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  Topic Review (Newest First)
06-22-2004 10:47 AM
Help me find my budget dream boat!

You said:

I''ve discounted a Folkboat because of the wood (weaker than GRP and needs more attention).

The assumption that wood is weaker than GRP is not a safe one where boats are concerned. Some wood construction is much stronger than some GRP, some is much weaker, the key is the construction. Wood is more maintainance and if you don''t know anything about wood it can be duanting. On the other hand fiberglass can be even more difficult to maintain and at your budget you are likely to be buying some maintainance work.

I suggest looking at some traditional designs as they may fill all of your criteria better than a production boat and may be a better buy as well. There are a lot of good sailing designs that came out of fishing and cargo delivery before the end of working sail that fit your description.

Also read what Jeff_H says closely his advice is very good though biased towards the modern.

Good luck
06-22-2004 08:12 AM
Help me find my budget dream boat!

I''ve thought of looking for a boat in the US or Canada. For example, many Contessa 26s were built in Canada and prices there seem to be 60% of what they are here.

However, a single-handed west-east trans-atlantic crossing in an unfamiliar used boat is probably not the most sensible first passage. On top of that, the cost of flights, accommodation, etc. would easily eat into any savings. And then there''s the VAT tax (all boats in the EU have to have proof of VAT paid in an EU country or else they''re charged the VAT).

I''ve spent hours on the Internet looking at and for boats, but I haven''t managed to identify a particular place for cheap bargins (I can''t find many details about Malta). Since I plan to spend a year sailing in my home waters before setting out I''m probably better off buying in Ireland or the UK (or maybe elsewhere in Europe), even this costs a few grand more.

However I have hopes of getting a good deal closer to home. There are many harbours, boatyards, sailing clubs and other places with boats that seem to have been abandoned. Once I know what I''m looking for I''ll do a tour of these. Who knows? Someone with an old boat that''s been sitting on the hard for years rotting may be sympathetic enough to my enthusiasm to give me a good deal!

You never know!
06-19-2004 04:59 AM
john gov
Help me find my budget dream boat!

Cheap boats in Malta may be one of those "Legends". I''ve also heard that Florida is full of beautifully rigged 40 footers for sale by the widow of a retired guy who didn''t get to enjoy the boat very much. I''ve not been able to find any of those bargains.
06-18-2004 10:27 PM
Help me find my budget dream boat!

I am just passing on wisdom from friends at the yacht club who have just gotten back from circumnavigating. They stopped at malta on the way to the Dalmation Islands area and said that in the week they spent their the temptation to "upgrade" to a larger and fancier boat was almost irresistable. Yachts they could not hope to have afforded in Australia were fully outfitted and going to pot in the harbour at malta with prices at around 50% and dropping.
They showed some very nice and drool-inspiring slides too.

The opinion seemd to be that folks with the really top end boats can afford to have them delivered to soemwhere where they will get a better price. So what you tend to find are the cruisers that have been optimised for "couples" that then don''t have the resources to do anything but try to sell where they park.

You now know as much as I do. Get ont he internet and google away.

06-18-2004 08:50 PM
Help me find my budget dream boat!


Given the current exchange rates would the opposite be true as well? i.e. a U.S. citizen looking in foreign ports for those orphaned boats (assuming one would want to make the crossing back to the U.S.)

I''m looking for a comfortable, 32 foot ''ish ocean going liveaboard but what I''m finding in the U.S. seems to be on the wrong side of my funding.
06-18-2004 05:50 PM
Help me find my budget dream boat!

I disagree a bit.
Yes, you do need to look further afield the Ireland, but I would shop smart instead of big (U.S).

The internet is a wonderful thing. I suggest you check out brokers in Malta and other gateway ports.

What you will find is a great many boats that have just completed an ocean crossing intact, but with a crew that is now broke. In short boats that have lasted far better then the relationships of their owners.
They park the boat, she catches one plane, he hands the boat over to a broker and catches another. Divorce lawyers are duly employed and the boat gets cheaper by the week.

In addition, your money will go further in terms of exchange rates and sales taxes.

Do some internet browsing with these thoughts in mind. You have nothing to lose but a couple of hours net surfing.

06-18-2004 05:42 PM
john gov
Help me find my budget dream boat!

Here is a different angle of attack. You have the right idea, seem to have a good sense approach, and your budget should land you a boat that you will feel comfortable and safe with.
Here is what you can do. Gather a few Euros together, book a cheap flight to the US,and poke around New England for your dream boat.
US Route #1 runs alongthe coast. Stick to it, make some friends, and you will find what you are looking for.
This is still America , where your dreams can come true. John Gov.
06-18-2004 10:56 AM
Help me find my budget dream boat!

Thank you very much, Allen and Jeff,

Your information and advice is very useful.

What I''m trying to do is develop a list of possibilities before I go looking for a boat. I''m planning to tour harbours and yacht clubs as well as check the magazines and websites (I''ve heard that more boats are for sale than are advertised). The idea is to first get a good overview of the market including what boats I''m looking for, what the prices are like, things to watch out for, etc., etc. I have a relatively inexpensive surveyor lined up for Ireland and possibly the UK.

