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Old 07-06-2019, 06:56 PM   #1
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Blisters noted on survey

I am starting the purchase process on an older (1967) Willard boat. I will be getting my own survey of course, but I have a previous survey done 5 years ago that indicated: “Approx. one hundred 1/2" to 2 inch diameter blisters observed on wetted hull surfaces and not structurally significant. No repair is recommended. Monitor.”

I do not believe any repairs of the blisters were attempted since that survey, but of course I will see once the boat is hauled for my survey. My question is, what do folks think about this finding, assuming it is still true? Given the overall apparent condition if the boat, I believe I am getting a very good boat at a good price, but I am a bit concerned about the blisters. Of course, the broker says it is nothing to worry about and they should just be painted over. I am a skeptic at heart so I am not so sure. At 47’, a full peel and relamination with vinylester resin, which seems to be the gold standard for blister repair, would be very expensive and warrant a significant price adjustment, but I am not sure if that would be warranted, especially given that Willards have a reputation for being extremely well built hulls in general.

Any thoughts greatly appreciated.
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Old 07-06-2019, 07:07 PM   #2
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Hard to comment w/o knowing the cost.


It relative to that cost




But over 100?


is this it


https://www.yachtworld.com/boats/196...owse%20listing
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Old 07-06-2019, 07:17 PM   #3
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Yup. Already substantial discount from stated price.
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Old 07-06-2019, 07:37 PM   #4
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Thumbs up

that isn't a boat it's a ship



A work of art buy it!!!!


that engine room is fantastic.


you can take short cuts to repair the blisters
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Old 07-06-2019, 07:44 PM   #5
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She is a nice vessel, and the Admiral approves, which is no mean feat. . .
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Old 07-06-2019, 07:54 PM   #6
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Without seeing the blisters, i’m Guessing no more then $30k. Take the discount and own a beautiful yacht
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Old 07-06-2019, 08:24 PM   #7
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She is beautiful. I would not leave the blisters alone. Either get the owner to fix them or get a discount in order to fix them.
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Old 07-06-2019, 09:39 PM   #8
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Wow! Two things.
1 A friend of mine, John, lives in Gig Harbour Wa, no longer boating, still wears a license plate "Klatawa" as that was always the name of their boat. I will ask when I see him. I have sent the link.

2 I repaired a couple of dozen similar sized blisters on my last sailboat. No biggie. Didn't require a peel. Just an angle grinder to get through wet to dry layup, then epoxy repair. When I sold the boat the surveyor (purchaser's) commented that the repair was done the correct way, so didn't affect the price.

That boat is one of the nicest 47' I have ever seen. If those pictures are current, you are getting a great boat at a good price.
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Old 07-06-2019, 10:01 PM   #9
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Full peel? Relamination? Whoah! Slow down. Blisters are cosmetic. The boat has lasted many decades with them. It appears to be very well maintained.

Personally, at some point, I would have each blister ground and filled. Very routine and inexpensive job. Your survey may provide repair estimates but if the boat is already heavily discounted you might not get a dollar for dollar adjustment.
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Old 07-06-2019, 10:08 PM   #10
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Yep, blisters are cosmetic til you talk to people who are experts in hydrolysis.


Blisters are often cosmetic, but not always and can be a much larger problem.


The vast majority of both boaters and boatyards know little about the problem.


Read the other thread concerning bottom issues, especially post 22 - link below


Http://www.trawlerforum.com/forums/s...ook-45319.html
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Old 07-06-2019, 11:10 PM   #11
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Not sure how this will play out but a beautiful Willard! Hope it works out for you.
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Old 07-07-2019, 01:32 AM   #12
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You have the advantage of a 5yo report as a baseline. Are there photos too? Comparison with your own fresh report, and/or with your own observations at survey(I think you must be present)should define whether the situation is static or extending itself. 2" blisters are substantial and there are around 100. Are they,unchanged, growing in size, or joining up, or what? Could they be still 1/2-2" but getting deeper? How thick is the hull? Is it solid f/g?
I`m not in the "cosmetic" camp. Fix can be a pricy total peel and redo with vinylester, or less costly blister by blister repair. If it`s definitely not worsening/extending, maybe leave it alone but, reassess after you get your own report and advice.
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Old 07-07-2019, 05:16 AM   #13
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AS most blisters are only cosmetic I worry that few yards are skilled enough to do anything besides a minor surface repair.


