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  #51  
Old 01-02-2014
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Re: 1989 Hunter 40 - A million questions.

Smack,

I know this won't help, but I think what's happening to you is more or less par for the course. Everything costs more than we think. In the yard's defense, more than they think too. How many times have you tried to fix something, figured it would take about 10 minutes in the morning, and still find yourself buried in the bilge by dinner time? Lot's of times for me.

With a new boat to us, this usually goes on till I touch every system once. Then things stabilize for a while, until my repairs get old and we start again

But remember this, you might run out of money, but for sure, all of us eventually run out of time. Go sailing and enjoy your family.
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  #52  
Old 01-02-2014
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Re: 1989 Hunter 40 - A million questions.

Quote:
Originally Posted by capecodda View Post
But remember this, you might run out of money, but for sure, all of us eventually run out of time. Go sailing and enjoy your family.
You nailed it cape. I really don't mind the money. It's nothing compared to sailing with my boys.

I'm fitting out the boat for our crossing to Florida then down to the BVIs over the next 4 summers. So there's a lot to do. It's just impressive how quickly it adds up. And I think it's important for newbs to know what they're getting into when buying a boat. Do you have $10K sitting in your account AFTER you've bought the boat? (Assuming you're going to take her on a big trip.)

I'm also learning a lot. I can handle most things at a general level (engine work, electrical, plumbing, etc.) - but I have no problem calling "The Man" when I need to. I just watch and learn.

Being fairly meticulous, though, it drives me crazy when I see sloppy work like that rat's nest in the bilge. Especially when I've paid good money for it. And I would never get away with coming in 80% (see revision below) above our estimates with our clients in my businesses. So I have no problem questioning a pro that does so. That shouldn't happen. Period.

It's all good, though. The sailing is absolutely worth it.
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S/V Dawn Treader - 1989 Hunter Legend 40

Last edited by smackdaddy; 01-02-2014 at 03:07 PM.
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  #53  
Old 01-02-2014
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Re: 1989 Hunter 40 - A million questions.

Sounds like "1st World Problems" to me.

Smack, 80% cost overruns and crappy work are why I do 99% of everything myself. Right now, I have a LARGE through-hull in a difficult place that is leaking, and I'm toying with the idea of having a professional remove and fill the hole.

In the end, I think my fear of being overcharged for shitty workmanship is going to drive me to make the repair myself.

If it weren't for your bum arm, I would have told you to do all the standing rigging yourself, using swageless, Hayn Hi-Mod fittings. I'll be making my own upper shrouds this month, using them.
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  #54  
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Re: 1989 Hunter 40 - A million questions.

One of my sailing buddies was upset because he about to head off on a cruise, and his boat was not ready. Lot's of items on his to do list. We came up with the following prioritized list, and off he went, with a number of "small" things still not working. He had a great time.

Here's the list:

1. No Leaks - if the boat leaks and sinks, pretty much any thought of having a good cruise is out the window (I guess small leaks are OK). This item also encompasses common sense stuff like the keel should stay attached.
2. Rudder - If you cannot steer the boat, what's the point. Also, had a buddy loose his rudder about 500 miles from anywhere on the way to Tortola. Hard to go in straight line with makeshift stuff.
3. Rig - If the rig falls on your head, you cannot sail. Sails need to be reasonable too, but the rig needs to stand or the sails are just interesting hunks of synthetic fabric. Yea, I know someone will tell us a story of a makeshift rig across an ocean, but if given the choice they'd rather not.
4. Anchor - Need to stop once in a while in places where it's shallow enough to find the bottom. The closest thing we've got to brakes in a car.
5. Engine - Case the wind dies, and we aren't skilled enough to sail into any marina in any wind condition (although I understand many sail netters are, so good for those who can).

Yea, I'm assuming you've got safety gear, meet the CG regs, etc. Goes without saying.

But when you think about it, everything else is just about added comfort and convenience. If the winnebago stuff fails, you can find a way to keep going and fix it later.

