Click for JetForums Click for Abeking Click for Seacoast Click for Ocean Alexander Click for Walker

Looking to buy a Sportfish/Convertable

Discussion in 'General Sportfish Discussion' started by craigsduc, May 4, 2011.

  1. craigsduc

    craigsduc New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2010
    Messages:
    86
    Location:
    Thousand Oaks
    We are again looking to buy a used SF to use in the Bahamas a few times ( I know.... a few times isnt enough but........... ) before reluctantly bringing her to the west coast.DD 92s not desired.DD 1271s OK. Cats/Cummins better but in our price range of mid to high 100s, we are limited. Mans maybe.....???? Would really like to buy 1/2 of a beautiful 300 to 400K boat and leave it in Fla for a while ( or even 1/2 of a 140K to 200K boat for that matter ) We live in Southern California and have boated our entire life. Our six year old daughter says she wants a sportsfisher.....and a big one at that.....so she can fish and eat them! I say OK!!!!! My wife thankfully loves boating thanks to me introducing her to the lifestyle in a good and pleasant way. Looked at a 2000 Cabo xpress with new C7s but the seller is hard at 189K. Not a bad deal but for that amount, we can buy a 55 hat with 1271s and great accomodations which will make the little one happy. She really knows the difference from a Viking and a Hatteras.....at 6! I know.....buy the newest thing you can afford.....but when your wife hates expresses and your daughter wants a big sportsfisher like her daddy does, and you cant spend 300 ( or even 250 for that matter as it is a cash thing...unless we find a seller willing to carry a small note for a short period while the boat is still in Fla.) Anyway, anyone out there know of an exceptional boat ( Hat, Viking, Bertram, Cabo,....43ft to 55ft, teak or cherry interior ( no ash or oak ) that will not cost us a fortune to own or use. Merrit has an old Hat 53 that looks incredible but I,m sure in person it would feel like an old boat and it has been for sale forever. If there is someone with a beautiful/mint 54/55 Hat or 54 Bertram that loves their boat but doesnt use it enough and would entertain a 1/2 partner from the West Coast ( Cal) that cares about his boats almost as much as his daughter, let me know. Looking at some 55 hats that look nice w low hour 1271s that we could own outright but as we will only be able to come out once in a while to use, 1/2 of one of these would be perfect too. Just want to find a truly truly exceptional boat. Thanks!
  2. 805gregg

    805gregg New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2010
    Messages:
    17
    Location:
    Ojai, Ca
    Check out Mickelson
  3. NYCAP123

    NYCAP123 Senior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2008
    Messages:
    9,341
    Location:
    Long Island, NY
    That is so cute.:D They are hard to say 'no' to. In fact, I dare say near impossible for a father.:D
  4. craigsduc

    craigsduc New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2010
    Messages:
    86
    Location:
    Thousand Oaks
    I have located a 81 Hat 55 on the west coast of fla owned by the original owners for almost 30 years. am told it is incredible in person and shows well on line. 1000 hrs on 1271s. 2000 lb davit. asking 185K . perhaps they are negotiable. might fly in Monday to preview. Opinions??
  5. NYCAP123

    NYCAP123 Senior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2008
    Messages:
    9,341
    Location:
    Long Island, NY
    I'm sure those 1,000 hrs. are SMOH. Do you know how many MOHs?
    In person, 'incredible' can quickly turn into 'incredible for a 30 year old boat'. So don't believe a word of it, and never believe pictures. That's puffing in preparation of the negotiating process. I recently checked out a boat for a client whose description from the broker and pics were as you described. When I saw it, it was all too evident that the owner knew nothing about caring for a boat. SFs get used and abused (but hopefully cared for in a situation like you describe). Even if it looks good to you, don't believe it until the survey report. Do you know when the interior was last upgraded? As soon as you get on the plane you are invested. That puts you at a disadvantage in the negotiations. You should be able to knock $30K off that asking price easily.
    Sorry to be a wet blanket, but better you have low expectations and get a good surprise than the other way around. Good luck.
    P.S. my client bought a 2nd boat I checked out. Much more knowledgeable owner and much better kept, but still not even close to the description. That's sales.
    P.S. Do you have someone local , knowledgeable and reliable who can preview it before you fly out? It would be a good idea.
  6. craigsduc

