Samson C-Breeze (Boxmast Fears)

Discussion in 'Sailboats' started by Prtndr37, Feb 1, 2009.

  1. Prtndr37
    Joined: Jan 2009
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    Prtndr37 Junior Member

    Looking at what I would call, a floating hull, of the cover boat for Samson C-Breeze. She has been neglected for well over five years. Been floating for in the same marina for over 15 years. No masts, no "brass work"(ports, cleats, etc), motor condition unknown(looks decent), old sails, interior needs complete updating...basically a lot of work. I've exhausted Google with key word searches, nothing new. Found a dozen or so C-breeze 46' for sale around the world(about 100k) in complete condition. She is completely dry inside, no visible cracks above the water line, but I'm worried about under water, a deteriorated keel, bumps/bruises, no sailing, yada yada. Seller has no interest in haul out inspection in order to complete a sale. Mind you he saved it from the marina, he was friends with the daughter of the 2nd owner. So he says...him being the third owner and living across the country.

    My questions....1)What is a realistic price for such a boat? She is...was coast guard certified, has available her entire build process photos, maiden voyage, and original plans/paperwork. 2)Could someone recommend one of those elusive insurance companies in Australia(Oz?) or NZ who might cover a Ferro?

    I understand she will not pass a test right now, but would like to know for when she is ready. Even if I have to purchase property. I have the time, I have enough to get started, and finish her through the years. I'm only 30, with a wife of 10 years and two daughters. My parents own a house on a lake with deep water access. Thank you to those who contributed great knowledge to my "Box Mast fears" post.

    Now, Let me have it....I need to know roughly what this is worth.

    If we don't do it now...will we ever?
    C.
     
  2. marshmat
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    marshmat Senior Member

    Hi C.,

    Sounds like you're at the decision point! So, a few questions to be fired back at you:

    - What do the wife and daughters (mostly the wife) think of the boat? When you look at it, does she start talking about what you can do to refit it for the family, or does she say "umm, I have a bad feeling about this thing"? I don't know why, but some boats just have a vibe about them, one way or the other....

    - Have you found a surveyor yet who is familiar with ferro construction in particular? I don't think there are that many of them around, but I honestly wouldn't consider the purchase of a ferro hull without a survey by someone knowledgeable in that method of construction. I wouldn't trust my own eyes to see everything that could be a bit unusual.

    Now, as to how much she's worth.... well, as a rough guess, I'd take the average price of the 12 or so that you've found for sale, and subtract the cost of the repairs and such that would be needed to bring your candidate boat to comparable condition. But I'm not a surveyor, nor an expert, and appraising a boat is tricky at the best of times. Of course, the lousy economy works to your advantage here, as yacht prices across the board are depressed right now as a lot of people realize they can't afford to pay off their boat loans now that their stocks are collapsing.
     
  3. PAR
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    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    If the owner will not swing the haul out, he's not interested in selling the boat. Without the haul out, you can't get insurance or a complete survey (which the insurance company will insist on). It's likely he's hiding something he's well aware of, but rather you not see, until after the sale.

    You could dive on the boat, you could also pay to have the boat hauled yourself (if he balks at that, just walk away from it, he's up to no good).

    Ferro construction is extremely difficult to properly survey and many insurance companies make you pay a premium for owning one, if they'll even insure you at all. In the USA ferro has a very poor reputation, though this isn't shared in Europe and down under. There are several good reasons they have such a bad reputation and some are well deserved.

    Frankly, in this economic environment, if you have an unwilling seller, then it has hidden issues that aren't forth coming. This should tell any reasonable business person it's a "snake bit" deal and act accordingly.

    There are lots of "deals" in the current market, with very willing and entertaining sellers. You could end up with a much better boat, from a helpful responsible and willing seller, for the same or less money. Try not to fall in love, remember it's a commodity, not a family member (yet). My instinct upon reading your post is to walk away from the deal before you get hurt.
     
  4. Prtndr37
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    Prtndr37 Junior Member

    Vibes are a funny thing...

    We will certainly appreciate the questions and comments that will make us think.

    1) Yes, she looks and dreams, we even drew up a simple enough conversion to remove the third cabin to open up a "living room" area, while doubling(stacking) two single berths up front in the V, consideration would be paid to the weights of wood removed and added. With a divider curtain in the V, our two daugthers could still bring a friend each, while not being to cramped in case of bad weather....
    2) Yes also, bad vibe at first, althought she isn't sure if it was the boat itself, or the way it looks, + the way the seller emails is somewhat fishy.
    3) Surveyer.... Was planning on diving the hull myself, looking/feeling for cracks, loose "chips", noncrisp edges of the keel, etc. In the interest of responsibility, I am now currently shopping a diver for hire, I do not want to wait this out till spring. Surveyers are in my opinion, a waste of money. I used to buy cars for a living, I flipped some houses at the begining of our boom, I'm confident on everything else, except the condition of the keel....
    I do understand the method principals of ferro, worked with tile an mortar sets of different sorts, never anything comaprable to the size and profound impact of this boat. I would be comfortable making a decent repair. There are no signs of rust streaks inside or out after 4+ years of neglect. Someone did a plywood job up top, sealed and sanded, but not primed or painted. I would have expected some sort of rust, but found absolutely none.