Pressure water fails - foot pump
head fails - bucket
fridge fails - ice, in the UK they like warm beer?
ac fails - leave the marina, anchor and open the hatches, go swimming
audio system - talk or sing
radios - be self sufficient for a bit, miss the daily net gossip
chart plotter - paper and eyeballs
depth sounder - lead line
radar - stay put till the fog lifts or nav the old way
wind instruments - wet your finger and hold it up

Yea, I like having all that stuff work too and there's plenty of strong opinions on what safety gear you need, all the way from those who won't go anywhere without a personal rescue copter at the ready, to those who say I'm on my own in the wet wilderness.

But it's hard to have a good cruise without the high priority items working

Do what I say, not what I do. Get the priority stuff right then go! Sounds like you've got quite an adventure on the horizon.
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Re: 1989 Hunter 40 - A million questions.

Smack,

you blog was a good read. Thanks!

As some of the otheres in this thread I am doing most on my boat myself. Started due to monetary limitations during student period, later on when I could afford hiring help I usually wasn't satisfied with their work - better do it myself, then I know who to blame.
With time, I have even started to enjoy the work. Quite different from my normal job, nice to actually do something concrete with tangeable results.

Last year I changed my rudder bearing. Well, I could refrain from laughing during the digging in frozen soil. When all was finished, I admire my own work. (my boat is in the same size and age as yours, check the bearings before something drastic has to be done).

In your blog you mention blisters. I had that on a previous 35 ft boat. Sanded down the old paint, by hand (limted budget ...), fixed the blisters, put on a number of epoxy layers. Not expensive, somwhat time consuming (50-60 hours in total I think) and certainly tiring.

And so it goes on. Better to enjoy it.

Best

J
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Old 01-02-2014
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Re: 1989 Hunter 40 - A million questions.

I don't think I ever went over budget on having work done to the boat - mostly because over the course of owning two boats, about 95% of the time I wanted something done, there was no one to do it, so I had to do it myself. One of the benefits of not being in a full-service commercial marina (and the guys nearby only touched powerboats).

But never fear, one way or another I still managed to blow through the budget by a few thousand dollars... darn holes in the water have a way of doing that :-)

No regrets. The memories for the kids growing up on the boat from a young age are priceless.
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Re: 1989 Hunter 40 - A million questions.

I went back and re-read the section of the rigging cost and, though the overall numbers were generally accurate, there was a lot of detail missing. This made South Texas Yacht Services look bad - and I don't mean to do that. In the end, they stuck to their rigging estimate (apparently eating a fair sum) - which I totally respect.

So, here is the revised entry with ALL the numbers.

Quote:
Remember that $6K estimate for the rigging? At the end of it all, we ended up at almost EIGHT THOUSAND FIVE HUNDRED DOLLARS!!! How the hell did that happen??? I have to say, I was seriously shocked.

To be fair, let's go back and look at a breakdown of the estimates and actuals:

Original Ballpark Estimate at Survey: ~$5,000

Actual Estimate/Bill (with parts/replacement of boom sheaves added):
-Decom/Recom of Mast: $880
-Crane/Cherry Picker Unstep: $450
-Replace All Standing Riggin & Topping Lift: $5,107
-Replace All Boom Sheaves: $555
-Total With Tax and Surcharges: $7,644

As mentioned above, I gave the okay to start work and decided to pull new wire for the mast fixtures (radar, lights, etc.) while the mast was down. I purchased all the wire based on their recommendations and worked with their guy for a couple of hours pulling it through the mast. I installed a new VHF antenna, anchor light, and transducer cup myself. And I bought a new deck/steaming light combo - which the guy riveted to the mast himself. Beyond that, he had to purchase a couple of European terminals at Radio Shack for the wind transducer and radar. Also, there were some rigging parts that needed repair/replacement which could not have been seen beforehand. So here's the breakdown of that work:

Actual Bill:
-Labor to Replace Mast Wiring, Fixture, Bus Bar, etc.: $510
-Outside Sales: misc parts, roller furling, connector, weld spreaders, connectors, etc.: $242
-Total With Tax: $822

So here I was at right at $8,500.

