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Old 04-15-2009
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Sailboat Salvage, Lightning Striker, Lancer 36, Blisters, Hull Moisture

Hello All,

Checking out a Lancer 36 (Bill Lee) that was victim of a lighting strike. Much of the electronics is non-functional now, but the engine seems to work (perhaps some issue with it or the prop? but not sure from discussion -- have not seen it run yet). Boom is missing (original boom snapped in a reach last year, apparently). Hull supposedly showed high moisture in some areas and did obviously have some blisters in process of repair (with one area showing glass, pushable with finger). The inside, though, seems quite dry (and lacks the very typical mildewy smell of many sailboats -- even some nicer ones for sail).
So, also, this is a salvage boat and might be had at a very low price.
Any takes on this? Blisters? Lightning strikes? Lancer 36's?
Just looking for feedback -- seems to be a gamble. A good, fun boat with a little work, or stepping into a hornet's nest of work for a boat not selling for that much relatively. I'm not looking for a masterpiece -- just a fun boat to live-aboard and do some sailing up and down the east coast eventually.
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Old 04-15-2009
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Seems a like there are a lot of unknows that you need to figure out before you have a clue as to the cost of getting this boat back in normal operation, engine and hull being the two biggest cost items about a boat. The odss are very high that whomever take son this boat ( assuming he won't PAY anything for it) would end up spending a lot more on it than it would cost to buy a decent lancer 36, ready to go, ignoring all the time and personal work involved.

This is a story plays out over and over in this forum.

Funny, you can say the above again and again, but people still go for the deal, usually to disappear from here after relating the first three of four expensive surprises.
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Old 04-15-2009
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I think it depends on what consititutes fun for you. If completely rebuilding a boat is your idea of fun, then maybe this is the boat for you. If sailing is what you are looking to do, this sounds like it might not be the best choice.
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Old 04-15-2009
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Epatter—

given all that is possibly wrong with this boat, you really should run IMHO.

The high moisture readings and blisters are a huge negative point...add fried electronics, possible hull and deck damage from the lightning strike, possible rig damage from the lightning strike, the missing boom, the issue with the engine, and you're looking at repairs that will cost far more than the value of this boat.

In general, most cheap boats or free boats aren't worth buying. The cost of repairing them to the point where they're usable is often far more than the cost of buying the same make/model boat in sailable shape to begin with.

I'd also point out that with fiberglass boats, a lightning strike can often cause a lot of pinhole leaks through the hull that aren't readily detectable.
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Old 04-15-2009
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mimsy View Post
I think it depends on what consititutes fun for you. If completely rebuilding a boat is your idea of fun, then maybe this is the boat for you. If sailing is what you are looking to do, this sounds like it might not be the best choice.
I simply must disagree, it is first about MONEY, what you are willing to spend to get a boat of your liking, most of which you will never get back with a subsequent sale. Yes, there can be a lot of fun, and rebuilding can be a valued adventure, but you must go into it knowing that you will pay wildly and probably beyond your imagining, for the ride.
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Old 04-15-2009
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Sailingfool I was being a bit sarcastic, sorry if it did not come across as such.
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Old 04-15-2009
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Sailingfool I was being a bit sarcastic, sorry if it did not come across as such.
On re-reading you were spot on, please excuse my tin ear.
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Agreed. I think everyone has to know what their priorities are -- it was funny in a way hearing feedback from people around town and the boatyard in looking at this boat over the past few days because it really brought out what they liked or didn't like. A lot were quick to chime in without discussing issues and ideas about the boat and sailing. :-)
Anyway, I decided ultimately not to bid. Someone might get a decent deal, but it will no doubt be a lot of work. And I learned a lot in reading up -- so now a know a lot more about laminates, blisters, repair, lightning strikes, etc. :-)
The bit which SailinDog mentioned, and I had read yesterday, about lighting exiting at many places through a hull and creating many holes (from large to small undetectable) is pretty wild, but also just one more difficulty to add to a boat like this.
I was willing to live on it, work on it, and eventually sail it, but I decided I rather just wait (living on a powerboat now) until I can get a sailboat that will require just a bit less work. ;-) Thanks for all the good feedback and discussion, too.
On a side note, the whole lightning strike thing is very interesting. I heard that one local boat may have been hit twice?!
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