Friday, 11 March 2016

Pre-purchase Survey of Hallberg Rassy 49


This cutter rigged Hallberg Rassy 49 was designed by Olle Enderlein & Christoph Rassy and built in 1989. A superb boat for long distance cruising, with lots of stowage space and long range capability. The classic flush teak-laid deck is uncluttered and the stow away cutter stay is ideal for short handed sailing. This particular vessel had a four cabin interior, making it popular for charter or family cruising.

The pre-purchase survey of this boat took place over a period of two and a half days. The sea trial  allowed a more thorough check of the engine & drivetrain than if the engine was simply run whilst ashore. Following the sea trial, a sample of engine oil was taken and sent away for chemical analysis. The very last task of the survey was to climb the rigging. Although there was ice on the mast, making my hands sore & numb, I was able to identify a number of fine cracks on the stainless steel hardware that secured the cap shrouds to the mast head. Whether the new owner wished to take her ocean cruising or simply use her for weekend cruising, he was glad to know that these defects had ben found in good time and could be repaired before a more costly and dangerous failure occured.

See examples of my pre-purchase survey reports:

Monday, 6 July 2015

Pre-purchase Survey of 1999 Hunter Legend 380 in Chichester Marina

This pre-purchase survey took place over a two day period: The hull, keel, rudder, skin fittings and external drive gear were all checked whilst the vessel was ashore. I then returned a few days later to check the rest of the boat. The engine was also inspected when the boat was back on her mooring, with a one hour test run, both in forward and reverse gear.

The Legend 380 is rigged with a B&R (Belgstrom & Ridder) type rig. This design was apparently developed for use on performance 'round the world' race boats. The mast has the spreaders swept back at an angle of 30 degrees, creating a broad 'tripod' base and removing the need for a backstay.

I knew of a smaller Legend with a similar B&R rig that had problems with the attachment of the shroud deck plates: The internal structure that tied the deck plates to the hull had de-bonded. With this previous experience in mind, the very first check that I made on the boat involved the removal of part of the seating framework in the saloon, on both port and starboard sides. This task took over an hour to perform, but I consider that it was worth it. Although I didn't find any loose or de-bonded structure, I did find evidence that post-build repair work had indeed taken place, with relatively new fibreglass laminate applied to the parts of the hull moulding that secure the shroud chain plates in place.

I suspect that although Hunter Legend claim that the B&R rig configuration creates an immensely strong rig with greatly reduced stress on the hull, the loads taken by the shrouds are very high and possibly much higher than those experienced by the twin backstay on a more traditionally rigged bermudian sloop. If the supporting structure of the deck and hull are not substantial enough, de-bonding of the join between the hull and hull stiffening structure is likely to occur.

Barcelona: Insurance Survey of a 57' Dagless Fleur de Lys

Surveys of timber boats are always very interesting, and this Fleur de Lys was no exception. She was designed by L. Francis Jones and built in 1979. She was constructed from 1 1/2" Iroko planks on large oak frames & floors and powered by two six-cylinder Sabre diesel engines.

She was ashore in Port Ginesta, a very large marina just south of Barcelona, Spain. It's always nice to be tasked with a survey in a warm country and this was a particularly nice location in which to spend a couple of days.

Saturday, 22 November 2014

Insurance Survey of a Frances 26 at Emsworth Yacht Harbour

I have just finished the insurance survey report of this very nicely maintained Frances 26, currently out of the water at Emsworth Yacht Harbour, Hampshire, England. It's not often that my reports have as few as twelve recommendations for the owner to carry out, showing that she has been very well looked after.

