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  #1  
Old 05-28-2011
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My Boat Shopping Adventures Log

After several months of studying and research, I finally went out to view some sailboats for sale! I would like to post up some pictures and some thoughts on what I've seen. If there are any objections to me doing this please I will delete it. If not, then I will continue to update this thread as I go viewing more boats until I find the one.

First, a little background. I'm based in South Florida and looking for my first sailboat. I want something blue water capable (seeing as how the Caribbean is so close) with a budget of about $15k (maybe a bit more with the right sacrifices). I don't mind a boat that needs work done, as long as boat + work falls within the budget. I also wouldn't mind doing the work myself, but I'm inexperienced with sailboats and would only have the weekends to work on it.

So without further ado...I present to you:

Boat #1 - 19?? Islander 36
From Boats - Islander36

The owner is asking $9500. He told me that it needed about $1k or $2k to get it sail ready. $4k would get it "ship shape". I think not. The hull was smashed on the port side. The caulking between the deck and hull was falling out. There was so much wrong with this boat. I didn't even go inside. Check out the gallery for more pics (click the link that says "From: Boats - Islander36"). The pic captions tell the story.

Boat #2 - 1977 Heritage West Indies 36
From Boats - Heritage36

This is a much nicer boat. The price is a bit high, $17,500 but the broker told me the owner was flexible. I actually would like the opinion of some experienced sailors as to how much it would take to get this boat ship shape.

Here is what I know about it:
At some point this boat was dismasted. The mast and rigging are new. The previous owner even installed a larger chainplate on the bulk head.

The bilge was completely filled with water. The guy there climbed behind the engine and said that the leak seemed to be coming from where the prop shaft exits the hull. Obviously the bilge pumps were not working. We got one to pump working manually.

The mainsail needs to be repaired for $600 or replaced for $1200 (according to the broker).

The boat has to be hauled and the bottom painted. And now the shaft leak fixed.

At least one of the through gunnel drains leaks (or leaked). The edges of the drains were sealed with some strange compound (see the gallery). There are cracks and dings on the hull that seem to be from age and use. I don't know how serious they are.

No AC, no generator. Not much in the way of electronics. It does have some kind of autopilot and a VHF.
Well, that's all I have for now. Please chime in with your thoughts and opinions or ask questions.
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Old 05-28-2011
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The boats are in really bad shape are far to big for your budget
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Old 05-28-2011
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Depingus,
Go to yachtworld.com, enter Islander 36, and see what prices come up. Of the two boats you've mentioned, if they were both in good condition, the Islander is a better boat, but you've got to find (and pay for) better examples. 15k for a 36' boat will not cover the work you will need to do. If you're budget is 15k, find a smaller boat for 10-12k, and use the rest to fix/upgrade/etc.... Don't be in a rush, and look at this:

Boat Inspection Trip Tips

You've got a lot of reading and research to do so you have a better idea of what's even worth looking at. An Islander 36 at 9.5k screams "project boat" if not something for the sawzall and dumpster. One for 30k might be worth a look, but that's twice your budget. Both of the boats you posted are well within the 'run, don't look back' category given your descriptions.
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Old 05-28-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tommays View Post
The boats are in really bad shape are far to big for your budget
Yeah. That is way more boat than I need. I wasn't even thinking that big when I started looking online. I learned an important lesson today: search with a MAXIMUM foot size. That seems to weed out most of the junk boats.

So my new search filter is $10k to $17k, 23' to 30' in Florida.

Is that a reasonable search criteria? Can I search lower than $10k and still find good boats on the smaller end of my size range?

Quote:
Originally Posted by puddinlegs View Post
...and look at this:
Boat Inspection Trip Tips
I didn't just look at that, I printed it out and formated it into a report/check list to take with me!


I hope my documented follies help out future new buyers... and at least entertains the experienced sailors on board. Thanks for all the input. I really appreciate the guidance.
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Old 05-28-2011
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I'd check the sails carefully for any boat your are considering. New cruising sails for a 36' boat (main & genoa) would set you back about $5K, if you are going with a name brand. I'd have a sailmaker inspect the sails that come with whatever boat you are considering. If you stay below 30' the cost could be less than $4k for the pair.

It's not just the sails that wear out, but all of the other stuff that makes a boat work. You may want to consider allotting 10% of your budget for repairs/replacements. Even if you capture a well-found boat, stuff happens. If the boat has had structural repairs, I'd run--not walk--given your budget.

Another thing: asking isn't always getting when it comes to price. You might check the boat Blue Book values for any boat you are considering. At least you'll get an objective opinion on worth.
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Old 05-28-2011
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10-15 k ought to get you a nice sail ready boat in the 25-30 foot range. It will be an older boat that will need a lot of maintenence but boats this age all require it. But you should be able to find a decent boat for the money.

You asked for blue water capable. That is kind of a vague term...
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Old 05-28-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MarkCK View Post
10-15 k ought to get you a nice sail ready boat in the 25-30 foot range. It will be an older boat that will need a lot of maintenence but boats this age all require it. But you should be able to find a decent boat for the money.

You asked for blue water capable. That is kind of a vague term...
Thanks. That's exactly the info I'm looking for regarding size/budget.

Regarding "blue water capable"...I'm a little reluctant to even bring up the discussion. I've seen several other threads derail talking about that. Suffice to say I'm looking for something that will get me around the Caribbean and the Gulf; nothing trans-Atlantic or anything like that.
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Old 05-28-2011
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It is kind of a sticky subject on here. If you are not concerned about how fast you are sailing there are a lot of 25-30 cape dory's and tartans that will go anywhere in the Caribbean. Either of those brands have also gone a lot farther than that.
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Old 05-29-2011
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In my mind 25 to 30 is a huge difference

I am sure you could find a really nice 25' to 27' in your range but at 30 you would be making a lot more compromises on condition
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If a dirty bottom slows you down what do you think it does to your boat
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Old 05-29-2011
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Both of those boats seem overpriced to me. Try these sites online... sailboatlistings or sailingtexas and also as someone mention yachtworld. I see plenty boats on those sites advertised as ready to sail away, especially for over 15k.
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