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Thread: Ericson 35-3

  1. #16
    kapnkd kapnkd's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by trickdhat View Post
    Thanks for all the kind words of encouragement. They accepted the offer! I think I'm in shock.

    So what do we do now? Last time, I just chose to buy a boat instead of a mountain bike. This time is a little different story (although with how expensive mountain bikes have gotten, its still not far off). Does anyone have any recommendations on a surveyor up my way?

    Congratulations!! ...One thing to keep in mind as you get into the necessary work projects. DO check out your diesel fuel tank for algae and/or sludge buildup. We re-powered with a diesel engine in the early 90's and last year, the tank had enough "gook" in it that we went ahead and pulled the tank for a good cleaning. (Good friend of mine at our boat club also had to do some extensive fuel and tank cleaning, so it's not an uncommon problem to have build up over the years.)

    We went online and bought a $20 Endoscope Inspection Camera (USB that fits on your i-phone) to look down into the tank and insure it was super clean after flushing it out. Perhaps your surveyor will be checking on that aspect for you - but if not...It's worth your efforts to do for peace of mind.
    Fair Winds....

  2. #17
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    Wow, thanks for the info. My mind is racing trying to figure everything out and it's making it next to impossible to focus on work today. I'm waiting for a reply from Erik Bentzen, Kingspoke Marine, and I'm going to try Tasman Boat Company as well.

    I'm thinking of doing a quick sand, 2 coats of bottom paint, and any immediate fixes in Port Townsend if the survey pans out. I'm reluctant to jump in to major projects during this haul out to allow for time to gather info on what the survey finds. I'm also located across the sound in Everett which limits the amount of time I could spend in the yard (that ferry ride is beautiful, but time consuming). The boat was cruised this summer and it has had a diver clean and replace zincs regularly from what I understand. I'm sure the boat will need some kind of work outside a quick bottom job, but I would like to do that closer to home.

    When I viewed the boat, the batteries were dead. The broker said they have been replaced twice in the last 2 years. we found an ancient battery charger with the DC breaker tripped. The owner has hired a mechanic to investigate the problem and the broker has given them this week to get it fixed. I'm not sure where a perspective buyers rights are in this situation. It would be nice to be involved with the repair decision, but I understand it isn't our boat. Should I request to be informed of the work to be done, request what I would like done, or do I just have to wait until sea trial to find out? The broker has been extremely friendly and responsive and probably has the answer, but I wanted to check with you guys before I start asking.
    Luffalee, 1980 E25+
    Yamaha T8 outboard

  3. #18
    Advanced Beginner bgary's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by trickdhat View Post
    I'm not sure where a perspective buyers rights are in this situation.
    There's sort of a power shift halfway through the process (Bruce's Opinion, worth everything you've paid for it)

    Up until the surveyor arrives, you kinda have no vote in things. It's their boat. You can ask, but you have no real leverage.

    Once the survey happens, and especially when the surveyor's findings are reported out, then you have some room to negotiate. If the surveyor finds (for example) that the battery charger is defective, or poorly installed, or whatever, you can ask the owners (through their broker) to make it right. Generally speaking they should have the survey issues resolved to your satisfaction... or if you'd prefer, you can ask that they take the cost of the repair off the purchase price. The Broker more-or-less represents the seller, but is motivated to help the deal happen, so he/she ends up being in a position to tell the seller "look, one way or another this needs to get resolved or we're going to lose this buyer.... and because the issue is in the survey report, we're going to have to take care of it for the next buyer anyway if we don't do it now..."

    $.02
    Bruce

    PS
    I took full advantage of that power. In purchasing my boat, the surveyor reported that the lifeline gates didn't have tape around the latches. I pretty much sat there, wordlessly glaring at all involved for a good 2 or 3 seconds, dead-set on not moving forward with the deal, until the seller pulled a roll of tape out of a drawer and resolved the issue... It felt awesome to abuse such a tiny amount of power (laughing)
    "Makana" (ex-Thelonious)
    1985 Ericson 32-III #604
    Makana blog: here

  4. #19
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    That's what I thought, but this is kind of a chicken or the egg situation. We can't do the sea trials or survey (assuming the survey will take place on the way and in the yard) without figuring out the battery / charger situation. The broker thinks they're probably just going to put a new battery which should solve the problem and last until the sea trial. I just don't like the idea of buying a new battery and connecting it to an old charger. It's probably just going to be something I'll have to get over.