    craigsduc New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2010
    Messages:
    86
    Location:
    Thousand Oaks
    Have entered a contract subject to subject to.......At $ 150K, I am willing to fly in to see it. Listing is with yachtworld out of the west coast of Fla. I plan to have a few boats to look at during the trip just in case it doesnt show as anticipated. Need xlnt surveyors ( hull and Detroits ) in that area in case we move forward. Seems like a possible fit but until I seer it, not sure as I too know boats can appear incredible in fotos as well as descriptions yet fall short in person. Also have feelers out on a couple of Riviera 43s in South Fla where we would buy 50 % and leave them where they are. Not Hatteras,s but nice enough boats for our needs for sure. Planning on not bringing the bigger boat home and buying a nice sized trailerable to shoot to the islands in So Cal to satisfy the need for boating close to home. Plan on coming to Fla as often as we can at least for this season to enjoy the Bahamas on our own boat. Hoping this all works out.
  7. Capt J

    Capt J Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2005
    Messages:
    12,325
    Location:
    Fort Lauderdale
    Sounds Nice. Keep in mind, the maintanence and dockage costs on a large sportfish, in addition to just the asking price.
  8. Beau

    Beau Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2010
    Messages:
    2,092
    Location:
    Cold Spring Harbor, NY
    Craigduc

    Sounds to me like you should slow down a bit. You went into contract on a 55 Hat without inspecting it, and at the same time you're talking about 43 Rivieras - those are two completely different boats!
  9. dsharp

    dsharp Senior Member

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2009
    Messages:
    240
    Location:
    lake jackson, tx
    Listen to the advice of Capt J. As a second generation boatyard owner I've seen people buy just a little bit more boat than they can really afford then realize that buying the boat ws the inexpensive part. If you buy a boat that has been sitting a good while then start using it you start to find an endless list of things to repair. There is no way that a survey will catch it all. If it was a young family, such as yours You may want to look at boats in the 45' range. I doesn't seem like there would be much difference but it seems that the 53' Hatts and 54' Bertrams cost almost two times as much to run and maintain. Not trying to get in your business but, I have had several customers move up, then get discouraged and get out of boats for good. As a kid that grew up on and around boats I would say that there is nothing better.
  10. craigsduc

    craigsduc New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2010
    Messages:
    86
    Location:
    Thousand Oaks
    I mentioned the 43 Riviera only because we have looked at them and they would serve our needs however I agree they are not in the same solar system as a Hat 55 w 1271s. They would be newer, smaller, but with more modern 4 cycle Cummins or Volvos which I know would/could cost less to own/maintain. I am becoming a bit more comfortable owning a 1271 boat due to the cost to repair and their reliability. If we had a lot more to spend, we would simply be buying a Cat powered 54 Hat or 54 Bertram w 3412s or ?? At $ 150K and wanting a good sized SF with accomodations, the 55s seem to work. There is a 88/02 Hatteras 48/52 in S Fla ( " the Shark " ) that been on the market for some time which might be obtainable for $ 150 with 1900 hr 1050 Mans. Looks OK on line but will have to see her too in person when I come in. I plan on looking at a few boats while in S Fla but am in contract on the 81 55 as mentioned. Might be going home still looking as I certainly am not going to buy just anything. Its just that we REALLY want to find something soon if the right boat is out there. Would I actually buy a Riviera 43?? Possibly if the boat was exceptional and the deal was right. Do I feel they are built like a Hat or Bertram? No way! I do feel they are built well enough to consider due to our budget limitations. We are also fully aware that older bigger Detroit boats are not the cheapest boat to actually own/maintain. At $ 150K, we are leaving quite a bit in the bank for LIFE and boat ownership costs. At 55 years old, with a 6 year old that was meant to be on/under the water....I simply have decided to pursue our love of boating again and enjoy life with no regrets. Leaving our boat in the Bahamas is something we really want to do at least for the season as that is where we want to boat. Am looking into realistic options but know it needs to be orchestrated properly. It does seem it is doable though albeit with caution.

