The joy and nerves of purchasing one's first boat are upon me. I've gone from pining for a boat from my "dream list", all of which are very much out of my price range, to shopping for something I can afford now. Enter the Bristols: from what I have read, they came from a respected yard where they were well designed and well laid, capable of passage making (yes, with upgrades), popular with a decent owners organization, and surprisingly affordable today.
Cutting to the chase, tonight, I'm going to view a 1968 Bristol 32 that's being offered for sale at a price that generated my interest. I've been more successful at finding data on the more popular 24's and 27's than I have the 32. That coupled with the fact that this is the first time I'm shopping for a yacht, I have (a myriad of) questions. I'll limit them.
Main concern: The boat is on the hard in the owner's driveway. The owner purchased it 1.5 years ago, then was in an accident that rendered him incapable of sailing. He's never had it in the water. He purchased it from a local marina (whom I've contacted; they don't remember the vessel off the top of their heads but are researching for me) who was selling it for an elderly man. The current owner seems knowledgable enough, but, I'm leery of purchasing without knowing when it was last in the water. Owner says that the seacocks, stuffing boxes, and fuel filters have been serviced along with new bottom paint, "amongst others". Most of his attention/work has been paid to the cabin.
Since I'm buying on a budget, a $500 survey, while a great idea, under the circumstances, may not be feasible since the boat will need to make it's way to the water, have its mast stepped, dropped in, then yanked out when it starts sinking
If the first looks today are good, I'll be seeking someone with more knowledge than I to come and have a look see with me. But for tonight, here's what I'm looking for, please add to this list
Leaking tanks (water in the bilge, fumes), engine run?, mold / signs of leakage in cabin, state of the electronics, quality of included sails, crazing, chainplates, condition of rigging...
Your experience and knowledge are always appreciated.