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  #1  
Old 11-23-2012
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Ericson 29...2 hours...

Looking at an Ericson 29 i found on craigslist in a couple of hours...I had been looking to buy a 30' Hunter over the summer but that fell through...I'm on a budget, so this is really all i'm looking to spend...and it seems like a lot of boat for $3500...It's in the water, so I know i'll be able to see it running...If i'm serious I have a buddy that's going to dive and check everything below the waterline (can't really justify a survey on a boat this inexpensive)...But i'm not all the familier with Ericsons...Any known issues? I know it's an old boat but don't have a lot of time to mess around or I'm going to miss out on this deal..
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Old 11-23-2012
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Re: Ericson 29...2 hours...

And here is the ad:

1977 Ericson 29 sailboat
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Old 11-23-2012
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Re: Ericson 29...2 hours...

Boat deals are like buses: if you miss this one, another one will be along in 20 minutes. Don't get run over by the bus. Get a survey to avoid buying a boat with serious problems. I would be wary about a price that low for that boat - about 1/3 of fair market value, even in this market.

Why is the owner selling? Was he/she forthright and realistic in answering your questions about the boat?

If the boat is structurally sound, the single most valuable item is the engine. Age, condition, appearance of the A4? How easily did it start? How did it run? Did you inspect it while it was running?

If you want to check out the bottom, you should have it hauled. A diving inspection can miss many important items.

There are some questions arising from the listing. Why would someone sell only 2 years after buying a new main (and a new mainsail cover)? Where was the boat during Superstorm Sandy?
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Last edited by jameswilson29; 11-23-2012 at 09:46 AM.
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Old 11-23-2012
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Re: Ericson 29...2 hours...

Ah, I wouldn't be so skeptical. I definitely think this boat is worth looking at if it fits within your criteria. Sometimes you just gotta take the leap.

We bought our first boat this past summer (1981 Seafarer 26) at a slightly higher price point, but not by much. We also couldn't justify the cost of a professional survey, but I think you can tell a lot about how well a boat has been maintained just by going through it yourself. If the owner has skipped over routine maintenance items that you can see, then that will tell you something. In our case, the boat had been meticulously maintained and we had the opportunity to spend a few hours going over everything with the seller. I guess we could get unlucky with something big failing (like the Yanmar) but that's a risk that we knew we were taking on.

The money we spent on the boat was an amount we felt comfortable taking from savings, and we made sure we could swing the known costs such as mooring, winter storage, etc.

On the day we closed on the boat, the former owner helped me get the sails on, hook up the batteries, start the engine, and away we went. We used the boat every single weekend and many weeknights until we sadly had to haul for the winter last month. Wife and I agreed almost every time we were on the boat that it was the best investment we've ever made.

There's no time like the present.
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Old 11-23-2012
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Re: Ericson 29...2 hours...

Just got back from looking at the boat...It was pretty much what i expected...Overall, in OK condition....A 3500 dollar boat...Other than a broken piece of trim in the cabin, everything was there...The Atomic 4 started right up and sounded great...Shifted into forward/reverse without a problem...Interior lights/nav lights didn't all work...My guess is just some corrosion...

I've attached some pictures...let me know if you think it's worth working on for the winter and making a nice boat out of...
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Ericson 29...2 hours...-photo.jpg   Ericson 29...2 hours...-photo-1.jpg   Ericson 29...2 hours...-photo-2.jpg  
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Re: Ericson 29...2 hours...

I owned a 1971 model, tiller steering. Great boat! Good sailor with a well laid out interior. Access to engine is not bad. Had it for approx. 5 years and sorry I ever sold it. In my opinion better build quality than a C&C I later owned.
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Old 11-23-2012
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Re: Ericson 29...2 hours...

ck,
It seems to me that the owner of this E29 has it priced to sell quickly. They can't expect to get top dollar for a boat with an A4 in it. I have no problem with the A4 as my boat of the last 10 years has one in it, but many people consider this a big red flag. The forum at Moyer Marine is the best place for helping you learn about the Atomic 4. The A4 is a simple engine and I have not had to pay a mechanic to work on it yet. The A4 is also quite durable - our A4 and boat are 45 years old.
Did they give a reason for putting it up for sale?
Apparently, Erickson made a standard model 29' and a tall mast version. Here is the std version spec: ERICSON 29 sailboat specifications and details on sailboatdata.com
Do you know which version of E 29' this one is?
Fixing the wiring for the lights should not require a huge effort.
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Old 11-23-2012
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Re: Ericson 29...2 hours...

Paying for a pro to survey a $3K boat seems kind of silly or, rather, cost ineffective to me. There are a couple of "stickies" here that give you info on doing your own survey. I'd print them and take them to the boat & do your own. Don Casey has a book out on the subject as well.

I would get it hauled though rather than having a diver look at it. A 1/2 lift (out, in the slings for an hour or two and back in) doesn't cost much and if it needs the bottom done you can simply continue to a full lift & block with no loss.

Your pics didn't show them but I'd be primarily concerned about the condition of the bulkheads re: chainplate attachments - are they water damaged?

Also, I don't know if those Ericsons have inside or outside ballast - if it's outside, what is the condition of the bolts and the seam on the outside?

It certainly looks like it's worth spending several hours investigating the boat - it may just be a screaming deal.
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Re: Ericson 29...2 hours...

My friend has a E-29....had some soft spots in the decks...other than that..it seemed like a great boat in that size range...fairly fast and the interior build quality and cabinetry is excellent...I would skip the the survey and dive into this one for 3,500 and a running engine that started right up as long as the standing rigging wasn't shot and the sails were decent...congrats if you can get her..she's priced to sell for sure...
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Old 11-23-2012
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Re: Ericson 29...2 hours...

Final question on this...Regarding the standing rigging...It looks good to me...Chain plates also looked good...But the owner said he's never replaced it and has had the boat for 10 years...What's the typical lifespan?

Thanks!
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