Cost to Finish a Bare Alum. Hull

Discussion in 'Metal Boat Building' started by KandDConcepts, Feb 20, 2020.

  1. KandDConcepts
    Joined: Jan 2019
    Posts: 8
    Likes: 0, Points: 1
    Location: Seminole, Florida

    KandDConcepts Junior Member

    Hey guys,

    Looking for some numbers from experienced builders and craftsman. I am considering the cost and effort involved on an unfinished aluminum 38’ sailboat. Wondering what kind of cost numbers I might be looking at to finish the boat out.

    My wife and I like simple boats, VHF, depth sounder, fans, lights, stereo, solar, and refrigeration. We might one day add radar.

    Our interior taste is Dashew-esc, white, bright, durable, well lit. Mostly Formica over ply. White oak trim. No teak or exotics.

    I have been in the composites industry for a decade and on boats my entire life. Boat repair and building professionally for a few years each. I am now transitioning into design work, graduated in December as CAD designer/drafter. But I have never been very involved in the finance or planning side of boats. Restored/updated a couple of personal cruising yachts (27’,30’), which is applicable for rig/engine costs and project management- both had tight budgets and were successful- but nothing this big.

    The boat has all the windows in the hull and acrylic to go with the holes, all the hatches are there. Drivetrain is there- although engine has been sitting 20+ years after delivery from the factory. Waiting on head cover removal/inspection: presumed D.O.A.. Through hull and standpipes are in. Floors are braced. Bulkheads are in (aluminum). Tanks are integral and finished. Has drawings form designer. Hull is fully painted- which may be a negative as it will be hard to do any additional welding.
    Interior layout is deck saloon, single cabin, aft cockpit.



    Please share your experience in these matters. Time and Money rule the world and so I want to explore the good and bad before I seriously consider making an offer.

    Thank you.


    PS. I did some lengthy searching for similar threads- if they exist, just post the link and I can get rid of this one.
     
  2. bajansailor
    Joined: Oct 2007
    Posts: 1,243
    Likes: 340, Points: 83, Legacy Rep: 37
    Location: Barbados

    bajansailor Marine Surveyor

    Hello KandD - Based on your experience and accomplishments mentioned above, I think that you are the best person to try to estimate the cost of finishing this 38' aluminium sailboat.
    Only you know how fast you work when you have been involved in building and repairing boats in the past - hence you should be able to estimate the hours required for doing the job.
    And if you haven't ever taken twice as long as initially anticipated to do the job, then you are doing really well!
    However I think that everybody will generally agree that the cost of finishing this boat will end up being twice (and hopefully not too much more than) whatever figure you initially come up.
    Re 'making an offer' on her - basically she will be worth whatever somebody is prepared to pay for her. How much are they asking for the hull as described above?
    As you say, time and money rule the world - so you have to assess if it will be more effective to simply buy a secondhand aluminium boat and go sailing, or if you are more keen on probably spending much more than the cost of a second hand boat in reasonable condition, while putting in many 100's of hours working on her before the boat will be in a condition where you can sail away over the horizon (if this is the plan?).
     
  3. Rumars
    Joined: Mar 2013
    Posts: 811
    Likes: 314, Points: 63, Legacy Rep: 39
    Location: Germany

    Rumars Senior Member

    Between 50 and 150 000 depending on luck, skills, friends in the industry, sh parts, etc.
    At hulk stage the boat is 20% completed, money and timewise. Then you have interior (including isolation), plumbing, electrics, electronics, engine, rig, sails, anchoring system, just to name the big ticket items.
    Right now the boat has a base value of her materials in scrap. The highest value would be what a yard would charge for a similar hull at similar stage. Anything in between is fair, the more you go towards the high value the more risk you bear. That's because you have no guarantee on the welds, ballast to hull isolation, paint prep, etc.

    Here is a boat refit where the owner talks openly about costs. The hull is steel but also 38 feet.

     
    Last edited: Feb 21, 2020
  4. gonzo
    Joined: Aug 2002
    Posts: 14,507
    Likes: 659, Points: 123, Legacy Rep: 2031
    Location: Milwaukee, WI

    gonzo Senior Member

    Building an interior on a boat with the deck already on is probably three times more expensive in labor. Are you looking for a cost if you hire out the job?
     
  5. KandDConcepts
    Joined: Jan 2019
    Posts: 8
    Likes: 0, Points: 1
    Location: Seminole, Florida

    KandDConcepts Junior Member

    Gonzo: No, I would do the labor with wife/friend help at my own property/shop. Wondering end cost of others who have done something kind of similar, cost of materials/hours invested. Perhaps my question was not clearly asked. But yard cost/hours is useful to a point.

    Bajansailor: I expected someone to tell me that. Haha but the problem is, I am endlessly optimistic and I know that if I double it, I would be close.. but was hoping those that have come before me might share their final costs.
    We are currently sailing our little cutter in the Bahamas and will be further south next season. I would like to sail to some less traveled places and so am looking for an aluminum boat with a protected watch station that I can beach.
    I know it’s easier to fix/update an old boat, I have done that twice and sailed both those good boats many miles. But the type and style of boat I am currently seeking is harder to find being so specialized and I have not been finding much used available at a good value.

    Rumars: I will watch that video soon. Hadn’t considered YouTube. The boat was professionally built at a yard with a good rep or I wouldn’t have considered it. But you make good points to be sure.


    Thanks guys.
     
    Last edited: Feb 21, 2020
  6. Rumars
    Joined: Mar 2013
    Posts: 811
    Likes: 314, Points: 63, Legacy Rep: 39
    Location: Germany

    Rumars Senior Member

    Fortunately youtube is not all cats. Even if the hull was professionally built I would still not offer more then what the materials would cost me new. After that price you are in a race between what transporting this hull home costs, vs. waterjet cutting and paying a welder to do the seams after you assembled it. Something between scrap metal price and new metal price is what I consider fair for all.

    The time budget can not really be estimated by someone else. Every job has a hands-on and a thinking part. The hands-on part is usually not rocket science and can be estimated pretty well. The thinking part depends on your knowledge of the subject and how often you change your mind. Additionally you must do logistics for everything.
     
  7. KandDConcepts
    Joined: Jan 2019
    Posts: 8
    Likes: 0, Points: 1
    Location: Seminole, Florida

    KandDConcepts Junior Member

    Thanks for the advice on my offer price. I will keep it in mind.
    Any experience on materials cost of a similar project?
     

  8. Rumars
    Joined: Mar 2013
    Posts: 811
    Likes: 314, Points: 63, Legacy Rep: 39
    Location: Germany

    Rumars Senior Member

    Sorry no. Even if, the variables are to big. She could be a light displacement or heavy, round bilge or multichine, 3mm plate or heavier, etc. Get the details from the plans or calculate a rough area and check Al and ballast (lead or steel) prices.
    Can you tell us the specific design or if she is custom some details? What's the asking price?
     
Loading...
Forum posts represent the experience, opinion, and view of individual users. Boat Design Net does not necessarily endorse nor share the view of each individual post.
When making potentially dangerous or financial decisions, always employ and consult appropriate professionals. Your circumstances or experience may be different.