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post #21 of 48 Old 12-30-2007
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There's lots of lists around for pre-sales evaluations. I like to think primarily of five:

1) Engine condition and maintenance history.
-- a recently replaced or rebuilt engine can be a real plus.
-- don't forget the condition of the fuel and electrical systems.
-- Atomic 4s are fine, IF they were cared for.

2) Hull condition and recent treatments.
-- some say all fiberglass hulls will need epoxy treatments sooner or later,
preventative or restorative (peel jobs).
-- some blisters aren't a deal-breaker, but their presence most likely
means an ongoing issue.

3) Standing rigging age and chain plate condition.
-- recently replaced standing rigging is a big plus.
-- don't run risks with worn-out standing rigging
-- corroded chainplates or rot where they tie in can be very expensive to
repair. Any rot around deck fittings can be a big deal to repair.

4) Age and condition of sails and running rigging.
-- Newer sails are a big plus, and you should at least know the cost of
replacement sails if they appear needed.
-- Running rigging is less expensive to replace, but still can be complicated
if sheaves in the mast head need to be replaced, etc.

5) Age and condition of electrical system.
-- Flaky electrical systems reduce resale, are fire hazards, can mean
you're not seen at night, etc.
-- Batteries are relatively inexpensive to replace, but new wiring panels
and materials typically add up fast.

Anyway, see a range of boats, as many as you have time for before deciding. The Contest would be a good boat to see, as would a C&C 27 in that size range. Have fun, and let us know how it goes!

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post #22 of 48 Old 12-30-2007
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Yeah, I just noticed the Contest 30...nice boat.

Jim H's list can go on your fridge...it's full of useful caveats.

You WILL of course make an offer conditional on survey, right? It will be $500 or so, but it will save you multiples of that in grief if it a) keeps you from purchasing a rotted-out boat, or b) provides bargaining leverage for a boat in need of TLC that you feel able to remedy.

The survey I had in '99 for my first boat facilitated a drop in price from $31,000 to $23,000. The money I saved went back into the boat, naturally, but now it's in decent working order (with a rebuilt Atomic 4 good for another 20 seasons) and a great deal of confidence for me in knowing that the boat is not only structurally stronger than when I bought it, but probably than when it was new.
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post #23 of 48 Old 12-30-2007
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Firstly the boat is not really wooden. It is probably cold moulded ie two layers glued and then apparently expoxy sheathed. This will probably last longer than a GRP boat, and be stronger because it has frames. The inside may or may not be expoxy coated. I prefer the wood look and with maintenance of the varnish, and probably the bilges sheathed it should be low maintenance, and no more than GRP.

There was a problem with adherence of fibreglass sheathing in the early days however this doesn't apply with more modern resins, certainly not in the 90s, as the builder seems an enthusiast who probably had a good idea what he was doing. The technicque is not unusual and there are many boats here built like that that are ocean going and in good shape but a little bigger.

It is individualistic, and perhaps the hull lines are not as appealing as they might be, however with the boards down and the sails up she should look good and be a lot of fun.
I agree with the others that by the time you want to venture further you may want another boat.
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post #24 of 48 Old 12-30-2007
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My $.02


Welcome aboard! Good luck with your search.

A few general comments.
  • You need to LOOK (not just on the web but in person) a lot more boats before you even think about buying one.
  • Don't believe ANYTHING you read / see on the web until you see it in person (and even then what you see maybe not be an accurate representation of the actual condition).
  • The Head on the Catalina 27 is very small. I didn't look to see if the one you looked at has hot water, but even if it does, the shower is VERY small. Not something you would want to use on a regular basis.
  • I don't believe you will be able to register the boat in the US. The broker should be able to give you more info.
  • THere are lots of other makes and modes you should look into. Consider other boats like O'day, Newport, S2, Tartan, C&C, .....
Good luck,

Originally Posted by mxtommy View Post
Thanks everyone

I've pretty much crossed the ketch off my list, I've also bumped the Catalina from 3rd place to a tie for first with the Grampian. I suppose my preferences will change after I see the boats though. The listings some of you supplied are also worth looking at. I'm going to look into the ones I posted first though as they're a LOT closer to me then others. They're only about 100 miles away and all 3 are in the same area (roughly) so I could conceivably go see all 3 in the same day. I'd have tried to go today but I'm on call for my work (IT Administrator) starting a 5pm Oh well Next weekend perhaps if I can arrange it with the broker. I'll take lots of pictures and let you guys know how it went.

