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Old 06-18-2013
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new to me 1969 Cheoy Lee Offshore 27

Hello. I have just purchased a 1969 Cheoy Lee Offshore 27 (Newell Cadet). I am sure this is a common story, but I purchased her to fix up and learn to sail. There is a lot of work to do, but I wanted to introduce myself and ask my first few questions / issues (there are / will be more).

She is berthed at Oyster Point in South San Francisco.

So I did not pay a great deal for the boat, knowing it needed some immediate work. It did come with a survey from the beginning of the year (which I take with a grain of salt) which said the bottom paint was fresh, and had some pictures of the boat hauled out of the water.

A couple weak points were pointed out in the standing rigging, so I am going to tackle that as my first big project. No idea how old the rigging is, and no fish hooks, but it does have a couple cracked swage fittings, and it looks old over all, so I want to replace the whole thing. I am totally new to all of this so I have done some research, but am still a bit lost on the process of boat rigging. The plan is to have a rigger do it, but do I have to take the boat to a boat yard with a crane to unstep the mast, then take all of the lines into the rigger, or is this something they can measure on the boat and replace with the mast up? I am not opposed to unstepping the mast as it would give me a chance to check it all over. I could also use a wind vane on top of it, which is currently missing.

While on the topic of rigging, the lifeline needs to be replaced, but I feel like this is something that I can take care of myself with some supplies and tools. Would love any advice on how to approach this.

Both the bow and stern hand rails have cracked from what looks like force from the lifeline, is there a simple way to repair these (like a sleeve and some epoxy)?

The automatic bilge pump was not functioning when I purchased the boat, I had a marina rewire and service the pump so it is now working. One thing is that does not seem to be taking care of the last 2" of water in the bilge. The sensor is obviously working, it turns on when submerged, but I am thinking maybe the run in the hose to the exit is too long, and the water is just flowing back in? I am not opposed to buying a new pump and setting up a more efficient system.

The prop stuffit box is leaking, I had a mechanic look at it. I believe they just tightened it to relieve the dripping, but it started again. I have noticed that it dribs pretty heavily when the motor is running or it is in neutral (running or stopped), but when I put it in reverse or forward gear it slows dramatically (sometimes reverse works better, sometimes forward works better). I had them look at it again and they say it requires a haul out to repair. I have read up on restuffing the box, and it seems pretty straight forward, any reason they would tell me I need a haul out? I need to double check with them exactly what they attempted.

I think those are the bigger things for now, much more to do on top of that, but those are the pieces I want to address before actually sailing her.

Thanks, here is a pic...

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Old 06-18-2013
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Re: new to me 1969 Cheoy Lee Offshore 27

Some pictures of the concerning areas of the bow and stern pulpits would help. I know some people re-pack their stuffing boxes in the water. But, water will come in while you do the job. I would be worried about getting in done right the first time in the water. At some point you will want to take a look at the bottom yourself. Just combine all the projects that are better done out of the water, and have it lifted. If it is OK to sail now, then put off the projects until you have had some fun with the boat.
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Old 06-18-2013
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Re: new to me 1969 Cheoy Lee Offshore 27

Congrats! Pretty boat. Please post updates as possible.
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Old 06-18-2013
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Re: new to me 1969 Cheoy Lee Offshore 27

Congratulations on your new boat, Agent9! As you are about to experience, there are no true bargains out there and to quote the old TV add, “you can pay me now or pay me later”.

When rigging fails, 90% of the time it will do so at the swages. Very rarely does it fail mid-wire. The cracked swages indicate rust expanding to the point of cracking the swage. Be careful – your boat is living on borrowed time. If it was me, I’d get all new rigging before I sail the boat on windy San Francisco Bay. This is not a “home handyman” type of a job – you lack the tooling to do this job. Glen Hansen is way booked up so your options are either Easom Rigging in Richmond or Svendsen’s in Alameda. Both riggers will want you to bring the boat to them at their dock. You can also give the Rig shop at West Marine Alameda a call. They have a big mobile truck and most probably can do it at your dock. Just be prepared that the cost of a new rig job is probably what you originally paid for the boat.

Life lines also need to be machine swaged. Don’t do this yourself unless you have plenty of insurance. West Marine Rig Shop does this work all the time. If your pulpit and pushpit have cracks in them, you need to get it welded. No amount of epoxy is going to make it safe. Call Svendsen’s metal shop.

