Refit inside cabin of Columbia 23? - SailNet Community

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Old 05-26-2007
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Refit inside cabin of Columbia 23?

I am thinking about buying a Columbia 23 for about $1500, the current owner has removed the entire cabin to fix a leak onto the bulhead, he is now out of time and needs to get rid of the boat. The hual appears to be in good shape and he has all the pieces for the inside cabin but most of them need to be refabricated. It does not appear to be a major project, a timely one but not that diffucult, is this something that could be taken on? Should I eep away from the boat?

Thanks

Jonathan
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Old 05-27-2007
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It might be a good idea to do some exploring on the internet to see what a Columbia 23 in good shape is selling for. It will cost a lot of money to repair the boat - way more than your purchase price - even if the parts are all there. It may be cheaper to buy one that hasn't been ripped apart...
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Old 05-27-2007
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I'd have to agree with sailormann. the price difference between a wreck and a decent boat is generally far less than what the cost of repairing said wreck would cost. Unless you have a serious jonesing for a custom interior Columbia 23 of your very own, and have the woodworking and fiberglass skills to back it up... I'd stay away. That said, I know a guy who has a SC31 that he bought with no interior, and the interior on his boat is absolutely stunning, since he is a master carpenter...and his partner is a master cabinet-maker, and they took the time and spent the money to do it right.
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Old 05-27-2007
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Thanks, that is what my wife is trying to tell me, I like projects but this may be too much of a project even for me.

Thanks Jon
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Old 05-29-2007
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I'm putting an interior into a Beneteau First 24...it sucks, and there's not much to it. I bought it at a good price, but it's still no fun. Find something ready to go and get on the water.
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Old 05-29-2007
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My 2 cents

Here is my 2 cents. If you feel you are getting a good deal (by all means do your research) and bargain bargain bargain, then get the boat if you think the everything else is sound. As far as refitting the inside of a cabin I have read an excellent book on this called This Old Boat by Don Casey. He covers in detail how to refit and change cabin layouts, what to use and how to use it. He has a newer book out called I think complete sailboat maintenance guide. It would probably help you to read those books to help your decision.
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Old 05-29-2007
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If you don't like to sail...

Then by all means get the Columbia. I bought a boat that was in pretty good shape (only needed a few minor things fixed) and it wound up costing twice as much and taking three or four times longer than anticipated to fix even these minor things. I can't imagine getting an actual "fixer-upper"!!!

But the most disappointing thing is I missed a whole month of sailing this season cus I was frantically trying to finish everything and put my boat back together the past few weekends. Everyone who tells you that it is more economical to cough up the extra $$$ for a boat in better shape is right. And don't worry...if you like to romanticize about working on your boat there will always be something to repair or enhance.
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Old 05-29-2007
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I've replaced most of the bulkheads on my Columbia Sabre, and it's a messy time consuming job. If the bulkheads are in that condition I would worry about other things, like the core in the deck beeing wet and rot in the header for the mast.
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Old 05-29-2007
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Wow, what a bunch of "experience" talking here. Minnreefer- my wife said the same things and everyone around me said I was a fool and that it would cost too much and take too much time, etc. I started a complete refit of a Starwind 22 in November 2006 and just laid on the bottom coat yesterday. Yes, lots of work.... yes....a bit of money...but not bad if you pace yourself with what you really absolutley have to have at the time. I am not a master of anything and everything i did was pretty much for the first time. I too found that Don Casey's Sailboat MAintenence Manual, (which i now refer to as the Bible) was a great starting point....not to mention having the absolute support of SAILNET members who were so forgiving for me asking a zillion questions without checking the previous post.. Also, if you have NETFLIX, you can rent DVDs that demonstrate How-To projects. I found one that helped ease the fear of fiberglass. Obviously, make sure the thing is otherwise seaworthy...maybe even get a survey. Be prepared to be frustrated at times, (i had a FOR SALE sign on my workbench ready to go a few times when replacing bulkheads!!) In the end...funny how the ones who said I was a fool are now excited and asking to be there for the launch. AND, even my wife has come around and bought some nautical tea towels for the galley and is making new cushions. Besides being a very rewarding experience (towards the end), I find that I will become a better sailor because I know every single millimeter of that boat inside and out. I am behind you all the way...don't forget to post photos of your progress if you decide to jump.... best of luck.
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Old 05-29-2007
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Boats like that go for much less on eBay ($500-800) esp. from the Boat Angel. It would make a good winter project.
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