace the stuff you mention. However, thinking that you would have to replace everything down to the chainplates to may it “ready to go” does not make sense to me. I have sailed my T37 for 30K miles, many of them offshore, over 25 years and never seen any issue with the chainplates (yes I have inspected them and tightened the bolts, but no problems with leaks or any apparent weakness). I have had nearly new rigging (forward lower) fail without warning, so replacing old stuff with new is no insurance against failure. Engine hours are a poor indication of the condition of diesel, IMHO. Looking at the engine for outward appearance for maintenance and running it a bit for smoke and oil are far more telling than number of hours in my experience. Replacing or even “rebuilding” an engine is a very expensive proposition that can kill the whole economy of boat buying, so a smooth running, well maintained engine should be, IMHO, a principle interest in a purchase—low engine hours probably means the engine was never fully warmed up and probably sat mostly rusting in a damp bilge. I met folks out cruising who had 10k+ Hours on their diesels and were not anticipating replacing them. Maintenance matters.
I am just respectfully disagreeing with your premise of “buy a crummy boat because you are going to have to replace everything anyway”. I have made that mistake myself and what I learned was that you are going to have a lot, lot more money in a boat rebuilding everything from the ground up than paying a bit (or in some cases a Lot) more for a well maintained and generally solid boat. Even new stuff breaks and everything on a boat needs constant attention if you are really going offshore. I realize this goes against what many boat buyers do—they shop for the cheapest priced junker and haggle the heck out of someone who has kept the boat up with regular maintenance/replacement, but that is, in my experience, really false economy in boat ownership. Truly well maintained boats are cheap—sometimes at a much higher purchase price— and junkers are just liabilities posing as boats. I was “given” a basic, sound hull on a Folkboat I recently rebuilt—by the time I finished I had at least 2x the money (not to mention about 1000 hours of my time) I could have bought a very well-maintained and better equipped example for. Unless you really like boatyard work—and I do to some extent—and even then—-buying a junker is a poor financial investment IMHO.


 
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 Post subject: Re: Which One? Dark Blue Gelcoat or White?
PostPosted: 03 Oct 2017 09:34 
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Skipper

Joined: 09 Aug 2017 15:35
Posts: 178
Location: Maine/USVI
I don't see either of these boats as particularly "distressed," and certainly not "junkers," nor do I necessarily espouse "buy a crummy boat because you are going to replace everything anyway." Both the hulls look pretty good. I just have a method for refit. Nor did I say I was going to replace the chainplates. I refitted an Endeavour 40 around 12 years ago. I motored it from Coral Bay to Independent Boatyard, about 12 miles, with a little sailing. Everything looked O.K., the old Perkins ran fine, no fishooks in rigging, etc. When I got it in the yard, I ran halyards to stand by the shrouds so I could pull chainplates. The chainplates looked fine, with little stainless caps and caulk. No indication of leaking. I pulled the three on starboard first. Had to cut holes in the furniture to get at them, through bolted on the hull with stove bolts. Put a block underneath from the inside, tap up with a hammer on the bottom of the plate, the top half of two out of the three simply popped through the deck and the bottoms fell into the furniture. Same thing on the port side. And these were 25 year old "typical" flat chainplates. So I pull chainplates and check them. You can't see that 3/4" to 1.25" that is captured in the deck. That's where they fail.

Later, because I didn't replace the apparently "good" steering cable linkage, it failed at a very inopportune time. I now replace that cable and clamps and have a good look at any chains as well. I do what it takes to keep the boat floating, without concern, and going forward (sails, rigging and engine).

I'm a zealous advocate of knowing the boat, every wire, every through hull. 40 year old bronze has lost a lot of its composition. Standard procedure, even on 20 year old boats, to punch all the through hulls, replace, properly back them and bond them. I've pulled apart 2 cylinder Volvos, Yanmars and up to 6 cylinder Detroit 671. It ain't rocket science (although Swedish engineers put the decimal "comma" in the wrong place a couple times in the Volvo manual - there was a wasted day).

Either of these boats I could probably throw in the water after a weekend of cleaning and dithering. I just don't know what's in the mast for wiring, nor what the aluminum to stainless connections look like at the masthead and below. I don't know how the centerboard is secured or if the pennant is any good. One of the boats has some cutless slop, the other doesn't. All this stuff gets done. I know yard monkeys, I've seen them in operation from Maine to Grenada to Northern California. I prefer my work except when it comes to specialty machining, REALLY involved glasswork (e.g., stern tube) and the like. As far as the chainplates go, though, without yanking them, that little tidbit would always be in the back of my mind. Here's my 50' Navy Utility refit a few years ago. I did 90% of the work alone: https://www.google.com/search?q=50%27+N ... ypDckooIM:


 
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 Post subject: Re: Which One? Dark Blue Gelcoat or White?
PostPosted: 04 Oct 2017 16:36 
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Midshipman

Joined: 15 Jan 2010 16:13
Posts: 51
I have a very well equipped 1979 in East Boothbay that I may be putting on the market.


 
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 Post subject: Re: Which One? Dark Blue Gelcoat or White?
PostPosted: 24 Oct 2017 08:51 
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Skipper

Joined: 09 Aug 2017 15:35
Posts: 178
Location: Maine/USVI
I'm still at it. Slowed down because of the hurricanes, but we'll get there. I figure I still have at least an Atlantic Crossing left in me.


 
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