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I recently purchased a 31'' aluminum "Bris de Mer". This boat was designed by Groupe Finot
and built in 1976. I purchased the boat because I liked the way it looked and I happened to have the cash but I knew little enough of its'' qualities. Now working backwards, hopefully without too many regrets, I''m seeking first hand or educated opinions of its'' stengths and weaknesses. I would be out there finding out for myself if it weren''t for this work thing which had me traveling two days after I purchased it.
Thanks and Happy Sails to you.
 

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I would certainly contact Groupe Finot and see if they have any info. (I was stunned at the sheer anount of information that Farr''s Office gave me on my ''new'' boat.) You shoudl be able to get basic dimensions and some copies of marketing materials on yoru boat. I actually got a ''sailing guide'' that discussed recommended sail selections for various windspeeds and how to trim these sails for various conditions.


I can only assume that you have had the boat throughly surveyed by a marine surveyor familiar with aluminum boats.

Aluminum technology in the early 1970''s was really crude compared to today. Aluminum is a nice boat building material BUT it has some very serious faults that affect its long term lifespan. Aluminum work hardens (fatigues) at hardspots, concentrated loads and at welds. As a result it looses a lot of strength over time.

Aluminum is also very prone to electrolysis and in the 1970''s electrolysis protection was not what it is today. You will need to use special bottom paints and in many areas of the world (U.S. for example), amatuers are not allowed to purchase or apply these special TBT based bottom paints because of environmental laws.

Aluminum tends to be noisy and have a lot of condensation problems unless coated with dampening material like foam, BUT these dampening materials can create areas for concealed corrosion.

Modern aluminum alloys can be quite durable, but I seriously doubt that these were available in the 1970''s.

Good luck
Jeff
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks for the info Jeff. I am fairly well versed in the nature of the material and did find some info on the Groupe Finot site. My surveyor canceled at the last minute and suggested someone who knew less than I did, that''s another story however. I guess what I''m really looking for are it''s sailing characteristics and flaws. They did build about 110 of these over 10 or so years and I''m hoping to get some inside dirt.
Thanks
 
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