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Wow! I am starting to look for my first boat and your list is great!

I had some conversations with experienced boat owners and everything they noted as a major item to look for is on your list, such as delamination and rudder issues. I was also told to watch out for models with a rudder that is lower than the keel because when the boat hits the bottom of the bay (as it will in the Barnegat Bay NJ) the rudder will take a bigger hit than the keel will. And the keel should be the one taking the hit.

thank you so much for this list and i plan to print it for sure! :)

Christina
 

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Thank you for all those points to check. I had a basic idea as to what to look at but you had a lot more than I would have considered. Well done!
 

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Learning the HARD way...
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I've been mulling adding this one to the list for some time. All of the keel horror stories that have popped up of late have made me decide to add the following to the list.

If you are looking at an older (10+years) boat with a bolt on keel, I strongly suggest that you add language to support the following to the offer to purchase. IF the deal should get to the point of a survey, that as part of the survey that you remove and re-torque at least three of the keel bolts.

Here is why;

When I went to look at my current boat, with the intent of purchasing, here is what the bilge looked like


and here are the keel bolts;

Note the manual pump in the above picture... There was a "little" water in the bilge, and this pump was right here when I looked at the boat on its mooring.



Not too bad - or so I thought...

I eventually made an offer on this boat, and when it went to survey here is what the keel looked like;
Pre powerwash;


Post powerwash;


Something struck me as odd about the keel, and the way that it sat in relation to the hull... After much insistence to the surveyor, and the broker, and the owner, and the yard manager, the surveyor checked it out...

Sure enough, the keel was loose, and the bottom would move about ¼" from side to side. Not a lot, but enough to kill the deal.

The owner faced with this prospect wisely decided to repair the problem and go from there. He had the keel dropped, and here is what we saw;








Four of the seven bolts were TOAST:eek:
The only way that this would have been caught, if I didn't make such a fuss, would be to remove, and re-torque several of the keel bolts.

The owner paid over $9500 to have this situation addressed by the yard. Better on his dime than mine, or yours!
 

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Boat Bum
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Absolutely awesome thread. Particularly since I'm about to launch a 10-day keel kicking tour of southwest Florida. Here's my question. Since I have a dozen or so yachts to visit and given the exhaustive nature of the list, how long should it take to look at a prospective boat? And how many should I be able to effectively see in a day (given that they are all within a few miles of one another)?

Thanks for the input.

JT
 

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Learning the HARD way...
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Plan to spend an hour, looking at every boat on the first pass. Do not make an offer on the spot, unless you know that it is the perfect boat and perfect deal for you. (IMHO there is no such thing, but what do I know...)

After you have seen a couple of comparable boats, re-visit the one that you really like, and spend another hour, or two.
 

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i have mentioned this in other threads. as a retired diesel mechanic, one of the first things i do is take off the oil filler cap. if it has water dripping from it the engine has water in the crankcase

Could one put in a pcv (positive crankcase ventilation for those who dont know) valve so the moisture could be drawn in thru the engine instead of being trapped and accumulating inside the crankcase?
 

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On inspection of a trawler recently I found this?? Port engine was a ford lehman while starboard was a perkins.....!

Never have seen this before. So what do you think about dollar value of this boat?
 

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Glad to read that you enjoy the thread. However as an FYI - SD hasn't been here for well over a year.

Also, after the sh!t that some here gave him when Maine Sail told us that SD's boat, named after his deceased wife, went up in flames last year, I seriously doubt that he'll ever be back.
 

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keel bolt inspectio

Is it proper to unscrew bilge covers to inspect keel bolts? I have the boat narrowed to one. The surveyor did not unscrew the bilge covers. I would like to do so in wrapping up the transaction.
 

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Re: keel bolt inspectio

Is it proper to unscrew bilge covers to inspect keel bolts? I have the boat narrowed to one. The surveyor did not unscrew the bilge covers. I would like to do so in wrapping up the transaction.
Well really you should have just grabbed a screwdriver and opened it yourself for him, though I have never seen any covers that needed to be "unscrewed" other than a quick release type screw and that the surveyor should have done that. They are not supposed to remove any permanently attached panels or cabinets, but I don't think that means "bilge covers" seems he may be taking a bit too literal interpretation of not unscrewing things. It means there is no "destructive" inspections, or where there is risk of damaging something by unscrewing it, I can't imagine if the bilge covers were screwed down that he would not ask the owner, the broker or at least you (at least you and the broker should have been present) to unscrew the covers if he was really unwilling to do it himself. I think I would be refusing to unscrew my wallet to pay for a survey where he did not check the keel bolts on a boat I was looking at.
 

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Sure enough, the keel was loose, and the bottom would move about ¼" from side to side. Not a lot, but enough to kill the deal.
How did they determine that the keel was loose.
 

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Learning the HARD way...
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How did they determine that the keel was loose.
He pushed it from the starboard side toward port while the boat was in the slings. The keel moved, while the boat didn't.:eek:
 

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Re: keel bolt inspectio

Well really you should have just grabbed a screwdriver and opened it yourself for him, though I have never seen any covers that needed to be "unscrewed" other than a quick release type screw and that the surveyor should have done that. They are not supposed to remove any permanently attached panels or cabinets, but I don't think that means "bilge covers" seems he may be taking a bit too literal interpretation of not unscrewing things. It means there is no "destructive" inspections, or where there is risk of damaging something by unscrewing it, I can't imagine if the bilge covers were screwed down that he would not ask the owner, the broker or at least you (at least you and the broker should have been present) to unscrew the covers if he was really unwilling to do it himself. I think I would be refusing to unscrew my wallet to pay for a survey where he did not check the keel bolts on a boat I was looking at.
Many "bilge covers" are teak/holly plywood and often with multiple coats of varnish over the dozens of screws. Removing those screws will often damage the veneer and the surveyor will often be blamed and expected to pay for new panels. I specify to all clients that all panels/covers/hatches that need to be removed for inspection should be removed before I arrive. I will not remove such fasteners as the seller will often be ticked off with me because I found stuff he did not want found and will be looking for a little pay back.
 

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Excellent Thread!

Great Job by Saildog. Sad that he lost his boat, his effort created a thread with diverse comments.

I had a GIANT Dah moment. Contrary to those that live in the lower 48 there are fewer than 25 vessels under $150,000 that I could see without a plane trip. To get to a area with some vessels to look at would require in excess of $1000 air fare hotel rental car. It makes a no brainer to have a survey first. very lively discussion that made me think.

Thank to all for questions and those that replied.
 
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