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Old 05-24-2017, 11:57 PM   #21
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you said you've done all your researh and are sure this is the boat for you. I assume you've seen this review then:

Boat Review by David Pascoe - Mainship 31

he may be excessively harsh but he points out a number of important details ( and includes photos ) that would definitely make me want that boat surveyed before I bought it. A few excerpts:

keep in mind 2 things....this boat was only 3 years old when reviewed....and are these things a mechanic would find ?


Let's start with glassed over plywood stringers and frames. There's nothing wrong with using plywood if you do it right, only they didn't. First, we found about 15 holes cut in them with hole saws, leaving the plywood exposed......

...... we found the plywood sucking up water, expanding and cracking. Up in the forward bilges we found limber holes cut in major frames that were starting to rot (see photos below).

...for in the vicinity of each of these glassed-in doubler blocks we found major weep holes (see photo above right). Then we have some bolt-on attachments on the transom below the waterline, where the bolts apparently were not caulked, and which were leaking.

...we found all those nice fabrics around and below the windows to be all wet, three days after the last rain?
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Old 05-25-2017, 01:36 AM   #22
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Originally Posted by Steve91T View Post
I knew that would get your attention. Allow me to splain....

Very very long story short, we live on lake Norman in Charlotte, NC. We have a 20' Mariah open bow and use it about 3 times a month. We love being on the lake. So does our 3 yr old. She's been boating since she her mom would allow her to go.

So...

We fell in love with a 36' aft cabin Mainship. But we absolutely wouldn't be able to ship it to the coast once a year because the fly bridge would have to come off.

So then we decided on an express cruiser. We looked at a very nice 32' Maxum 3000 SCR. It was nice but we just don't want an express cruiser. But it has a decent living space and will be easy to ship.

Then we found this thing.

Used 1996 Mainship 31 Sedan Bridge, Folly Beach, Sc - 29412 - BoatTrader.com

We have done the worst thing we can possibly when shopping for a boat...fallin in love.

We've read everything we can find on the internet about it and people with families really seem to like it. We've watched every YouTube video we could find and it's the boat for us.

It looks like shipping only requires removal of the radar arch and Bimini. I can handle that.

Our plan is to enjoy nights on the lake and maybe in a year ship it to the coast and explore the intercoastal and eventually get it to the Bahamas.

So, I'm thinking about skipping the survey. Before you guys fall out of your chairs, let me explain...

From what I've read they are kinda like house inspectors. They know a little about everything, specialize in nothing. (I mean no offense)

I'd hire a mechanic to look over the boat for us. We can't see the boat for another week and a half. So I'm thinking about making an offer contingent on a river trial and mechanic inspection.

Any and all opinions, good or bad or awful, will be appreciated.

Thanks guys.
Steve
Steve,

First of all, seems like your goal is to have cruiser on Lake Norman, not cruising the inter coastal, correct? If so, this boat may not eat your lunch with fuel bills, but it WILL guzzle the gas. I'd be surprise that you'll get 5 gph cruising at 6 or 7 knots like David said. And I'd bet if you got it up to cruising speed, you'd be looking somewhere around .6 to .8 nmpg in efficiency.

And I'd suspect that this is a plaining hull and you won't do as well as a displacement or semi displacement hull and handling at 6 or 7 knows isn't really good.

However, as a place to hang out on the lake, moving little, it's pretty cheap.

If so, this boat would be fine. The lake is not big enough for serious cruising and those gas guzzling 454s won't eat your lunch.

So, spending a lot of time on the hook or in anchorage, it's a good boat. Long range cruising, it would suck.

As for a survey, that's your choice. But what is the upside on a sight unseen offer? If it's to expedite a absolute steal, then fine. But this doesn't look like a steal. The survey cost is a fairly large percent of the purchase price, but it's the complexity of a boat that makes it worth while. And the surveyor won't find everything that needs attention, but if he finds ONE big one, he would be well worth his dollar.

At least have a good engine and electrical guy look things over.
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Old 05-25-2017, 06:45 AM   #23
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Buying a boat without having a survey done is not a wise decision. Period.
You can rationalise this all you want but chances are you will regret it down the line.
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Old 05-25-2017, 06:58 AM   #24
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The website for the selling broker is not Certified Sales, Inc. - its their yacht salvage division
YachtSalvage.com - used boat sales

That's a survey to me for sure.
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Old 05-25-2017, 07:41 AM   #25
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why not visit the vessel to ascertain:

-- Does the boat interior smell moldy
-- The ER picture of the bilge pump area does not look healthy. Actually bad
-- I know 454s. Tough, strong, heavy, size precludes good ER maintenance.
-- Very old instruments
-- Does the boat smell gassy
-- Does the AC work
-- Fly bridge Isinglass is cloudy and needs replacement
-- Who owns the vessel?
-- Can clear title Be provided

Unless you can talk on the phone with a caring owner who will share video, pictures and history, be very careful if not paranoid on this vessel sight unseen.
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Old 05-25-2017, 07:50 AM   #26
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Originally Posted by Steve91T View Post
Sorry guys forgot to add that my insurance does not require a survey.
First reason to obtain a survey- you fell in love with the boat, and are not objective.