Why look for trouble?
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Old 07-07-2019, 11:11 AM   #14
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Can we clarify the actual issue with blisters? I am guessing they are a sign of water seepage into the hull lining? If they are the very small <1/2in “pebble” variety, my understanding is they do not indicate a major problem. I have heard a rule of thumb is to be concerned about the ones the size of a quarter or larger, presumably because that indicates enough water intrusion that the hull itself could be weakening?
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Old 07-07-2019, 12:07 PM   #15
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Those rules of thumb are not usually in the discussions you might have with real experts



Go beyond forums and dock talk, the general run of the mil boatyard, most surveyor's and many magazine articles and find out what the top tier thinkers and investigators found out through the years.


Any discussion that ends with only the word blister in it, is just the tip of the iceberg.


Some boaters might be all a boat has, but it could be worse and too many don't realize all that may be going on



Plenty on the web, you just have to get past the majority iof partial truths.


You can have a severely delaminated or hydrolyzed hull and not have one bister if my research and memory is correct.
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Old 07-07-2019, 01:56 PM   #16
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Thanks to all for the thoughtful replies. I have indeed read many of the in depth articles on blisters, and there certainly is a lot to learn. In terms of photos, the old survey only had a couple of pictures of the bottom (I couldn’t figure out how to clip them and post) and they don’t show anything that looks too huge, but they are limited in scope. I believe the hull is of very heavy, solid laid up fiberglass (novcore) construction, based on the comments I have read about other Willards. There is one other boat like this in the PNW, named Neried, and if anyone knows how I could get in touch with the owner of that vessel I would greatly appreciate it, so I could compare notes about this issue.

I know that anything other than a simple grind and fill job requires a yard with considerable skill, and probably costs a lot. I am not sure how much bargaining room I will have with the Seller, and it might come down to a choice of walking or taking my chances. We shall see. The boat is clearly very nice in other respects and she has held up for 52 years without any evidence of structural issues, so I tend to think it is unlikely there is a significant problem. We shall see when I get my own survey. It is great to have this group,to bounce things off of. Thanks!
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Old 07-07-2019, 02:10 PM   #17
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You may want to go to this site for in depth info on blisters.

https://www.yachtsurvey.com/my_wet_hull.htm
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Old 07-07-2019, 02:35 PM   #18
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Filled up more than 2 trash cans full of laminate that most I pulled off with bare hands.


You bet I did a lot of research on what was wrong and how to fix it
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Old 07-07-2019, 04:28 PM   #19
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Looked through the photos on YW and wow what a beautiful boat, the way it appears that that boat was loved I doubt that the owner didn't deal with the blisters if they were a bigger issue than an annoyance. That hull is no doubt stupid thick as that's the way they built big boats in the early days of fiberglass.


Good Luck and I hope it works,
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Old 07-07-2019, 05:43 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by psneeld View Post
Yep, blisters are cosmetic til you talk to people who are experts in hydrolysis.
There are many so-called experts, many theories, and many many opinions.
But nobody seems to have any actual knowledge of a boat sinking as a result of blisters.

SteveD acknowledges that grind and fill is an acceptable repair method for blisters in a boat that is not severely delaminated. A surveyor should be able to detect severe delamination, It was probably more of a problem in boats built in early eighties when mfgr's shifted production to cheaper China where they had to train new workers and deal with different temperature and humidity conditions that played havoc with the catalyzing process. I think they also has some issues in the early seventies during the gas shortages.

If is my opinion based upon my own experience with blisters that they are probably cosmetic and will have more impact on resale value than structural integrity. There are of course exceptions and blisters may be a sign of deeper delamination. A 1967 boat still floating is most likely sound.
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