Re: Buying a 30-40 year old boat - your opinions
We just switched from a 2007 Gemini 105mc (bought new) to a 1987 Irwin 38 Mk II center cockpit.
The Gemini didn't feel like home, the Irwin does (will). I'm with WingNWing on this one, you'll spend 24/7 on the boat, either underway on the hook or at a marina; it's got be home, not camping. Older boats feel more solid to me. To get that feel in a new boat I've got to go for the 600k plus boats.
I'd rather spend the money on living than the boat. I can make old stuff shiny and if age mattered I'd have to throw myself out.
We bought her with almost none of the things cruisers need fully knowing that we'd be spending her value again in the next three years getting the upgrades in place.
That gives me three advantages
1) I'll know the boat and it's systems inside and out because I built it
2) I don't have to rip out old stuff before I put in the new stuff
3) I don't have to worry about fixing or repairing a 30 year old (e.g.) autopilot
By the time I'm done I'll have an arch with about 500w of solar, a battery bank that's three times the current, charging systems to support and monitor all that, efficient refrigeration to make sure I don't NEED all that power just for a few ice cubes in my cocktail, a new fully supported electronics suite that works together from AIS to weather forecasting.
Sure, it's like taking a school bus and making a modern RV of it, so?
Lessons learned are opportunities earned.