This Frances 26 was built in 1989 by Victoria Yachts in Warsash, Southampton, England. The original Frances was designed by Chuck W. Paine for his own use. His wish was to reduce the size of the well known Colin Archer designs, in order to reduce the problems and difficulties encountered with the larger ocean cruisers. He retained the attributes of the Archer designs that were necessary for comfort and safety at sea, such as a double ended stern, plenty of ballast and heavy displacement. A generously sized bridge deck offered a good level of flooding protection, should the vessel be pooped. For crew who are nervous of working on the foredeck when the vessel is heeled over, the teak laid deck of the Frances has a very well designed 'well' on her foredeck, providing high-sided bulwarks that give a better level of safety to the crew.

Friday, 26 September 2014

Insurance survey of Broom Monarch Motor Cruiser

I have just completed an insurance survey of a 1983 Broom Monarch motor cruiser in Birdham Pool Marina, Chichester. A total of 28 of these fast offshore cruisers were built between 1982 and 1991. This example, which has spent most of her life on The Thames, was fitted with a large double berth in the forepeak and two cabins in the aft. She was fitted with two Ford Mermaid Majestic, six cylinder turbocharged diesel engines, each driving a three-bladed bronze propeller.

Thursday, 25 September 2014

Pre-purchase Survey of Hallberg Rassy 42 (E) in Alicante, Spain

The Hallberg-Rassy 42 (E) was designed by Olle Enderlein and built between 1980 and 1991, with a total of 255 hulls being built. Enderlein’s design was replaced in 1991 by German Frers’ 42 (F). To me, her most noticeable difference when compared with the more recent Frers design is her large expanse of flat deck. I find that working (and relaxing) on a flat deck is much nicer than having to work around the slippery sides of a coachroof.

Down below in the saloon, they are light and spacious, with plenty of light coming through the numerous deck hatches and opening hull ports. With these boats being 23+ years old, the interior mahogany bulkheads, cupboards and furniture frames have darkened to a very beautiful deep red-brown.

I was recently asked to travel out to Alicante in Spain to survey a very nice 42 (E), built in 1982. Performing a pre-purchase survey of a 42’ ketch is physically demanding at the best of times, but working down below & delving into the bilges is more strenuous when the outside temperature is 30°C and the humidity is high. The vessel’s skipper, who was a great help throughout the day, kept me supplied with many litres of bottled water.

Not surprisingly, this boat’s hull had suffered from blistering in the past. This is incorrectly termed ‘osmosis’ in the UK and is called ‘boat pox’ in the States. Of more concern were the skin fittings and attached valves. The majority of these were the boat’s original hardware and were beginning to fail. I say ‘beginning’ as it was only when the valves and attached spigots were lightly struck with a hammer, did any of them fail.

Having finished the majority of the survey, it was time to put the yacht back into the water and take her back to her mooring, several miles up the coast. This gave the skipper & I plenty of time to run a sea trial on the Yanmar 4 cylinder main engine and also to enjoy a very pleasant sail. My only regret of the survey was that I didn’t take a photo of her deck whilst I was at the top of her main mast, checking over the mast cap and attached hardware.

Sunday, 31 August 2014

Pre-purchase Survey of Nimbus 380 Carisma Motor Cruiser

I have just finished a pre-purchase survey on a very nice Nimbus 380 Carisma motor cruiser at Lymington Yacht Haven. She was built in Sweden in 2004 and has been maintained to a high standard. She was equipped with teak cockpit, decks, bathing platform & flybridge, cabin heating and a good selection of instruments. The 380 has a large amount of storage space, with a large locker positioned under the saloon sole.

The survey also included a sea trial, where the vessels's twin Volvo diesel engines were tested through varying conditions. The engines were KAMD 43P, each rated at 230HP, each driving a 4 blade propeller through a V-drive. Although the sea state was quite lumpy, with a fresh breeze and wind-over-tide, we managed to reach 23 knots through the water. Careful adjustment of the trim tabs kept the semi-displacement hull nicely balanced. With the trim tabs fully raised, visibility from the helm in the main cabin was poor and the ride very lumpy. once adjusted, all-round visibility was excellent and the ride kinder to the boat and crew.