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Go Back   SailNet Community > On Board > Gear & Maintenance
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  #1  
Old 08-28-2008
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Steel hulls

Friend of mine is considering a 1979 42-ft steel hulled boat. Would like to hear from owners of steel boats what they think the pro's and con's of steel boats may be. I realize a lot depends on the maker and condition, but any thoughts would be appreciated.
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Old 08-28-2008
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Don't own one, but maintenance is really key to a steel boat. Corrosion never sleeps...and if the boat wasn't properly maintained, the boat will often fail from the inside out.
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Old 08-28-2008
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I think a properly constructed steel boat is very easy to maintain. If you read Bernard Moitessier's book "Cape Horn: The Logical Route" he details how his steel boat "Joshua" was built. That boat is still around (47 or so years old?)
One of the things to look for would be areas where the steel is inacessable for maintenance

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Originally Posted by Warren M. View Post
Friend of mine is considering a 1979 42-ft steel hulled boat. Would like to hear from owners of steel boats what they think the pro's and con's of steel boats may be. I realize a lot depends on the maker and condition, but any thoughts would be appreciated.

Last edited by GBurton; 08-28-2008 at 11:59 AM. Reason: Wrong book
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Old 08-28-2008
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In speaking to steel boat owners (and looking at some while I was searching for mine) - I also got the impression that initial construction is key. All those homemade Bruce Roberts kits are usually junk. However, a properly build steel hull using good quality steel (and lots of it) and properly welded is going to last for a very very long time. It does require maintenance, and good access to internal areas is key.

I was unable to find a steel boat that would meet these requirements, but they are out there.
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I can't imagine a 1979 steel hulled sailboat being in anything other than pitiful condition. Get a good surveyor!
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Old 08-29-2008
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A few more details: 50' Cascaruda 50 MS Steel-Ketch
Year: 1979
Current Price: EUR 119,000
(US$ 175,537)
Anyone familiar with this designer/builder?
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Unless that boat was meticulously maintained... it is going to have some serious problems. Maintenance is critical on metal boats. If you do decide to go ahead further, get a surveyor who is EXPERIENCED WITH STEEL BOATS.
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You know what the first rule of sailing is? ...Love. You can learn all the math in the 'verse, but you take
a boat to the sea you don't love, she'll shake you off just as sure as the turning of the worlds. Love keeps
her going when she oughta fall down, tells you she's hurting 'fore she keens. Makes her a home.

—Cpt. Mal Reynolds, Serenity (edited)

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Old 09-02-2008
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The designer and builder mean very little if it has not been maintained. You need a comprehensive inspection. Bondo covers many sins.
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