    The information that all of you, collectively and objectively, have to offer, fars out weighs, how much BS I would think the surveyer, would be full of. Hell, I bet someone out there, knows someone, who has a connection to the original Samson Marine folks, somebody would be able to tell me about this boat, I bet. I'll track 'em down tomorrow.

    Everything happens for a reason,
    Cori

    PS: My Vibe...was pure, safe, and strong... Salted with caution.
     
  5. Prtndr37
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    Prtndr37 Junior Member

    Par,

    You hit it it on the head. I did offer to pay and facilitate. His stance the whole time has been the intent of shipping it to San Fran, where he lives, come this summer, doing the same sort of deal with intent to retire, feeling the pinch of the economy like most, if he could sell it for a decent amount he will, but he definitely not giving it away.(Hello Run-On, I do that). Just an odd character, but everything screams scam. I've tracked him, got an address. Peoples homes, for what thats worth, will be involved in the deal....Hidden issues...I really don't think he knows, I think he help out a long time friend, and now he's scared or possibly needs to recover $. His stance against the haul out is: liability, possible damage, "When it comes out of the water, its going on a trailer, and I will deal with what I have when it gets here", or something like that.

    Par, you say you wouldn't know exactly what your looking for, do you own a ferro? If not, what type of boat do you own, or have owned? As to the market, if your buying through yachtworld or some other broker, you tend to pay what they say is market value. I perfer auctions: ebay, repo, Gov, Ins., and plain old word of mouth. I've been looking for an ocean going 37+ ft ketch that would have some value where ever we go for about two years now. Bid on many, viewed several, wish I had paid more for one.

    You guys provide me with a wonderful outlet,
    C.

    Sorry for blabbering...with bad grammar.
     
  6. Prtndr37
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    Prtndr37 Junior Member

    PS. I really can't afford this boat overall...But we do have a good size chunk of cash that can get us started, 2 years into it, while still leaving us some for lifes emergencies. No loans required, no contractors required either.
     
  7. PAR
    Joined: Nov 2003
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    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    I have several boats and a few yachts. I'm not saying I wouldn't know what to look for. I'm saying you can't access the structure very well or easily in a ferro build.

    The more I learn about his boat, it's owner and your situation, the more strongly I'd recommend you walk way from the deal. His excuses are just that and a clear indication of intent or possibly lack of it in this case. Let him wait until it's nearly worthless, then he'll call you to see if you're still in the market for a hard to sell boat. Please . . .

    If you want to get robbed, use a broker. The best way to get a boat is perform the leg work in person. Private sale, auction, abandoned boats at marinas, storm damaged, etc.

    Surveyors are like real estate agents, with many seemingly like they'll tell you just about anything. Amazingly enough, there actually still are real people who can and will access your prospect, without regard for who's paying the bill. I'm one of those surveyors. I don't care if it's a seller or buyer's survey as I don't offer one. You pay up front and you get an accurate assessment of the boat, like it's content or not.

    Now, you're 2,000 miles north of me, but frankly, there are thousands of yachts in the size range you're looking at down here. I suspect your area is about the same. Half the market value should be your highest offer. I'd say 50% of the sellers will jump at the chance to unload their yacht.
     
  8. Prtndr37
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    Prtndr37 Junior Member

    Thank you Par,

    He was asking 23,000, is down to asking 18,500. I told him it was worth 5-10k with a respectable 10k opener, we have reach an agreement at 13k, just can't overcome this hull inspection. I have free range with getting it done via camera or diver or whatever, besides a haul out. Mind you we're frozen here, he's looking to sell someone now, not interested in a binding contract contingent on the hull, essentially taking it off the market on a maybe. I feel I might be over thinking this. Its a concrete boat, with pictures of its upside down construction, its first lift upright, its 50 hour steam tent, its first paint job, etc etc....its concrete, not a Swiss watch. No leaks, no streaks, no visible patches, but definitely scary. You right about not being able to access much from the inside. I'll walk away when I find something worthy of walking away from, not just his squirrely attitude combined with the fact its ferro.

    Again, I know what the market value is when completed, what is a decent hull worth....1k 2k 3k 4k 5k 6k....13k?

    Any ferro builders out there?

    C.
     