This last bill seemed high since I had done a good deal of that work - and the re-wiring stuff with the recommissioning of the mast would have had to have been done anyway. So, I had a word with the yard manager and he sent me a line-itemed bill showing that they were actually already eating almost $2K in order to stick to their original estimate as possible. Here's that breakdown:

Actual Line Items From STYS:
-Decom/Recom of Mast: $559 ($230 less than original estimate)
-Crane/Cherry Picker Unstep: $450
-Replace All Standing Riggin & Topping Lift: $7,431 (~45% more than estimate)
-Replace All Boom Sheaves: $302 (~45% less than estimate)
-Total With Tax and Surcharges: $9,558

To me, this was just insane. I mean, shouldn't a professional yard kind of know these things when estimating? How can your estimate be FIFTY PERCENT OFF of the actual price????

Damn B&R rig! Wow.

In the end, I suppose we both got hurt on this one. So I'm not necessarily upset at STYS (they did stick to their original higher estimate on the rigging after all) - but it certainly ballooned way beyond what I was expecting. Better communication during the process would have been very helpful.

I think the biggest lesson learned here is to not add on work in the midst of a specific project. Or at least make sure you know the exact costs before getting into that additional stuff. I'll use STYS again since they stuck to their original estimate - but I'll be far more careful about what I ask for and what I expect.
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S/V Dawn Treader - 1989 Hunter Legend 40

Last edited by smackdaddy; 01-02-2014 at 05:26 PM.
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Re: 1989 Hunter 40 - A million questions.

Quote:
Originally Posted by capecodda View Post
One of my sailing buddies was upset because he about to head off on a cruise, and his boat was not ready. Lot's of items on his to do list. We came up with the following prioritized list, and off he went, with a number of "small" things still not working. He had a great time.

Here's the list:

1. No Leaks - if the boat leaks and sinks, pretty much any thought of having a good cruise is out the window (I guess small leaks are OK). This item also encompasses common sense stuff like the keel should stay attached.
2. Rudder - If you cannot steer the boat, what's the point. Also, had a buddy loose his rudder about 500 miles from anywhere on the way to Tortola. Hard to go in straight line with makeshift stuff.
3. Rig - If the rig falls on your head, you cannot sail. Sails need to be reasonable too, but the rig needs to stand or the sails are just interesting hunks of synthetic fabric. Yea, I know someone will tell us a story of a makeshift rig across an ocean, but if given the choice they'd rather not.
4. Anchor - Need to stop once in a while in places where it's shallow enough to find the bottom. The closest thing we've got to brakes in a car.
5. Engine - Case the wind dies, and we aren't skilled enough to sail into any marina in any wind condition (although I understand many sail netters are, so good for those who can).

Yea, I'm assuming you've got safety gear, meet the CG regs, etc. Goes without saying.

But when you think about it, everything else is just about added comfort and convenience. If the winnebago stuff fails, you can find a way to keep going and fix it later.

Pressure water fails - foot pump
head fails - bucket
fridge fails - ice, in the UK they like warm beer?
ac fails - leave the marina, anchor and open the hatches, go swimming
audio system - talk or sing
radios - be self sufficient for a bit, miss the daily net gossip
chart plotter - paper and eyeballs
depth sounder - lead line
radar - stay put till the fog lifts or nav the old way
wind instruments - wet your finger and hold it up

Yea, I like having all that stuff work too and there's plenty of strong opinions on what safety gear you need, all the way from those who won't go anywhere without a personal rescue copter at the ready, to those who say I'm on my own in the wet wilderness.

But it's hard to have a good cruise without the high priority items working

Do what I say, not what I do. Get the priority stuff right then go! Sounds like you've got quite an adventure on the horizon.
I like John Harries approach to this......

What Really Matters

Keep the water out
Keep the crew on the boat
Keep the keel side down
Keep the mast up
Keep the rudder on

The rest is small stuff.

We now prioritise every job/upgrade on the basis of the big 5.
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Old 01-02-2014
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Re: 1989 Hunter 40 - A million questions.

Nicely told Steve.
The cash blizzard will continue though.
You haven't even started listing your monthly slip fees.
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Re: 1989 Hunter 40 - A million questions.

Quote:
Originally Posted by CalebD View Post
Nicely told Steve.
The cash blizzard will continue though.
You haven't even started listing your monthly slip fees.
$250/month plus electric (which has never been more than $6 in a month). Of course, I've worked a deal where I don't have to pay any of that. So it's all good.
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