boat botox or grow old gracefully?

chubby

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With various polices maturing the chance arises to spend a bit on the boat, planning to mainly to upgrade functional things like the sails and sail handling gear but how about the cosmetics? I had previously shied away from painting and taken the view it just conceals defect. We saw a stunning Tradewind 35 in St Vaast this year, looked like new but I knew it must be the same vintage as our boat, late 1970s, 1980s, it had a superb paint job including topsides and coachroof and deck and glistening fittings and bright teak.

So do you grow old gracefully with the odd polish and not worry about the odd bump or have a paint job, if so if you have the topsides done but leave the coachroof it still looks an old boat, money and loss of sailing time if you have it done during good weather aside, does the boat end up looing like an elderly matron with too much botox!!!!!

What do forumites do to upgrade old boats if funds allow?
 

theoldsalt

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You don't say what boat you have. Some makes (Moody for example) were built with a thick gelcoat which enables cutting back to create an "as new" finish.
A skilled gelcoat worker can match the colour and fill damage successfully.
This is not only cheaper than painting but also helps retain the boat's value.
Paint jobs can very soon look tired and a lot of buyers are put off painted GRP boats perhaps because they wonder what is beneath.
Gelcoat work can be easily done when wintered ashore whereas for a paint job to be successful the boat needs to be in an temperature and humidity controlled building.
My advise is based on work I had done last winter on my Moody 425. Now looks like new !

As far as the spare cash is concerned, I suggest you save the rest because sooner or later you will need it on "essential" repairs and upgrades.
 

jwilson

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Following significant but essentially cosmetic damage from an adjacent boat when moored during a typhoon, I had a dark blue GRP hull painted with Awlgrip: the finish was superb, better than the original gelcoat. Kept the boat nearly another 10 years, still looked good despite considerable use. But when you sell it there will always be buyers suspicious of paint.
 

Concerto

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Certainly agree that compounding and polishing the hull will be a lot cheaper to do than paintings, also better for reselling in the future.

My Fulmar was looking very tired when I purchased her and now she is almost like new again. Look at the photos on this link to see how she used to look and then click to page 1. http://s1294.photobucket.com/user/ConcertoFulmar32/library/?sort=3&page=5. If you want to read exactly what I did, there is a thread on the Westerly Owners Forum with full details as it happened. http://www.westerly-owners.co.uk/woaforum/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=2748

Do try and avoid painting for as long as possible, then have it done professionally in Awlgrip.
 

ostell

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Bought a Centaur 4 years ago that had been neglected and looked it. Local guy worked on it, repairing dings and scrapes in the hull and then polishing. Quite common to get comments on how good she looks and even "Is that a new one".

The guy I use, Small Boat Services, is legendary locally on his skills in matching colours.

em first impression.JPGem just need water.jpg
 

Tranona

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With various polices maturing the chance arises to spend a bit on the boat, planning to mainly to upgrade functional things like the sails and sail handling gear but how about the cosmetics? I had previously shied away from painting and taken the view it just conceals defect. We saw a stunning Tradewind 35 in St Vaast this year, looked like new but I knew it must be the same vintage as our boat, late 1970s, 1980s, it had a superb paint job including topsides and coachroof and deck and glistening fittings and bright teak.

So do you grow old gracefully with the odd polish and not worry about the odd bump or have a paint job, if so if you have the topsides done but leave the coachroof it still looks an old boat, money and loss of sailing time if you have it done during good weather aside, does the boat end up looing like an elderly matron with too much botox!!!!!

What do forumites do to upgrade old boats if funds allow?

The great thing about discretionary spending like this is that there is only one person you have to consider - yourself (and maybe your SWMBO and family). It is therefore irrelevant what other people do or think except to get ideas like the ones already suggested - alternate ways of achieving your objective,

The concepts to take into account are sunk costs and opportunity costs plus the motto "My future starts now". By sunk costs I mean your boat is yours and you can't do anything about your decisions in the past. Opportunity cost is what else you can do with the money. The objective is to maximise the utility to you as a result of your expenditure. This comes in two forms; firstly the enjoyment you will get and secondly the increase (if any) in the capital value of the asset. Would suggest that the latter is minimal in that you would not recover much of the expenditure through a sale of the boat in the future.

So the decision is (assuming you don't want to spend the money on something entirely different) whether you will get value out of upgrading your boat over the future period that you own it, or is it better to sell this boat and invest the proceeds plus your new found capital in another boat. There are clearly pros and cons but only you can say which would be better for you. Bear in mind though that refurbishing an old boat just like an old house or car can end up costing more than you expect and can be time and emotion consuming compared with buying a boat already closer to your ideal.

Enough of the theory and on to a practical example from someone who was faced with exactly the same issue. We had planned our retirement with a boat in Corfu, an old fun boat in UK and winters travelling for as long as we were able and enjoying it. Circumstances changed (my health) which makes travel difficult, so Corfu boat now in UK and travel funds now available for other things. Our solution (as you see from my other threads) was a new boat to replace the Corfu one (and eventual sale of the fun boat). The objective was to get a boat that I could use easily and not require lots of fettling. Alternate uses of the money limited and opportunity cost of leaving it invested small.

Our solution, not suitable for everyone, but just illustrating the process. Look around and you will find people spending money on old boats, cars, houses as they see it as the best use of their money in their circumstances.

Hope this helps.
 

Colvic Watson

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The thing is, if you own a Tradewind 35 you already own a boat prettier than anything else on the forum, so any improvement you do is frankly just rubbing our nose in it.
 

chubby

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My boat is a Barbary ketch which is also quite pretty as motor sailors go, it is a similar vintage to the fantastically refurbed Tradewind we saw. If you want a motorsailor that is reasonably attractive and sturdy they really don`t make anything equivalent these days and the nearest the LM range are about 20 years old so as the boat suits me I plan to keep it just a question of how much to pay on optional refurbishment.

I followed the PBO project boat and saw it at SIBS and looks fantastic but PBO admits it was not economically viable even discounting the efforts of staff.

If money really is no object, at the scuttlebutt Poole trip a few years ago Berthons showed us a Fisher 46 being completely stripped and rebuilt but were hazy about the costs! I lke up to date kit that works but once you are aboard you can`t see the topsides so how much do you value the "row away wow factor" from the cosmetics? probably an impossible question but thanks for all the input folks.
The thing is, if you own a Tradewind 35 you already own a boat prettier than anything else on the forum, so any improvement you do is frankly just rubbing our nose in it.
 
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