Project Boats - Fixable? Worth it? - SailNet Community

   Search Sailnet:

 forums  store  


Quick Menu
Forums           
Articles          
Galleries        
Boat Reviews  
Classifieds     
Search SailNet 
Boat Search (new)

Shop the
SailNet Store
Anchor Locker
Boatbuilding & Repair
Charts
Clothing
Electrical
Electronics
Engine
Hatches and Portlights
Interior And Galley
Maintenance
Marine Electronics
Navigation
Other Items
Plumbing and Pumps
Rigging
Safety
Sailing Hardware
Trailer & Watersports
Clearance Items

Advertise Here






Go Back   SailNet Community > General Interest Forums > Boat Review and Purchase Forum
 Not a Member? 


Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
  #1  
Old 08-10-2009
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Posts: 2
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Rep Power: 0
MikeWannaSailSoon is on a distinguished road
Project Boats - Fixable? Worth it?

Thanks for any advice in advance. I'm trying to buy a boat for cruising the Chesapeake with family on board. Wife is skeptical about cost and comfort. Looking at several mid to late 1970's boats in the 27 to 36 foot range that need work to keep initial cost down. All seem to share fact that their inboard diesels don't work ("toast" as one seller described it). Most interiors need cleanup and cosmetic attention and all hulls need a coat.

I intend to pick one and hire a surveyor but would appreciate any independent guidance about how much it might cost to have an engine rebuilt or, alternatively, to have a rebuilt engine installed (there seem to be a variety of Yanmar's for sale from $3,000 to $4,000).

The most extreme project involves a 36' hull without a mast or any rigging. My first call to a spar shop resulted in an estimate of $14,000 to put up a mast, shrouds, and halyards. But used masts seem to be about $5,000. What's a good price to expect to have one installed, with new shrouds, stays, and halyards? It also has a chainplate that rippped its bulkhead clean off the hull during the dismasting. Is that even repairable?

Thanks for any help,

Mike
Reply With Quote Share with Facebook
  #2  
Old 08-10-2009
ChuckA's Avatar
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: Barrington, RI
Posts: 168
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Rep Power: 6
ChuckA is on a distinguished road
Project boats can leave you penny wise, and pound foolish. In my opinion, it is less expensive to find a basically sea-worthy vessel that floats, sails, and runs, and work on minor and primarily cosmetic improvements to make it your own compared with restoring a clunker to seaworthy condition. Boat values are down and there are some good buys out there. Parts and labor remain expensive. Although a skilled and devoted do-it-yourselfer can save significant dough by putting in sweat equity compared with hiring help, and by using consignment shops instead of retail marine suppliers, there will be many jobs that are beyond most do-it-yourselfer's capabilities. When you start taking apart an old boat, you should expect to find more problems than are visible on the surface.

Good Luck!
Chuck
__________________
Best,
ChuckA
sailing a P28-1 Heart of Gold on Narragansett Bay

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

Twitter: @CoastalCafe_NE
Reply With Quote Share with Facebook
  #3  
Old 08-10-2009
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 117
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Rep Power: 7
gonesailin40 is on a distinguished road
If you buy a 5,000 dollar boat and spend a year of hard work and 15,000 dollars to make it into a boat worth 10,000 dollars, will you be happy with your decision? I have invested time and money into project cars and project boats and I assure you it will not happen again!
Reply With Quote Share with Facebook
  #4  
Old 08-10-2009
nightowle's Avatar
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 226
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Rep Power: 8
nightowle is on a distinguished road
Recently, a similar 1975 O'Day 27' in super top condition was listed locally for $7,500 and sold for $5,500. This is a boat that needed no work. There are great buys out there - keep looking and make some low offers. Sellers may take you up on the offer as things aren't selling quickly.
__________________
________
S/V Don't Panic!
O'Day 27
Seattle, WA

“Navigare necesse est, vivere non est necesse” To Sail is vital, to live is not.
Reply With Quote Share with Facebook
  #5  
Old 08-10-2009
bobmcgov's Avatar
baDumbumbum
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Windy Wyoming
Posts: 999
Thanks: 0
Thanked 20 Times in 19 Posts
Rep Power: 7
bobmcgov will become famous soon enough
Sure -- it can be done. But how successfully has more to do with the person (you) than with the model or condition of the proposed noble craft/rough diamond/listing hulk. How much time you got, and how much do you value that time? Can you sort out wiring, repair fiberglass, sew sails, splice line, fix engines, apply difficult paints? Got a space to do all this in?

I'd say forget about the notion of saving money, when all is said and done; the reason to buy a project boat is so it is set up to your priorities & you know it inside and out -- and because you really really love restoring boats. We got our SJ21 for $2k; I've already put that much more into it, plus hundreds of hours, and it still needs a deck recore. I could have bought one with newish sails, a solid deck, and fresh paint for $3500, so the 'savings' is false economy. (We had very few to choose from w/in 800 miles, tho. So we bought the beater with eyes open.)

What concerns me most is actually your user name: MikeWannaSailSoon. That's where the red flags go up. If you buy a serious project boat, MikeAin'tGonnaSailForThreeYears. Sorry. That's how the story inevitably goes. The input-to-reward is so skewed, it can beat you down. Most 'project boats' were projects when the seller got them, and they ran out of steam -- often never even sailed them. Don't be that guy.