Your float switch seems to need a lot of water before it trips. Consider replacing it with a new one. Is your bilge pump in the lowest possible spot? You will always get a little flow-back from the hose, but two inches of standing water isn’t good – It can rust out your keel bolts.

The packing gland on your prop shaft is a two nut set-up. Tighten it until the drops are less than one per minute. It should have the occasional drop when running (this is for lubrication & cooling). If the packing gland is hot to the touch after running you need to loosen it. Try this before you haul. If the nut is almost tightened to full stop, haul, undo the nut completely, remove what’s left of the old packing, clean and re-pack (I like Gor-tex packing and prefer to do is on the hard. Re-enacting your favorite scene from “Das Boot” isn’t for first-time packing gland re-packers).

You have a pretty boat. Take care of her and remember, it’s only money.
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Old 06-19-2013
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Re: new to me 1969 Cheoy Lee Offshore 27

Thanks for the long response georgeB. If nothing else you are letting me know I was on the right track. I bought the boat knowing I would spend at least what i spent on her on making semi safe, so that is not a shocker. I have no desire to raise a sail until I get the rigging replaced. I am calling places this week and just hoping to keep the work under $2k, but realize that might be a bit optimistic. Having done my research I understand how standing rigging works and how bad it is when it fails. Thanks for the list of riggers, and I look forward to motoring her over to a dock so someone can do it right.

Good to know welding is the way to go for the rail repair, that will be my next move along with the life line.

The bilge pump has been placed in the second tier of the bilge so it does not run constantly, this is much larger and I am guessing it would balance out the switch / water level issue better. All that said I am not opposed to replacing it with a more modern bilge system.

Packing is also as I assumed, I am a little afraid of something going wrong / breaking / not fitting back on so I may just have her hauled to have the packing done.

I do have a question: Would it be a money savings to take her to a ship yard to have the mast removed in order to remove the rigging myself to take it to a rigger to measure / rebuild, then remount it myself before restepping the mast? Like I said I would love to keep the cost of standing rigging under 2k, but realize it might make more sense to just take it to a riggers dock to deal with.

I am not looking for the prettiest boat on the bay, just something that is safe and as dependable as plausible for a 40+ year old boat.

Side note: The offshore has a full keel, no keel bolts. One of the reason I bought her.

Thanks again,
Agent9 aka: ezra.

Quote:
Originally Posted by GeorgeB View Post
Congratulations on your new boat, Agent9! As you are about to experience, there are no true bargains out there and to quote the old TV add, “you can pay me now or pay me later”.

When rigging fails, 90% of the time it will do so at the swages. Very rarely does it fail mid-wire. The cracked swages indicate rust expanding to the point of cracking the swage. Be careful – your boat is living on borrowed time. If it was me, I’d get all new rigging before I sail the boat on windy San Francisco Bay. This is not a “home handyman” type of a job – you lack the tooling to do this job. Glen Hansen is way booked up so your options are either Easom Rigging in Richmond or Svendsen’s in Alameda. Both riggers will want you to bring the boat to them at their dock. You can also give the Rig shop at West Marine Alameda a call. They have a big mobile truck and most probably can do it at your dock. Just be prepared that the cost of a new rig job is probably what you originally paid for the boat.

Life lines also need to be machine swaged. Don’t do this yourself unless you have plenty of insurance. West Marine Rig Shop does this work all the time. If your pulpit and pushpit have cracks in them, you need to get it welded. No amount of epoxy is going to make it safe. Call Svendsen’s metal shop.

Your float switch seems to need a lot of water before it trips. Consider replacing it with a new one. Is your bilge pump in the lowest possible spot? You will always get a little flow-back from the hose, but two inches of standing water isn’t good – It can rust out your keel bolts.

The packing gland on your prop shaft is a two nut set-up. Tighten it until the drops are less than one per minute. It should have the occasional drop when running (this is for lubrication & cooling). If the packing gland is hot to the touch after running you need to loosen it. Try this before you haul. If the nut is almost tightened to full stop, haul, undo the nut completely, remove what’s left of the old packing, clean and re-pack (I like Gor-tex packing and prefer to do is on the hard. Re-enacting your favorite scene from “Das Boot” isn’t for first-time packing gland re-packers).