  9. alan white
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    alan white Senior Member

    Why not ask the owner for a guarantee of satisfaction of a hull survey? Go through the transaction with the selling price escrowed to a third impartial party, haul the boat, survey, and either break the deal or have the funds okayed for transfer.
    If he still balks, he's either a kook or he's hiding something. I've met kooky people in the past who shoot themselves in the foot every time they go to make a deal. They have an attitude about selling (or buying) things that is a product of a distorted childhood.
    I showed a 23 ft cruiser I had for sale to a potential buyer at the mooring. When we arrived there I found the engine wouldn't start due to the gas tank being empty. I told him I'd be back in a few mionutes with gas, apologizing for the inconvenience. But the man angrily decided "I wasn't ready to sell the boat", and he nixed the deal right then and there. The boat was a great deal, but that didn't matter to this kook. To him, buying a boat, or anything, was about being wooed, about the seller bowing and scraping, and less about the actual thing he was buying.
    Sellers can do the same kind of thing. They feel "lowered" by their financial situation. They'll be "damned" if that's going to effect how they appease the buyer. "I may be desperate, but I'm not going to actually act the part!"
    or, "I'm an honest man (which they are), and I refuse to have to prove it!"
    What can you do?
     
  10. PAR
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    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    Would you buy a $13,000 used car without your trusted mechanic having a good look over her? Would you buy the same car if it looked great, was well maintained by the previous owner, except the last few years, but the current owner will not let you start it?
     
  11. Prtndr37
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    Prtndr37 Junior Member

    Funny thing Par,

    I used to buy cars at auction for a living. Spending 60k a week of other peoples money, on cars I got to look at briefly, I was good... Motors do not scare me, it could be shot for all I care, just find myself a nice turbo diesel and redo. Its the things that you learn to look for after many years of sailing that I am worried about...You wouldn't know what this tick and that tick are in a car, I do. I don't have a sailing back ground, you guys do.

    Please, I'm not looking to get into the politics of the buy, I can handle myself. I hoping to hear from some experience as to what to look for, perhaps a rough idea of value, and a known insurance company over seas that would play ball.
     
  12. Prtndr37
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    Prtndr37 Junior Member

    Alan White,

    Good insight to the "kooky" behaviors of people. I think I might also fall into that catagory. I tend to be very suspicious, and see the potential negative side of things, worse case scenario. I over think many things in my life, often putting an "out of the box" spin on everyone elses reality. Problems is, down the road, I often been proved right, when others were dismisive.

    Still looking for advice on a ferro hull...

    So, If we don't do it now, will we ever?

    C.
     
  13. PAR
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    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    You'll find hulls in that condition and that level of equipment/systems, etc. aren't especially valuable. This is particularly true of ferro in the USA. Just trying to insure it will offer some clues to the value placed on it, by those who have had to make pay outs against them.

    It's possible you could find an overseas insurer, but they'll insist on a survey and understandably so. I'm a surveyor for the major wooden boat insurer in Florida and they require a survey on all new policies, which I suspect is an industry wide standard.

    From my experience the place you need to look, as you've already guessed is the keel. I've seen them with exposed armatures which rusts quickly and literally pops off the concrete, exposing more wire. Lets hope it's had a reasonably uneventful life and the keel is unbreached.

    I'd imagine you'll have a few months to wait before you can put divers in the water, but this would be a minimum requirement, if I was the purchaser. Of course you're not going to get around a survey unless you know a less then scrupulous one that will write up a report how ever you like.

    Another thing to look for is what some are calling "blisters". There are several possible reasons for these to occur, but in cold climates, it's usually associated with moisture ingress into the surface of the concrete (for whatever reason) which then expands while freezing, breaking up the concrete in localized areas. If not too extensive, these can be easily repaired, though is a tedious and time consuming affair.

    Electrolysis is another issue, which I will not get deeply into, mostly because it's very difficult to examine without an X-ray machine. Visible signs will be noticeable under the LWL, particularly on the running gear (shaft, prop, strut, etc.). Some signs may be visible inside the boat on the shaft, motor mounts, rudder port, strut attachment bolts, etc. Also check for bonding of the major metal components and the general condition around the bonding straps and wires.
     
  14. Prtndr37
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    Prtndr37 Junior Member

    What are the signs of electrolysis on the shaft, motormounts, rudder port?

    Have a driver ready for this weekend, boat is in an area were they cycle water, not just a hull bubbler. My instructions are to look for cracks, try for "chips", a visual of her keel edges...crisp and clean, or worn and rounded. he will also look for signs of repair, noted by a pattern...round/square/triangle/mishaped, but a loop line of any sort...prop condition, with a spin from inside by hand, rudder operation, perhaps even a series of "grid-pattern" knocks by hand, listening inside for a constant thickness. Given that this boat was choosen to represent the samson c-breeze name, is it acurate to assume, samson approved of this boat, or merely just coincidence. She was built in 1972...full sets of pictures, history...

    Waiting for the weekend,
    C.
     

  15. Prtndr37
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    Prtndr37 Junior Member

    PS: Only jumping ahead on the insurance. I want to know its possible. I understand the intial investment is a gamble till the day she's recertified, and documental for the scrupulus approval of said insurance company.
     
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