    Just wanted to state our thoughts as we want members to know we didnt just fall of the turnip truck but instead have owned boats our whole life and are truly commited to continuing the saga...albeit in a completely different boating world from where we grew up and have boated until now. Mechanically, I have been around mechanically my entire life and feel with some in depth education on these bigger diesels, I would feel comfortable being on the water with them. No....I know I will not be comparable to actual marine diesel mechanics that have many years of marine work, but I feel I will be miles ahead of many diesel boat owners in capabilities. Am very hands on and maintaining the boat will be done as much as possible personally. Thanks for the posts and replies. Its all very important to me as you guys are the experts!
  11. Ormond Bert54

    Ormond Bert54 Senior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2009
    Messages:
    461
    Location:
    Ormond Beach, FL
    Here is a current photo of the 12V71TI on my 1984 Bertram 54.

    [​IMG]

    It was overhauled last year for $60k and failed virtually immediately. The Yacht Yard that performed the complete overhaul repaired it at 60 hours then told me to pound sand after the same problem (failed cylinder head that they overhauled/replaced as part of the overhaul) allowed coolant into the oil which caused failure of the rings ... fuel in the oil ... and the rest is history.

    It is getting ready to come out of the boat because they screwed it up so badly that it has to go to the machine shop to be bored properly to accept new oversize sleeves before being completely overhauled again.

    So ... for many reasons, you better have deep pockets. Spending $100k on one of these boats is like digging out a few bucks for the ice cream man.

    Have fun ... There is plenty of work to be done while this engine is overhauled for the second time. On an 80's vintage large boat, unless somebody else has addressed virtually every system in the recent past, YOU will need to. And ... something to think about ... anybody who was on this boat within a couple of years before I bought it was TAKING THEIR LIFE IN THEIR HANDS. Everything from steering to bilge pumps to through hulls to electrical systems ready to start a fire. Deadly. I'm surprised these things don't go down much more often than we hear about.

    Here is the steering ram from my boat.

    [​IMG]

    and a close up showing only one nut holding the thing together ... looks like a glob of Mighty Putty was used to try to repair it at one time.

    [​IMG]

    None of the alarm systems were working properly ... the liferaft, epirb were shot ... the emergency engine shut down cables were frozen.
    Last edited: May 5, 2011
  12. RER

    RER Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2009
    Messages:
    1,281
    Location:
    Newport Beach CA
    That's Priceless!

    The soft market, due to a bad economy along with an aging inventory has created the illusion that these older 50' to 60' boats are affordable. And of course, they are not. As they say, the purchase price is just the cover charge to get in the club. It's the bar tab you gotta watch out for.
  13. Kafue

    Kafue Senior Member

    Joined:
    Nov 29, 2006
    Messages:
    1,151
    Location:
    Gold Coast Australia
    Now THAT is a photo that puts the fear in anyone who just thought that a few hrs. SMOH is "peace of mind". It is only as good as the company that did the work. As for the advice you are getting in this thread craig, take it!
    I too didn't just fall off the "turnip truck" as you put it, have owned about 18 or 20 boats in the last 16 years, some large (58') some medium (40’) & CC’s like a Grady.
    A 55' 30 year old boat has so many issues to be aware of that you may find the survey is "good" considering it is that old, IOW, the surveyor, in his way & experience is telling you, this is an old boat in good condition for it's age. But the day you take delivery you could have multiple expensive issues to repair. Capt. J & NYCAP know the deal.
    My advice, as someone who has just bought a 41 year old 53 Hatt conv & shipped it around the world to Australia: buy the boat that has the most SIMPLE inclusions, the more on the boat, the more you may find that multiple owners have added over the years. Each owner & their tradespeople, working over previous work & leaving more problems for the next to work out. Example: wiring in a 55’ 30 y.o may have been modified, changed, broken off, disconnected etc. by many people over the years. You will not see this until you get behind some liner or into a compartment, then it is your turn to “fix” it.
    Get as close to the bare bones as possible or be prepared to re-build a lot of the boat, that is if you plan on holding onto it for a while.
    Just my 2c.
  14. saltysenior

    saltysenior Senior Member

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2009
    Messages:
    264
    Location:
    stuart,fl.
    it's like buying a used car..even though it had the best of care,bad luck can fall on the next owner,and no ones to blame.....BUT,a used car,and the repair is cheap compared to a boat :D
  15. craigsduc

