Owner 4knot sb.
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: East Stroudsburg, PA
Thanked 95 Times in 91 Posts
Rep Power: 9
Re: Turn-key boat
If I might actually disagree with some... YOUR idea of "turn key" is likely different than theirs.
I assume the worst... if they say it's "sail away" condition... I assume that it'll get out of the slip under sail power alone (motor dead), but after that it may sink...
The prior owner of one of my boats, billed it as "well maintained, with new cushions, all new running rigging as of 2009, new standing rigging, new harken traveler, all teak had 7 coats of 'varnish.'" Well MAYBE most of that was pretty true...
What I experienced? The boat had been painted 15+ years ago and was peeling and flaking. The bottom hadn't been touched in 6+ years. The boat hadn't been sailed but 4 times in 10 years. The NEW traveler was a VERY nice new harken midrange, but the car had no blocks on it, and the "control" was lines tied to the center toggle (1:1). The knot meter didn't work right (and it was "just rebuilt"). The standing rigging WIRE had been replaced, but none of the chainplates, toggles or tangs had been replaced. The aforementioned varnished teak included the bulkheads (good), but the bulkheads are soft, and likely need replaced. The running rigging might have been new 2009, but in 4 years they had sat out uncovered and were bleached good, and were too heavy for the boat (sized as original, and could easily go down a notch in size on every one).
He also touted the winches having just been serviced (with general grease), and were "quiet." OK.. they were.. but of course that's not really the best way to service the winches.
I bought the boat anyway, and haven't regretted a thing. He was a super nice guy, and he just had different priorities than me. The cushions were stellar on this race boat...
OH and the "sails that were still crisp," were original 1980s vintage sails. It's all good, EYES WIDE OPEN.. as they say.
As for others that say new boats have the same/similar problems. ABSOLUTELY... the 2 new ones we purchased, we had tons of "tweaks" and changes that had to be done, including a wild rigging of a wheel (backwards), a persnickety diesel engine that would not start, and a goofy way to configure shrouds.
I nearly bought a brandy new Capri 22 on a trailer (it had sat for 3 years with the dealer)... The day I looked at the boat, it was raining (not drizzle)... the cabintop was open (for god knows how long, water pooling on the floor)... the trailer had been backed into a hill and busted the taillight... and I am quite sure they had the lowers and uppers connected to the wrong chainplates.... I'll leave the marina's name out of it, because they ALSO were great people, and sold nearly 99% powerboats... and the boat was significantly reduced from "as new" pricing.
Expect pain/expense with your boat, new or old (granted old generally means more recurring expense), and you won't be disappointed. If you bought something because it was a "deal," you aren't paying attention - boats cost money to maintain, own, and operate... and here's the shocker... the harder you use whatever boat, the more likely it is you'll find problems. Actually the sooner you find them an eliminate them the better.
"Rum Line" a 1982, S2 7.9 - Production boat limit tester, blue-water bucket owner, with wine taste on a beer budget.