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Old 09-10-2019, 06:12 PM   #1
City: Aquebogue
Join Date: Jun 2019
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34ft Marine Trader Trawler Leaking Decks

In the process of purchasing a 1988 34ft Marine Trader Trawler with the 135 HP Lehman Engine. In a recent survey all of the mechanical systems, engine generator sanitation appear to be OK but the surveyor noted high moisture levels and soft spots in the teak decking in some spots in the bow and stern of the boat. Side decks appear to be OK.

Should I do the repairs or should I walk away. Love the boat

Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated


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Old 09-10-2019, 06:51 PM   #2
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Almost any boat of that age with teak decks will have leaks. Should you walk, it depends on you and your DIY abilities. Do you like doing work on boats? If you do then it is a lot of hard work but not necessarily difficult technically. I would get rid of the teak decks completely and repair the fiberglass then paint the decks with Kiwigrip. You should also cut out the wet areas and replace the core before repairing the fiberglass and painting. Can you get the seller to cut the price to compensate for the leaks? Good luck.
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Old 09-10-2019, 07:05 PM   #3
City: Aquebogue
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Thanks for the information

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Old 09-10-2019, 07:46 PM   #4
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It`s more about $ than anything else. Does the price allow for the soft deck repairs, compared to other boats? What will the repair cost? Can you negotiate a reduction?
More generally, do not fall in love with a boat, a sure path to ignoring expensive issues. Be aware the estimated cost for the repair is rarely sufficient. Especially with wet deck repairs which are more "do and charge" than "quotable".
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Old 09-10-2019, 08:14 PM   #5
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34ft Marine Trader Trawler Leaking Decks

There are only three types of Marine Trader/CHB/Hershine/Sea Chief 34ís:

Those that have been loved, all the rot in core replaced, the decks stripped of teak and recored - These are way overpriced

Those that have rot. If the decks have rot in the core itís in other places too. These are priced to market.

Those that have had shoddy/cheap fixes, like removing the teak but ignoring the rot, or spraying the whole mess with Durabak. Run away.

The same 3 types also apply to the black iron fuel tanks.

They are easy to work on, have an awesome layout, and are remarkably seaworthy despite what you may hear. The Lehman is practically bulletproof, and sips fuel.

Many crimes are often committed by previous owners as this is a common ďFirst big boatĒ

I paid 30K for mine in 2001, have $65K invested and a few thousand hours of my labor very pleased with it despite the fact itís probably worth 25K, but I really enjoy working on boats... If my story doesnít scare you off go for it, a GB36 is mighty fine (I had a 32) but a lot more money.

There isnít anything I havenít taken apart, rebuilt, or improved PM me if you want any advice.
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Old 09-10-2019, 08:52 PM   #6
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Don't left love for the boat blind you to the massive cost of repairing soft decks, unless you DIY, in which case the massive part is your labor. If you are OK with that and EVERYTHING else is OK, maybe don't walk, yet.
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Old 09-10-2019, 09:05 PM   #7
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Normally I would say get a repair quote, and discount the selling price appropriately. But... what do mean by soft teak???
If an ice pick or small screwdriver goes through the teak and hits fiberglass, the boat has major issues.
If it is merely high moisture readings then i would fix the source of the leaks, likely recaulking the whole boat. Core repair is optional. If the deck is like a trampoline it needs to be re-cored.
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