Oh my god! We bought a freakin' boat!!!!
I posted a few days ago asking what people wished they had known before they bought their first boat - everyone gave excellent advice. Little did I know that Mr. Pegu Club and I were going to end up buying the first boat we saw. But we hit paydirt. It's a diamond.
We are now the proud (and very freaked out) owners of a 1976 24'7 Bristol Corsair. It has the lead keel (not the concrete mix), the owner has had it since 1985, and he has kept it in impeccable condition. I mean, this thing is incredible. He has kept up with everything. He even had all of the turnbuckles lubed, cleaned and ready to go for spring in labeled baggies. Even the seacocks are immaculate. No water penetration in the chainplates (he has rebedded everything a few times since he's owned it and always wonders why he's bothered since it's dry), the mahogany and teak is perfect, no soft spots, very little cracking in the gelcoat. He's selling because he's bought a bigger boat and he's going to be staying in the same marina. He said we could call him if we have questions, etc. He was candid about the troubles he's had with the outboard and the fact that the marina went downhill for a while but is now heading back up, and he just generally inspired confidence in his integrity.
Like I said, it was the first boat we saw and because of that we didn't want to jump on it, so we've spent the past few days touring a variety of boats. Some were o.k., others were just wrecks. It quickly became clear that we found the needle in a haystack, so there you have it. It's ours! Wow! We know how to sail, but we don't know the first thing about owning a boat - I guess we're going to be learning as we go. Bottom line, it's a solid little boat. We're going to be treating it as well as its previous owner has treated it, and I know it's going to take care of us in return.