Fiberglass ..classic?? - SailNet Community

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Old 09-12-2013
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Fiberglass ..classic??

Are old Fiberglass boats worth refurbishing and preserving, even the best of them??

It's easy to understand preservation of classic timber yachts, an old Fife could theoretically live for hundreds of years, to increasing acclaim. What sort of claim can made for fiberglass? Even the best usually have indifferent craftsmanship under the covering boards and head liners. Will the hull/deck last for more than a few decades? In other words do the returns inevitably diminish to zero?

I would really appreciate a believable justification having recently spent a lot of time, effort, etc doing all of the above.
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Old 09-12-2013
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Re: Fiberglass ..classic??

If you just restored a classic plastic boat, and don't feel it was worth your time and money, then sell the boat.

There are plenty of us here that own plastic boats that are more than just "a few decades old", and that have been lauded as classics in several sailing magazines, and we love them.

There is no "justification" except to yourself. Boats (even timber boats) do not accrue in value. Boats are a cash and time suck, and the sooner you come to terms with that, the sooner you will be at peace with your restoration efforts.

To the rest of society, my boat has zero value. It's a luxury in a bad economy where only "essentials" have value. I accept that, and I'm at peace with it. To me, my boat is priceless. It's my sanctuary, my place of peace, and freedom. That's all that matters.
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Old 09-12-2013
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Re: Fiberglass ..classic??

Quote:
Originally Posted by jamesjle View Post
Are old Fiberglass boats worth refurbishing and preserving, even the best of them??


ANSWER: No, absolutely not, not ever.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jamesjle View Post
...What sort of claim can made for fiberglass?


ANSWER: None.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jamesjle View Post
Will the hull/deck last for more than a few decades?


ANSWER: No, all the older fiberglass boats you have seen are merely a figment of your imagination, a result of having spent too much time on this forum.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jamesjle View Post
In other words do the returns inevitably diminish to zero?


ANSWER: Of course, assuming there even are "returns". Actually, there are only "costs" or "expenses", not "returns." We are not talking about precious metals here.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jamesjle View Post
I would really appreciate a believable justification having recently spent a lot of time, effort, etc doing all of the above.


ANSWER: I am sure you are familiar with the classic P.T. Barnum quotation....

Last edited by jameswilson29; 09-12-2013 at 09:07 AM.
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Old 09-12-2013
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Re: Fiberglass ..classic??

I'll let you know when I'm done doing mine
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Old 09-12-2013
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Re: Fiberglass ..classic??

No, owning/restoring plastic wind powered marine vessels is basically a terrible decision.

It just happens to be a much better bad decision than the bad decisions most other people make.
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Old 09-12-2013
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Re: Fiberglass ..classic??

Quote:
Are old Fiberglass boats worth refurbishing and preserving, even the best of them??
Absolutely!

However, buying and maintaining (and insuring, and restoring, and storing, etc...) a boat is an investment in yourself and, hopefully, your family. It is NOT a sound financial investment.
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Old 09-12-2013
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Re: Fiberglass ..classic??

Quote:
Originally Posted by jamesjle View Post
...
I would really appreciate a believable justification having recently spent a lot of time, effort, etc doing all of the above.
You're asking for justification for time and money already spent? And "believable" justification at that?

I think the takeaway here is next time ask that question before you start your next project.

Seriously, it seems like you may be regretting the project and now you're trying to find a silver lining?
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Re: Fiberglass ..classic??

Quote:
Originally Posted by jamesjle View Post
I would really appreciate a believable justification having recently spent a lot of time, effort, etc doing all of the above.
Your mileage may vary, but it has been worth it to me...

I'm not overly concerned about the "increasing acclaim" bit, or what might have become of my boat 100 years from now... Frankly, I don't find it "easy to understand" at all, the sort of money some throw at maintaining classic wooden trophies, certainly not if you actually want to go places with them...


Captainmeme, rugosa, jimgo and 1 others like this.

Last edited by JonEisberg; 09-12-2013 at 09:58 AM.
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Fiberglass ..classic??

BOAT= blow another thousand or fiberglass or wood lined hole in the water to throw money in. Do it because you love it, and at best you may be able to hand a well loved and solid boat over to your kids.
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Old 09-12-2013
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Re: Fiberglass ..classic??

From a financial standpoint, its clear your not going to make money and will loose money (otherwise we would all be buying old boats, restoring and selling them at a profit - and quite our day-jobs). Its like anything else in life, you need to do research and spend time looking for a deal, something that is not too far gone but needs some TLC and items your capable of rebuilding yourself (or having done at a reasonable amount). Mitigate the risk by getting something that was partially restored or not too far gone to begin with -- or is structurally sounds and you don't mind replacing everything else. From there, its again up to you to decide but your never going to get your money back.

What you will get back are memories that can fill your boat for decades to come. My wife and I along with our 3 kids have spent many days/nights out on the water - the memories we all built together are worth every penny I put into our boat. Along with friends we've brought out and made along the way; they always remember the time they came out on our boat.

So there are many ways to look at this and I hope this pov helps.

- Rob
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