    As for negotiating repairs after the survey, what's the general opinion regarding boats like this that are listed as needing some work? On one hand, the water damage and deferred maintenance were the only items listed, so everything else would be on the table. On the other, the boat is listed well below the going price and they accepted an offer significantly less than that. I'm not sure how much lower is really fair and the charger / battery was known when I submitted my offer. Maybe I'm just being soft, but it sounds like the owner is going through some difficult times and I don't really want to add to it. I can't imagine the internal struggle Christian had to go through on the other side of that expertly executed negotiating tactic. Then having to find the end of the tape under pressure in front of everyone. You're ruthless, maybe I should take note.
    Luffalee, 1980 E25+
    Yamaha T8 outboard

  5. #20
    Advanced Beginner bgary's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by trickdhat View Post
    what's the general opinion regarding boats like this that are listed as needing some work
    I think (again, just Bruce's Opinion), that.... it's a bit of a dance.

    On the one hand, you want to get things resolved that are truly issues affecting the viability of the boat. On the other hand, you're not going to get the boat rebuilt to like-new condition as part of the process.

    My surveyor explained his view (may be standard in the business, don't know) that there are three classes of issues
    -- Class-A findings are "violations or structure, seaworthiness or watertight integrity
    -- Class-B findings are "violations of USCG, NFPA, ABYC and/or other safety standards"
    -- Class-C findings are "other findings or recommendations"

    I'd guess that most "Class-A" (truly structural/seaworthiness) issues might be hard to get a seller to pay to resolve. Like, if the keel-bolts are corroded through or the mast was broken and badly repaired, those might be more likely to make me walk away than to ask the seller to fix. If the issues found are less drastic (e.g., the survey finds that below-the-waterline thru-hulls don't have double-clamps and pre-positioned bungs), that's easy to fix and probably not worth putting the owner over a barrel for.

    The Class-B things get more interesting. If, for example, the fuel system is inoperative or the battery-charger is a potential fire issue or whatever... yeah, I'd ask the seller (through the broker) to get those resolved as a condition of the sale. I think (JMHO) that you have a right to come out of the sale with a boat that has no glaring safety or operational issues, *unless* you're going into this with the idea that it's priced as a project boat and have no plans to use it until you've rebuilt it. In my case, I wanted a boat that had "good bones" (hull, rig, keel, operating gear) and no major issues that were in the way of going sailing.... your priorities might land on a different point in the spectrum, given the price-vs-condition and the seller's situation.

    I'd treat Class-C items as a professional's view of the things I should take care of once the boat is mine.

    And... for the most part, cosmetic/non-structural/non-safety things (delam'd floorboards, water stains on interior panelling, etc) are probably going to show up as Class-C if at all.

    Once you've found a surveyor, it might be worth a pre-survey call to ask him/her how issues are categorized and what the "custom" is for dealing with things in each category. Doing more surveys in a month than you or I will probably see in a lifetime will probably give him a good perspective, both about the severity of the issue and what's appropriate to ask for in the course of the transaction. My question, after the survey findings were known, was "are there any things in this report that represent reasons NOT to buy this boat". While he cannot make the decision for you, a good surveyor should be able to give you an answer that helps you sort through the findings and decide what's important to you.

    $.02
    Bruce
    Last edited by bgary; 12-02-2019 at 12:29 PM.
    "Makana" (ex-Thelonious)
    1985 Ericson 32-III #604
    Makana blog: here

  6. #21
    Advanced Beginner bgary's Avatar
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    Forgot to add: My surveyor recommended having both an engine survey and a rig survey, and having both of those done *before* the main survey so that he'd have access to any findings and could look at them himself during his inspection.