Some other questions that one of you raised relates to taxes, duties and such. I'm assuming I'll have to pay sales tax wherever I register it, however is registering it in the US possible? The thinking behind that would be that I'd avoid any "importation" issues and costs. I'm not really sure how all the "paperwork" is going to happen, though I guess that the broker would have more information? He's close enough to Canada that he must have had a few Canadian buyers before. Does anyone know where to find the sales tax rates in the US? I did a quick search on Google but didn't turn up anything. Also, could I declare it as a residence to save anything? I've seen a few people say that they declared their boat as a second home in order to save on taxes or something. Does that still work if you don't own a home? I realize the taxes on such a "cheap" boat wont be THAT much, (nothing compared to say a $200,000 boat) but hey, if all it takes is a few minutes filling out a form to save a grand or two, then why not.

Thanks again!

Barry Lenoble
Deep Blue C, 2002 C&C 110
Mt. Sinai, NY

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post #25 of 48 Old 01-05-2008 Thread Starter
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First, sorry for the length of this post

Well, went and saw some boats today at the brokerage. Sadly the Catalina 27 sold a few days ago, (guess it was a good deal )

The other two boats I was interested in didn't turn out so well.

The Beneteau has some water damage to the headliner. The broker said most of the headliner needs to be replaced, and most likely most/all the deck hardware needs to rebed in order to get rid of the leaks. He also said the interior needed some work. I didn't actually go see this one though, so it may not be as bad as it sounds.

The Grampian was.... well not pretty... It's a sad sight right now. When we opened the cabin, there was a STRONG smell of gasoline. Seems like a fuel leak somewhere. What really worries me though is on the outside of the hull, about a foot forward of where the prop shaft comes out of the hull, the gas has seeped through the hull. IE the hull is "wet" there and smells like gas. I'm no fiberglass expert, but that can't be good. Aside from that there seems to be some trouble at the keel to hull joint. Not quite sure what's going on there under the bottom paint, but doesn't look too safe. At any rate it would need a complete bottom job. The interior needs some work too. The headliner need to be replaced in a few spots as well as a few other things. Though... the broker said I could probably get it for a LOT cheaper then it was listed... as in "make an offer", so depending on the costs to fix these things, it MAY still be worth looking into.

Aside from that, The broker showed me 3 other boats, 2 of them I like enough to look into.

The first is a 29 foot Cascade from 1968. Yes it's old, but it's been more or less completely restored inside and out. Broker said the owner's put around $15,000 into it. Owner is selling because he was transfered to the west coast. (That's got to suck for him...)

(once again, sorry about the mangled links)

www dot yachtworld dot com/core/listing/boatFullDetails.jsp?boat_id=1556335

Honestly, for the price it is looking really good. New electrical, New Interior, New "used" diesel motor, recently repainted, Interior like new. etc... of course it's not "perfect", but at that price.... There is one or two things I don't like about it though.

- There seems to be some water leakage from the "windows" (Ok, so I know there's a proper name for them, but it escapes me for the moment ) This has "darkened" the wood underneath them. Is this fixable without replacing the actual wood?

- It feels "narrow". May just be the layout, but whatever.

- A nav station that small is pretty pointless IMO... taking up space.

- Not sure how useful that fridge is going to be... though you never know

- No quarter berth (well there is "technically" one, but I wouldn't even stick a kid into it).

- Winches are OEM... they look antique...

All that said, it still is only $7,900, leaves a lot left over for "upgrades"

The Other boat that he showed me that I liked was a 1985 C&C 27

www dot yachtworld dot com/core/listing/boatFullDetails.jsp?boat_id=1749682

This boat is immaculate

There doesn't appear to be a thing wrong with it. It's cabin is VERY spacious, and appears in perfect shape. The cockpit is also a lot more spacious then the Cascade. It also feels a LOT wider (which I like). It also as a small bonus comes with a "shelter" thing. Not sure how it's called. It's for winter storage, a frame that holds up canvas to keep the snow off of it. Most boats use a couple of tarps with bungee cords for the same effect. This ones a "proper" one. It also has a "Bimini?" for the cockpit. It also has VC-17 bottom paint and newish sails (05 I believe) This boat's a "turn-key" boat as the broker stated. He doesn't predict any problems at inspection. Only downside to this one is the cost, it seems to be in line with other boats of this age/size and model, but it's also twice as much as the Cascade. The C&C does have a more shoal draft though, so would be better in my local waters if I ever wanted to...

There you have it. Does anyone have any advice? Anyone ever sailed on a Cascade?

