Rust issue on Skipperliner houseboat

Discussion in 'Boat Design' started by JDJ, Aug 25, 2017.

  1. JDJ
    Joined: Aug 2017
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    Location: WILLIAMSPORT, TN

    JDJ Junior Member

    Hi, and I would appreciate any help or thoughts on this houseboat. I looked at it and it appears there is rust in the keel of the boat but the keel is dry now. The information the owner provided was that the boat was replated if that is the right word in 2012. The boat was built in 1995. It appears that there was some type of leak and the repair company welded a new steel skin over the existing exterior skin or structure and did nothing to stop or remove the existing rust inside the hull. My concern is the boat repairable for a reasonable cost. According to the owner the boat did have a thru hull that leaked and was welded up and is currently not leaking but will have to be pulled from the water and have a proper repair made. I am thinking I need to have an inspection made before I decide to move forward and purchase. My question is if the steel was welded over the existing skin - was this the proper method to repair? Is there a way of correcting the rust issue without tearing out the interior of the boat? What else should I consider or should I just walk away?
     
  2. gonzo
    Joined: Aug 2002
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    Location: Milwaukee, WI

    gonzo Senior Member

    Double plating is a quick and dirty repair. It lasts for a while. You should get a surveyor that is familiar with steel boats. Re-plating is the proper repair. At that time, it is possible to see if frames or the keel need replacing or repairing. Is this boat in fresh water?
     
  3. JDJ
    Joined: Aug 2017
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    Location: WILLIAMSPORT, TN

    JDJ Junior Member

    Yes, currently in fresh water and the frames have some rust that you can see. If it was in fact re-plated but the rust was not dealt with at that time can this be corrected with out a major tear out. I do not know if it was double plated or not - I guess I was trying to avoid the cost of a survey until I decided how serious I am about this boat. I was thinking that a boat built in 1995 and then bottom redone in 2012(either re-plating or double plating) that something was faulty in manufacture if the boat required an extensive replacement of the skin on the bottom of the boat rather than sanding and repainting. My major concern is the existing rust will it continue if the boat is kept dry and maintained properly? Thanks for the reply.
     
  4. gonzo
    Joined: Aug 2002
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    Location: Milwaukee, WI

    gonzo Senior Member

    If there is a plate welded over a plate it will continue to rust in between. Also, the outside plate is welded to a rusty plate, so it is not ideal. A 17 year old hull with extensive corrosion is uncommon. It may mean the alloy used was incorrect, or the quality of the steel was poor.
     
  5. SamSam
    Joined: Feb 2005
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    Location: Coastal Georgia

    SamSam Senior Member

    They rust from the inside out usually. The insides are usually inaccessible, the plating is thin, rust pits thin it even more and prepare it for pinhole leaks. Re-plating the thing might cost $20,000 or more.

    Depending on your circumstances, the things can be very reasonable or very expensive to have, so a competent inspection would be a good idea.

    You might not be able to insure it.

    You maybe need to lease dock space for it. If it sinks (it probably has no watertight bulkheads or flotation) , sometimes the water people (EPA, Coast Guard, DNR, TVA, marina owners, waterfront owners etc) make a huge stink about it, such as $$$$ per day fines plus damage and cleanup fee's etc. Plus paying to get it removed or re-floated or whatever.

    If you can't do the work yourself, repair costs are something pretty much out of your control. You pay or you lose the boat. Or sometimes you pay plus you lose the boat.

    It's best to pay a reasonable price for a well maintained boat that needs no work. They are out there.
     
  6. gonzo
    Joined: Aug 2002
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    Location: Milwaukee, WI

    gonzo Senior Member

    The only justification for re-plating, is a boat with a really nice interior and good machinery. Otherwise, it is just scrap.
     
  7. JDJ
    Joined: Aug 2017
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    Location: WILLIAMSPORT, TN

    JDJ Junior Member

    Thanks for the reply and answers my questions. I will probably look at the boat again and if interested get seller to give me a right to purchase based on a Survey of the boat.
     
  8. messabout
    Joined: Jan 2006
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    Location: Lakeland Fl USA

    messabout Senior Member

    The owner should not need to give you the right to have the boat examined by a surveyor. That is a given in any major transaction. Would you buy a house without having it assessed by a knowledgeable appraiser? Your mortgage lender would not even talk to you otherwise. If he has any problems with giving you his blessing to have the boat examined.....then your best decision is to run not walk away from the deal.
     
  9. gonzo
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    Location: Milwaukee, WI

    gonzo Senior Member

    I agree.
     
  10. JDJ
    Joined: Aug 2017
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    Location: WILLIAMSPORT, TN

    JDJ Junior Member

    I did get the invoice for the work done in 2012 and maybe you can see something that I do not see.
     

    Attached Files:

  11. JDJ
    Joined: Aug 2017
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    Location: WILLIAMSPORT, TN

    JDJ Junior Member

    When I wrote I would ask owner to give me permission to have a survey done on his boat that I would get agreement from him that he could not sell it to someone else while I was having a survey done.
     
  12. gonzo
    Joined: Aug 2002
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    Location: Milwaukee, WI

    gonzo Senior Member

    It doesn't say if the double plated or re-plated. You could call the shop for more details before the survey.
     

  13. JDJ
    Joined: Aug 2017
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    Location: WILLIAMSPORT, TN

    JDJ Junior Member

    Thanks. I could not determine that either but will call the shop to see if they can shed some light on what was done before wasting any more time on this boat. Hopefully they are still in business.
     
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