Thursday, January 19, 2017

Architeuthis For Sale Q & A

I haven't had time to post more details about the boat yet, but a potential buyer asked some questions on TradeMe. I think my answers will eventually show up on the listing, but in case they don't, I'll post them here. The potential buyer asked:

Congratulations on your PhD. Interesting yacht, rare to see proper mooring bitts/post nowadays - couplea questions: 1) How does such shallow draft affect AVS and sailing ability? 2) How are spruce masts, ply decks, wooden rudder holding up against water penetration/rot? 3) Condition of engine? 4) Age of rigging? 5) Lead or iron ballast?
Here are my responses:
  1. I don't know the exact AVS, but I looked up the capsize screening ratio (1.71) when I was buying the boat. Subjectively, I found the Mariner to be a little more initially tender than boats of similar size and displacement, but quite good with even a small heel. So, basically, just a bit wobbly when motoring with no sail. We just make sure to put up the mizzen and sheet it in tight when motoring on lumpy water. There were a few knock-downs of other boats that were crossing from Mexico to the Marquesas at the same time we were, but we hardly even dipped our rails (but that might have just been because we shortened sail early and often). The blue-water cruising potential and stability of these boats is well documented. See this book about the first single-handed female pacific crossing in a Mariner 31, or the forum on the Mariner owners webpage.
  2. The spars and deck are in really good shape. We took the whole rig down in 2010. We stripped and refinished the masts with AwlBrite, upgraded the spreader and spreaders on the main-mast, replaced the bobstay and bobstay chainplate, and inspected all the standing rigging and consulted with a professional rigger (photos). The AwlBrite is probably about due for a few new coats as preventative maintenance, but (impressively) it's not showing any signs of blistering, cracking, or water penetration of any kind. The decks were completely replaced by a previous owner around 2001 or so. We've been quite vigilant about tracking down and fixing any little leaks, and we pulled all the stanchions, re painted the decks and non-skid, and resealed everything in 2014. So the decks are in good shape too. The rudder has never shown any sign of water penetration. I'm not even sure it's got a wooden core. If it does, it's got a whole lot of glass and gel coat over it.
  3. The engine is the original 40hp Perkins 4-108. If I remember correctly, it's got around 2500 hours on the clock (I need to look to be sure). It always starts and it's never smoked. I replaced the water pump, strainer, and hoses in 2014. I also pressure tested the heat exchanger and transmission oil cooler and painted it. It's big, low-tech, and sounds like a tractor but it keeps on going and I've never had a problem getting parts for it. We typically burn about half a gallon per hour while motoring.
  4. I'm not sure how old the rigging is, but most of it predates my ownership. My impression is that the boat was fully refitted (decks, rigging, sails, everything) around 2001 or so, and then it just sat in the marina until I bought it. We replaced some hardware (spreader tangs, bobstay and bobstay chainplate) in 2010. The rigger we talked to in California before we left said that, according to industry guidelines, we should've replaced it then due to it's (assumed) age, but that based on it's condition he'd personally keep it. It's been a while since I've been up the masts, but everything I can see still looks good.
  5. I've never been able to find any definitive information on what the ballast material is. There's definitely a steel lifting eye (presumably used to lower the ballast into the hull when it was built) that sticks up out of the ballast below the cabin sole but, aside from that part, I can't get a magnet to stick to anything at all so I'm pretty sure it's lead. And I've never heard of these boats suffering from the water intrusion, rusting, swelling, and cracking thing that seems to afflict some of the Chinese boats from the same era.
I hope this answers your questions, and I hope trademe lets me include this much text in an answer.

P.S. Thanks for the congratulations on my PhD. It was pretty painful, but I'm glad I did it. ...mostly.

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