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  #1  
Old 04-07-2010
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Consequences of No Bottom Job

Am looking at a boat that looks great in the photos, sounds great in the description and is priced attractively. Only thing is, it hasn't been hauled out and had a bottom job in over 10 years. Is located in fresh water in a southern climate. What am I really looking at as far as potential problems? Thanks in advance.
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Old 04-07-2010
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It's gonna look like a science project or artificial reef for one. Also, the bottom growth could have damaged the bottom of the boat, but you won't know that without removing the growth. There could also be other damage to the boat that will be hidden by the growth.

I'd point out that if the bottom was neglected like this, the rest of the boat was likely also neglected as badly...and I wouldn't bother looking at the boat if I were you.

I'd also point out that any zincs have probably not been replaced in those same 10 years, and that electrolysis could have easily damaged a lot of the hardware—like the prop, propshaft, through-hulls, etc., in 10 years time.
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Last edited by sailingdog; 04-07-2010 at 02:06 PM.
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Old 04-07-2010
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I would say it is quite likely to have barnacles, mussels, and a small population of reef fish, sharks, and harbor seals living on the bottom. Once you scrape it all off, it probably won't look too smooth. This will mean fairing and sanding. At which point you may as well do a barrier coat. Then some fresh bottom paint. If she is simple below the waterline, this could be easy, a fully encapsulated full keel with an outboard rudder would be the easiest to deal with. An external fin keel and skeg hung rudder with a prop shaft, strut, and prop could get complicated, ugly, and fouled up pretty fast.

The boat probably won't be really usable until after a haulout and a few boat bucks. Think about that when deciding on a price.
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Old 04-07-2010
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A proper survey will require a clean and dry bottom. Unless the seller will haul the boat and have the bottom cleaned, at least 2-3 days before the survey, you cannot go any further with this boat. If you really like the boat and he doubts your bona fides, you could offer to pay $1-200 towards the haul to show good faith.
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Old 04-07-2010
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Well it's fresh water, so the type of life will be different than described, but it will be absolutely revolting. I expect that if it hasn't been bottom painted in 10 years, and looks great in pictures, the pictures are probably 10 years old as well. But it costs nothing to take a look at the boat except time, so check it out...
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Tell the seller that you will pay the survey fee IF you decide to buy the boat post survey. This should include the bottom cleaning.
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Old 04-08-2010
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Err osmosis??

Possible in fresh water too you know.
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Old 04-09-2010
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Watch out for blistering.
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Old 04-09-2010
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Locally, ie Lk Washington in the Seattle area, a friend of mine goes 5 yrs tween replacing zinc/Al equal metals. SO 10 yrs may not be that bad, as the salt will cause more electrolysis than freshwater. Frankly, not sure that FW is as bad for bottom growth as salt is either. No barnicles or other shell type organisms generally speaking to grow on things. If Zebra muscles live in this body of water. all bets are off!

Reality is, it may or may not be too bad on the bottom.

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Yes, but to leave a boat neglected like that also means that everything else on the boat was likely neglected for 10 years.
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Originally Posted by blt2ski View Post
Locally, ie Lk Washington in the Seattle area, a friend of mine goes 5 yrs tween replacing zinc/Al equal metals. SO 10 yrs may not be that bad, as the salt will cause more electrolysis than freshwater. Frankly, not sure that FW is as bad for bottom growth as salt is either. No barnicles or other shell type organisms generally speaking to grow on things. If Zebra muscles live in this body of water. all bets are off!

Reality is, it may or may not be too bad on the bottom.

Marty
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—Cpt. Mal Reynolds, Serenity (edited)

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