I strongly agree with Chuck: buy a boat that is at the minimum in sailable condition right now. If the sails are skanky & blown out, fine; they are wear items anyhow. (Make sure you get the full suite, however.) Needs new running OR standing rigging pretty soon, fine. Engine work, that's a harder issue: as you note, a pro replacement will double the cost of many older boats. Aesthetics are, of course, not on the table. If a boat has good mechanicals and fits my needs, I don't care if it's banana yellow with scuffed decks and gouged gelcoat. Oh hey -- that's MY boat!
__________________
Buccaneer18, Grainnia
SJ21, Diarmuid
Albin Ballad 30, Fionn
Reply With Quote Share with Facebook
  #6  
Old 08-10-2009
Here .. Pull this
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 2,031
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Rep Power: 8
Sailormann will become famous soon enough
Quote:
Thanks for any advice in advance.
You're welcome
Quote:
I'm trying to buy a boat for cruising the Chesapeake with family on board.
How many children do you have and how old are they ?
Quote:
Wife is skeptical about cost and comfort.
Bad omen - you need to get her on board or else the maintenance costs will turn into a sore point between you.
Quote:
Looking at several mid to late 1970's boats in the 27 to 36 foot range that need work to keep initial cost down.
Don't buy a project boat. You will not spend time sailing - you wil spend money working on her.
Quote:
All seem to share fact that their inboard diesels don't work ("toast" as one seller described it).
This is a 12 to 20 thousand dollar repair. You have to buy the engine, pull the boat out of the water, install the engine, reattach the drive shaft, etc., etc. etc. Then put the boat back in the water. Don't try to fool yourself into thinking that you can do it cheaply - you can't.
Quote:
Most interiors need cleanup and cosmetic attention and all hulls need a coat.
This is doable on a budget.

Quote:
I intend to pick one and hire a surveyor but would appreciate any independent guidance about how much it might cost to have an engine rebuilt or, alternatively, to have a rebuilt engine installed (there seem to be a variety of Yanmar's for sale from $3,000 to $4,000).
See above - the engine itself is only part of the cost.

Quote:
The most extreme project involves a 36' hull without a mast or any rigging. My first call to a spar shop resulted in an estimate of $14,000 to put up a mast, shrouds, and halyards. But used masts seem to be about $5,000. What's a good price to expect to have one installed, with new shrouds, stays, and halyards? It also has a chainplate that rippped its bulkhead clean off the hull during the dismasting. Is that even repairable?
It will cost you about 100 thousand to put the boat in the water in sailable condition, and about 200 if you want to put the boat in the water in nice condition. You will never recoup your investment.

I don't know how much you have to spend and I don't want to seem like a wet blanket, but it doesn't sound like you have a lot of experience and there is nothing inexpensive about boats. My advice would be to buy the smallest possible boat that can carry your family safely - look at a Catalina 22 or similar. Buy the best example of that boat that you can find and take good care of her. Teach your wife and kids to sail and let the magic of the wind and waves do the rest. Then - once you have a couple of years under your belt, and a spouse who is a willing and active participant, look at a slightly bigger boat.

Good Luck !

Last edited by Sailormann; 08-10-2009 at 10:31 PM.
Reply With Quote Share with Facebook
  #7  
Old 08-10-2009
Junior Member
 
Join Date: May 2009
Posts: 7
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Rep Power: 0
samhamt is on a distinguished road
i dont know if its the market but in texas you wouldnt spend more then 4000 for a project boat. but also before you buy one take a sailing class and charter a few with your family to figure out the size of the boat you may want. then go into decideing what boat you may want to buy
Reply With Quote Share with Facebook
  #8  
Old 08-10-2009
Irrationally Exuberant
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Northern Virginia
Posts: 1,296
Thanks: 6
Thanked 5 Times in 5 Posts
Rep Power: 7
arf145 is on a distinguished road
What they all said.
__________________
Tom K

2000 Beneteau 331
Northern Chesapeake Bay

Ambition is a poor excuse for not having enough sense to be lazy ~ Steven Wright
Reply With Quote Share with Facebook
  #9  
Old 08-10-2009
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: chesapeake bay
Posts: 1,942
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Rep Power: 6
scottyt is on a distinguished road
there is/was a hunter 27 for sale in rock hall for 4900 iirc. they are a solid boat that will hold 4 for a weekend, i have done it. it has a real head to keep the wife happy. i dont know the condition of the boat but it might be worth looking for it on craigs list.

where on the bay are you?
Reply With Quote Share with Facebook
  #10  
Old 08-11-2009
TQA's Avatar
TQA TQA is offline
Bombay Explorer 44
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 2,254
Thanks: 0
Thanked 24 Times in 21 Posts
Rep Power: 6
TQA is on a distinguished road
There is a good thread here on how to buy and fix a bargain boat.
Confessions of a bottom feeder

There is also a web site that carries free and low cost boats Good Old Boat - Fixer-Upper Sailboats

But there is nothing like poking around in the backwaters and boatyards asking about boats that look abandoned. People are walking away from boats that they can no longer afford all across America. We are down in Florida on a boat hunt [ 40 - 45 ft with a centre line bed in aft cabin ] and have seen a number of boats that might be had for the yard fees.
Reply With Quote Share with Facebook
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools

 
Posting Rules
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may post attachments
You may edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Cruising Boats KPBaker Boat Review and Purchase Forum 12 12-01-2012 06:35 PM
Long versus short overhangs kwaltersmi Sailboat Design and Construction 96 10-09-2010 10:33 PM
IOR...CCA... help! sherbet Boat Review and Purchase Forum 7 05-22-2006 09:38 PM
Request boat comparison information on 4 boats FrankLanger Boat Review and Purchase Forum 16 02-27-2006 01:19 PM


All times are GMT -4. The time now is 07:18 AM.

Add to My Yahoo!         
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
SEO by vBSEO 3.6.1
(c) Marine.com LLC 2000-2012