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Old 04-21-2010
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over-the-top shipyard bill

I received what I consider to be an outrageous bill from the shipyard where I had work done on my 35' cutter. I had them install a stack-pack and run reefing lines for new sails (the boat had not had reef lines before). The cost was $5k! Is this anywhere near normal? I want to get some figures before I go back to them to discuss the bill. Any suggestions?
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Old 04-21-2010
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Did that include the cost of the Stack Pack and all parts? If so the Stack Pack could have been $3000 of that. Did they install blocks and clutches? Mount hardware on the boom? Easy/lazy Jacks? That whole job could include a lot of hardware and labor.

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Old 04-21-2010
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It's irrelevant whether this price is "outrageous" and equally irrelevant what anyone else thinks. That is a value judgment - their judgment is that is costs $5000.
You hired them to do this work with no prior understanding of the cost?
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If you didn't know before that boatyards are expensive, you know it now. it is not hard to run up bills like this.

as to the reasonableness of the bill, break it down:
1. what part is supplies and hardware - you can price these yourself to determine reasonableness
2. how many hours - walk thru what they had to do and decide if the hours make sense, if not, ask the yard to itemize how the hours were used.
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Did you get an estimate or price quote for the work, or did you just leave the boat there and say do this, this and that??? If you had an estimate or price quote, they're generally required to honor them unless you okay an exception.

As for the $5000... The stack pack and lazy jack lines for the stack pack could easily be a large portion of that.

What work did they exactly do? As GeneT said, did they have to install hardware for the reefing lines? Did they have to add reefing points to the sail??

Asking a yard to reeve reefing lines is generally foolish IMHO, since you can generally do it yourself and not get charged $100/hour to have it done.

If you figure that a boatyard charges $100 PER HOUR, and that the stack pack and lines for it may have cost $3000 or so, that means that they're charging you for about 20 hours of labor max, not counting any additional hardware they had to install. Measuring and fitting the stack pack could take two people a couple hours to install it properly...
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Yep, lesson learned.

You are not the target market for boatyards. Pay the bill and do your own work next time.

I suspect you will also be disappointed with the quality of the installation.
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Sad but true in 99% of the cases... and one reason Maine Sail has posted what he has on his site.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Architeuthis View Post
Yep, lesson learned.

You are not the target market for boatyards. Pay the bill and do your own work next time.

I suspect you will also be disappointed with the quality of the installation.
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Old 04-21-2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sailingdog View Post
Did you get an estimate or price quote for the work, or did you just leave the boat there and say do this, this and that??? If you had an estimate or price quote, they're generally required to honor them unless you okay an exception.
There is a huge difference between an estimate and a price quote.
An estimate is just that, an educated guess as to how much the work will cost. The final cost can and usually does become different. A quote, on the other hand, is a somewhat legal binding agreement as to how much a Yard will charge for doing a particular piece of work and how much you will pay for it. Both parties need to sign the quote to make it binding. Few Yards will actually give you a quote as it is quite limiting whereas estimates are far easier to manage.

However, most reputable Yards will call you and get your OK before proceeding if they have given you an estimate that turns out to be too low due to unforseen circumstances.
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The $5k was LABOR to install ONLY. I purchased the stack pack directly - they only had to install it. The materials that they supplied was another $1500.
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Just a quick additional note: this is a boat that my late husband spent 25 years of his life building from a bare hull. He passed away before he ever got a chance to sail in it. The shipyard knew that I was having this work done on a shoestring - they had already billed me $10k to install winches and put on the sails which I had finally scratched together the money to have made; he was well aware that I was not one of his wealthy customers that just say "do it."
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