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Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Boat Lust

I had lunch down by the harbor and spent part of the day prowling the boat yards. It’s time for my annual need to talk myself out of buying another boat. Once people taste harbor life it stays in their blood like the fire of a first kiss.

Some of the voices in my head are trying to talk me into buying this 28’, aluminum hulled, twin screw Marinette cruiser. It is an old boat (1980) and needs a great deal of work, but for the most part is seaworthy as is. The previous owner died on board of a heart attack as the boat was sinking in Lake Michigan; his family has been trying to sell it for a couple of years now. After the sinking, a salvage crew raised the boat from the drink and made repairs. Due to its history, it is less than half the asking price for either of two other comparable Marinettes that are for sale in the yards. It is still a significant amount of money for my retirement budget to digest. In addition, there is always the chance that water from the sinking caused extensive electrical and mechanic issues that have yet to appear. A half-price boat is no bargain if you spend an amount equal to its purchase price to make repairs.

It is big enough to be a nice harbor-home, with enough room to entertain a small gathering of family or friends. It is almost too large for me to single-hand out on my lone-wolf fishing expeditions; I would prefer a 24’ – 26’ boat for that.


Chris Byrne said...

I have to say, that looks like a great singlehander liveaboard.

Generally speaking, I wouldn't call a 28' too much for a singlehander; other than maybe linehandling.

If she was single screw, no way would I run her without a mate; but twin screw (gas or diesel? I presume diesel), I don't think she'd be a problem.

Maintenance on the other hand... well, you know the old saying. Extra waterline means it's just a bigger hole to fill up.

Chris Byrne said...

Huh.. I guess Marineete only put the Chryslers in these hulls. Too bad, it's be a much better boat with a diesel.

Anyway, it appears the going rate on a PRISTINE one is about $15k.

Chris Byrne said...

Oh and looky here:

Seriously, in ten minutes I found a bunch of much better examples on Craigslist and yachtworld for the same or less.

James A. Zachary Jr. said...

Hi Chris! Thanks for stopping in.

Yeah, they mostly used the Chrylser 318 engine in Marinettes, which is a pretty good little engine, but these have high hours. Dunno if anyone in this area has a great deal of experience working on them ... repowering the boat with rebuilds can be more than I want to deal with.

For some reason I am drawn to the Marinettes.

Thanks again for the comments and info. I probably keep shopping around ... maybe have to wait another year.


Chris Byrne said...

I like the Marinettes as well. In general, I like the classic aluminum hull sedan cruisers.

I'm a tall guy, and the configuration maximizes belowdecks space.

Really the best of the breed are the various scandinavian craft in the 40' range, especially with the MAN diesels; but they command the $$$.