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Go Back   SailNet Community > On Board > Boat Review and Purchase Forum
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  #1  
Old 02-10-2008
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You found the boat you want...

After months of looking you found a boat that both you and your S.O. really like. It has the accomodations to suit her and a former owner of the boat was a racer at heart and added goodies for you like upgraded hardware, folding prop, mast mounted whisker pole and adjustable backstay tensioner to make the "family sedan" a tad racier than stock. Other nice upgrades include addressing shortcuts taken by the builder like replacing marlon through hulls with bronze give the over all impression the boat was well cared for at least for a good portion of its life.

Then you learn that the boat was just surveyed and rejected buy a previous buyer. According to what you can learn from the broker and surveyor, the survey went fine, until the boat was pulled and they found the boat has several (6-10) fairly large blisters (larger than a quarter, smaller than a 1/2 dollar). The blisters were mainly on the starboard side and randomly distributed down the length of the hull. The rest of the survey only turns up only minor, common problems that would not kill the deal or result in major price renegotiation.



Do you:

1) Walk away and wait for another boat -- its cheaper to add the goodies to a boat without blisters.

2) Make an offer a couple/few of grand off what you think the boat is worth. Blisters are not that big a deal. Grind em out, stick a barrier coat on and call it good.

3) Make an offer adjusted for the $350-$400 per foot a full peel and bottom rebuild job will cost -- Hey, you're not buying some elses problem and paying to fix it also.

This is pretty much where I find myself, and though my I think my mind is made up, I'd still love hear what others would do.
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Last edited by PalmettoSailor; 02-10-2008 at 07:34 PM.
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  #2  
Old 02-10-2008
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Is the hull solid or cored?

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Old 02-10-2008
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Depends on a lot of things. Off the top of my head, how old is the boat? Mine was 16 years old and had 7 blisters ranging from dime to quarter size. All were superficial and no big deal. Depends on the severity of the blister. Also the make of the boat, some are more prone to it than others, also the paint, the age, etc. Not that cut and dry. May not need a peel, just grind and dry.
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Old 02-10-2008
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All this depending to some degree on what boat, what year, etc

A dozen or so blisters is handlable... if all else checks out OK and the boat really suits you both I'd try for a moderate price reduction (the seller may be more amenable now that yet another deal is heading for the rocks) and deal with the blisters as you see fit.

It's tough to find a boat that really fits your needs, and it sounds like you're close here. Are you getting your own survey? Another surveyor's take on things could be helpful too.
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Old 02-10-2008
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I bought a boat with blisters 4 years ago -- adjusted the price based on input from the surveyor, then ground them out, filled them with thickened epoxy, barrier coated the entire bottom and never looked back. The surveyor agreed with my approach I might add. My boat had about 3 dozen blisters between the size of a dime and a quarter. No signs of blisters since then.

Some people are freaked out by blisters, and boatyards make piles of money on them. Obviously some boats are so bad they aren't worth buying. But it sounds like your boat will be fine. I vote for door # 2.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gtod25 View Post
.......................................
Solid laminate, '91 Catalina.

If I were to go forward, I'd either try to buy the previous survey and spend a couple of hours going over it, or start again from scratch.

The fellow that did the previous survey was favorably mentioned here on sailnet in a couple of the surveyor recommendation threads, so I feel he'd be trustworthy and knowledgeable.
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Old 02-10-2008
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I'd say it depends... ofcourse. The seller might have known there were blister issues, and thus priced the boat accordingly. Compare, compare, compare. If it were close to the price of other boats with healthy hulls, then definitely discount the price by the total cost to fix this issue, plus what ever other offer discount you might want to use for negotiation. Having one buyer walk away because of these blisters means that the seller is probably willing to negotiate alot more.

If the seller accepts an offer which compensates enough for the blisters, then I would buy it.

Might be a good idea to see if you can get ahold of the previous surveyor, and see if they'd offer quick advice on if these blisters are repairable before heading much further.

Good luck.
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From a sales perspective I think a seller would begin to feel completely devastated losing 2 buyers back to back (and knowing the 3rd will also learn of this) You really have the control in this situation which can only put you in a better financial position. You can be a hard negotiator while still being fair...I think its a win win for you...just make sure the offer benefits you first..them second.
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A 91 Catalina (of unspecified length) isn't a rare boat. Unless there is some compelling reason to take the chance with the hull, why not just find another one?
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Old 02-10-2008
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It is my understanding that most blister problems amount to nothing. They are mainly cosmetic and easily curable. It is only one boat in a thousand that has a genuine problem ad most are well known. If you like the boat, dicker on the price and have the blisters fixed. A full peel is likely way overkill for 6 - 10 blisters unless you ask a boatyard........
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