A survey is cheap in the world of boat bucks, and can save you massive dollars- or give you a negotiation point in the purchase process.
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Old 05-25-2017, 08:00 AM   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve91T View Post
I knew that would get your attention. Allow me to splain....



Very very long story short, we live on lake Norman in Charlotte, NC. We have a 20' Mariah open bow and use it about 3 times a month. We love being on the lake. So does our 3 yr old. She's been boating since she her mom would allow her to go.



So...



We fell in love with a 36' aft cabin Mainship. But we absolutely wouldn't be able to ship it to the coast once a year because the fly bridge would have to come off.



So then we decided on an express cruiser. We looked at a very nice 32' Maxum 3000 SCR. It was nice but we just don't want an express cruiser. But it has a decent living space and will be easy to ship.



Then we found this thing.



Used 1996 Mainship 31 Sedan Bridge, Folly Beach, Sc - 29412 - BoatTrader.com



We have done the worst thing we can possibly when shopping for a boat...fallin in love.



We've read everything we can find on the internet about it and people with families really seem to like it. We've watched every YouTube video we could find and it's the boat for us.



It looks like shipping only requires removal of the radar arch and Bimini. I can handle that.



Our plan is to enjoy nights on the lake and maybe in a year ship it to the coast and explore the intercoastal and eventually get it to the Bahamas.



So, I'm thinking about skipping the survey. Before you guys fall out of your chairs, let me explain...



From what I've read they are kinda like house inspectors. They know a little about everything, specialize in nothing. (I mean no offense)



I'd hire a mechanic to look over the boat for us. We can't see the boat for another week and a half. So I'm thinking about making an offer contingent on a river trial and mechanic inspection.



Any and all opinions, good or bad or awful, will be appreciated.



Thanks guys.

Steve


I would never purchase without a good qualified survey, no matter how good it looks. It's always good to get an independent perspective. It is cheap money in perspective of the entire transaction.
Don't let it scare you away and any good seller won't object.

I also purchase my last boat with an accepted offer with out seeing the boat. The contract was contingent on my visual inspection prior to surveys and I could withdrawn for no reason if I didn't like it. Just make sure you protect yourself.
Good luck.
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Old 05-25-2017, 08:27 AM   #28
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Thanks for all of the great responses! I guess my idea of using a mechanic was not one of my best. I will definitely get a survey.

I want to clear something up. The reason I want to put an offer in before seeing the boat is to take it off the market. But like I said in my original post, I would make sure it's clear that it's contingent on my visual inpection, the results of the survey and the results of a river test.

Speaking to the broker, who I believe to be a honest man, it's a very clean boat and I would make an offer based the information I have. Obviously I am in no way committing to purchase without the survey and my approval once I see the boat.

Our plans were to ship the boat back to our lake but actually we're thinking about keeping it on the coast. It's only a 3 1/2 hr from our house. So taking little trips up and down the intercoastal would be great. I know the fuel burn will be an issue.

When we get tired of traveling we'd have it shipped back to the lake.

Does that clear up my plan at all?
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Old 05-25-2017, 08:35 AM   #29
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No problem making an offer, subject to survey and sea trial, without seeing the boat. That is house I bought my last sailboat. I toured the boat, did a sea trial, survey and haul out all on the same day after flying my broker and myself down that morning.
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Old 05-25-2017, 09:00 AM   #30
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Have you shopped boats much before? I've found boats that look great in pictures, but have issues that were just out of the shot once you get on board. How long has this one been on the market? Does the layout really meet your needs? Personally, I wouldn't even make an offer without seeing it. If you're that hot for it, get on over and take a look, but it's probably not going anywhere anytime soon.
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Old 05-25-2017, 09:05 AM   #31
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I have a minute so I thought I'd explain why we like this boat. And please tell me if you guys think otherwise.

We like the layout. We like the back deck, the molded stairs to the fly bridge and the pass through to the bow. I want something with twin small blocks but I don't know if the fuel savings between big blocks and small blocks will make that much of a difference (let me know if this isn't true). I'd rather focus on the condition of the boat over the size of the engines.

I will run this thing slow. Possible even shut an engine down for short, slow cruises? How do these boats handle on one engine?

We're planning on exploring different cities and marines. We also want to spend the night on the hook often. The generator and AC will need to be working well. Any idea how much fuel a genset burns while running AC?

Our 3 yr old will absolutely love the bunk bed. If/when we decide to make another little person, we'll figure something out.

My wife is more excited than I am. That's pretty cool. It doesn't mean that we are going to buy a junk boat. I'm here for information. I've already learned how valuable a survey is.
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Old 05-25-2017, 09:26 AM   #32
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I have a minute so I thought I'd explain why we like this boat. And please tell me if you guys think otherwise. We have told you already

We like the layout. We like the back deck, the molded stairs to the fly bridge and the pass through to the bow. I want something with twin small blocks but I don't know if the fuel savings between big blocks and small blocks will make that much of a difference (let me know if this isn't true). I've owned both 350 and 454 CID, figure about 30% more fuel for the 454 plus it adds about 300 lbs per engine where you don't want it meaning the boat will have a tough time getting on plane I'd rather focus on the condition of the boat over the size of the engines.

