Join Date: Feb 2000
Location: Annapolis, Md
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I respectfully but strongly disagree with the idea that "Blistering where it may occur is largely a cosmetic problem subject to cosmetic repains. definately not a reason to exclude considering older boats."
While some cases of blistering, especially in boats built after the mid- 1980's may be strictly cosmetic, I have seen boats where the blistering extends completely through the laminate and is in-fact structural in nature. It is a failure of the resin formulation and almost no matter how these boats get repaired, short or laminating an entirely new bottom, the blisters will return and teh laminate will be undermined. For all reasonable intents and purposes boats like these are beyond permanent repair.
The boats that I have observed with this level of blister/delamination problem, have been constructed during the early 1970's through mid- 1980's.
The cost to repair blisters on one of these boats can far exceed the cost of correcting core problems, and can be much more difficult to detect if an unscruplous owner chose to mask a bad blister problem by hauling the boat long enough to allow it to dry and then doing simple cosmetic repairs.
I also suggest that when looking at older boats, fatique in a non-cored hull can be a much harder issue to overcome than minor core failure. Of course major core problems will be very obvious to a qualified surveyor and if you encounter a boat with major core problems I would say, walk the other way or else buy her very cheap, which is the exact same advice that I would give on a boat with major blister problems.
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Curmudgeon at Large- and rhinestone in the rough, sailing my Farr 11.6 on the Chesapeake Bay