Buying an uncommon boat - would you? - Page 2 - SailNet Community
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post #11 of 23 Old 12-11-2006
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I would not....


I would not buy a boat that you can't find at least a mailing list for. I was recently in the market for a 33-36 racer / cruiser. I found a boat that was 'interesting', it was a Laguna 33. Try finding information on that boat! I was actually able to locate two owners. Anyway, I was worried that I would never be able to sell the boat, and that questions on it would not be answered.

I ended up paying a lot for an O'day 35, but I know I will be able to find support for the O'day, parts are plentiful and it will be easier to sell than the Laguna.


Barry Lenoble
Curragh, 1986 O'day 35
Mt. Sinai, NY
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post #12 of 23 Old 12-11-2006
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First, off in its day, the Omega 30 was very well known and respected. There are lots of boats out there, especially older racer-cruisers, which are in the same situation. These boats offer very little disadvantage over better known models except that they take a bit more reseach to buy. The good news is that lesser known brands can usually be bought for less money and so you have more boat for the money. Over the life of owning the boat this means less interest paid. Since these boats have already been depreciated due to their being a lesser known brand, the fact that it is lesser known would not necessarily mean a bigger loss at the time of sale.

I think that way too much is made of whether a boat builder is still in business. Few replacement parts on modern boats (after 1980 or so) are proprietory and even when a company is still in business those parts are rarely available after the boat is out of production. (Catalina and Beneteau are notable exceptions). For example, you couldn't get replacement parts from Oday or Columbia even when they were in business.

Personally, I have found virtually no difference selling well known models and not very well known models. The key comes down to offering the boat in good shape at a reasonable price.

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post #13 of 23 Old 12-11-2006
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I agree with Jeff. By the way a boat designed by Ron Holland and built in Sweden, to me has on the paper a better pedigree than many others well known (known for their marketing and poor quality). And I would not forget that as rryan14 found it interesting, other people will feel the same about it if it is well kept. A boat that is unknown is also a boat that distinguishes itself from the crowd, and that may appeal to many. Last but not least, many future cruisers are not necessarily very informed about the famous brands of the eighties. Sure the boat needs to be showed on picture and not only mentioned for attract future buyers, but with today's technology of internet I don't see the problem. And finally, yes the price has to be attractive, so do not pay too much for it.
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post #14 of 23 Old 12-11-2006
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Some gasoline into the fire.....

Listen, IT'S A BOAT. You like it you buy, you don't like you don't buy. Simple.

I have seen a lot of really really BAD BOATS out there that have wonderfull web pages and the best references MONEY CAN BUY!!!!!!!!!!Just buy ANY unbiased American Sail magazine, the list is long, Hunters, Macsomethings, Catalinas, Jeaneaus, you name it. There is good and there is bad.

BOATS ARE ALLWAYS BAD, otherwise the industry would be bankrupted.

Stop that uhhhh I don't buy if they don't have web page, uhhhh I don't buy if they don't have spare parts for my cleats or for my shower, uhhhh I never heard of it, uhhhh its foreign must be good, uhhh this uhhh that.

(I think that you guys in the US have become too much catalog buyers). Please no offense in what I said, ok???

PLEASE. go look at it, and get-r-done (bought a Larry The cable guy DVD, sorry).

Over here we have tons of "obscure" yachts that beat then "s****" of Benetau, Jeanneau, Dufour, Bavaria, you name it.

Just because they sell big time does not mean they are GOOD, it just means they sell cheap (obviously a compromise here with quality), and there is a lot of SUCKER buying them, because they read the "unbiased" SAIL report, or the "unbiased " WEB PAGE.

Here, we still buy boats according to the need,and with the heart.

I am having a VERY VERY VERY bad week, so I am sorry if I offended any one.



Last edited by Giulietta; 12-11-2006 at 03:36 PM.
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post #15 of 23 Old 12-11-2006
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Ryan, you can email apparently their web site is frozen right now, but the company still appears to be there. It is possible that the hull is a more commonly known RH design and the only "custom" part of it are the fittings, so you may be able to compare it better to something else sharing the hull design. (Although, a motivated broker might have already tried to do that.)
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post #16 of 23 Old 12-11-2006
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Another way to look at this (ie the obscure builder) is that perhaps they did not survive in business because they didn't cut enough corners to make money. And that could be a good thing (for the end product.)

I'd imagine it's difficult to sell a quality low-production-run vessel in a market flooded with high run boats like the "well known" brands. Lots of really good boats and builders went out of business for economic reasons, not quality control ones.

So, as has been said, it comes down to inherent quality (design and execution), a knowledgable buyer, good maintenance and presentation by the seller. And for those on limited budgets, this path can lead to more boat than you might otherwise get for your hard earned cash.
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post #17 of 23 Old 12-11-2006
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Even in Portuguese I wouln't have said it better!!

Its the plastic and the premolded and the kitchen sink that is good nowadays, you know...

And the fake teak, and the glued decks, and the rest of the "good" stuff that sells.
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post #18 of 23 Old 12-11-2006
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Hey! you crazy Portagee, it's Git-r-done-not get. Were you educated in yurrup or somethin?
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post #19 of 23 Old 12-12-2006
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Originally Posted by hellosailor
But on the other hand, if there is little interest in it and it has been on the market for a while, maybe you can use that to your advantage and get the price down to where it is worth the risk to you. If something has to sit on the hard for a whole winter...that's money lost from the selling price.
Good strategy...Or wait until March or so and then offer 75% of asking price. There is always another boat.

"Tell 'em I'm busy. I'm on a sails call."
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post #20 of 23 Old 12-12-2006 Thread Starter
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Follow up conundrums

Interesting replies to my original post; I think it really helps to get impartial advice when you get in the thick of the hunt and canít think straight. Thanks to all who replied.

It isn't that I don't trust a boat no longer manufactured - every model that I can afford isn't built now - but rather trying to resell the boat in, say 5 years, is my primary concern. Another concern is the lack of a user group. If I bought a 1980's vintage C&C, I can easily get advice on how to fix a problem or maybe find 2nd hand sails.

In the not so distant past, a buyer would be shown a few different boats by a broker and that broker could really influence the sale of an unknown, but distinguished boat. These days, buyers (including me) might go to and type in a few keywords in the search box and the Omega is probably going to be invisible. I always type in the brand, the length, and the minimum year. I don't even recall how I came across the Omega.

The Omega is an intriguing boat that I still havenít seen in person. It has a PHRF rating of 144, teak decks which I love, self-tacking jib which is a plus/minus, and a nice interior. From what I can tell, it is in good but not great shape. The asking price is good but not outstanding. So, in the back of my mind, I was thinking if I could get this boat cheaply enough, then maybe my fears are unfounded. Or not?

Other boats that I am considering are early 80's C&C 34 and Tartan 33, mid 80's C&C 30, and late 80's J/28. None of these boats is absolutely outstanding in my price range (around $30K). Some boats, especially J Boats, seem grossly over-priced considering that their build quality doesnít necessarily match their reputation (and yet I still like them, which doesnít make any sense).

But there is also a dark side to buying the common boat Ė how does it get distinguished from its peers? In the Northeast where I live, there are 12 C&C 34s from the early 80ís. Itís hard to know which one to look at so price because the driving force.

I keep waiting for some boat to jump out and say 'buy me'. This hasnít happened yet.

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