    craigsduc New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2010
    Messages:
    86
    Location:
    Thousand Oaks
    Its funny but we are actually planning on relocating to the Gold Coast within the next 1 to 2 years. Not really planning on bringing our boat with us in the event we do buy a larger older SF due to cost. I do realize buying an older larger SF is riskier than buying a newer smaller one. I know we would be wiser to look for a mid sized 43-46 ft boat but this particular 55 is owned by the original owner, is reputed to be without a doubt the most incredibly cared for boat the broker has ever seen, and in a condition again like nothing the broker has ever come across. I know, it sounds like broker talk but it is at least worth a trip to see especially if I look at quite a few boats while in Fla. I am able to look fairly closely to see just how on top of things the owner was/is however a strict survey by a very qualified guy is imperative as well. And yes, I realize it could grenade the day I take delivery regardless of the quality of the surveys. Its simply something I would like to look at seriously. I mentioned Riviera as they are built well enough certainly for our needs and expectations. A 43 would be as small as I would go but they are in a different cost bracket which we could do but we want a nicer reserve in the bank after the purchase. I really want to own 50% of a boat with someone who cares about it as much as we would. I,ve had two partnerships and they both worked very well. We actually never boated together but simply co owned the boat and shared all costs 50/50. It made boating that much more enjoyable. I will definitely look into the known costs of owning a 55 Hat while keeping it in the Bahamas. The reality is we will only be able to use it 3 to 5 times a year ( 1 to 3 weeks each time ) but bringing it to Southern California is not desired until we have had a chance to use it quite a bit in the Beautiful Bahamas.
  16. Capt J

    Capt J Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2005
    Messages:
    12,325
    Location:
    Fort Lauderdale
    Why are the head surfaces or deck of the block so rusty? Have the head gaskets been leaking for a while? I've seen quite a few DD blocks where the holes are egg shaped and they need to be line bored along with using the appropriate oversized sleeves, otherwise the liners get hot spots and create pre-mature failures. Rebuilding an engine is relatively easy. It's the prep work, measuring all of the surfaces and tolerances that is the important part and seperates the backyard mechanics from the professionals.
  17. NYCAP123

    NYCAP123 Senior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2008
    Messages:
    9,341
    Location:
    Long Island, NY
    Don't go alone

    That doesn't sound like broker talk. That sounds like broker talk that you're believing. Just the fact that you would write that tells me that you absolutely need to bring a seasoned professional (captain with good mechanical skills or engineer) with you who's job it is to convince you not to buy this boat. Make it someone who gets paid; not a friend. Preferably, have them check the boat before you bother fly in, and again with you. This is seperate from the surveyor. It may be a wonderful boat, and I hope it is, but what you have written shows that you are already at a psychological disadvantage in this deal. Make sure that someone puts in writting that there are no known problems and that the boat has never sunk. Aside from the normal issues, remember what weather has hit the Gulf region over the past 30 years. Don't assume that all those destroyed boats made it to the bone yard.
    Personally, my scam meter went to overload when read that.
  18. Ormond Bert54

    Ormond Bert54 Senior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2009
    Messages:
    461
    Location:
    Ormond Beach, FL
    This process began in December with removal of the cylinder head and sending to the insurance company lab ... then the plan for complete overhaul (in hull) ... when they tried to fit the .004 over sleeves, it was determined that two of the bores were out of tolerance. Since we are now into the summer rush, the job has been sitting for a couple of months while the boat was moved to a close by Marina, hauled and interior disassembled ... all slowly.

    It's a process. I feel good about the engine coming out because I certainly don't want to do this a third time!

    Mike
  19. K1W1

    K1W1 Senior Member

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2005
    Messages:
    7,390
    Location:
    My Office
    Hi,

    You might want to check your terminology, line boring is done as the name suggests in a line it is used for stern tubes, main bearing pockets in engine blocks etc.

    Boring or machining of the cylinder block to accept oversize liners is exactly that - cylinder boring, except this type of job it is the bore that the cylinder liner sits in that needs to be made bigger to make it round again.
  20. Hattsoff

    Hattsoff New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2009
    Messages:
    56
    Location:
    Chicago IL
    I'm sorry for all your aggrevation. Who's eating this second bill? Do you have any recourse with the place that did the first rebuild? I know it's a machine and things can happen but I've heard and read about too many expensive engine rebuilds that go bad. Of course there are many success stories as well but eitherway it takes my confidence away from having anyone touch an engine. Or anything for that matter!