You have a pretty boat. Take care of her and remember, it’s only money.
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Old 06-19-2013
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Re: new to me 1969 Cheoy Lee Offshore 27

Quote:
Originally Posted by GeorgeB View Post
If it was me, I’d get all new rigging before I sail the boat on windy San Francisco Bay. This is not a “home handyman” type of a job – you lack the tooling to do this job.
It could be done by a diligent home handyman if you use mechanical connectors like Norsemans on one (probably deck) end. Get somebody to swage masthead fittings on to wires that are longer than you need, cut them and install the Norsemans to match the length of the old rigging.

Not that this is the necessarily the best way to do it, but I did all of mine last year and it wasn't all that hard.

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Life lines also need to be machine swaged. Don’t do this yourself unless you have plenty of insurance.
There are plenty of threads here about doing synthetic lifelines with some kind of dyneema line. I'm just finishing mine up right now and I couldn't be happier. No specialized fittings or connections, just a few simple deadeyes and a whole bunch of splicing and lashing.
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Old 06-19-2013
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Re: new to me 1969 Cheoy Lee Offshore 27

That's a lovely boat Agent9. Congratulations.

If it's not a budget killer, it is a good idea to remove the mast. With the mast down you can take off all the rigging and bring it to a rigger to make the new rigging. Also, it will give you a chance to thoroughly check everything attached to the mast, remove and re-attach whatever shows signs of corrosion, inspect and replace the sheaves at the mast head and, if you don't already have one, install a PVC pipe conduit inside the mast for the new wiring. Check the lights and VHF antenna as well. All this is easy with the mast on the ground.

The lifelines you can replace with pieces of the old rigging. They will be much stronger than the original plastic coated lines.

I would think installing a new bilge pump and automatic switch should be a priority (not expensive). Then inspecting and repacking the stuffing box. Change all the hose clamps on the stuffing box regardless of their appearance. You can replace the stuffing in the water, but it is more difficult, Pre-cut the packing flax so you can work quickly when you pull out the old packing. I recommend the gortex packing that is pretty much dripless.

Next I would inspect every through-hull, hose, hose clamp (just replace with new) and the steering cables, sheaves and anything else hidden away. At this point you can be confident that your boat is safe. Then go sailing and see what else needs attention.

Post some pics when you can!
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Re: new to me 1969 Cheoy Lee Offshore 27

Quote:
Originally Posted by copacabana View Post
That's a lovely boat Agent9. Congratulations.

If it's not a budget killer, it is a good idea to remove the mast. With the mast down you can take off all the rigging and bring it to a rigger to make the new rigging. Also, it will give you a chance to thoroughly check everything attached to the mast, remove and re-attach whatever shows signs of corrosion, inspect and replace the sheaves at the mast head and, if you don't already have one, install a PVC pipe conduit inside the mast for the new wiring. Check the lights and VHF antenna as well. All this is easy with the mast on the ground.
SF boat works is $200 an hour for the crane billed in half hour increments, I assume I can do the prep and get it off in an hour, but not sure. I think I am going to consult with a few riggers and see what their recommendation / preferred process is.

Quote:
Originally Posted by copacabana View Post
The lifelines you can replace with pieces of the old rigging. They will be much stronger than the original plastic coated lines.
Great idea! I love this.

Quote:
Originally Posted by copacabana View Post
I would think installing a new bilge pump and automatic switch should be a priority (not expensive). Then inspecting and repacking the stuffing box. Change all the hose clamps on the stuffing box regardless of their appearance. You can replace the stuffing in the water, but it is more difficult, Pre-cut the packing flax so you can work quickly when you pull out the old packing. I recommend the gortex packing that is pretty much dripless.
The bilge might be a project this weekend, I really want to hold off on a haul out to do the whole stuffing box, and I feel like that is the safest approach. The bolts themselves look a bit nasty (might just be grease and salt water all over them) and I dont know what I would do if the bolt snapped / stripped / etc when I was monkeying with them.

Quote:
Originally Posted by copacabana View Post
Next I would inspect every through-hull, hose, hose clamp (just replace with new) and the steering cables, sheaves and anything else hidden away. At this point you can be confident that your boat is safe.
I have inspected everything from the interior, I see evidence of tiny dribbles on a couple of the through hulls, nothing that wouldn't evaporate before hitting the bilge. When I do hall the boat out (hoping to get an idea of how the bottom paint is looking when I have the hull cleaned at the end of this week so I can assess) I will do a thorough inspection of everything.

Quote:
Originally Posted by copacabana View Post
Then go sailing and see what else needs attention.