    IIRC, those were about 100 bucks each, and your surveyor should be able to recommend qualified mechanics/riggers in the Port Townsend area.

    Worth doing, IMO, especially insofar as it extends your ability to decide which things are items you can/should take care of once the boat it yours, versus which things are potential deal-breakers.

    B
    "Makana" (ex-Thelonious)
    1985 Ericson 32-III #604
    Makana blog: here

  7. #22
    Moderator Christian Williams's Avatar
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    we found an ancient battery charger

    They fry batteries. A new one is just a couple hundred peanuts. I hope it was not this original equipment, which destroyed my previous owner's bank of expensive AGMs.

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    By the way, Bruce was of sound mind (sort of), and closed our deal with a bottle of superb brandy. Things didn't go as well buying Thelonious II, with a seller who was in the grip of Alzheimers, did not really want to sell, and confided to the broker and me that it was all his wife's idea, and that "I never loved her anyhow." That negotiation took two months. You're right, we owe the seller some humanity, as it is not always easy for them, and often a matter of some setback financial, personal or of health.
    Last edited by Christian Williams; 12-02-2019 at 01:02 PM.
    Thelonious II, E381 hull 513 (1984) Universal 5432
    Table of Contents for Thelonious Blog here
    Videos: http://www.youtube.com/c/ChristianWilliamsYachting

  8. #23
    kapnkd kapnkd's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bgary View Post
    There's sort of a power shift halfway through the process (Bruce's Opinion, worth everything you've paid for it)

    Up until the surveyor arrives, you kinda have no vote in things. It's their boat. You can ask, but you have no real leverage.

    Once the survey happens, and especially when the surveyor's findings are reported out, then you have some room to negotiate. If the surveyor finds (for example) that the battery charger is defective, or poorly installed, or whatever, you can ask the owners (through their broker) to make it right. Generally speaking they should have the survey issues resolved to your satisfaction... or if you'd prefer, you can ask that they take the cost of the repair off the purchase price. The Broker more-or-less represents the seller, but is motivated to help the deal happen, so he/she ends up being in a position to tell the seller "look, one way or another this needs to get resolved or we're going to lose this buyer.... and because the issue is in the survey report, we're going to have to take care of it for the next buyer anyway if we don't do it now..."

    $.02
    Bruce

    PS
    I took full advantage of that power. In purchasing my boat, the surveyor reported that the lifeline gates didn't have tape around the latches. I pretty much sat there, wordlessly glaring at all involved for a good 2 or 3 seconds, dead-set on not moving forward with the deal, until the seller pulled a roll of tape out of a drawer and resolved the issue... It felt awesome to abuse such a tiny amount of power (laughing)

    Well stated. Ultimately it IS the buyer’s right to complete the purchase or not on the results of the survey. Both the broker & previous owner are most hopeful for the sale. Hence, the needed leverage to get a fair deal.

  9. #24
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    Yes, that's the charger. The broker said the boat has had 2 battery banks in the last 2 years. Sounds like the charger is the problem.

    After figuring out the name of the boat was spelled incorrectly on the listing, I was able to find the owners blog. I think they have a profile on here but haven't been active in a while. Putting a name and face on it puts a little different spin on the situation.
    Last edited by trickdhat; 12-02-2019 at 01:14 PM.
    Luffalee, 1980 E25+
    Yamaha T8 outboard

  10. #25
    Principal Partner Kenneth K's Avatar
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    I think it's pretty typical for surveyors to state a "fair market value" of the surveyed boat. If your offer is significantly less than that, then I think, from a business perspective, you're not likely to get many additional repairs or concessions for new findings. But there's always the "personal" side of the seller's story....especially if he really NEEDS to sell.
    Ken
    '85 E32-3 "Mariah" #641
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    "Saltwater is the cure; sweat, tears, or the sea......"

  11. #26
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    Rig Inspection?