My budget, like everything else, is a trade-off!. The cheaper the boat, the sooner I can leave. The longer I wait, the more boat I can afford. Right now my budget looks about Euro 15,000 (US$18,000 or so), with another Euro 5,000 ($6,000) or so in equipment/maintainance/upgrades/provisions after purchase.

I guess another criteria for my search is that the boat should be available in Europe - preferably Ireland or the UK. Following your advice I did some research on the Tartan 27, but there don''t seem to be too many of them on this side of the Atlantic.

Right now (and after your input and some research) my list of possible boats includes a GRP folkboat, Marieholm IF Boat (International Folkboat), Marieholm 26 or 28, Albin Vega, Contessa 26, and Sadler 25, 26 or 29. I still have to check out some of the others you''ve mentioned!

Do you know anything about the Hurley 27?

Any and all other information or advice would be more than welcome.

Thanks again for all your help!

Kind regards,

06-18-2004 03:58 AM
Help me find my budget dream boat!

This is a tough question. I don''t know what your budget is, so it is a little hard to give you a very specific answer but in a general sense, you are asking for something that is pretty rare.

To begin with the traditional rule of thumb for a distance cruising boat is a displacement of 2 1/2 to 5 long tons per person (roughly 5500 to 11000 lbs). That would suggest a boat between 25 and 30 feet with the boats at the longer end of the range obviously giving more room, speed and in a general sense more seaworthiness.

If you are going to keep your costs down, you are probably looking for a 25 to 40 year old boat. But 25 to 40 year old boats tend to be very tired. Recent studies suggest that fiberglass becomes more brittle over time and that early fiberglass boats, which tend to lack internal framing systems are especially prone to reduced strength due to fatigue and poor layup practices. Unless well maintained and upgraded by the prior owner you can expect to find what I call the ''old boat litany'' on any boat this age. Unless very well maintained and updated by a previous owner, you might expect to need to address some combination of the following items:
Sails, chainplates, mast step and associated suporting structure, standing and running rigging that are beyond their useful lifespan,
an engine that is in need of rebuild or replacement,
worn out or out of date deck, galley, and head hardware,
worn out upholstery,
Out of date safety gear
electronics that are non operational, or in need of updating,
electrical and plumbing systems that need repairs, upgrades to modern standards or replacement.
Blister, fatigue, rudder, rotten bulkheads, failed tabbing, hull deck joint or deck coring problems
Keel bolt replacement (bolt on keel) or delamination of the hull from the ballast for a glassed in keel.
And perhaps a whole range of aesthetic issues.

It can easily cost as much as the boat is worth to address even a partial combination of these items.

Then there is the suitability issue. Most of the boats that get built in any given year (and this is especially true of small boats) are biased towards coastal cruising and club level racing. Small boats designed for offshore were extremely rare in that period in which the prices are likely to be affordable. Small boats generally tend to be shaped to some extent by the racing rules of the era. In the 1960''s this produced boats that had very short waterlines for their length which greatly diminishes thier motion comfort, carrying capacity, seaworthiness, and speed. In the 1970''s small boats were greatly influenced by the IOR Rule which tended to produce boats which were short on stability and motion comfort, and had inconvenient rigs and poor tracking capabilities.

This leaves you looking for something of a needle in a haystack. Probably my default answers would be a F.G. Folkboat (or derivative like a Marieholms, or Contessa 26), a Tartan 27, a Seawind Ketch, or one of the fiberglass H-28 derivatives that were built by a number of companies, with the Tartan 27 being my first choice.

Other choices might include such boats as a Albin Vega, Cal 2-29, Mariner 28, Mirage 27, Morgan 28 (1960''s), Paceship PY26, Pacific Seacraft 25, Rhodes Ranger 38 (which is not the same as a Ranger 28), Sabre 28, Soverel 28, Tartan 30, Westerly 28, Winga 860.

Some of these are pretty modern designs and others are a bit more traditional. My sense is that you would be better served by the boats in the earlier short list but hopefully these will give you a range of designs as a starting point in your search.

Good luck,

06-17-2004 06:45 PM
Help me find my budget dream boat!

Just an off the cuff impression, looking for an "inexpensive offshore and liveaboard boat" sounds like looking for an inexpensive 4X4 and winnebago. You said luxury and space are secondary considerations, so it sounds like you''re looking for something like a van with 4X4 capability and ruggedness and you''re willing to camp out in it as you drive around the outback. Lots of archived messages on this board will convince you there''s no shortage of suitable vessels capable of single handed extended cruising if you are willing to sacrifice comfort; Jeff usually wisely steers people towards racer/cruiser designs, particularly more recent vintage, but your "Inexpensive" stipulation may limit the possibilities. Just how limited is your budget? It''s going to be a lot harder to find a boat that meets your requirements on a shoestring.

Allen Flanigan
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