Opinions on a Tanzer 7.5
I've read a fair bit here and elsewhere about the Tanzer 7.5; most comments seem positive. I went to look at one priced very low and I'd like some feedback from people more knowledgeable than I.
Here is the boat in question: Link, priced at $2900.
I went to look at this boat and the pictures are accurate; the deck seems very solid but has some minor cosmetic issues. This is a smaller boat than I would normally consider, but the fact that it has a real head and a roller furling made me overlook its lack of headroom.
It strikes me as a very well cared for boat that has perhaps been neglected for a few years.
Here are the pictures I took; pardon the quality, they were taken with my cell phone and a flashlight - Link
- Very clean inside and out (with some exceptions listed below)
- 6hp 4-stroke with battery charging
- private head
- roller furling
- appears to have been professionally rewired not long ago; nice panel with all wires labelled, although I could not find a master battery switch anywhere
- battery box and fresh water tank seem recent
- Sails in questionable condition. As you can see in the photos the headsail is pretty gross. "I'd be embarrassed to sail that into our marina" - My wife
- I did not unfurl the main, but I did notice that at least one of the sail slides was broken. The sail material seemed "thinner" than what I'm used to, but maybe that's common with smaller boats?
Looking at the pictures for the first time since viewing a week ago, I actually remembered the sails looking worse than what the pictures show. I'm really not knowledgeable enough with sails to know if this is a replace or repair scenario so I'd appreciate some input on that.
- There seems to be a significant amount of fresh water in the bilge, under the settees, and under the v-berth.
- The water under the v-berth was almost black in colour (shown in one of the pictures). Any idea what that could be?
- The hand pump for the head didn't seem to work; felt like the seals might have been gone. Same for the sink pump, but in all fairness I'm not 100% sure there was water in the tank for the sink.
- Keel bolts - I'm not sure if these are normal or not (based on pictures linked above) - thoughts?
- There is no indication as to when it was last surveyed, and the broker said he thought it was hauled and painted this spring. There is a significant amount of algae growth on the rudder so I'm not so sure about that...
Part of me would like to "rescue" this boat; I wouldn't mind putting a bit of money into something like this, but where to draw the line? New sails ($1k to $1.2K per sail I'm guessing) plus other things means I'm getting up into the $5k to $6k range where I could possibly get a larger boat in better condition.
I'm drawn to this because it's cheap and simple, and as a first boat if I don't use it as much as planned I won't feel as guilty as if I buy a 27ft or 28ft diesel powered boat. One thing I did learn is that I can probably live without 6ft standing headroom. Perhaps I need to keep looking.
Sorry for rambling on, but I find writing out my thoughts help me consolidate them. Also I'll use any input to build on my (very) amateur surveying skills :)
When you get down into the bottom-feeder price bracket (that's not an insult, in my book- it's where I live when it comes to buying/building boats), you're going to find lots of tired sails and leaking hull/deck joints and just general stuff that needs to be fixed. The upside to a Tanzer 7.5 is it's relative popularity in Canada- it's easier to find used sails and other bits and bobs, relatively inexpensively.
Black water near the head is a possible area of concern. Did you smell the water in question?
I'd be more concerned about the rigging than the sails. How did it look?
If you can live with the limited headroom, aren't afraid of a little hard work, and know what you are getting yourself into, offer the vendor $1800.
This Tanzer model does not do it for me aesthetically but that is neither here nor there. I think Tanzers are well-regarded and the price point leaves some room for fixup. Also, since it is a well-known make it will be a bit easier to resell at some point. None of the issues you mention should be particularly costly to fix other than the sails and you know where you stand with that. You can get some decent used sails pretty cheaply as well. I would consider an offer in your shoes.
As Killarney alluded to, you have to 'like the look'.. this one, and her bigger sister the 26 won't necessarily be the 'prettiest girl at the dance' but these boats have a solid rep and sail well. As a starter boat in BC waters you could do much worse - esp at that price.
Your pictures don't look too bad; the 'filthy' sail is mainly the result of long-time disuse and having been left furled.. it's mostly dirty on the exposed portions and the rest of it looks not too bad. New or better (used) sails would be a good (and perhaps early) upgrade.
The only pics that gave me pause were the keel bolt images, but that might just be surface rust due to standing water - still, that needs a careful look.
I don't think that you would want to get too excited about the prospects until you can get a look at her bottom. If there is a lot of blistering or keel/rudder damage, you could just be taking on liability and be upside down on this boat after all your repair costs/time compared to getting one that someone else just restored for a few grand more.
As mentioned before, the name Tanzer helps out a lot and when the time comes that you would like to sell, it shouldn't be too hard to move, especially after you put all your sweat equity into it.
Good luck with the hunt!
For that price, take a chance on it. A toilet is only 130 bucks and you can use those sails for many seasons still I bet. That outboard is worth at least 800 bucks alone. I had looked at at Tanzer 7.5 years ago and really liked the way the interior was set up for a small boat, very spacious. Go for it.
The rigging seemed in good order; the jib sheet looked pretty weathered, but functional.
I dunno, I'll think about it over Christmas :)
Re: Opinions on a Tanzer 7.5
old post, but hopefully it's realized (above) that the "jib sheet" is a rope/line. Surely no one is too concerned about a weathered rope.
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