Post some pics when you can!
I REALLY want to be out sailing instead of doing mental calculations of what its going to cost me to get the boat there

Thanks again for all the feedback.
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Re: new to me 1969 Cheoy Lee Offshore 27

Agent9, when I pulled my deck-stepped mast it was about 15 minutes of crane work. You can remove a lot of stuff yourself before the crane arrives (boom, sails). When the crane arrives and holds the mast you just release the standing rigging at deck level and away it goes! Is your mast stepped on the deck or keel?

I agree that doing the stuffing box on the hard is the best option. You can tackle that along with replacing through hulls and valves as well. If you're quick about it you can do most in a day, then another 2 for painting the bottom and you're back in the water. As much as I understand your desire to get out sailing, seeing to these problems first will only take a few days and you'll enjoy the peace of mind when you are out sailing, knowing the essentials are taken care of. The rest you can deal with in the water, little by little, without interrupting your sailing. As you're in SF, you have a nice long sailing season so you won't miss much of it doing the repairs now. Just my 2 cents.

A quick side story. A friend of mine bought a Dufour 35 that was rather neglected. He couldn't stand the sight of the boat in such a state and went ahead and painted the boat, got a new mainsail, new sail covers and other cosmetics. He blew his budget before he really had a chance to see all the problems. As it turned out, the main problem was the many leaks, which he should have dealt with first, before anything else. The boat is now literally waterlogged and rotten (decks, bulkheads, cushions etc.). The moral of the story is: do what is essential for safety or maintaining the integrity of the boat first (to "contain" further decay), and then set about doing the rest at your leisure and as money allows.

On a positive note, a boat like yours will be easy to maintain and will cost quite a bit less to bring up to bristol condition than a larger boat. It will also be one heck of a nice boat! Post those pics!
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Last edited by copacabana; 06-19-2013 at 01:41 PM.
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Old 06-19-2013
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Re: new to me 1969 Cheoy Lee Offshore 27

Agent9, you are approaching this in the right way. Too often, posters buying older boats are blind to the amount of deferred maintenance that needs to be addressed and the expenses involved with rigging, engines and sails.

As stated above, the best of all worlds is to have the rigger pull the stick. All the riggers I know will let you work on your stick while it is down and while they are making the new stays and shrouds. The downside is “mission creep” as you see that a lot of hardware is on the verge of needing replacing and how easy it would be to do some upgrades. I know, years ago I needed to replace a headstay and wound up stripping the sticks, painting them and replacing all sorts of hardware (and replacing the rest of the wire.) I recall that I overran that budget by 3X.

Without looking at your boat, I would say your cracked swages are headstay at the stem fitting and the bases of the cap shrouds and lowers. Your back stay has no crack. You have a low freeboard boat and the front is continuously getting doused in our Bay chop. Even with machined rolled swages, water got in and caused crevice corrosion. Sta-Lok and Norsman terminals by their construction will allow for more trapped water. Do you really want that maintenance item? Besides, your wire is pretty small (3/16, 7/32?) and easily machine swaged. I have taken the Biron Toss rigging class and re-wired one boat by myself. I won’t do that again. But if you are game I’d be happy to sell you a Loos Gauge.

I know that Biron too, has finally come around to synthetic life lines, but I remain skeptical. The fibers attract grime (I have a synthetic gate on my sugar scoop). You have a single lifeline, again small diameter, get wire (I prefer uncoated). You will be buying new turnbuckles and fittings anyway which is probably a majority of the expense. Standing rigging wire is a different construction than your lifelines and not flexible. If you use it in a lifeline application, you will not be able to use your gates.

Your packing gland should look something like this: All you need to do is tighten it less than a turn to stop the constant drip. This is an owner job and done in the water. If it is a full stop and still leaking, then haul the boat and replace. I am a little concerned that your through-hulls are leaking. If they are leaking at the hoses, replace the hoses and hose clamps (probably fifty year old clamps anyways). You will want to double clamp all hoses below the waterline. I would work on stopping all the leaks. In the meanwhile, leave your battery charger plugged into shore power. A cycling pump will kill a group 24 or 27 battery in no time.



As you can see from my signature, my boat is over in the east Bay and I am most familiar with those boat yards. Talk to your dock neighbors for recommendations about San Francisco Boat Works. Your boat is “classic plastic” and although you will never completely recover the money you spend in resale value, it will give you years of enjoyable service in the future.
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