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  #1  
Old 03-26-2010
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I need help! Buy or don't buy?

Hey, I'm new here but not new to sailing. I've been a sailing instructor for the local yacht club and know my way around sailboats.

My problem is that I have been offered a Ensenada 20 for $500. It has new sails, the hull looks to be in decent condition. The rigging is newer. The interior needs work but just for cosmetic reasons. What has me concerned is that there is a lot of algae growth and quarter sized barnacles growing on the hull. I am used to small boats where we take them out every day so I have never run into this problem. I plan on taking this boat out with a trailer but is there any reason to believe that growth has weakened the gelcoat or fiberglass? Is this a good deal or should I pass?

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Old 03-26-2010
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Buying the boat is rarely the major issue....

1. Have you the time/money to work on her.
2. Have you a place to store her / money for storage.
3. Have you the time to sail her.

If the answer to ALL of the above is yes the go for it, if not pass.

+ its a Lyle Hess design.
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Old 03-26-2010
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1. Well I have time and some money to work on it.

2. I'm trying to get a trailer for it but a place to park the trailer is no problem.

3. I got time to sail.

So yes, yes and yes.

Just curious, without ever seeing the boat yourself, could you say if $500 is a decent price? It does need work so I wanted to see if he would go lower but I don't want to cheat the owner if it is actually worth $500.

Thanks again.
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Old 03-26-2010
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if nothing else you could probably part her out, make more than your 5hundo and parlay the gains into something else.... heck the winches and the sails are probably worth 500bucks
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Ahhh the value of money......

$500 to some is a fortune to others its a bottle of Johnnie Walker Blue Label King George V Edition.

If you pay too much you loose a few dollars, if you pay too little you may sour a potential friendship. I almost never tell people what I pay for something because someone will always trump you by saying you paid way over the odds.

Haggle and try and end up with a win/win situation.
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I never really thought about it that way. Thats some good advice. Thanks

So no one is worried the grass growing from the hull is hiding any wonderful surprises?
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Old 03-26-2010
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I wouldn't worry if the bottom was covered by 1" barnacles. They can be scraped off. It is highly unlikely that barnacles would cause any serious damage to the hull. Weeds can be power sprayed off the hull.
The owner probably has not painted the bottom with anti-fouling paint for a while.
$500 for a 20' sailboat in sail away condition is a good deal even if it does not include a trailer or motor. If it has a motor then it is a no brainer.
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Old 03-26-2010
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Well I'm sold. Thanks guys.

This is going to be a big jump from my open 15ft Albacore. Even though the Ensenadas are just 20ft long they are huge compared to some 22' and some 24'.

I'll let you know when I get it so maybe some of you can have a chuckle as I'm scraping barnacles. Haha
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I have seen man boats come out the water loaded with barnicles, green growth, seaweed, and lots of other nasties.

Most of these boats are sound with no probles after a good scraping and pressure washing. At worst it could have osmosis, at best (and more likely) no problems. Just ask if the boat was built before 1990, and when it was last epoxied (if at all).

If you are still concerned, then get her hauled out, cleaned, and scraped, and then look for any signs of blisters. If there are any blisters on the hull, then she may have osmosis. If you are not sure, have a moisture meter reading done both above and below the waterline all around the boat.

Other than this, i think she is a bargain. Go for it!

Hope this helps you out.
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She was built in 1975. Why the 1990 cut off date?

When I looked at her she was completely dry on the inside in the bilge and it was a rainy day so I think thats a good sign too.

I did have another question though, if I trailer her from now on, should I apply antifouling paint or some other kind of paint? She will spend a week or two in the water at a time and for around here thats enough time to get some growth but how will antifouling paint hold up against a trailer bunk?

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