Also regarding registration, here's what the broker had to say. I can register the boat in Vermont no problem. There I pay 6% sales tax. I can bring the boat to Canada for trips, working on it, and even winter storage, though i can't "keep" the boat in Canada. If I register it in Canada, I pay 15% sales tax, but then the paperwork is less...

<-- me

I hate decisions.... On the other hand this is much fun

Also, for those that are going to suggest it, don't worry, I will be getting whichever boat I decide upon inspected. In fact, it will get inspected twice Once by my uncle who's been working on/in/around boats his entire life, and if it passes him, then a "professional" inspection
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post #26 of 48 Old 01-05-2008
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I'd say go for the C&C 27. Great article on the C&C 27 in the current issue of Good Old Boat magazine that you'll probably want to read. Also, has a small article on some comparable boats in that size range and how they stack up against the C&C.

As for registration... I would highly recommend registering the boat in CANADA. If you take the boat to the islands, being a Canadian citizen and having a US state registered boat might cause you some issues... and I wouldn't be surprised if you ended up taking the C&C down to the islands, as it is fully capable of going down the coast and out to the islands.


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post #27 of 48 Old 01-05-2008
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That C&C looks like the deal. Thems sweet sailin' boats. From all appearances it had an active owner who kept it upgraded.

I will repeat the following two pieces of advice others have given:

1) Don't buy a boat you don't _love_.
2) There are lots of boats out there, wait for the one.

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post #28 of 48 Old 01-05-2008
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i looked at sailboats for several years before i bought mine

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post #29 of 48 Old 01-06-2008
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I have a C&C 35 MKIII.

The 27 is a great first step cruiser with many advantages. Good balance. Equipped with top quality hardware (winches, traveler, oversize chainplates etc. Quality workmanship in gelcoat and joinery of inside woods. Great storage behind settes, hanging locker, under "v" and a good size and layout salon for a 27 footer. Newer sails are very good too and could be worth as much as 3-$4,000 to replace on that boat easily. Refrigeration is important. What engine is it Yanmar?

C&C will definately be a quicker boat also compared with others in that size range and will handle all winds thorugh the range better than most

Make sure you get a survey to detect for moisture in hull as well as other areas. Also engine and mast step also. Check out the C&C owners forums here on sailnet too. There are many in Canada as well as a few associations and clubs there.

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post #30 of 48 Old 01-06-2008
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I owned a 1973 C&C 27 for two years, and it was excellent. It is worth knowing the difference between the five "marks" of the C&C 27, and this site is an excellent source of information:


The boat you looked at looks like a Mark V, and it was significantly different from Marks 1-4, and it was built at two different locations (which can make a difference in quality). Here's an article and specs on just the Mark V:


The worst thing that can happen to a C&C 27 is wet decks-- water that penetrates the balsa coring in the deck and rots it. That can reduce the strength of the deck to the point that that standing rigging is comprised. Be warned-- an otherwise perfect looking boat can have this relatively serious problem, but a good survey should give you both moisture readings and find other types of evidence of the problem. Here's a page that shows a deck rebuild, but it would be about as hard as it looks:


For the record, here are pics of our C&C 27:


Now, as for the Cascade 29, it's an entirely different boat. The C&C 27s can be raced well, yet the boat is still a good weekend cruiser (or longer). The Cascade 29 is actually more of an offshore design, narrower in beam, heavier in build, and actually better in a sea way. (The C&C 27 is reported to "pound" or "hobby-horse" in bigger swells.)

Here's a Cascade 29 that my brother is currently considering:


Here's a fun article about a low-budget circumnavigation on one:


In the end, it all depends on what type of sailing you want to do. I mostly did river sailing on our C&C 27, and it was good in light airs. My brother is thinking about doing a bit of off-shore from Astoria to Puget Sound, so the Cascade 29 (with all the upgrades, and a decent price) might be an interesting choice.

One other topic: engines. My C&C simply had the original Atomic 4, and not a new Yanmar, for example, and it was a good learning experience maintaining it, the fuel system, the stuffing box, etc. The C&C you're looking at (a Mark V) has an outboard, which would be easier to maintain, but less of a learning experience and not as strong as most inboards (which may be fine for your sailing area).

Have fun. Both boats looks interesting for different types of sailing, but both could have hidden issues. Also, remember that you've only looked at a handful of boats yet, and there are more out there.

Jim H
London, UK

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Last edited by Jim H; 01-06-2008 at 04:17 AM.
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