I will run this thing slow. Possible even shut an engine down for short, slow cruises? How do these boats handle on one engine?

We're planning on exploring different cities and marines. We also want to spend the night on the hook often. The generator and AC will need to be working well. Do not run the gas genset while sleeping, Any idea how much fuel a genset burns while running AC? With those 454s, small in comparison

Our 3 yr old will absolutely love the bunk bed. If/when we decide to make another little person, we'll figure something out.

My wife is more excited than I am. That's pretty cool. It doesn't mean that we are going to buy a junk boat. I'm here for information. I've already learned how valuable a survey is.
You may want to go back and read the prior comments. Have your wife read them too. She needs to know what you're trying to talk her into.
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Old 05-25-2017, 09:54 AM   #33
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I wouldn't touch it with a barge pole. I think that either you're certifiable or you are pulling our legs. A salvage company? Plus you get to pay the commission on top. Good deal.

Try and listen to the knowledge on this site or stop the nonsense.
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Old 05-25-2017, 10:56 AM   #34
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"The broker sounds like an honest man".

If he was an honest broker he wouldn't be advising you to put in an offer sight unseen imo.

Good luck!
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Old 05-25-2017, 11:08 AM   #35
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Not necessarily true- the offer/deposit takes the vessel of the market. Standard practice, and there is nothing unusual about it.
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Old 05-25-2017, 11:34 AM   #36
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Easy guys. I'm here for advice and I am listening.

The boat has a clean title and has no damage history. This will also be verified and if it's not true, then we walk.

I am a little confused as to why so many of you are hung up on making an offer before seeing it. It's just an offer...nothing more. Am I missing something that could force me to purchase the boat? I will have all the contingencies that some of you mentioned. If it's not as pictured or described, or the survey reviels something that I don't like, then we walk.

I'm not trying to argue, just trying to understand.
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Old 05-25-2017, 11:53 AM   #37
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Making an offer sight unseen, is a bad negotiating technique, it shows that you have the hook firmly set and that all the seller has to do is play you correctly to land a big one. A far better plan is to feign a slight interest, show up on short notice "since I just happened to be in town on other business", verbally critique the boat during the walk-through with the seller, then make a low-ball offer. At the very least, you will discover the actual selling price, not the posted list price. After that it's up to you: how bad do you want this particular copy of a common boat and how much will you pay?
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Old 05-25-2017, 12:03 PM   #38
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Making an offer sight unseen, is a bad negotiating technique, it shows that you have the hook firmly set and that all the seller has to do is play you correctly to land a big one. A far better plan is to feign a slight interest, show up on short notice "since I just happened to be in town on other business", verbally critique the boat during the walk-through with the seller, then make a low-ball offer. At the very least, you will discover the actual selling price, not the posted list price. After that it's up to you: how bad do you want this particular copy of a common boat and how much will you pay?
Cannot agree with you.

The bottom line is not "lowball"- a sale is made when both parties come to an agreement. As a seller, I would take offense to anyone that came onboard, made snide comments about the boat, then made an offer- that party would be invited to take a walk of a short pier...

As almost all marine purchase contracts skew in favor of the buyer with regards to the ability to rescind the offer to purchase, where is the downside?
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Old 05-25-2017, 12:18 PM   #39
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I have sold boats to buyers SIGHT UNSEEN. When you make an offer it will be subject to a personal inspection, subject to survey, sea trial and mechanical inspection.
Do not plan a survey and hire surveyors until you have satisfied your personal inspection first. There is no need to spend money for surveyors until you see the condition of the boat for yourself.
However two things come to mind here. You say it is only 3.5 hours to the boat. I do not understand why you don't go to Myrtle Beach and look at a few different boats while you are there, plus this one. Find some other boats for sale in the same size and price range, the more boats you look at the easier it will be to say "this is the right one."
The other point is why is this boat listed with a company that specializes in salvage? Unlike CarFax I do not know of any place to check for damage history for boats that may be accurate. There are some services for that, but I question their accuracy. All of the disclaimers on the website are for boats that have had damage, but this boat has the same disclaimers. "REPORTED GOOD" doesn't sound encouraging.
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Old 05-25-2017, 12:32 PM   #40
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I am a little confused as to why so many of you are hung up on making an offer before seeing it.
For the exact same reason you wouldn't propose to a girl before going on a first date with her.

Come on dude, take a breather here. It's obvious you have boat fever. But take your time. Shop. Go see the boat then go see others and compare. Once you've seen half a dozen you might feel totally different about the boat you are so in love with today. Or it will confirm that you really like this layout and this type of boat. So at least when you do make an offer it's not going to be blindfolded like you are right now and it won't be like rolling the dice and hoping for the best.

Marinas and boat yards are filled with people who made impulsive decisions. Their boats are the ones that never get used.
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