    On Bruce's and other's recommendation, I called Port Townsend Rigging to see about a rig inspection (I'm also planning on calling Brian Toss). It was on odd interaction. I spoke with them at the boat show a few years ago and had a great friendly conversation for over an hour about my boat and all things sailing. This time was much different.

    She first seemed caught off guard by me asking for a rig inspection and even asked why I would want to do that. Then she said they don't travel, not even across the bay to Port Hadlock, but she might make an exception if it worked out. She said she needed me to fill out a form to give them more information (seems fair, but I'm wondering why she couldn't take the info over the phone. She ended the conversation by saying if it's an '84 with old looking rig, it wasn't even worth my money or their time to look at the boat, but she'd check my email before making a final decision.

    I was really impressed with them at the boat show, but not so much anymore. I'm assuming I will need to replace the standing rigging at some point in the near future, but I thought it was a good idea to get it inspected anyway if the price wasn't too insane. Now I'm wondering if a rig inspection is a good idea if I know I'm going to replace it anyway.
    Luffalee, 1980 E25+
    Yamaha T8 outboard

  12. #27
    Moderator Christian Williams's Avatar
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    Around here a rig inspection is free. The rigger takes a look and makes recommendations. You take them or not.

    I don;t think it's necessary to "automatically" replace all the standing rigging on an '84 boat. But the rig needs a check, including, and especially, chainplates bow and stern and interior, and all turnbuckles and lifelines. Its just an eyeball job by a professional eyeball. But they find stuff I miss.

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    Thelonious II, E381 hull 513 (1984) Universal 5432
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  13. #28
    Curator of Broken Parts toddster's Avatar
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    Well... certainly worth inspecting it yourself before sailing away into the sunset. Especially if you have the opportunity to ask the seller about anything you may find but don't understand.
    There's a dozen things on my boat that I've been puzzling over for years.
    s/v arcturus E29 #134

  14. #29
    Senior Moderator Loren Beach's Avatar
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    Electircal

    As for the rigging inspection, my opinion (and *I am unanimous in that!) is that any boat with an 'old' standing rig and no actual proof of the install of a new rig within the last decade, needs a new standing rig. I believe that any professional rigger will agree. BTW, I have a friend who is a rigger, and he told me recently that Brion Toss is battling cancer, and it's serious.
    Given his successful business, I am sure that the shop will have other people that can help you, and I have met another rigger who is reportedly moving from Portland to Pt Townsend (at least temporarily) to assist Brion.

    As for your prospective boat's battery charger..... oh yeah....
    When I inspected what would become our boat the batteries were dead as a stone, and the owner had the broker put two new 12 volt group 24 batteries in to facilitate the sale. The stock shore power charger was a different brand than your picture, but likely the same old "ferro resonant" technology. Those things could provide the voltage but were very poorly regulated and would boil batteries dry in a week if ignored. I installed a modern solid state charger.

    *wonderful quote from 'Mrs Slocombe" of Are You Being Served.

    Unsolicited Opinion: The 35-3 is a strong and fast offshore vessel that is not all that much smaller than the 38 series. This may well be your last boat, taking your family on many cruises. Perhaps you will be posting cruising and racing stories here in 2030 .... !
    Last edited by Loren Beach; 12-02-2019 at 06:29 PM.
    1988 Olson 34 #8
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  15. #30
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    Just plan on a new rig. Even more so than a new engine, the knowledge your standing rigging is in good shape makes a huge difference in your enjoyment, especially when things get rougher than you expected.

    In the grand scheme of things, the rig isn't even all that expensive and is something that has to be done every so often anyway. If you're pulling the mast for transport, that's a great time to have to worked on.

    The battery thing is weird to me though. I've never used a battery charger on a boat. The alternator should do it for you when you run your engine right. And you should run your engine till its hot every so often even on a slip. And on a slip you'd have shore power, so why drain the batteries to the point of needing a charge there? I'm sure it is some mode of boating life-style I haven't yet encountered, but I for one would check the alternator before using a charger. Of course that reminds me I need a new alternator....

    The boat looks good. Even great for that money.

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