Ask SAIL: Disposable Boat - Sail Magazine

Ask SAIL: Disposable Boat

 My partner has a 26-foot sailboat that has been neglected over the years. I have been tracking sale prices of boats this size, and everyone tells me it is a challenge selling a boat like this now...
Author:
Publish date:
Parting with an old boat is not just “sweet sorrow,” it can also be surprisingly difficult to arrange

Parting with an old boat is not just “sweet sorrow,” it can also be surprisingly difficult to arrange

Ann Shelley, Bellaire, Michigan

Q: My partner has a 26-foot sailboat that has been neglected over the years. I have been tracking sale prices of boats this size, and everyone tells me it is a challenge selling a boat like this now—especially given the economic climate.

My partner is spending about $300 a month for moorage, and I swear he is losing that and more by holding onto the boat. Places also won’t take it as a donation. Apparently, they only want boats that they are confident they can sell.

What does one do with a boat no one wants? How does one dispose of something made of fiberglass that does not naturally break down?

Don Casey Replies

A: Your math is correct. Your partner is spending more every year than the boat is worth in good condition, and it is never going to go up in value. At least from a financial standpoint, he should dispose of the boat. He’ll save $3,600 every year after.

Because the boat has little, if any, cash value, no charity will be interested. But if the boat is still basically sound, you just need to find a sailor or would-be sailor up for the challenge of breathing new life into an old boat. Good Old Boat Magazine hosts a web page at goodoldboats.com listing boats like your partner’s neglected little yacht. The listing is free, but asking prices are limited to not more than $5,000. In your case, with the meter running at $300 per month, the wise thing may be to offer this boat for free.

A second forum for disposing of unwanted boats is Bone Yard Boats, a quarterly newsletter that saves old boats from being broken up. Most listings here are for wood boats, more power than sail, but some fiberglass boats are included. The listing is free, but will likely be slower to yield results, as the offering does not appear until the next quarterly newsletter is published. You can find more information at boneyardboats.com.

Other possibilities are an ad on eBay, on craigslist, in a local “shopper” publication, or on the notice boards of nearby marinas, boatyards or sailing clubs. Your partner’s boat still has dream value. You just need to publicize its availability.

DonCasey

Don Casey has written many books and articles on marine maintenance and repairs

Got a question for our experts? Send it to sailmail@sailmagazine.com

Related

TOTW_PromoSite

SAIL's Tip of the Week

Presented by Vetus-Maxwell.Got a tip? Send it to sailmail@sailmagazine.comDitch the stress Owners of high-freeboard yachts best boarded via the stern sugar-scoop like to back them into a slip, but the process can be fraught on a windy day or when there’s a current running, ...read more

Sun-Odyssey-490-Bertrand_DUQUENNE-aft

Boat Review: Jeanneau Sun Odyssey 490

True innovation in monohull sailboat design can be a bit elusive these days. That’s not to say that there are no more new ideas, but it does seem that many new tweaks and introductions are a bit incremental: let’s say evolutionary rather than revolutionary. Just when it seems ...read more

X3M-family

Gear: X3M Flight blocks

Block PartyThe elegance of these new X3M Flight blocks from Ubi Maior conceals the fact that they can handle loads of up to 15 tons. Designed to be used with a variety of textile loops, as fixed or snatch blocks, the X3M blocks have resin frames to carry the loops and anodized ...read more

03-BAVARIA-C34_Interior-2k_2

Ask Sail: The Right Cabin Sole Finish

Q: I am working on refinishing my cabin floorboards. I have brought them home and sanded the old finish off and would appreciate comments on using varnish or polyurethane for the sole.— Danny Love, Grand Rivers, KYDON CASEY REPLIES Polyurethane is the better choice for a cabin ...read more

shutterstock_peterisland

The Caribbean Charter Trade Rides Again

“The BVI is now a bit like it was 20 years ago,” Josie Tucci, vice president of sales and marketing for sister companies Sunsail and The Moorings, told me last December. “Instead of full bars, it may be a guy on the beach with a cooler and a barbeque, but the spirit of the place ...read more

Dragging01

Waterlines: Fear of Dragging

If you have a paranoid personality, anchoring out can be a validating experience. On the one hand, it seems rather simple. You amble up to the bow of your boat, drop a lump of metal overboard, let out some rode and secure it somehow. Then you stroll back to your cockpit and ...read more