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Re: Irwin 38 1983 for offshore??
There are Irwins in ports all over the world. Sure there are issues with Irwins, but often they are 'lack of maintenance' issues, more than design issues. Remember Irwin produced over 6000 boats! A few things I would consider if you are preparing for crossings. I would through bolt my hull deck joint every 18" this is no small task as interior parts will need to be replaced. The hull deck joint was very strong when these boats were new and the method of joinery top notch, (joint type) except that instead of bolts Irwin used screws on the top and from the side throught the rail. (Irwin was very proud of the hull deck joint at the time by the way) Crevise corrosion is the problem here and the screws can be dangerously weak on a 30 year old boat.
Replace the chain plates.
Inspect the bulkheads, they are tabed to the hull all the way around, but some could use reinforcement.
The salons are often huge and not adequately supported for the riggors of passagemaking. There are several ways to add strength, all are labor intesive and if you're aren't prepared to do the work yourself, are likely cost prohibitive.
I have heard talk of the larger Irwins having not adequate deck hardware, but that is certainly not the case on my 65 as it is all massive, infact overkill on the winches IMO.
Inspect the Mast Step- this is a hot spot on many Irwins... the original rusts inside and out and should be replaced if it's not sound.
Get a good surveyor, preferably one is is familiar with Irwins.
And rememeber Irwins are in ports all over the world and they all sailed there!