Re: "Free boat" seaworthiness
I went to see the boat.
first, the guy isn't a con man, a moron, or a jerk as I suspected from our communication. he's a nice guy just trying to keep peace in the family. he was very friendly and helpful. if I can't take the boat, I am welcome to strip it of stuff I want. I am welcome to do that or take the boat at my convenience, without him there, and just let him know I am. then, if I take it, he will meet me with the title.
the boat is in very shallow water. it was low tide when I saw it and the bottom was in mud. the tiller was hard to turn, because of it being in mud, and we tried to pull the boat around to the lift, so I could see the entire hull ( he was genuinely helpful ) but it was like dragging a car, it was so mired in the mud. we only were able to pull it so far before giving up. and there was a cloud of mud in the water after we moved it. so, that's why it flooded at low tide. something I, personally, think happened more than once...or maybe it stayed flooded for a few days before he pumped it.
the complete story on the boat is that his aunt's daughter had been on sailboats, twice, while on vacation. she decided she wanted to sail and she worked at the bank where the boat was auctioned. she bought it for $1600 a year ago. she had it at another relative's house until 4 or 5 moths ago, when they told he it had to go. this aunt decided enough was enough because they never did anything at all to the boat.
she bought them 'new' sails for the boat. they obviously were used because I know new Dacron when I see it and that's not it.
now, the boat:
it has about an inch of water in it, from the recent rains.
the barnacles are worse than i'd hoped. Denise called that right. the boat must have floated heavy with water for a little bit before he pumped it. they are pretty heavy up til about 6" from the deck. there are some barnacles in the cockpit, as well. that's the worst part of the boat.
the deck is rock solid, with no cracks of gel blisters, except a small soft spot on the starboard cabin roof/deck. it is reachable from the inside and it's not a big deal. good old boat had an excellent article on how to repair such a thing.
the V-berth shelf has a few small gel blisters, not a hard repair, but is rock solid. no other fiberglass issues are visible. there are no old holes, from moved hardware, that might cause fiberglass problems.
the only thing the daughter managed to really do was to gut the inside. which is good. there is no disgusting wood or material to remove. just bare fiberglass to clean. it smells of oysters ( bay water ) inside but is not moldy.
it has an alcohol stove, which needs cleaned, and a sink. it also has a quarter berth.
the tiller was rotted from exposure, but that's not a hard thing to make. the rudder moved smoothly, except for being mired in the mud.
the mast, boom, and all the running rigging is in fine shape. the metal hardware, even what was exposed to the water, is in good shape. one of the rubber rub rails needs replaced.
the faux wood is actually a pattern in the fiberglass and the color was the topside paint. it wouldn't be unattractive if redone well.
they left the main sail lashed to the boom with the material sail cover on it, apparently since they got the sails. the cover was damp and there is a little mildew on the sail which would need cleaned. the halyard is stuck up at the mast head and i'd have to lower the sail to fix that. but that's not a huge problem since the mast is stepped on the deck with a hinged mast step, like on my holiday.
except for the wood colored deck paint, the topside paint looks fine. this gives me hope that the bottom paint may be good. if this is true, the barnacles may not be under the waterline, just on the sides, were the boat was sitting lower than the bottom paint.
since he is ok with me coming back to the house, without him there ( his aunt is on vacation he is hoping to deal with the boat before she returns Monday ), I am thinking of asking if he would mind if I used the lift, tonight, at high tide, to examine the underwater parts of the boat.